June 16, 2024 The voice of all eras.

Ariana Grande and Cynthia Erivo Defy Gravity in the Captivating First Look of the Musical Film ‘Wicked’

February 16, 2024

February 16, 2024

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The first trailer, unveiled during Super Bowl LVIII alongside ‘Deadpool 3,’ showcased the magical and enchanting world of the upcoming cinematic adaptation.

It’s finally out—and the Internet is abuzz with excitement. Dropped during the most-hyped time in America, the reimagined version of the beloved Broadway play has sparked diverse reactions among fans, with Ariana Grande and Cynthia Erivo at the forefront of the buzz.

Set against the backdrop of the show’s signature anthem, Defying Gravity, the sneak peek of the two-part movie provided an inside look into the magical Land of Oz. Ariana stuns in pink as Glinda the Good Witch, while Emmy-, Grammy-, and Tony-winning powerhouse Cynthia Erivo plays the iconic Wicked Witch of the West—main characters who are set to develop an unlikely but profound friendship, navigating through their opposing personalities and viewpoints.

What We Know So Far About the Musical Fantasy Film ‘Wicked’

Showcased in a kaleidoscope of colors and magical wonders, Jon M. Chu’s Land of Oz unfolds the story of the legendary world that predates Dorothy’s arrival. The trailer begins with the meeting of Glinda and Elphaba as students of Shiz University and eventually builds up to a scene when Ariana tries to appease Cynthia by saying, “Don’t be afraid,”  to which the Wicked Witch of the West responded: “I’m not afraid. It’s the Wizard who should be afraid of me.”

The one-minute teaser also introduces stars like Michelle Yeoh, who plays Madam Morrible, the Head Mistress of Shiz University. Jonathan Bailey from Bridgerton takes on the role of Fiyero Tigerlaar, the love interest of both Elphaba and Glinda. Notably, pop culture icon Jeff Goldblum portrays the Wizard himself with his iconic line: “The best way to bring folks together is to give them a real good enemy.”

Adding to the vibrant cast are Ethan Slater as Boq, Marissa Bode as Nessarose, and Bowen Yang as Pfannee, contributing to the ensemble of colorful characters in the movie.

To remain authentic to the original narrative, Chu’s adaptation of Wicked was filmed in two parts to ensure that no crucial aspect of the story gets overlooked or omitted. In the words of the Crazy Rich Asians director: “As we prepared the production over the last year, it became impossible to wrestle the story of ‘Wicked’ into a single film without doing some real damage to it. As we tried to cut songs or trim characters, those decisions began to feel like fatal compromises to the source material that has entertained us all for so many years. We decided to give ourselves a bigger canvas and make not just one ‘Wicked’ movie but two! With more space, we can tell the story of ‘Wicked’ as it was meant to be told while bringing even more depth and surprise to the journeys of these beloved characters.”

Film producer Marc Platt also emphasized that condensing the entire story into a single film would result in a four-hour movie, inevitably leading to the omission of several songs. “We want to satisfy the fans of the musical.”

While opinions on the trailer vary, one thing remains certain—anticipation is running high to witness the unfolding magic of Wicked. As diverse perspectives emerge, the collective excitement for the movie’s release is a testament to the widespread eagerness to see how this enchanting story comes to life on the big screen.

Are you ready to watch and experience the first chapter of Wicked in cinemas on November 27? Mark your calendars for an unforgettable journey to the Land of Oz. Brace yourself to be captivated by the magic and enchanting tunes, especially Defying Gravity.

Cover image credit: Ariana Grande / Vanity Fair

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