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‘Wicked’ movie: All the hidden details in the film’s promotional character photos

Theater nerds, rise! New photos from Vanity Fair provide a tantalizing sneak peek into the film adaptation of Wicked, due in theaters on November 27, 2024.

Fans of the stage show will recognize much of the visual iconography adapted from the Broadway musical. But what other hints can we discover hiding within the images? We took a closer look to find out.

Cynthia Erivo as Elphaba

Elphaba appears here in full wicked witchy glam standing in front a broken window, a detail we also see multiple times in the film’s trailer. The base of a hot air balloon can be seen through the shattered panes, perhaps the same hot air balloon that first brought the Wizard to Oz.

Ariana Grande as Glinda

Here we see Glinda (née Galinda) in Munchkinland, along the Yellow Brick Road. Now known as “Glinda the Good,” she travels by bubble, with a scepter in her hand and crown on her head.

In this image, the bubble has disappeared and left only the plush throne-like platform that supports her in the air. Around Glinda lie bunches of tulips, the kind that populate the fields outside Munchkinland. The thatched roofs behind her match the set pieces we saw in a photo captured by the Daily Mail in April 2023.

Elphaba and Glinda at Shiz University

In the hallowed halls and vine-draped walls of Shiz University, opposites attract in roommates Elphaba and Glinda.

On one side of the room, Glinda perches on a pile of pink luggage embossed with her initials. Among the luggage are several round hat boxes, perhaps harboring the black, pointy “witch” hat she later gifts to Elphaba out of the “goodness of [her] heart.” Glinda also has her impressive collection of dresses and frocks hung up in a neat line, ready at a moment’s notice for the next Ozdust Ballroom bash.

Elphaba’s side is a little more… academic. Her feet rest on a pile of books, and more tomes line her black trunks in the background. On her rather plain bed sits a tray of Oz-ian stationery: a pen, ink wells, and an hourglass timer. On the wall behind the bed hangs a map, perhaps of Oz, that notes the mistreatment of anthropomorphic Animals throughout the land. “Four legs not wanted” is scrawled at the top and “Animal refugees stampede to border” at the bottom, with drawings of a giraffe and antelope also visible.

Elphaba has also brought 11 glass cloches to Shiz, all with blooming flowers inside. Perhaps her special magical proclivity for the “biological arts” enables them to live once taken from the ground.

Jeff Goldblum as the Wizard

The Wizard appears here in his workshop, surrounded by blueprints for his inventions. The giant eyes on his desk are replacements for those in the enormous mechanical head he uses to speak to visitors like Dorothy and her crew.

At his feet are extra yellow bricks and a model version of the steam train we see Elphaba boarding in the trailer and, later, rushing towards the Emerald City. While the eponymous Wizard of Oz appeared bumbling and cowardly in the original film, Wicked‘s Wizard promises to be much more clever and, perhaps, even conniving.

Jonathan Bailey as Fiyero

Unfortunately, we can’t glean much from this image of prince and playboy Fiyero. There’s only so much to say about a dude on a horse. But Bailey looks very dashing on horseback, which is all we ask of Fiyero anyways.

Michelle Yeoh as Madame Morrible

The formidable headmistress of Shiz University, Madame Morrible, is dressed in stylish school colors in her study. On the cover of the hardcover in her hands is a small hot air balloon, likely a depiction of the Wizard’s arrival in Oz. Behind her, a book lies propped open on a pedestal at a convenient height for hands-free spell-casting.

Marissa Bode as Nessarose, Ethan Slater as Boq, Bowen Yang as Pfanee, and Bronwyn James as Shenshen.

Dear old Shiz, the proudliest sight there is! This quartet of supporting characters is seen here as students, dressed in university best. Boq, a Munchkin pining for Glinda, has added quirky flair to his uniform. Nessarose, Elphaba’s sister, is wearing striped socks in what appears to be a subtle nod to her disastrous fate (iykyk). And Pfanee and Shenshen, two completely new characters created for the film, look smart in skirts and suit jackets.

They appear to be hanging out in a classroom, where notes on the “biological arts” and a map of the Shiz campus adorn the walls. Flyers advertising choir auditions and a “Twister Tornado Tournament” are scattered about the classroom.

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