The production for Universal Picture’s adaptation of the Broadway musical Wicked is delayed. Universal Pictures had plans for the film to open on December 21, 2021. Universal did count on the COVID-19 pandemic to throw a wrench in their plans. It was rescheduled for March. Unfortunately for fans of the long-running Broadway musical, they will have to wait a little longer for the movie adaptation. Production is now planned for June 2022. It was originally to begin production in Atlanta but now has moved to the United Kingdom. Wicked will be the first production to use Universal’s newly built Sky Studios in Elstree. The delay ensures that technical aspects of production are taken care of before filming begins.
Universal’s adaptation of the Broadway musical is technically still in development. There is still a possibility the project could be discontinued. Although, director Jon M. Chu (Crazy Rich Asians, In the Heights) and producers Marc Platt and David Stone have been directed to keep moving forward with the film. Universal has been working on this feature adaptation since 2004. The has not looked good for Broadway musical adaptations. Cats and Dear Evan Hansen tanked in the box office and poor reviews. Since Wicked is one of the best-selling Broadway musicals of all time, it will have high expectations as a feature film.
From Broadway Musical to the Silver Screen
The Broadway Musical has been running since 2003, with widespread critical acclaim. It’s based on Gregory Maguire’s 1995 book Wicked: The Life and Times of the Wicked Witch of the West. Maguire’s book is a retelling of L. Frank Baum’s 1900 book The Wonderful Wizard of Oz and the 1939 Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer film The Wizard of Oz. Music and lyrics were made by Stephen Schwartz. The musical takes place before Dorothy ever sets foot in the Land of Oz. It’s told from the perspective of Glinda the Good Witch and Elphaba aka the Wicked Witch of the West. Idina Menzel, Kristin Chenoweth, and Joel Gray originated the main roles. Menzel played Elphaba, Chenoweth played Glinda, and Gray played the Wizard. The original cast album won a Grammy Award. Wicked‘s original Broadway musical production won three Tony Awards and seven Drama Desk Awards.
Just because it was celebrated on stage doesn’t mean it will be on the silver screen. Fans will just have to wait and see if Universal’s adaptation of the Broadway musical Wicked has been worth the wait.