Jeff Goldblum Confirms Role in 'Wicked' Movie, Says Childhood Fear of Witches Caused Tears on Set

The first installment in the two-part film adaption of the hit musical is set to hit theaters Nov. 27, 2024

Jeff Goldblum Confirms His Role in 'Wicked' Movie
Jeff Goldblum on Jimmy Kimmel Live. Photo: Jimmy Kimmel Live/YouTube

Jeff Goldblum is heading to the Emerald City!

The actor, 70, confirmed reports that he's starring as the Wizard in the two-part film adaption of the hit musical Wicked during an appearance on Jimmy Kimmel Live Thursday.

"I was just on the set of Wicked. I'm not supposed to talk about that. But it's been out and about," Goldblum said as he revealed his sons — Charlie, 7, and River, 5 — had joined him on the set of the movie in London.

The Jurassic Park star also told Kimmel he has shown his kids The Wizard of Oz, but the film classic wasn't a hit with them. "We showed them The Wizard of Oz, one of my favorite movies. It was too scary for them," Goldblum said. "The witch is terrifying. Margaret Hamilton, terrifying."

Goldblum then teased of Wicked and his costars, "You should see our witches — Cynthia Erivo and Ariana Grande — very good."

Erivo and Grande were cast as the leads Elphaba and Glinda, respectively, in November 2021. In September 2022, Bridgerton star Jonathan Bailey was announced as taking on the role of Fiyero, the main love interest in the musical.

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While Goldblum didn't divulge any more details about the movie during his appearance, the star did discuss how he had a childhood fear of witches because of a nightmare, with the fear resurfacing during filming.

"I shouldn't talk about it, but I was shooting one day and I found myself tearing up in fear, a childhood fear came back to me," he told Kimmel. Goldblum revealed he told his costar Erivo about the nightmare, which involved a "very scary witch" who tied him to a tree and was "going to chop my head off."

ariana grande and cynthia erivo
Ariana Grande and Cynthia Erivo. Trae Patton/NBC/NBCU Photo Bank via Getty; Universal Stage Production; Rich Fury/Getty Images

In October, Variety reported that Goldblum was in "final talks" to play the Wizard in the upcoming films, which are being directed by Crazy Rich Asian's Jon M. Chu.

The adaptations of the Tony-winning Broadway show — which is based on the 1995 novel Wicked: The Life and Times of the Wicked Witch of the West by Gregory Maguire — will differ slightly from the stage version, but Chu, 42, has promised to stay true to the heart of the story.

"With more space, we can tell the story of Wicked as it was meant to be told," Chu said in April 2022 in a post announcing the two films, noting that "a bigger canvas" would allow the creative team the space to include as many musical numbers and characters as possible. He added that trying to "wrestle" the story into one film would do "real damage" to it.

Wicked Part 1 is due in theaters Nov. 27, 2024.

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