The Wizard of Oz gets a remake, and a thousand angels cry

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Rumors about a possible remake/re-visiting of The Wizard of Oz are nothing new, so it wasn’t terribly frightening when I heard that someone wanted to do a live-action version of the famous tale. But the more I read into the latest rumor, the more frightened I became. Warner Brothers is apparently in talks with Robert Zemeckis to produce a live-action version based on the original 1939 script. Yes, they plan on using the script that produced one of the most beloved stories in American film history to make a new film, probably starring someone ridiculous like Dakota Fanning or Zac Efron.

Zemeckis is an interesting figure. On the one hand, he made Beowulf and What Lies Beneath. On the other hand, he is responsible for Forrest Gump, Castaway, and Back To The Future. But the heart of the matter is that Warner Brothers has decided that nothing in Hollywood is sacred. It’s one thing to make a prequel or re-imagining of the Oz universe, it’s another to just steal the script from a great film and try to make some money off of it. No actors or writers are currently attached, but honestly, how will they…

Rumors about a possible remake/re-visiting of The Wizard of Oz are nothing new, so it wasn't terribly frightening when I heard that someone wanted to do a live-action version of the famous tale. But the more I read into the latest rumor, the more frightened I became. Warner Brothers is apparently in talks with Robert Zemeckis to produce a live-action version based on the original 1939 script. Yes, they plan on using the script that produced one of the most beloved stories in American film history to make a new film, probably starring someone ridiculous like Dakota Fanning or Zac Efron.

Zemeckis is an interesting figure. On the one hand, he made Beowulf and What Lies Beneath.  On the other hand, he is responsible for Forrest Gump, Castaway, and Back To The Future.  But the heart of the matter is that Warner Brothers has decided that nothing in Hollywood is sacred. It's one thing to make a prequel or re-imagining of the Oz universe, it's another to just steal the script from a great film and try to make some money off of it. No actors or writers are currently attached, but honestly, how will they make this as good as the original? I just don't see it happening.

The Wizard of Oz was a grand success, despite going up against Ninotchka, Wuthering Heights, Stagecoach, Mr. Smith Goes to Washington, and a little film called Gone With the Wind. The film had strong writing, a stellar cast, timeless musical numbers, and a stunning color palette that really showed off Technicolor film. It also holds up surprisingly well to repeat viewings, and ages gracefully to boot. I just can't imagine why someone would take all of that into consideration, and still declare "yeah, people don't remember this story, lets sneak it into our 2014 release schedule."