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‘It’s A Wonderful Life,’ ‘Wizard Of Oz’ To Get Diverse Reboot

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This article was originally published at StateOfUnion.org. Publications approved for syndication have permission to republish this article, such as Microsoft News, Yahoo News, Newsbreak, UltimateNewswire and others. To learn more about syndication opportunities, visit About Us.

Director and writer Kenya Barris is planning diverse reboots for classic Hollywood films “Wizard of Oz” and “It’s a Wonderful Life.”

He aims to tell these stories from a different perspective, focusing on themes of self-reliance and community support.

Barris wants to create a sense of pride and representation for diverse communities, intending to offer a fresh take on these timeless tales.

“The original ‘Wizard of Oz’ took place during the Great Depression and it was about self-reliance and what people were going through,” Barris said.

“I think this is the perfect time to switch the characters and talk about what someone imagines their life could be.” It’s ultimately a hero’s journey, someone thinks something’s better than where they’re at, and they go and realize that where they’re at is where they should be.”

“I want people to be proud and happy about where they’re from,” he said. “But I want the world to take a look at it and I hope that will come through.”

In his vision, “Wizard of Oz” will feature a character from Inglewood, while “It’s a Wonderful Life” will center around a person of color helping their community.

Barris emphasized the importance of diverse representation and making people feel seen through these reimagined stories.

“I feel like Christmas movies are amazing and I think the idea of taking something that has that long of a history and a tale behind it and putting an amazing piece of talent to tell that story,” Barris added.

“It’s a guy who’s trying to help out his community and things are going to turn around on him,” he said. “I think that’s the perfect story to tell for a person of color — Black or brown — to get into that because our communities have some issues and someone trying to help that community out. I think that’s the perfect vehicle to tell that story from.”

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