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Stephen Schwartz reveals more about planned 'Wicked' movie

October 18, 2010 | 10:18 am


"Wicked" in 3-D? Lea Michele as Elphaba, the bad witch?

In a recent interview with Broadway.com, composer Stephen Schwartz revealed details about the planned film version of "Wicked," adapted from the hit musical that has been running for close to seven years on Broadway. 

The composer told the website that the movie will "probably be in 3-D, because that's where all [movies] are going." He said a decision about a director will be coming soon, with "Glee" creator Ryan Murphy among the possible contenders. "We like Ryan and had a great meeting with him," Schwartz said of the director. "I've always been a big fan of his."

Other directors whose names have been mentioned as contenders include J.J. Abrams, Rob Marshall and James Mangold.

As for casting, Schwartz said that Michele, who stars in "Glee," is "fantastic," and that "and it'd be silly to say she wouldn't be under consideration [for the role of Elphaba]."

"Wicked" is still in the planning phases, and there is no start date or release date set for the movie. The film is being made by Universal, which also had a hand in producing the Broadway version of the musical.

Based on the book by Gregory Maguire, "Wicked" is a prequel to "The Wizard of Oz" that follows the relationship between Glinda and Elphaba, who grow up to be witches with starkly different temperaments.

The Broadway production was nominated for multiple Tony Awards -- it lost the best-musical award to "Avenue Q" -- and has toured the country with different casts. Times theater critic Charles McNulty noted in 2007 that the musical "hasn't exactly been a critics' darling. Complaints about its bloated book and overwrought score stuffed with fulsome anthems are hard to refute."

-- David Ng

Photo: A scene from the 2007 production of "Wicked," starring Megan Hilty (left) and Eden Espinosa, at the Pantages in Hollywood. Credit: Lawrence K. Ho / Los Angeles Times

[Updated: a previous version of this post incorrectly referred to the protagonists of "Wicked" as sisters.]


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Comments () | Archives (30)

Glinda and Elphaba aren't sisters.

Glinda (Galinda) and Elpheba are not sisters....they are college roommates who hate each other, and then become friends.

Please cast Eden Espinoza. Lea Michele is nowhere near is talented as Eden.

How about looking at the current cast in the London production to be in the movie version, especially Lee Mead, who plays Fiyero. Mead actually has put substance into a very blandly-written part and has an amazing singing voice. Rachel Tucker as Elphaba also deserves consideration. This current London cast is the best I've seen!

Not to get picky..but Glinda and Elphaba are not sisters...Elphaba's sister in the play is Nessarose who turns out to be the Wicked Witch of the East, who, as everybody knows, is killed when Dorothy's house lands on her.

I think instead of casting Lea Michelle who is an Idina Menzel clone, you should look at the London cast. Rachel Tucker, Louise Dearman and especially Lee Mead who gives more depth to a 2 dimensional character than has been done in the past.

I think that instead of casting Lea Michelle, who is an Idina Menzel clone, you should audition the current London cast, Rachel Tucker is a stunning Elphaba, Louise Dearman and lovely Glinda and Lee Mead a very handsome price with a marvelous stage presence and voice. Mr. Mead brings a new depth to a basically two dimensional character.

While Lea Michelle is a good choice, I think someone with experience in the role would be best suited. that's why I would love to see Eden Espinosa as Elphaba.
I even started a facebook petition if anyone else wants to join, please do.
I'm open to who would be Galinda, Megan Hilty is my favorite.
3d sounds cool, as long as its filmed in 3d and not given the 3d treatment after filming is done.



Is Wicked really a prequel? (aka a story thats set previously to the main story) If I got the story right its more off a parallel story than a prequell even thou its starts earlier.

really Lea Michelle would be fine and it's not like she doesnt have experince just not in the role but has sang defying gravity quite well

Kristin Chenoweth and Idina Menzel shoud be casted without a doubt. Wicked would not be the same with out them. They made the show last and it would be wrong not to have them play their roles. The rest of the movie cast should all be from the Original Broadway too!

I think that either the original broadway cast should do this or the current if possible because I saw them a few days ago and they were fantastic!

How about Lea Michele as young Elphie and Idina Menzel as Elphie after college? Do similar casting so that college Glinda is played by one actress and Glinda after college is played by Kristin Chenoweth. Appeal to youth masses and Broadway fans alike!

While I love Glee and Lea Michele, I would really like Elphaba to be played by someone who already played her...I really liked how the Rent movie was carried out. They stayed pretty true to the musical and had as many of the original actors as possible. Just please NOT Lea Michele.

no offence to the london-lovers, but I'm pretty sure they're not going to be looking beyond US borders for their cast.

I think they should stick with Originals, Idena and Kristen.
They gave the charecters life and seem more attatched to them at heart.
and I have yet to see a better Glinda that Kristen haha

Oh and and adding to my previouse post, Lea Michelle shouldnt be cast just because she's in Glee. Now if they did Spring Awakening into a movie, im all for Lea being Wendla, since she is the original.

I'm not really a big Glee/Lea Michele fan, so the idea of casting her as Elphaba doesn't really appeal to me. I don't even have a specific actress in mind - I like Eden, and there are also a lot of capable actresses who've played the part I'd love to see cast! I'm pretty sure Kristin and Idina have taken themselves out of the running at this point, which is a shame, but I'm hopeful the moviemakers will find a brilliant cast. (:

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