Six new actors have been cast in pivotal roles in the Wicked movies. The projects, which are being directed by Crazy Rich Asians’ Jon M. Chu, are based on the Stephen Schwartz and Winnie Holzman stage musical of the same name, which was itself adapted from Gregory Maguire’s 1995 book of the same name. The novel imagines an origin story for The Wizard of Oz’s Wicked Witch of the West, Elphaba. In Addition to Jonathan Bailey, Michelle Yeoh, and Jeff Goldblum, the long-awaited film adaptation has already cast Cynthia Erivo as Elphaba and Ariana Grande as Glinda. It will debut in two parts on Christmas 2024 and 2025.

Several significant roles have been packed for the upcoming Wicked movie adaptations, according to a new casting announcement, as reported by Variety. This includes Marissa Bode, an accomplished young performer who uses a wheelchair and who will star in her first feature film as Nessarose, the younger sister of Elphaba. The additional new cast members are Aaron Teoh as Avaric, Colin Michael Carmichael as Professor Nikidik, Bronwen James as ShenShen, Keala Settle as Miss Coddle, and Bowen Yang as Pfannee.

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Yang, who currently appears on Saturday Night Live & made a splash this summer in the LGBTQ+ rom-com Fire Island, is arguably the most well-known name on the list. The comedian had a successful year in 2022, appearing in films like Gremlins: Secrets of the Mogwai, Bros, and The Lost City with Sandra Bullock and Channing Tatum. The animated spin-off movie Night at the Museum: Kahmunrah Rises Again, starring Joshua Bassett as the son of Ben Stiller’s character from the original films, was just made public today on Disney+, adding to his ever-expanding list.

Many fans of musical theater will also be familiar with the name Settle. She was a Tony Award-nominated Broadway actor who played lead roles in productions like Waitress and Hands on a Hardbody. She is also remembered for her memorable performance as the bearded lady Lettie Lutz in the 2017 holiday season sleeper hit musical The Greatest Showman, based on the life of P.T. Barnum. Teoh, who has experience in theater, also had a minor on-screen role in the Disney+ children’s book adaptation of Artemis Fowl in 2020 as a LEP officer.

James, on the other hand, is a talented actor with a wealth of television experience. He has acted in a number of well-known series, including Ghosts, The End of the F**king World, Slow Horses, and Ghosts. Similar roles in well-known British series like Coupling, Midsomer Murders, and the techno-thriller anthology series Black Mirror can be found on Carmichael’s resume. With this new infusion of talent, Wicked now features a diverse cast made up of actors from both big and small projects, continuing Chu’s commitment to telling audiences a variety of stories in works like his previous musical In The Heights.

Source: Variety