The world of Wizard of Oz is about to get the horror treatment from Launch Pad and Hit List alum Mike Van Waes. New Line Cinema recently picked up a pitch tied to the classic 1900 L. Frank Baum from the up and coming screenwriter, the Tracking Board has confirmed.
The project, which was first reported by The Hollywood Reporter, is in the early stages of development but will be set in the universe made popular by the 1939 film starring Judy Garland. Since the IP has entered the public domain, there have been many iterations of Dorothy, the cowardly Lion, the Tinman, the Scarecrow and the cackling Wicked Witch of the West on the big screen and television. This includes the live-action Oz the Great and Powerful starring James Franco, Michelle Williams, and Mila Kunis as well as the 1975 musical The Wiz starring Diana Ross and Michael Jackson which later became a live TV event on NBC. ABC used characters from Oz in Once Upon a Time and more recently, NBC’s Emerald City has given another twist to the popular tale.
With Van Waes’ new project and Emerald City, we might be seeing another surge of Wizard of Oz projects in Hollywood. Story details about Van Waes’ pitch have been kept under wraps.
Van Waes is a fairly new name to the scene, having just sold a handful of pitches and scripts. His Black List spec Hammerspace is at Warner Bros., and he sold a book proposal called Peeves to Harper Collins, which was nabbed by Fox Animation.
Dino-Ray Ramos | Staff Writer