‘Wicked’ movie casts Ariana Grande and Cynthia Erivo as Glinda and Elphaba

Will the new movie adaptation of “Wicked” give Cynthia Erivo her EGOT? That’s but one of the compelling storylines already in play after Erivo and Ariana Grande were cast to lead the blockbuster musical on Thursday night.

Once set to arrive in theaters this year but delayed because of the coronavirus pandemic and other production needs, “Wicked” has been in development for almost a decade. “In the Heights” filmmaker Jon M. Chu was hired earlier this year to direct, and now with Erivo and Grande in the cast, production is set to begin in June 2022.

Erivo and Grande announced their participation in the project via dual social media posts on Thursday night. Erivo will play Elphaba in “Wicked,” the part originated by Idina Menzel in the Broadway production. The role won Menzel a Tony Award for Best Actress. Grande, a self-acknowledged “Wicked” fanatic, is set to start as Glinda, the part Kristen Chenoweth originated in the Broadway version. Chenoweth also received a Best Actress nomination from the Tonys. The musical remains a top performer on Broadway and is the fifth-longest running show in Broadway history.

Erivo has already won a Tony Award, Grammy Award, and Daytime Emmy Award for her performance in the Broadway musical “The Color Purple.” She has received two Academy Award nominations, both for the film “Harriet.” 

Grande is a Grammy Award winner, who is next set to star in “Don’t Look Up” opposite Leonardo DiCaprioJennifer LawrenceMeryl Streep, and Timothee Chalamet, among many other top performers.

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