Ariana Grande and Cynthia Erivo at Universal's CinemaCon 2024 presentation.

Source: Photo by Jerod Harris/Getty Images for CinemaCon 2024.

Ariana Grande and Cynthia Erivo at Universal’s CinemaCon 2024 presentation.

Universal brought its CinemaCon presentation to a heartfelt finale in Las Vegas on Wednesday with a 30-minute segment dedicated to the glittering jewel of its 2024 release slate, Wicked.

Leads Cynthia Erivo and Ariana Grande, who play the witches Elphaba and Glinda from the magical Land of Oz, introduced footage to the first part of Jon Chu’s Broadway adaptation, which recently wrapped production in London and is scheduled to open on November 27. The second instalment comes out on November 26, 2025.

Chu fought back tears as he joined the film’s producer Marc Platt, who won a Tony for the Broadway show, alongside Michelle Yeoh as Madama Morrible and Jonathan Bailey as Fiyero on stage at The Colosseum in Caesars Palace.

Peter Dinklage was revealed as the voice of the goat professor Dr Dillamond, who mentors Elphaba.

In a solo introduction to the segment, the ever-eccentric Jeff Goldblum, who portrays Wizard, said participating on the production was “dreamy”. The venue sparkled with replica tulips in seat cupholders containing colourful LED lights.

Donna Langley, chairman of NBCUniversal Studio Group & chief content officer, teed up the Wicked segment after reflecting on the studio’s huge 2023 in which it dominated studio market share with hits like The Super Mario Bros. Movie and best picture Oscar winner Oppenheimer.

“When it comes to the traditional markers of success in our business, there’s not much more you could ask for than being number one at the box office and winning the Academy Award for best picture in one year,” Langley told attendees. “Yet… we believe our best year should always be in front of us.”

Her words capped off a session in which the studio announced a sequel to last year’s $291m global horror hit Five Nights At Freddy’s coming in autumn 2025, and screened first footage from several tentpoles.

Illumination Entertainment head Chris Meledandri reminded that Illumination and Nintendo are in production on a sequel to the $1.4bn 2023 smash The Super Mario Bros. Movie, opening in April 2026.

The executive teed up an extended sequence from the July 5 release Despicable Me 4 featuring Steve Carrell, Kristen Wiig, Will Ferrell, and Sofia Vergara.

Universal president of domestic and international distribution Jim Orr hosted a segment on Blumhouse Films and showed first footage from Leigh Whannell’s werewolf horror Wolf Man, scheduled to open in January 2025. As previously announced, M3GHAN 2.0, sequel to $180m-grossing 2022 horror release M3GHAN, opens on May 16, 2025.

Orr also introduced the trailer premiere of James Watkins’ psychological horror Speak No Evil, an adaptation of the 2022 Danish film of the same name. James McAvoy and Mackenzie Davis star in the tale of a family weekend break that turns into a nightmare. Speak No Evil opens on September 13.

DreamWorks Animation president Margie Cohn welcomed The Wild Robot director Chris Sanders and Lupita Nyong’o to tease footage from the September 20 release. Alongside Nyong’o, the voice cast includes Pedro Pascal and Bill Nighy.

Focus Features chairman Peter Kujawski teased footage from Robert Eggers’ Nosferatu, Edward Berger’s Vatican thriller Conclave, and Sam Taylor-Johnson’s Back To Black

Earlier in the session Orr hailed the studio’s mighty 2023 box office feats which saw The Super Mario Bros. Movie claim two of the three top slots of the year. His sentiments were echoed by president of distribution at Universal Pictures International Veronika Kwan Vandenberg, whose division was responsible for three of the top four including Fast X.