The world created by L. Frank Baum’s The Wonderful Wizard of Oz has inspired numerous adaptations – most famously and magically the 1939 Judy Garland staring The Wizard of Oz, and most recently Sam Raimi’s Oz: The Great and Powerful – but we’ve never quite seen the version of the Yellow Brick Road and the Cowardly Lion that could be on the way from Syfy.
To pull off this latest incarnation, the network is teaming up with Wanted and Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter director Timur Bekmambetov for a new, surely extreme, miniseries called Warriors of Oz.
According to Deadline, the project is described as:
A fantasy-action re-imagining of the classic story in which a warrior from present day Earth is transported to a post-apocalyptic future Oz where he must team up with three other warriors, Heartless, Brainless, and Coward, in order to defeat the evil Wizard who has enslaved the land.
Naturally, this description poses a few questions, but the biggest of those is: will Bekmambetov’s warrior be a fearsome Dorothy Gale? Obviously, the word “re-imagining” gives the project a fair amount of leeway in terms of straying from the established continuity of the source material, but one would imagine that they would have to hold on to Dorothy – easily the story’s most iconic character.
Beyond that, it’s not like television has an over-abundance of take-charge, action hero roles for women, so putting that kind of character in the lead for this project would surely open up the show’s appeal to an audience that might be resistant to it if they went in another direction.
Speaking of other directions, this isn’t the only Oz based TV project presently in the works, though there hasn’t been much chatter about Warner Bros. “Game of Thrones in the Oz world” project, The Red Brick Road, since March.
So, if both projects make it to air, which one will come out on top, and besides that, are people really ready for all that gritty rebooting of these beloved characters and this world that is so closely tied to warm and fuzzy childhood memories? After all, some of us have only recently managed to forget Return to Oz.
As with all things, time will tell, but Wizard of Oz fans can always just ignore both of these and feast on the IMAX 3D release of the original that is due to hit theaters on September 20th.
Stay tuned to Screen Rant for updates on The Red Brick Road and Warriors of Oz.