By Kevin Jagernauth | The Playlist May 4, 2011 at 1:33AM
While it was recently reported that Sam Raimi and Disney were fighting over a key female role in "Oz The Great And Powerful" -- the director wanted Hilary Swank, but the studio was looking at Michelle Williams -- another actress entirely has snagged the part.
Heat Vision reveal that Rachel Weisz has joined the film, marking a rare tentpole appearance. Starring alongside James Franco and Mila Kunis, the prequel of sorts follows Oscar Zoroaster Phadrig Isaac Norman Henkle Emmanuel Ambroise Diggs (a.k.a. Oz), a showman and magician at a traveling circus who flees in a hot air balloon after being caught canoodling with a customer’s wife only to be swept away in a terrible storm to wake up in the magical land of Oz, which is run by two magical wicked witches. Weisz will play Kunis' older sister who intends to rule the land and tries to lure her sibling to the dark side.
It doesn't need to be said that Weisz is a fine "compromise" if indeed the director and studio were pushing and pulling over Swank and Williams. It's a great bit of casting and a nice change of pace for the actress. The film is gearing up for a July shoot with a release date yet to be set, but likely coming in 2012.