Joey O’Hern Staff Writer
Once “Les Miserables” became a box office and award winning success it wasn’t shocking that NBC/Universal executives let it be known that the movie version of “Wicked,” the Broadway hit, would be moving into production faster than before. Now with “Oz: The Great And Powerful” making a splashy debut in theatres and hinting at a possible sequel I wouldn’t be shocked if something “Wicked” comes this way quicker than we could have ever imagined.
There’s a lot of talk of why “type” of movie should “Wicked” be? A big summer box office hit or the type of movie released towards the end of the year, one that hopes to be an Academy Award contender? Personally, if done right it could be the movie that gets the Oscar buzz going. But with a big name, and even bigger expectations who should be cast in the roles? Below are some of my suggestions for what I consider the 5 leads.
The Wizard:I’ve got 3 different choices: Steve Martin, Alec Baldwin, and Robin Williams. Personally, my absolute favorite would be Robin Williams. When I think of the Wizard I think of someone who can be endearing, slick, yet insecure and Robin could be just that. People might not think he could sing but correct me if I’m wrong didn’t he sing all of his own songs in “Aladdin”?
Madame Morrible: Just like the Wizard, this character has to come off as charming but ready to stab you in the back at any moment. My top 3 preferences: Jacki Weaver, Angela Lansbury, and Bette Midler. Honestly, I would LOVE to have the legendary Angela Lansbury take it but honestly, I’m not sure at her age if she could handle it. I say give the role to Bette. She can sing, she can act, and honestly this could be her “comeback role.”
Fiyero: Personally, I see no one else but Darren Criss in this role. There was a time where I would have said it’s got Zac Efron written all over it, but in the past couple of years he’s been pretty forward on the fact that he doesn’t want to do any more musicals for a while. Darren oozes the laidback quality and charm that Fiyero needs.
Glinda:Most of the “suggestions” on the Internet I feel suggest women who are, in my opinion, too old for the role. You need someone who can play the role young and then carry the character through the story from being a youth into her adulthood. My pick, Brittany Snow. Brittany has shown us in “Hairspray” she can not only sing but also play the girl who will do whatever it takes to be popular and get to the top. Sounds like the character of Glinda no? Even though I love Snow, I do think the hilarious Kristen Bell could make it work and make it work well.
Elphaba: The role that will honestly make or break someone’s career. It seems like fresh from her Oscar win everyone is screaming Anne Hathaway, me personally I don’t think she’d be able to sing the score the way it was written. So who do I think then? My 3 suggestions: Samantha Barks, Anna Kendrick and the wild card: Emily Blunt. Barks personally, could have been the break out star of “Les Mis” if she was allowed but I think she knew the show was meant for Anne and respected that. Would she ever do it? I doubt it; only because she’s got a strong loyalty to Cameron Mackintosh who I believe isn’t fond of “Wicked” composer Stephen Schwartz. Emily Blunt I’m not sure can even sing I’ve just always found her talented. But my pick? Anna Kendrick, there’s a video going around of her singing “For Good” with Kristen Chenoweth and after I saw it, I said “Did she just audition for the movie?” and if she did give her the role because it was incredible. Not to mention having, “Academy Award Nominee Anna Kendrick as Elphaba” has a nice ring to it.
So that is who I would cast. What are your thoughts? Did I get it right? Did I get it wrong? Let us know, I want to here from you!