Black-ish creator Kenya Barris is once again clicking his heels together and wishing for another updated version of a Hollywood classic. Following an impressive string of remakes and legacy sequels, Barris adds yet another reboot to the pile. Per Deadline, the Barris will write and direct a “reimagining” of The Wizard Of Oz.
Since 2019, Barris has written and/or produced the Big riff Little; the legacy sequels Shaft and Coming 2 America; Robert Zemeckis’ Witches remake; 2022's Cheaper By The Dozen, and that remake of White Men Can’t Jump starring Jack Harlow. There was also a Bewitched reboot that appears to have stalled. However, his lone original screenplay, 2017's Girls Trip, remains his most successful critically and financially.
Of course, seeing as Wizard Of Oz is in the public domain, it’s going to be competing with various other Wizards. There’s the long-awaited two-part version of Wicked that is taking the It approach and separating the fun half from the boring half. There’s also New Line’s retelling, directed by Watchmen’s Nicole Kassell. Variety describes that one as a “fresh take” on the property, giving it the edge on Wicked, which isn’t described as anything other than an adaptation of the Broadway show that’s been in development since the early 2000s.
Barris does have an original idea coming to Netflix soon, though. His directorial debut, You People, written by Barris and Jonah Hill, stars Hill, Eddie Murphy, Julia Louis-Dreyfus, and David Duchovny. The film is currently in post-production. Barris has more time on his hands these days now that Black-ish ended its eight-season run. Of the show’s spin-offs, only Grown-ish remains on the air. Now that he’s a little less busy-ish, he can get on with his real passion: remaking hit comedies for modern audiences.