There are just so many fairy tale film adaptations happening nowadays that adding another one seems like crazy talk. But adding another one we are.

Dorothy of Oz, an animated sequel to The Wizard of Oz, is coming soon to a theater near you. True, an Oz-sequel has already been done, 1985’s Return to Oz. It was quirky, it had spunk…and it fell just a *little bit short* of being good. But! Dorothy of Oz looks promising.

Dorothy of Oz Concept Art 1

She also looks like Lea Michele

So what’s the story about, and why does it have potential? Here’s part of the website’s official description:

In the story, Dorothy returns to Kansas to find it devastated by the tornado that had whisked her away to the magical Land of Oz. The home she had been so desperate to return to is no longer; the townspeople, with nowhere to turn, are packing up and moving out. However, before Dorothy can even begin to react to or resist this change, she is transported back to Oz by equally magical methods as her first trip. Oz is in trouble, and the people there need her help: Dorothy’s old friends – the Scarecrow, Tin Man and Cowardly Lion – have disappeared and the land is in a state of decay. As Dorothy journeys to find her friends, she encounters a number of new companions and problems, including a man made of marshmallows who can’t think for himself, a china doll princess whose bossiness is a cover for her fragility, and a tugboat with as many personalities as he has pieces. Dorothy must help this odd group band together against a wicked new villian – a Jester who thinks all of Oz should be under his own control.

First of all, I like the plot. A little bit of darkness! Genuine drama! Marshmellow men! Also, the cast looks great. Aside from Lea Michele, the cast also includes Martin Short, Kelsey Grammar, Hugh Dancy, Jim Belushi, Dan Aykroyd…and two magic words.

Patrick. Stewart.

Patrick Stewart and "Tug"

Starring Captain Picard as a Rogue Grandmother Willow

There he is: the love of my childhood. No, seriously. I was in love with Captain Picard from “Star Trek: The Next Generation” during my formative years. And…I love him still. It’s an issue I’m working through, okay? But that has no bearing on the matter at hand, which is that Captain Awesome is playing what the website calls “a humorous talking tree turned tugboat.”

Only awesomeness can lie this way. However, I do have one bone to pick:

This looks like my childhood nightmares of Roman catacombs.

CGI? Haven’t we had enough CGI? 3D Extravaganza? Haven’t we had enough 3D extravaganzas? I guess not. But I’m willing to set aside my misgivings; all things considered, this looks like an excellent project.

To see the rest of the concept art (there’s lots), visit io9’s page here