This Friday, NBC will debut its "dark and edgy" revisionist take on Oz, a ten episode series helmed by Immortals and Mirror Mirror director Tarsem Singh and starring Adria Arjona as Dorothy and Vincent D'Onofrio, who had a supporting role in Jurassic World and plays Wilson Fisk in Netflix's Daredevil series, as the Wizard of Oz. Honestly, I'm not sure what to make of this one. I'll be watching for sure, but I can't say that I'm really jazzed to see it. But, who knows? Maybe it's the next Tin Man.
I'm not sure why this wasn't released earlier (or later) to coincide with Christmas, but nevertheless, it looks like IDW will release the Eric Shanower illustrated Life and Adventures of Santa Claus on January 17. According to IDW's website, the release will also include the short story A Kidnapped Santa Claus. I've actually never ventured into L. Frank Baum's work outside of the Oz books, but I am planning on getting this and finally reading it. You can pre-order it on Amazon here.
3. Guardians of Oz - January 24
On January 24, the English dubbed version of the Mexican/Indian CG-animated film Guardianes de Oz will be available in the U.S. on DVD and digital HD (but, frustratingly, not on Blu-ray). I've been curious to see this since it was released in Mexico a year or so ago, so I'm glad that it is being released here, even if to little fanfare. You can read more about the film and its release here, and if you feel so inclined, pre-order the DVD on Amazon here.
4. Captive Hearts of Oz, Volume 1 - January 31
In 2016, Seven Seas Entertainment brought us a beautifully illustrated collection of the first two books of the Oz series realized in a unique, whimsical manga style. I would guess that that book sold pretty well, because in 2017, Seven Seas bring us something called Captive Hearts of Oz, which is described as "an all-new story of adventure and romance based on The Wonderful Wizard of Oz!" I've been let down by Oz-centric manga series in the past (see Son Hee-joon's Dorothy of Oz), but I have relatively high hopes for this one and will definitely pick up the first volume. You can pre-order it Amazon here.
5. The End of Oz - March 14
If you haven't read Dorothy Must Die or aren't caught up on its sequels yet, stop what you're doing and get on it. Danielle Paige's books are so much more and so much better than your typical YA fare. The books connect to and divulge from the source material in really surprising and interesting ways, and coming from someone who isn't much of a reader as of late, these books are as engaging and entertaining as anything you'll find on TV right now. I'm even more excited for this fourth and final installment in the series after chatting with Danielle on the podcast last year, and I really think it's worth checking out for any Oz fan, even if it doesn't sound like your kind of thing. You can pre-order it on Amazon here.
6. Dorothy Must Die Stories, Volume 3 - March 14
Coinciding with the release of The End of Oz is the release of the third (and, I assume, the final) volume of short stories, also written by Danielle Paige and set before the events of her novels. This volume includes three stories, Order of the Wicked, Dark Side of the Rainbow, and The Queen of Oz, which I believe are already available (or will be soon) as individual e-books. The short stories aren't something that you necessarily have to read to understand everything in the novels, but they do a nice job of exploring and expanding the world and characters of the series. Pre-order it here.
7. Urfin Jus and His Wooden Soldiers - April 20 (Russia)
As I recently wrote about here, Урфин Джюс и его деревянные солдаты, the CG-animated film based on the second book of Alexander Volkov's Magic Land series, will be released in Russia on April 20. It actually looks pretty good, so let's hope that it gets picked up for release in the U.S. and elsewhere either sometime this year or next year!
8. Captive Hearts of Oz, Volume 2 - June 6
We don't have a cover or any sort of synopsis for it yet, but it looks like Seven Seas is moving full steam ahead with the Captive Hearts of Oz series as a second volume is already pegged for a June 6 release. Obviously whether or not I get this one will depend on what I think of the first volume, but it's promising to see that its creators are confident enough in the series to go ahead and begin work on a second installment. Keep an eye out for more on this one as we get closer to its release. You can pre-order it on Amazon (or maybe just add it to your wishlist for now) by clicking here.
Happy New Year, everyone!