Wizard of Oz remake in the works

Director Nicole Kassell, of TV drama Watchmen, exhilarated by task of re-imagining classic story — "these are profoundly iconic shoes to fill"
Wizard of Oz remake in the works

Judy Garland in the 1939  film The Wizard of Oz, a remake of which is being worked on by New Line Cinema.  

A remake of the 1939 classic film The Wizard Of Oz is in the works, New Line Cinema has announced.

Nicole Kassell, known for her work on acclaimed TV drama Watchmen, will direct the movie, the studio said.

It is the latest adaptation of L Frank Baum's beloved 1900 book The Wonderful Wizard Of Oz.

The best-known big-screen version is the 1939 musical starring Judy Garland as Dorothy, a young girl who finds herself transported to a fantasy world.

The film is a pop culture landmark. New Line said the new version will be a "fresh take" on the story. The studio is owned by Warner Bros so will be able to draw on elements from the classic film, including the ruby slippers.

Kassell said: 

While the 1939 musical is part of my DNA, I am exhilarated and humbled by the responsibility of re-imagining such a legendary tale. The opportunity to examine the original themes  — the quest for courage, love, wisdom and home  — feels more timely and urgent than ever. These are profoundly iconic shoes to fill, and I am eager to dance alongside these heroes of my childhood as we pave a newly minted yellow brick road!

Disney adapted Baum's Oz books for 2013 fantasy adventure Oz The Great And Powerful, with James Franco, Mila Kunis, Rachel Weisz and Michelle Williams starring. It received mixed reviews from critics but was a box office success.

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