It’s ‘Hard’ for Idina Menzel to Not Play Elphaba in the Upcoming Wicked Film

After creating the character of Elphaba on Broadway, Idina Menzel discusses the “honest truth” about her feelings regarding the upcoming Wicked film. It was 19 years ago today.

The impending Wicked film adaption is bittersweet for Idina Menzel.

In a recent interview with Broadway.com Editor-in-Chief Paul Wontorek, the actress and singer said she’s been asked “a lot” about the two-part film, which will star Cynthia Erivo as Elphaba, the character Menzel created on Broadway in 2003, and Ariana Grande as Glinda.

“I’m extremely excited,” she added. “I know it’s in good hands, and I’ve sent so much love to Cynthia and Ariana, and I’ll be there for them if they need me.” “And sure, I’m a little disappointed that I’m getting older and won’t be able to play the part, you know? And it is the unvarnished truth.”

Menzel, 51, confessed that it’s a challenge

It’s ‘Hard’ for Idina Menzel to Not Play Elphaba in the Upcoming Wicked Film

“”It’s the age and the proprietorship of the role and what it means to me and how it transformed my life,” she said of not stepping into Elphaba’s curly-toed shoes for the film. I adore it, and I suppose what I’m trying to express is that I miss her.”

She is, nevertheless, looking to her predecessors for career-strengthening evidence. “Isn’t it true that Julie Andrews didn’t get to play Eliza in [the film adaptation of] My Fair Lady? Then she saw The Sound of Music “Menzel stated.

The cinematic adaptation of the Tony-winning Broadway musical Wicked — based on Gregory Maguire’s 1995 novel Wicked: The Life and Times of the Wicked Witch of the West — was first announced in 2016.

It's 'Hard' for Idina Menzel to Not Play Elphaba in the Upcoming Wicked Film
It’s ‘Hard’ for Idina Menzel to Not Play Elphaba in the Upcoming Wicked Film

In February 2021, Jon M. Chu, the director behind Crazy Rich Asians and the cinematic adaption of Broadway’s In the Heights, was recruited to direct the Wicked film. Then, in November, Erivo, 35, and Grande, 28, were cast as Elphaba and Glinda, respectively.

The screenplay is being adapted by Stephen Schwartz and Winnie Holzman, who co-wrote the Broadway show’s music and lyrics, while Marc Platt will return as a producer.

Menzel appeared in the original stage performance alongside Kristin Chenoweth, who played Glinda.

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