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15 Swankified Easter Eggs in Wicked’s Official Trailer

15 Swankified Easter Eggs in Wicked’s Official Trailer
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15 Swankified Easter Eggs in Wicked‘s Official Trailer

The upcoming two-part film version of the long-running Broadway favorite musical stars Cynthia Erivo and Ariana Grande.

Rejoicify, Ozians! This morning a full-length trailer was released for the upcoming two-part Wicked movie, and Playbill has combed through the footage to make sure no detail goes unnoticed. Watch above and then read on to see what we noticed. Warning! Spoilers for the long-running musical ahead.

The first film in the two-movie series is scheduled to hit movie theatres November 27. The second part will release Thanksgiving 2025. Fans can also look forward to Defying Gravity: The Curtain Rises on Wicked, a behind-the-scenes celebration of Universal Pictures’ upcoming feature film of the international hit musical, airing on NBC November 25 (check local listings).

Along with stars Cynthia Erivo and Ariana Grande, the two-part film will star West End Company Olivier winner and Bridgerton star Jonathan Bailey as Fiyero, SpongeBob SquarePants star Ethan Slater as Boq, Emmy winner Peter Dinklage as Dr. Dillamond, 2023 Oscar winner Michelle Yeoh as Madame Morrible, Jeff Goldblum as The Wizard, and newcomer Marissa Bode as Nessarose, the first wheelchair-using actor in the musical’s history to take on the role. 

Stage and screen star Keala Settle, SNL‘s Bowen Yang, Bronwyn James, Aaron Teoh, and Colin Michael Carmichael also play roles new to the musical’s screen version, with Settle as Miss Coddle, Carmichael as Professor Nikidik, and Yang, James, and Teoh as Shiz students Pfannee, ShenShen, and Avaric, respectively.

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Now, let’s get into the nitty gritty details! In the newly released trailer, eagle eyed fans can spot…

  • “No One Mourns the Wicked”
    This trailer opens with Grande-as-Glinda offering the same question that begins Wicked in its first song: “Are people born wicked? Or do they have wickedness thrust upon them?” As she speaks, a familiar refrain also sounds: the opening notes of “No One Mourns the Wicked”, isolated and haunting.

  • Prince Fiyero
    As the Wicked films are being broken into two parts, there is going to be significantly more screen time to fill, providing ample time to delve deeper into the backstories written by Gregory Maguire in his original Wicked novels. This trailer gives us evidence of one such backstory coming to the screen: Fiyero being the heir of a royal dynasty. In the musical, this Princely status is only glancingly referenced by Glinda during a transitional scene, but during Jonathan Bailey’s entrance as Fiyero at 0:24, a cavalcade of Shiz students can be seen rushing forward holding newspapers with a headline proclaiming “Prince Fiyero Enrolls At Shiz”

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  • “Popular”
    The second song heard, also featuring Grande, is “Popular”, which can be heard at 0:30 in the background as Elphaba and Glinda move into their dormitory at Shiz University, along with some other footage of Glinda exploring her new digs in the most theatrical way possible—high kick included.

  • “What Is This Feeling”
    It looks likely that the final sequence of the song “What Is This Feeling” is on full display at 0:47, with Elphaba frightening Glinda into a yelp. Unlike the Broadway staging, which has Elphaba surprising Glinda from behind, the film shows Elphaba jumping out from behind a closed door.

  • Doctor Dillamond
    At 0:50, this trailer marks the first time Peter Dinklage is (sort of) seen as Dr. Dillamond, Elphaba’s kind-hearted mentor who warns her that “something bad is happening in Oz.” Dinklage is not donning prosthetics like his stage counterpart. Instead, he provides the voice for the goat professor, now a CGI speaking goat instead of a goat-man as depicted on stage.

  • “Ballgown!”
    Another fan-favorite scene can be seen at 0:52 while Dillamond lays out the state of Oz. Clad in a dramatic pink robe, Glinda tries to magic a ballgown for Elphaba to little avail, as she attempts to trick her magic wand into functioning.

  • Nessarose
    In another transitional sequence at 1:06, we get our first glimpse of Marissa Bode as Nessarose, levitating in the air as Elphaba struggles to control her telekinetic powers. In the Broadway staging, the wheelchair’s wheels never leave the ground. It appears Chu really believes that everyone deserves a chance to fly!

  • Elphaba’s Iconic Hat
    As the “No One Mourns The Wicked” refrain sounds once again at 1:25, we get our first glimpses of Bowen Yang and Bronwyn James as Glinda’s Shiz friends Pfannee and ShenShen (both new for this film version) as they pull what is destined to be Elphaba’s iconic hat out of its box. The film’s hat has a new shape, with a more serpentine point and structural ridges, as well as a crooked tip.
  • “Defying Gravity”
    The opening refrain of Wicked‘s famous act one finale song sounds over footage from the Ozdust Ballroom at 1:43, while Fiyero and Glinda can be heard delivering dialogue from the musical prior to Glinda and Elphaba’s embrace. The orchestral backing of the refrain continues through Glinda and Elphaba’s journey to the Emerald City.

  • Boq
    If you look very closely at the initial Ozdust Ballroom scene, you can see Ethan Slater as Boq standing behind Nessarose, his arms crossed in indignation before he moves out of the way to allow Nessarose to wheel herself away. Slater’s Boq has proved one of the more elusive figures from the upcoming movie, with this sneak peek our first major look at the SpongeBob SquarePants star in the film.

  • The Flying Monkeys
    The flying monkeys are seen throughout this trailer in various ways, but one crucial detail is showcased upon Elphaba’s arrival to the emerald city to first meet with the Wizard. In Wicked, the monkeys are originally servants of the Wizard, who are later freed by Elphaba (with some opting to stick around and help her, of their own free will). You can see the legions of monkeys, pre-Elphaba’s flying spell, crouched in subservience when Elphaba and Glinda first enter the Wizard’s chamber at 2:16.

  • Make It Blue? No, Make it Pink!
    When Wicked first came to the stage, they had to carefully ensure that all of their visual language could only be traced to the original L. Frank Baum books, rather than the 1939 film The Wizard of Oz. One of these changes included Glinda’s Munchkinland dress and bubble. When worn by Billie Burke in the 1939 film, both were a fetching shade of bubblegum pink, but on stage the color was swapped for an airy sky blue. As this film is being produced by the company that owns the copyright to the 1939 film, Glinda is back in her pink tones, with Grande sporting a gauzy rose gown in her iridescent pink bubble at 2:35.

  • Hot Air Balloon
    At 2:52, Glinda and Elphaba can be seen attempting to escape the Wizard’s tower in a hot air balloon that very well may be the same balloon that Dorothy Gale intended to use as transportation back to Kansas, although the balloon is angled in such a way that we cannot see the emblem on the side to be sure. We might have to wait till 2025’s Part Two release for the answer to this one.

  • Young Elphaba
    It looks like Elphaba’s backstory will be expanded upon in the upcoming film with the trailer giving us a brief glimpse at a much younger Elphaba, played by Karis Musongole, at 3:10, showing her as she’s ridiculed by the munchkins her father governs.

  • A Very Special Flower
    As Elphaba thinks over her life before making the choice to split from the Wizard (becoming a fugitive in the process), she flashes through numerous moments, including one of the most crucial bonding sequences between her and Glinda: the famous “Toss Toss” scene where Glinda attempts to teach Elphaba how to be popular. Elphaba and Glinda can be seen gazing at each other in the mirror at 3:14, with Glinda’s pink rose tucked behind Elphaba’s ear post-“Popular” lesson. That memory solidified, she grabs hold of her broom and flies off into the sky, ushering in the final battle cry of “Defying Gravity,” and the trailer’s title card.

The screen adaptation, which will include new songs by Stephen Schwartz, is helmed by In the Heights screen director Jon M. Chu. Wicked book writer Winnie Holzman has penned the screenplay, and Tony winner Paul Tazewell designed the costumes.

Wicked, injecting a new backstory onto the classic tale The Wizard of Oz, debuted on Broadway in 2003 and continues to be an audience favorite at the Gershwin Theatre. Based on the novel by Gregory Maguire, the musical features music and lyrics by Schwartz and a book by Holzman. The original cast included Tony winners Idina Menzel and Kristin Chenoweth as Elphaba and Glinda, respectively. The musical has subsequently been performed in more than 100 cities across 16 countries and is now the fourth longest-running production in Broadway history.

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The show won 2004 Tony Awards for Best Actress in a Musical (Menzel), Best Costume Design (Susan Hilferty), and Best Scenic Design (Eugene Lee).





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