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Robert Zemeckis Remaking 'Wizard of Oz' at WB? Say It Ain't So!

by
November 16, 2010
Source: Deadline

The Wizard of Oz

If you named five movies that you believe should never, ever, ever be remade, one of the first that comes to mind (for me at least) is The Wizard of Oz. The brilliantly entertaining 1939 classic starring Judy Garland still holds up today and is one of the greatest films ever made, musical or not. Sadly, its time has now come. Deadline says that Warner Bros is looking to develop a live-action remake of The Wizard of Oz and they're currently in "early talks" with Back to the Future director Robert Zemeckis to helm. Despite the level of talent involved, this is still something I am completely against. This really is a day I thought we'd never see!

Not many details are known yet, however Deadline says they plan to use the original script from the 1939 movie, which is credited to Noel Langley, Florence Ryerson and Edgar Allan Woolf, though over 19 writers worked on it at the time. This is obviously a jab back at Disney, who is trying desperately to get Sam Raimi's Oz: The Great and Powerful off the ground before any other number of Wizard of Oz related projects come to fruition. After ImageMovers was shut down by Disney in March, Zemeckis has been poised to make a big return to live-action, despite continuing work on his next film, an animated Yellow Submarine remake. He's also attached to a time travel project at Warner Bros called Timeless that we wrote about a few months ago.

I don't know about everyone else, but this idea disgusts me. I'm a huge fan of The Wizard of Oz and I truly thought it was one of those sacred movies we'd never see remade. What's next, Citizen Kane? Casablanca? Lawrence of Arabia? I know Zemeckis is the guy behind Back to the Future and Forrest Gump and Contact and Cast Away, but it doesn't matter, no one should be remaking this movie. I will admit I'm curious to see what their plans are and how, if at all, they're going to change this. But besides that, I can't see this turning out well, at all. Stick with original projects Zemeckis, don't ruin a beloved classic! What do you all think?

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  • Al
    ugh.
  • Keith
    I agree this movie should not be remade. However, I'll probably still go see it just to see what it is like.
  • Z
    Hopefully They do the one thing no one else has ever done make the ACTUAL story into a film. there is no way They could ever have a sliver of hope of remaking the brilliant 1939 film.
  • Micah
    Its not a like reboot of a classic movie completely kills the legitimacy of the first. I agree that this should not be made to the degree that once they get started visual effect will take the over and we could end up getting a piece of trash movie that is bad in its own right. They also could be going for the wonderland money too.
  • iceman
    i love how Hollywood has just totally scrapped any film that had an original thought and instead feels the need to continuously rape our collective childhood...
  • If it's going to be remade, I think it should not be a musical. That way, it would be different enough from the original and much more likely to be accepted. There would be the "musical version" from 1939 and the Zemekis' new "non-musical" version. I would be totally open to that, actually. But if all they want to do is make another music Wizard of Oz film, then I don't think it's a good idea.
  • Scott
    It'll be interesting to see what they come up with, but yea its utter blasphemy. Once this is done, and mostly likely succesful BO. That's a mere tipping point for a whole roast of other classics. I really hope they realize they're actually diluting the aura of Hollywood. Literally de-valuing they're own brand in the long run. Really sad actually.
  • Happy Camper
    Get ready for The Godfather remake next!!! haha hollywood needs to fall into the Pacific!
  • ryn
    Robert Zemeckis how do you plan to destroy your career? Zemeckis: Easy I'm going to remake Wizard of OZ.
  • nene
    Leave my favorite movie ever alone or ill send the wicked witch after you!
  • JeepFu
    Jeez...you know Hollywood is in trouble when it thinks remaking classic movies like this is a good idea.
  • Dave Lister, J.M.C.
    ...and in other news, McG to remake 'Citizen Kane'. If we're shitting on Hollywood classics, of the past, why not go all out?
  • MeNotYou
    No WAY they use the original script. That HAS to be incorrect info. They would crazy to try to do an exact remake. However, I'd love to see someone do a film that is based on a script that stays faithful to the original book. No one has ever done that. I say there's no way they use the 1939 script. That has to be a bad bit of intel.
  • Sydney
    This should never be done. The remakes are never as good and I don't think it's necessary. The movie holds up today better than it did then. Just leave Judy alone!!! The Wizard of Oz is a classic and should be left alone.
  • Tenacious V
    Talent or no, this movie should never, ever, ever be remade. Especially considering they will most likely make it cartoony, ridiculous, and in useless 3D.
  • Dave Lister, J.M.C.
    With Zemeckis directing, two casting proposals seem rather obvious... Tom Hanks as The Scarecrow, Jim Carrey as the Cowardly Lion. I don't have a guess, for Tin Man or The Wicked Witch; but the more I think about this the worse the idea seems. This can only end up paling, in comparison to the original.
  • nene
    Why mess with WOZ. Why not make one of the other books into a movie. WOZ was perfect he can't win with it. Pick another story. it is the only way it could succeed
  • Please read my open letter to Robert Zemeckis on my blog. Cheers.
  • tra la la la la di da
    While I agree that it shouldn't be remade the fact that's it's here now I'm curious an glad that it is in capable hands. It's hopefully not going to be some 3D, dark, CGI shit or anything. It could be dark, the first one was, but ya'll know what I mean. Still...why? Seriously? Are there not enough other crappy movies to be remade and made better before making something worse?
  • While I love the movie, it does re-interpret the actual book for the Wizard of Oz quite dramatically: in the book Oz is very real, not just some figment of Dorothy's imagination. There are also quite a few parts of the book completely left out. For example, Dorothy gets the hat the witch uses to control the flying monkeys, and actually commands them herself for awhile. So, if he were to make a version that sticks more closely to the books and includes all the things the original left out, it might be worth it. But, if he's just looking to do a reworking of the original then it's definitely NOT worth it. Using the original script shows they have a lack of imagination, and the last set of people who should be remaking this movie are those who lack imagination.
  • A5J4DX
    no!
  • matt
    Why are people so upset by this??? This is one story that demands a remake. As Great as the classic is it couldn't be any further from the original story it is based on. No one wants to touch a classic but no one wants to acknowledge that the movie strays so far away from the book. The only way this film will succeed is if it sticks to the original content and interprets the book for the TRUE Oz fans. But, it won't. Cuz most of you haven't read it and or care.
  • Ari
    I can understand why people would think this is a terrible move, some might say-would you re-paint the Mona Lisa no! but if the right director came along it could be just as good but more modern themed. I dont know about anyone else but Zemeckis is the man, Back to the future is arguably one of the greatest trilogies of all time.....at least it's not some no talent like say....michael bay but either way it seems like this film is going to happen why not Zemechis?
  • Shane
    Why don't they just remake every classic, every movie ever made, ever.....FUCK YOU HOLLYWOOD!
  • Hattori Hanzo
    You have to have one hellof an ego if you think you are good enough to remake something like The Wizard of Oz ... Well Mr. Zemeckis, you were good in your day; we'll miss you.
  • Jackson
    Why must Robert Zemeckis be such a douche to cinematic achievement?
  • yep
    I honestly don't care if Wizard of Oz is remade. In fact, I'll welcome this remake if it's done right.
  • Solo Calrissian
    SERIOUSLY... dont do this. do your own take ala "the Wiz" & "Tin man (mini series)," but for all thing sacred please do NOT do a shot for shot remake. PLEASE
  • 97.6
    Oh please, oh please, oh please. Can't you all see? Realize this gift as a once-in-a-lifetime experience to bitch and moan for years on end? Rejoice fanboys, rejoice!!! This wreck will unfold slooowly, like a runaway supertanker tacking toward a nuclear power plant. Pray that Lucas jumps on board, that Hanks signs-up, Ford too. This can only warm a true cynics heart.
  • amy
    Seriously a pathetic idea. Literally makes me weep. There are a lot of kids that haven't seen The Wizard of Oz but those who have LOVE it and it totally holds up. That comic called Dorothy is an interesting take on the story. Flash-sideways is an ok way to go. But please don't remake. BLECH.

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