Warner Animation Group is developing an animated musical based on the Michael Morpurgo children’s book Toto: The Dog-Gone Amazing Story of the Wizard of Oz. The book tells the story of The Wizard of Oz from the point of view of Dorothy’s pet dog, Toto.
The project was first put into development in 2018. It will be directed by two-time Tony nominated director Alex Timbers. The screenplay is written by John August. Jared Stern is serving as executive producer, and Derek Frey, who previously ran Tim Burton Productions will produce the film.
Timbers’ credits include Rocky and Moulin Rouge!, Disney theatrical’s Peter and the Starcatcher which won five Tony Awards and for which he was nominated for best director of a play; Bloody Bloody Andrew Jackson, which he directed and wrote, and was nominated for a Tony for best book of a musical; Rocky: The Musical; David Byrne and Fatboy Slim’s Imelda Marcos musical Here Lies Love; and The Pee-Wee Herman Show which was Emmy-nominated. He is the co-creator and executive producer of two-time Golden Globe winning series Mozart in the Jungle. He has also directed and executive produced the specials John Mulaney: Kid Gorgeous at Radio City and Ben Platt Live From Radio City Musical Hall.
August is the screenwriter of Big Fish which was nominated for BAFTA. His other writing credits include Aladdin, Dark Shadows, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, and the first two Charlie’s Angels movies for Sony. He wrote and directed the Ryan Reynolds fantasy drama The Nines.