What Is Wicked, The 2024 Movie?

By z20z.com 11 Min Read

Summary

  • Wicked, a highly anticipated movie musical adaptation, is set to be released in November 2024 and will be directed by Jon M. Chu, known for his work on popular musical projects like In the Heights and Crazy Rich Asians.
  • The Wicked musical, based on Gregory Maguire’s book, has become one of the most popular Broadway shows in recent history, with a long run on Broadway, a national tour, and a successful run in London’s West End.
  • The story of Wicked primarily follows the characters of Elphaba and Galinda before they become the Wicked Witch of the West and Glinda the Good, exploring their complex friendship and the injustices they face in the land of Oz. The movie adaptation will be split into two parts, premiering in 2024 and 2025 respectively.


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Hollywood is no stranger to movie musical adaptations, but 2024’s Wicked is sure to be a major movie event when it releases in November 2024. Wicked tells the story of Elphaba and Galinda, two witches attending Shiz University who become roommates, then unlikely best friends. As prejudice causes tension in their land of Oz, Elphaba dedicates her time to becoming powerful enough to change the injustices happening around her. However, Elphaba’s story changes before her very eyes, and she must continue doing what she believes is right, even when others rewrite history after her.


Wicked is set to be released on November 27, 2024. The movie is being directed by Jon M. Chu whose filmography includes popular musical projects such as Jem and the Holograms and In the Heights, and other films like Crazy Rich Asians and Now You See Me 2. The screenplay is written by Winnie Holzman and Stephen Schwartz, who previously wrote the Broadway musical that the film is based on. Though the film suffered many delays due to the COVID-19 pandemic and the 2023 SAG-AFTRA strike, the Wicked movie and its sequel will finally premiere in 2024 and 2025 respectively.


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Wicked Is A 2024 Movie Adaptation Of The Broadway Stage Musical

Wicked Ariana Grande and Cynthia Erivo as Glynda and Elphaba Instagram Preview


A significant aspect of the anticipation surrounding Wicked is the fact that the movie is being adapted from an incredibly popular Broadway musical of the same name. Composed by Stephen Schwartz of Pippin fame, and written by Winnie Holzman, Wicked was in development throughout the early 2000s. Early on, Schwartz brough on Tony award-winning actress Kristen Chenoweth to play Galinda, and later, Idina Menzel earned the role of Elphaba. Wicked was initially performed in the spring of 2003 in San Francisco, then after intense revisions, made its way to Broadway, wherein it has run continuously into the present day.


Wicked has certainly become one of the most popular Broadway musicals in recent history. While Broadway often shows certain musicals over an abundance of years, Wicked’s long-held spot on Broadway is proof of its popularity. This is only helped by the fact that Wicked still has a national tour showing throughout the United States and also, has been running at London’s West End since 2006. Wicked has been nominated for and won several awards, including Tony’s for Best Actress, Best Scenic Design, Best Costume Design, and Best Musical of the Decade by Entertainment Weekly.

The Wicked Musical Is Based On Gregory Maguire’s 1995 Book

The Wicked Witch of the West (Margaret Hamilton) intimidates Dorothy (Judy Garland) in The Wizard of Oz.


Before Wicked was a musical though, it was a book by Gregory Maguire. “Wicked: The Life and Times of the Wicked Witch of the West” is a 1995 book written by Gregory Maguire with illustrations by Doug Smith. The book is the first in a longer series called “The Wicked Years.” Ultimately, Wicked and its consequent books were all inspired by L. Frank Baum’s 1900 novel, “The Wonderful Wizard of Oz,” which was later turned into the iconic 1939 movie, The Wizard of Oz. Ultimately, the books are something of a revisionist history on Baum’s original story.


While Maguire was certainly inspired by The Wizard of Oz, and his writings take place within Baum’s world, Wicked has other important elements to it. For example, before writing Wicked, Maguire was curious about the concept of evil, and whether calling something evil could become a self-fulfilling prophecy. This concept ultimately became the basis of Elphaba’s story. After being called evil all her life because of her skin color, Elphaba’s good intentions and misunderstood story morphed, and she eventually turned into the Wicked Witch of the West that audiences have long feared.

Wicked Primarily Follows Elphaba & Glinda Before Becoming The 2 Most Notable Witches In The Land Of Oz


Wicked has a plot that is quite different from The Wizard of Oz. The book, musical, and 2024 film all follow Elphaba and Galinda, before they were the Wicked Witch of the West and Glinda the Good. The story begins with the pair starting their first year at Shiz University, where they learn to hone their magic. While Elphaba is serious and antisocial, Galinda is lighthearted and bubbly. The two could not be more opposite, but when they become roommates, an unlikely bond grows between them that is vastly different from the relationship depicted in The Wizard of Oz.


Though Elphaba and Galinda learn to overcome their differences, the world outside of Shiz continues to make their lives difficult. Elphaba’s green skin makes her an outsider, so even when Galinda tries to make her “beautiful,” she still faces injustice from the Ozians around her. And though Elphaba starts to be seen by her peers, there are still others hoping to take her down. As a young girl named Dorothy Gale hovers over the land of Oz, Elphaba’s future which she planned out so perfectly, begins to unravel, and she becomes a villain in her own story.

Elphaba will be played by Cynthia Erivo while Galinda is played by Ariana Grande in the Wicked movies.

How Wicked Connects To The Wizard Of Oz

The Tinman, Dorothy, Scarecrow, and The Lion in The Wizard of Oz


As previously mentioned, Wicked and The Wizard of Oz are closely linked. When Gregory Maguire wrote Wicked, he definitely had L. Frank Baum’s novel and the 1939 movie in mind. For example, both Wicked and The Wizard of Oz take place in the land of Oz and the two stories share characters. Elphaba is The Wizard of Oz’s Wicked Witch of the West, while Galinda is Glinda the Good. Other details like the flying monkeys also connect the stories. For the most part, Wicked expands on the politics and societal issues of Oz that The Wizard of Oz glosses over.


However, the biggest link between Wicked and The Wizard of Oz is Dorothy.Though Wicked is a prequel to The Wizard of Oz, the two plots do overlap. Near the end of Wicked, Dorothy falls into Oz via the tornado and the events of The Wizard of Oz come to pass.

The only difference is that the story is from Elphaba’s perspective, making everything much more tense and upsetting.


Rather than Dorothy being the hero of the story, she is essentially the villain. In this way, Wicked and The Wizard of Oz tell the same story from different angles.

Wicked Will Be Split Into 2 Movies

Cynthia Erivo as Elphaba facing away from the camera and holding a broom in a shadowy room for Wicked


Although the Wicked story is one book and one full musical, the movie musical adaptation will have two movies. There will be Wicked: Part One in November 2024 and Wicked: Part Two in November 2025. It isn’t entirely clear why the story is being split into two, but it seems likely that the movies will delve even deeper into the lore of Oz and Elphaba. With two movies, the franchise can take its time with the story and make it even better. Either way, the upcoming Wicked movies are no doubt going to be a huge Hollywood moment in 2024.


  • WickedThe Wizard of Oz
    Release Date2024-11-271939-08-25
    DirectorJon M. ChuVictor Fleming
    CastMarissa Bode, Ethan Slater, Jeff Goldblum, Jonathan Bailey, Cynthia Erivo, Ariana Grande, Michelle YeohMargaret Hamilton, Jack Haley, Bert Lahr, Ray Bolger, Judy Garland
    GenresMusical, Adventure, FantasyFamily, Musical, Adventure, Fantasy

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