When Sherlock Holmes entered the public domain a few years back two different projects were announced and over time the version starring Sacha Baron Cohen has been completely buried by Guy Ritchie’s crack at the famous detective. When it comes to The Wizard of Oz, which came into the public domain in 1956 it is right now that a large number of adaptations are in the works and they don’t seem to bothered by the competition.
Rumours were running wild yesterday about Robert Downey Jr. teaming up with Sam Mendes in a prequel called Oz The Great and Powerful with Downey Jr. as the great wizard himself. Warner Bros. are getting into the Oz game with two different films, the first of which will be a straight forward remake of the classic film called simply Oz. The second film, Wizard of Oz, will be a more modern take as Dorothy’s granddaughter returns to Oz to fight evil. Universal also has a film they want to make; a film version of the hit musical Wicked as loved by theatregoers everywhere.
With all these new films in the works, Tim Burton’s version, Sci-Fi’s woeful Tin Man from 2007 and Over the Rainbow on the BBC Dorothy and her ruby slippers seem to be everywhere. I have no idea why now is the time for Oz to take over the cinema but with so many versions soon to trickling into cinemas at least one of them has to be good.