Casting Call: Robert Downey Jr. To Play Wizard In New 'Oz' Prequel?

Robert Downey Jr. gets hyped up for 'Sherlock Holmes' at Comic-Con in San Diego on July 24, 2009 Robert Downey Jr. gets hyped up for 'Sherlock Holmes' at Comic-Con in San Diego on July 24, 2009

Robert Downey Jr. just might become the most powerful man in Oz.

Downey is in talks to star as the wizard in a “Wizard of Oz” prequel for Disney, according to The Los Angeles Times.

The film, which at one point was titled “Brick,” but now is reportedly dubbed “The Great Powerful,” is based on parts of the L. Frank Baum books about a Kansas con man who becomes the mysterious man behind Oz’s big curtain.

While no other casting or plot details have been revealed, the studio does reportedly have two potential – albeit very different — directors in mind: the more dramatic Sam Mendes (“American Beauty,” “Revolutionary Road”) and the more whimsical Adam Shankman (“Hairspray,” “Bedtime Stories”).

If everything falls into place as expected, production on the film could begin as early as Spring 2011.

Downey, who will reprise his role as Tony Stark in “Iron Man 2” (in theaters May 7), has a slew of upcoming projects, both wrapped and in development.

He wrapped production the comedy “Due Date” with Zach Galifianakis; he lent his voice to the animated film “Megamind” alongside Tina Fey, Will Ferrell and Ben Stiller; and in addition to the already planned “Iron Man 3,” he’ll also bring his Tony Stark role to “The Avengers” in May 2012.

In recent days, there has also been online buzz about a potential “Sherlock Holmes” sequel.

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