More stars have been added to NBC’s live version of The Wiz, while Shaft is headed back to the big screen.
According to The Hollywood Reporter, Mary J. Blige and Queen Latifah have joined the cast of the musical. Blige will play Evillene, the Wicked Witch of the West, and Latifah will star as the Wiz. The women join Stephanie Mills — who starred in the original Broadway play as Dorothy — as Aunt Em.
The search continues for the role of Dorothy.
Latifah is staying consistent with musical roles since the Emmy nomination for her portrayal in HBO’s Bessie was announced this month. Speaking with The Los Angeles Times, the multi-talented star says she was thrilled to hear about her nomination.
“You know what, everyone else around me gets so excited about these things,” he said. “And I do [get excited] on the inside but I tend to remain the calm one. I just try to remain really calm and relaxed and I start hearing a bunch of screams around me and I know it’s really happening. So the house has lightened up a bit.”
Meanwhile, it was also announced Tuesday that Black-ish creator Kenya Barris will write the script to the latest Shaft remake. This is the second remake of the blaxploitation film, which starred Richard Roundtree in 1971. Samuel L. Jackson starred in a sleeker version by John Singleton in 2000.
Barris promises the new version will have more comedic relief, but will also be full of action.