BRAND NEW ON E!
Oz…you'll like it.
That's what Disney's top brass are banking on because although the James Franco–headlined Oz the Great and Powerful, which opens today, has yet to make a dent in the box office, the studio is already getting the ball rolling on a sequel.
Per The Hollywood Reporter, scribe Mitchell Kapner, who cowrote the screenplay for this big-screen return to L. Frank Baum's fantastical world, has been tapped to work on a script for a second go-round.
The stars themselves—who include Mila Kunis, Michelle Williams and Rachel Weisz—seem primed for an encore to the Sam Raimi–directed flick: Earlier this week, E! News exclusively revealed that they're all signed on for sequels.
Weisz said she'd be down for a redux—"If there is one, I'd love to be in it"—while Williams was equally enthusiastic: "Wherever Sam goes, I'll go," she explained, adding, "I'd do anything Sam asks me to do. I'd get stuck in quicksand with him."
(Raimi, meanwhile, has been less committal, saying, "I'm not signed up for a sequel, and I have no plans right now to make a sequel.")
Although the film has received mixed reviews, expectations are running high for a box-office blowout: Insiders predict an opening-weekend gross of $50-$75 million domestically—or more, if the film ends up doing Alice in Wonderland–size business.
That 2010 film, to which Oz has often been compared and which also opened in March, raked in a record-breaking $116 million during its opening weekend.
Oz will certainly need to conjure up some considerable dough: Its hefty price tag, including production and market costs, reportedly clocks in at an oh-so-great-and-powerful $325 million.