Cynthia Erivo and Ariana Grande to star in 'Wicked' film adaptation
The pair will play Elphaba and Glinda, respectively.
Oh, what a celebration they'll have today! The upcoming film adaptation of Wicked has found its stars, with Tony Award winner Cynthia Erivo announced as Elphaba and Grammy Award winner Ariana Granda as Glinda. Wicked film director John M. Chu broke the news on Twitter on November 4, posting screenshots of the video call on which he told Erivo and Grande they had gotten the roles.
Erivo, an English actress, made her stage debut in 2011 in an off-West End production of The Umbrellas of Cherbourg that transferred to the West End. She gained acclaim in America for her Tony-winning performance as Celie Harris Johnson, a role she first played on the West End, in The Color Purple when the production transferred to Broadway. With the production, Erivo also won a Grammy Award for Best Musical Theater Album and a Daytime Emmy Award for Outstanding Musical Performance in a Daytime Program for performing on the Today Show. Erivo has also appeared in films such as Bad Times at the El Royale and Harriet, the latter of which earned her two Academy Award nominations. She most recently starred as Aretha Franklin in the anthology series Genius: Aretha.
Grande is best known for her award-winning career as a pop singer, but she got her start in 2008 in the Broadway musical 13. Afterward, she gained more widespread fame in TV acting, playing Cat Valentine on Nickelodeon's Victorious and Sam and Cat. Now, she has delved fully into her music career, developing a four-octave vocal range and releasing six studio albums that have won her, in total, two Grammy Awards, one Brit Award, two Billboard Music Awards, three American Music Awards, nine MTV Video Music Awards, and 27 Guinness World Records. She has appeared intermittently in stage shows including Cuba Libre and A Snow White Christmas, and in 2016 she played Penny Pingleton in NBC's Hairspray Live! broadcast.
Additional casting and a movie release date have yet to be announced. Filming is set to begin in the U.K. in summer 2022.