Hitting Screens, Week of Jan 2, 2017

Two high-profile film adaptations expand nationwide this week, Hidden Figures and A Monster Calls (see our coverage from their Oscar-qualifying opening week).

mv5bmtk5nta1nzkynv5bml5banbnxkftztgwnzk1mdm3mdi-_v1_On NBC, a new series based on The Wizard of Oz begins.

Emerald City is billed as a “modern reimagining” of the backstory of L. Frank Baum’s famous tale.

After a rocky path to the screen, involving delays and major changes in the lead team, it finally premieres Jan. 6 at 9 EST and will run for 10 episodes in its opening season. Tarsem Singh (Mirror Mirror, Self/less) directs. Shaun Cassidy (Cold Case) serves as executive producer.

Deadline Hollywood says the show is “gunning for” the Game of Thrones label, writing it offers a “dark new take” in which “Dorothy [is] transported by tornado along with a K9 police dog into a mystical land of competing realms, lethal warriors, dark magic and a bloody battle for supremacy.”

ScreenCrush calls it an “ultra-ultra-ultra-gritty take” and details the cast: “Adria Arjona as Dorothy Gale (complete with K9 police dog Toto), Dracula star Oliver Jackson-Cohen as Scarecrow-type Lucas, Florence Kasumba as the Wicked Witch of the East, Joely Richardson as Glinda, [and] Vincent D’Onofrio as the Wizard of Oz.”

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