The land of Oz won't be getting its Iron Man on anytime soon. Instead, the Emerald City is going pirate all the way.
Robert Downey Jr. has taken a step back from Disney's "Oz, the Great and Powerful" -- directed by Sam Raimi -- and, instead, the Mouse House is taking a good look at Captain Jack Sparrow himself, Johnny Depp, The Hollywood Reporter confirms.
The prequel-esque "Wizard of Oz" tale offers the backstory of Mr. Great and Powerful as a burgeoning illusionist kicked out of a traveling circus. His hot air balloon -- yes, the very one Dorothy uses in her attempts to return to Kansas in the original film -- gets caught in a tornado and lands him in Oz.
No word as to why RDJ has stepped away from the project but this marks the second 2011 project for which he's taken himself off the call sheet (the other being "Gravity"). Hmmm...
As far as Depp is concerned, THR points out, it's all a matter of timing -- the in-demand star has Tim Burton's "Dark Shadows" lined up to begin shooting this spring as well as Gore Verbinski's "Lone Ranger" down the road.
What say you -- are you bummed that Downey won't be taking on the guru in green, or are you pumped by the idea of Depp facing a run-in with Dorothy? Sound off in the comments or on Twitter.