Alpine Pictures Inc. exec VP James Arthur Jones dropped us a line telling us about Dorothy of Oz, a feature-length animated musical the company is producing in association with Box Office Productions III, LLC. The pic will be the first in a series of animated features Alpine Pictures plans to base on the writings of children’s author Roger S. Baum, whose great grandftather, L. Frank Baum, authored The Wonderful Wizard of Oz series.
Serving as a producer on Dorothy of Oz is Bonne Radford, an industry veteran who has served as head of feature animation at DreamWorks SKG, as well as VP of animation and VP of production and finance at Steven Spielberg’s Amblin Ent. Radford began her animation career with Spielberg’s animated feature An American Tail, and moved on to work on such DreamWorks Animation productions as Balto, Antz, The Prince of Egypt, and The Road to El Dorado. Most recently, she produced the Curious George movie for Universal Pictures.
‘Bonne’s gift is her passion for the art of storytelling through the medium of animation,’ says Jones. ‘We are delighted to have such a capable and talented individual as part of our team to bring this dream project to reality.’
Roger S. Baum’s Dorothy of OZ series offers up new stories of Dorothy’s adventures in the enchanted land of Oz. The first book is being adapted for the screen by Randi Barnes, who served on the writing staff of Disney Channel’s American Dragon: Jake Long. She has also written episodes of Disney’s Brandy and Mr. Whiskers, The Buzz on Maggie, The Emperor’s New School and The Replacements, as well as Cartoon Network’s Class of 3000.
Directing Dorothy of Oz is Daniel St Pierre, who has worked as a layout artist on such major Disney releases as Tarzan, The Hunchback of Notre Dame, The Lion King, Beauty and the Beast, The Little Mermaid and Aladdin. He later served as a production designer on DreamWorks Animation’s Shark Tale and cut his directing teeth on Starz Media’s CG feature Everyone’s Hero.
A new voice for the Dorothy Gale character is currently being sought by casting director Matthew Jon Beck, whose credits include Finding Nemo, The Incredibles, Brother Bear, Chicken Little and Garfield: A Tail of Two Kitties. Neil Kaufman will exec produce the Dorothy pic for Alpine, which has produced a couple of live-action flicks including the recently wrapped Dark Honeymoon, starring Eric Roberts, Daryl Hannah, Roy Scheider and Tia Carrere.