For the past 24 hours, movie bloggers have been howling like so many flying monkeys about Deadline’s report that filmmaker Robert Zemeckis is in talks to direct a live-action remake of The Wizard of Oz based directly on the screenplay for the 1939 classic. Despite Zemeckis’ pedigree as the visionary behind films like Back to the Future, Who Framed Roger Rabbit, Forrest Gump, and The Polar Express, most people found the idea of trampling on such hallowed cinematic ground as Oz more terrible than great.
Well, everyone can calm down. While a source at the studio confirms to EW that Zemeckis did indeed take a meeting to bat around the idea of an Oz remake, Zemeckis’ rep tells EW that the filmmaker is definitely not going to pursue the project, saying, “The reports that Robert Zemeckis is doing The Wizard of Oz are absolutely false.” Discussions about the remake were still very preliminary and nebulous — and Zemeckis (who is currently working on a 3D remake of The Yellow Submarine) was the studio’s first choice if it was going to proceed — so odds are the idea will be shifted to the back burner for now.
What do you think? Are you relieved at this news? Disappointed?