6 items from 2015
Dorothy is definitely not in Kansas anymore. In fact, she may be in New York City.
NBC has announced details for its casting call for the role of Dorothy for its upcoming production of “The Wiz Live!” Casting directors are seeking a young African-American woman between 18 and 27 years old. She “must have an extraordinary voice that can tell a story, as well as be mature with a youthful energy.”
The casting call is set for 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. on June 6 at Telsey + Co. at 311 W. 43rd St. on the 10th floor in Midtown Manhattan. Candidates need to be prepared to sing “Home,” “Ease on Down the Road” and “Be a Lion” from the original Broadway production of “The Wiz.”
- Reece Ristau
Stephanie Mills is returning to Oz.
The Broadway star who originated the role of Dorothy in the musical adaptation of “The Wonderful Wizard of Oz” is set to appear in NBC’s upcoming live broadcast of the play, it was announced at the network’s upfront presentation on Monday. She will play Auntie Em but will no doubt have plenty of advice for the new talent that NBC hopes to find to play its leading lady with the fancy footwear.
NBC announced in March that “The Wiz” would be its next live musical production. This one comes with a twist compared to NBC’s previous productions “The Sound of Music” and “Peter Pan” because it will be co-produced by Cirque du Soleil’s new stage theatrical division, which will also help adapt the show for the Broadway stage.
- Whitney Friedlander
The numbers are in and it turns out, MGM’s highly anticipated big screen adaptation of L. Frank Baum’s The Wonderful Wizard of Oz is a box office flop. Apparently most moviegoers weren’t really into the idea of a farm girl riding a tornado to an alternate world, stealing some dead woman’s shoes and frolicking down a yellow brick road arm in arm with a cowardly lion, tin man and scarecrow. After going through a handful of directors before landing Victor Fleming and then struggling through a number of production challenges including some serious injuries on set, The Wizard of Oz wound up running MGM a whopping $2.7 million tab, but then only went on to accumulate a total of $3 million during its theatrical run. Tack on distribution and various other costs, and that makes The Wizard of Oz a $1.1 million loss for the company. Clearly it’s »
- Perri Nemiroff
After having success with The Sound of Music and Peter Pan, NBC is moving ahead with another live musical event: The Wiz. The network will rework the 1975 Broadway hit that was inspired by L. Frank Baum's book The Wonderful Wizard of Oz. Even more exciting? Cirque du Soleil will be involved this time. The live performance is scheduled for Dec. 3, and there are plans to bring the show to Broadway in 2016. Diana Ross and Michael Jackson starred in the Oscar-nominated movie version, which came out in 1978 and featured an entirely African-American cast. In case you're not familiar, here's the trailer! »
NBC’s next live musical event will come with a literal twist (or, more likely, dozens of ‘em).
The network announced on Monday that executive producers Craig Zadan and Neil Meron — the men behind NBC’s live versions of The Sound of Music and Peter Pan — will mount a live production of The Wiz in partnership with Cirque du Soleil on Dec. 3. Cirque’s new stage theatrical division will then present The Wiz as a major Broadway revival for the 2016-17 season.
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Tony-winning director Kenny Leon will »
NBC will ease on down the road for its next live musical television event: “The Wiz” will take centerstage Dec. 3, the net announced Monday.
“The Wiz” marks NBC’s third such production, following the success of “The Sound of Music Live!,” starring Carrie Underwood, and “Peter Pan Live!,” in which Allison Williams played the title character.
“The Wiz” will be co-produced by Cirque du Soleil’s new stage theatrical division. After the television event, the musical will make its Broadway revival for the 2016-17 season, also presented by Cirque du Soleil.
Casting for both projects has yet to be announced.
Craig Zadan and Neil Meron, who exec produced NBC’s “Sound of Music” and “Peter Pan,” return as exec producers. Kenny Leon directs both the TV production and the Broadway revival, along with Harvey Fierstein, who will contribute new material to the original Broadway book by William F. Brown.
- Elizabeth Wagmeister
6 items from 2015
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