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Robert Downey Jr. is no longer set to star in Disney’s Oz, the Great and Powerful and his replacement could be none other than Hollywood's other busybody, Johnny Depp.
According to The Hollywood Reporter, Downey was never officially set to star, but he had been circling the project. The actor also opted out of a supporting role in Alfonso Cuaron’s Gravity fairly recently, to which he was officially attached; that role has been since taken up by Academy Award-winner George Clooney.
Disney loves Depp, so his name is a natural fit, but his tight schedule might prevent him from doing so. He’ll be filming adaptations of both Dark Shadows and Disney's The Lone Ranger, the former of which will begin production this spring. Booking Depp for “Oz” is obviously what the Mouse House wants, but “Ranger” would get pushed back if that were to happen. Will Disney want to make that compromise?
It’s disappointing that Downey stepped out of this role. He’s always great in whatever project he stars in but hasn’t been taking too many challenging roles as of late. “Oz” is not only the blockbuster film he’s now accustomed to; it would also provide a potentially complex role for him to really chew on. Sadly, it won’t be happening.
That being said, Depp is certainly no bad choice either. He’s been in a bit of rough patch recently with films like The Tourist, but there’s no mistake about it: he’s an immensely talented actor. He excels in playing the eccentric, so this role would be a great one for him, but it’s ironically a bore to see Depp take on quirky roles.
What are your thoughts on this development?