Ingenious Pitch: The Wizard of Oz Remake
Hollywood loves remakes. It gives them the opportunity to cash in on a pre-existing property while simultaneously exposing a new generation to a beloved tale. The problem, of course, is that they mostly just inspire outrage among that property's core fanbase.
But is there a way to remake a film in a way that satisfies everyone; a version that pleases new fans and doesn’t “ruin the childhood” of those that cling to the original like a security blanket?
In the case of The Wizard of Oz, I believe I have just the pitch. It’s all in the way the story is framed.
So, if any Hollywood-types are reading this, here is my pitch. Call me.
The story will begin with an elderly Dorothy. After the events of the original film, she grew up, went to college, and became a successful writer. Among her successes: A series of books based on a dream she had as a little girl about a wondrous place of magic and adventure; a place called Oz.
Her grandchildren come to visit her one rainy afternoon and she begins to tell them a story. Grandma Dorothy has yet to tell them of her most famous tale, and as she reads, we dissolve into the familiar realm of yellow brick roads, talking scarecrows, and the most wicked of witches.
With this framing device, the movie can take some creative license in retelling the tale. After all, Dorothy is an old woman and memory changes with time. What results isn’t a shot-for-shot remake, but an altered spin that is part sequel and part remake, all while leaving the original version intact. The original adventure we saw her go on in 1939’s film will be completely unaffected in the eyes of fans, while presenting a new version (as Dorothy herself tells it) that updates the story with amazing visuals and slightly different takes on familiar events and characters.
With this framing device, and a director who holds the original in high regard, the end result should be both critically and commercially successful in ways that Sam Raimi’s Oz: The Great and Powerful failed to be.
So, that’s my pitch on how to do a truly unique version of a timeless classic without inciting rage and anxiety from the masses.
Seriously, Hollywood, let’s talk.
Bee Holder Productions, Beverly Hills, CA