Let's get the facts straight here though: "in-the-works" is "in development". That does NOT mean "greenlit". It means they want to do it - heck, lots of people want to do it and there's some money being spent - BUT they're still trying to see if they can make it happen and are at the idea stage (of successfully translating the musical to the big screen).
When Producer Marc Platt was talking to Film Divider he confirmed the film was definitely "in development" with a first-pass script being written and a soft goal of a 2016 release. The production companies for the film are Marc Platt Productions and Universal Pictures.
Here are the relevant quotes from the interview at which the news was revealed:
|The most famous (and possibly beloved) cast of Wicked The Musical.|
Casting have some big shoes to fill!
It’s a loose goal. But the bar is very high for the creators of Wicked. Our show is still so strong everywhere, and we just set a record in both London and Edinburgh last week, and in Los Angeles, and we did on Broadway. Audiences enjoy that show so much that we are intending to move forward on the movie but aren’t going to do so until we’re satisfied in the material we have as a screenplay, and that the film will be every bit as satisfying as what we have on the stage.
Who’s been writing it?Winnie Holzman.
And what shape is her script in now?She’s just writing it now.
And do you have a director at the moment?It’s Stephen Daldry. He’s been on for a year or two. But it’s in process. 2016 is the goal, but I don’t know whether we’ll make that goal or not. We will make the movie, but like I said, the bar is really high. We’re going to scrutinise our work on the screenplay and our prep on the movie, and when we feel like it’s ready, okay. We’re not going to shoot a release date is what I’m saying. It’s in the works, it’s not in a rush.This movie is a no-brainer fan-draw. No matter what trends are happening, from misunderstood villains to Oz tributes to nothing-at-all-to-do-with-any-of-these, this movie has a guaranteed built-in audience who have been dying to see it for YEARS.
If you're one of them, just be warned it could still be quite a ways off. 2016 is only next year and that's a LOT of work to get done to get a film release-ready from it's current state by December 31st!
In the meantime, let the dream casting begin! (Or, continue...)
Sources: Here, here, here & here