The Wiz Live! producers Neil Meron and Craig Zadan talk about the making of NBC’s latest live musical sensation.
When Neil Meron and Craig Zadan’s The Wiz Live! aired on NBC last December, it hauled in over 11.5 million viewers and was a huge hit on social media posting 1.37 million tweets during its East Coast airing. One publication wrote that it saved Christmas and critics love it. It currently holds at 91% on Rotten Tomatoes.
If you haven’t seen The Wiz Live!, set aside three hours to watch the genius musical production that is packed with plenty of high notes, stunning costumes and even vogueing. Watch as Shanice Williams slays her role as Dorothy. Her rendition of Home is enough to give you goosebumps in her breakout debut. The whole production is nothing short of enchantment, magic, and talent.
There is no doubt that The Wiz Live! was a great musical feat. It managed to do what no other televised musical production had done before – it got people who wouldn’t normally watch musicals watching. It converted fans. It aired at a time when racial violence was plaguing the airwaves. The Wiz Live! deserves to receive acting and directing nods from the Television Academy. It is a shoo-in for craft nominations for Best Production Design and Costume Design. Have you seen the stunning costumes? The Wiz Live! should also be seen in the Makeup and Hair categories as well as Best Original Music and Lyrics. Expect The Wiz Live! to be a strong contender when Emmy nominations are announced.
Of course, The Wiz Live! would be a faint memory without the dedicated brilliance of producers Neil Meron and Craig Zadan. It’s hard not to look at Neil and Craig’s body of work without having one “I loved that” moment after another. The Oscars – remember when Lady Gaga came on stage and performed that Sound of Music tribute? Chicago. Hairspray. The Sound Of Music Live!. Now we can add The Wiz Live! to that endless list. AwardsDaily TV’s Jazz Tangcay recently caught up with Neil Meron and Craig Zadan to talk about bringing the musical extravaganza to live TV.