Variety reports that Mike Johnson, who co-directed 'Corpse Bride' alongside Tim Burton, will helm a stop-motion/CG film called 'Oz Wars' for Vanguard Films. Written by Rob Moreland and Athena Gam, this is another re-jiggling of the Oz story. This time, Dorothy gets "caught up in a whirlwind of warrior witches, black magic, martial arts and monsters against a contemporary backdrop."
Vanguard head John Williams says the film will be for kids and adults, the world of Oz "reimagined using stop-motion to create a world that's dark, slick, sexy and dangerous." According to him, the film will also be able to be whipped up at "an unprecedentedly economical cost point" due to new stop-motion software. That, naturally, means that this new project is pretty close to a sure thing. The only question that remains is whether Johnson has the same success without Burton. 'Bride' is the only feature film on the man's resume, though it's one that earned him an Oscar nomination.
But wait, there's one more thing. This project is, as previously mentioned, another Oz movie. Usually when we offer up a long list of battling productions, they'll span over a year as studios rush into different stages of development, but in 2010 alone we've had news bites for 'Oz' planning to battle 'Wicked,' plus 'Dorothy of Oz,' 'Oz: The Great and Powerful,' 'Surrender Dorothy' and Robert Zemeckis flirting with an all-out 'Wizard of Oz' remake.
With 'Oz Wars,' that's seven battling Oz pics. And you were fearing oversaturation on two Snow White pics.
Will you run off to see the Wizard seven times?