Will Robert Downey Jr. Relocate To Emerald City?
Robert Downey Jr. is rumored to be in talks to star as the Wizard in Disney’s prequel to The Wizard of Oz.
That’s according to the Los Angeles Times, which early last month reported that Alice in Wonderland producer Joe Roth is developing the project, then called Brick. Apparently, the title has since been changed to either Oz, the Great and Powerful or simply The Great Powerful, depending upon which source you believe.
Buoyed by the success of Alice, Disney is reportedly looking to begin shooting next spring.
The scuttlebutt has two top candidates to direct: Sam Mendes (American Beauty, Road to Perdition) and Adam Shankman (Hairspray, Bedtime Stories). Mendes’ name has been mentioned here a lot lately, as he left the long-in-development Preacher to direct the next Bond film, which was put on hold earlier this week because because of financial uncertainties surrounding MGM. So, Mendes just may have an opening in his schedule.
The script, by The Whole Nine Yards writer Mitchell Kapner, borrows from the L. Frank Baum books to tell the story of the Wizard, who was a charlatan in a traveling circus before he mysteriously arrived in Oz. The film is one of at least three Oz-related projects winding their way through Hollywood.