The “Bridgerton” star will play Fear in the two-part adaptation, which will star Ariana Grande as Glinda and Cynthia Erive as Elphaba. Universal Pictures films will be released on Christmas in 2024 and 2025.
Wicked is a prequel to The Wizard of Oz, which tells the story of how Elphaba became the Wicked Witch of the West and Glinda the Good Witch.
“We decided to go bigger and make not one Wicked movie, but two!” Chu wrote in a statement announcing the bipartisanship. “With more space, we can tell the story of ‘Wicked’ the way it was meant to be told, bringing even more depth and surprise to the journey of these beloved characters.”
Stephen Schwartz, who wrote the music and lyrics for the original Broadway show, is adapting the Wicked script with Winnie Holtzman. The musical opened on Broadway in 2003 and continues to run, grossing over $1 billion on Broadway. The show is second only to The Lion King as the highest-grossing Broadway musical of all time.
Marc Platt will produce the films for his Universal-based Marc Platt Productions. David Stone will also produce. Universal’s senior executive vice president of production Eric Byers and vice president of production development Lexi Barth will oversee the project.
It became known in July Bailey will play Matt Bomer’s love interest in The Travelers, Showtime’s limited series adaptation of Thomas Malone’s novel of the same name. Bailey recently starred in a West End production of Mike Bartlett’s The Rooster. In 2019, he won the Laurence Olivier Award for his work in the London production of Company.
Bailey is represented by Anonymous Content, Conway van Gelder Grant Ltd, ICM and Relevant.