The Wicked Movie Will Have One Very Long Intermission
Good news, fellow Ozians. The heavily anticipated Wicked movie starring Cynthia Erivo as Elphaba and Ariana Grande as Glinda will have a very long intermission, as it’s now been split into two separate films.
Breaking the news from his “OzPhone,” director Jon M. Chu wrote that production ran into trouble trying to pare down the mega-musical for film. “It became increasingly clear that it would be impossible to wrestle the story of WICKED into a single film without doing some real damage to it,” Chu wrote. “As we tried to cut songs or trim characters, those decisions began to feel like fatal compromises to the source material that has entertained us all for so many years.”
So, rather than cutting songs like “Wonderful” and “Sentimental Man,” or doing away with Dr. Dillamond and his absolute banger “Something Bad,” Universal decided to split the movie into two separate films. “With more space, we can tell the story of WICKED as it was meant to be told while bringing even more depth and surprise to the journeys of these beloved characters,” said Chu.
Chu ended his announcement by pledging that stars Erivo, Grande, and the entire production of Wicked will “create nothing less than an experience that honors its foundation for all the fans who’ve waited for this movie” and promises that the decision to split the film into two parts will lead to “a thrilling, fantastical world full of dynamic characters.”
While it might seem like an insane move to turn a two-hour musical into a four-hour cinematic experience, the decision might not be as crazy as it seems. Wicked is a beloved IP a la Dune, which also opted for the two-part model—successfully, at least with part one. Splitting Wicked in two also doubles the film’s awards potential and provides more room for some original songs from almost EGOT-er Stephen Schwartz. And, let’s be honest: ending the first film with “Defying Gravity” could be absolutely breathtaking.
The first Wicked film is scheduled to hit theaters in December 2024, which most likely means you’ll have to wait at least another year until you can hear Erivo rip into “No Good Deed.” But, if Chu is right, as I suspect he is, it should be worth the wait.
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