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Thousands sign petition to keep James Corden out of ‘Wicked’ movie adaptation

By PINKY S. ICAMEN Published Nov 12, 2021 6:19 pm

“James Corden, in no way shape or form, should be in or near the production of Wicked the movie,” the petition reads.

Fans of Tony-winning musical Wicked expressed their excitement as lead stars of the film adaptation of the Broadway hit were recently announced—pop star Ariana Grande as Glinda, and award-winning actress, singer and songwriter Cynthia Erivo as Elphaba.

Following the casting announcement of the film adaptation, which will be helmed by Crazy Rich Asians and In the Heights movie director Jon M. Chu, a petition was created by a certain Mikel Miller to prevent the actor, comedian and TV host James Corden from getting casted in it. 

Titled “Keep James Corden out of Wicked the movie,” the petition was aimed at Universal Pictures and is straightforward with its message: “James Corden in no shape or form should be in or near the production of Wicked the movie… that’s pretty much it.”

As of this writing, the petition has over 85,000 signatures. 

One person wrote, “James Corden is the worst and ruins every movie musical he’s in. I’m literally begging don’t let him anywhere near Wicked.”

Another said, “Cinderella was the final straw, he has no idea of how to make a movie and the fact that he is taking the place from someone who really care and knows about it is ridiculous!”

Others also pointed out Corden’s performance in the film adaptation of the Andrew Lloyd Webber hit musical Cats, which reportedly bombed the box office in 2019 with an estimated loss of $114 million (P5.6 billion).

“He’s awesome as a talk show host. He is funny when the occasion calls for it. But Corden just plays himself when it comes to acting. In fact, has no acting skills whatsoever. He ruined the Cats movie. So please keep him away from Wicked.”

Fans speculate that if ever Corden will be casted in the movie, he might be playing Dr. Dillamond, a talking anthropomorphic goat who works as a Life Science teacher at Shiz University.

Twitter was also lit with people who shared the petition.

Singer and podcast host Jack Remmington tweeted, “I’ve never signed a petition so quickly in my life.” The post has been retweeted with others who share the same sentiment, some captioning their posts “This might be the most important thing you have ever signed” and “I have no problem with James Corden but please… that man doesn’t have to be in every musical.”

Another also tweeted, “The reason why a lot of musicals fail as film adaptations is that studios feel that only casting A-listers/household names are going to draw audience. Cast those best suited for the roles, not just famous people!”

Corden has starred in several movie adaptation of musicals including Into the Woods in 2014. He has been called by critics as a “curse” in the film genre as some of the biggest hit musicals flopped or got heavily criticized. 

For example, his performance as Broadway veteran Barry Glickman in 2020 film The Prom was slammed as homophobic by critics. While Cinderella on Amazon Prime, with Corden as one of its producers and played one of the three mice, got a lukewarm reception with critics pointing out “heavy-handed dialogue” and “mediocre acting.”

The ubiquitous Late Late Show host has become infamous online for a bevy of reasons, including his reported hostile behavior, which was exposed by former employees of the show. And more recently, he was accused of using Korean supergroup BTS for clout after describing their United Nations General Assembly visit as “unusual.”

According to Deadline, the film adaptation of Wicked is in development with production set to begin in 2022 in the United Kingdom. 

Will James Corden star in the Wicked movie? We, and those who support the petition, have to wait and see.