Johnny DeppOur favorite flawed superhero, Robert Downey Jr., will not be playing the Wizard in 'Oz' after all. Last October, when director Sam Raimi was confirmed for the project, a prequel / origin story entitled 'Oz, the Great and Powerful,' Downey was said to be "in negotiations" for the title role, a circus wrangler who is transported by a tornado to a magical land. Now, The Hollywood Reporter says Downey is out, but Johnny Depp may be in.

Disney wants Depp, according to the report, but timing is an issue, since Depp is already committed to making 'The Lone Ranger' (also for Disney) after finishing work on Tim Burton's 'Dark Shadows' this spring. Disney wants to start production on 'Oz' later this year.

For at least 30 years, this has been a major problem for the studios: Too many high-budget productions and too few stars available to star in them. They desperately yearn for blockbuster returns on franchise projects, but won't make them unless they have one of the "golden few," someone who can, in their minds, guarantee a minimum box office return. Does it really matter to you, the movie-going public, if Downey or Depp make the picture? Are they interchangeable at this point of their careers?
Oz the Great and Powerful Movie Poster
Oz the Great and Powerful
Based on 42 critics

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categories Movies, Cinematical