EXCLUSIVE: The year of Wizard Of Oz continues with the sale of another high-profile Oz-themed drama project. Lifetime has put in development Red Brick Road, from the Wolper Organization, Vertigo Entertainment and Warner Horizon. Written by Tim Schlattman (Dexter) based on an concept by artist Rob Prior and executive produced by Roy Lee and Adrian Askarieh, Red Brick Road is described as an edgy, Game Of Thrones take on the world of Wizard Of Oz. In the classic 1939 feature, when Dorothy set off for the Emerald City, she followed the Yellow Brick Road. But among the yellow bricks at Dorothy’s feet, there was also a swirl of red bricks. They’ve been there the whole time in plain sight. Unnoticed. Unexplored. Which raises the question — just where do they go? Red Brick Road will answer that by following Dorothy down that fateful path, taking her to the oldest, darkest and most dangerous parts of Oz to find what became of her friends who all have gone missing.
Red Brick Road is the fifth Oz-themed project to land a network sale in the past three months, joining NBC’s drama Emerald City, a dark reimagining of the classic tale of Oz in the vein of Game Of Thrones; CBS’ Dorothy, a medical soap inspired by the characters and themes from The Wizard Of Oz; the CW’s Dorothy Must Die, a revisionist take on L. Frank Baum’s classic based on the upcoming young adult novel by Danielle Paige; and Syfy’s miniseries Warriors Of Oz from director Timur Bekmambetov, a fantasy-action reimagining of the classic story. Red Brick Road was put in development long before the summer Oz selling spree started — it was set up at Warner Horizon at the beginning of February by Lee, Mark Wolper, Askerieh Jeff Krelitz and Prior. Schlattman was brought in as a writer, and a detailed concept — complete with art of Dorothy (image on right) — was developed before the project was taken out and set up at Lifetime. Schlattman, Lee, Wolper, Askerieh and Krelitz executive produce, while Prior serves as a consulting producer.
The great interest in Wizard Of Oz is not entirely unexpected as the title has been getting a lot of attention in conjunction with the upcoming 75th anniversary of the 1939 feature, which includes a 3D rerelease of the Judy Garland-starrer. It also comes on the heels of the success of Oz The Great And Powerful earlier this year. Schlattman is with Circle of Confusion, and CAA and Stuart Rosenthal.