Oz in the News 3.8.13

oz-sequel-mila-kunis__oPtDisney Already Prepping Follow-Up To ‘Oz The Great And Powerful’  Sam Raimi’s Oz the Great and Powerful opens Friday and, so far, buzz has been generally good. The industry tracking has been even better, with some outlets projecting a near $100 million opening weekend. So it should come as no surprise that Disney has just signed Mitchell Kapner, who co-wrote the first film with David Lindsay-Abaire, to get to work on a sequel.  Before Oz, Kapner was best know for writing The Whole Nine Yards, its sequel and Romeo Must Die.

Oz the Great and Powerful’ munchkin played by Bay County’s Chelsea Butterfield  Chelsea Butterfield appears in “Oz the Great and Powerful” as a munchkin wearing a yellow shirt with orange flowers, brown skirt with green stripes and an orange apron. She also wears a wig and prosthetic nose. She spent from September to November 2011 working at the Michigan Motion Picture Studios in Pontiac, living in a hotel paid for by the studio. Call time came at all hours of the day and night, triggering a two-and-a-half hour process to get makeup and wardrobe ready for the camera. “Getting makeup at 3:30 a.m. is not fun,” Butterfield said. “Sometimes, I would be falling asleep while they were putting my wig on.” Average work days were between five to six hours long, but sometimes were much longer depending how well they were doing on film, she said.

Heir of ‘Oz’: L. Frank Baum’s Great-Grandson Weighs in on Disney’s 3D Blockbuster, Reveals Family Secrets  “You always wonder if Great-granddad wasn’t somewhat influenced with Dorothy — instead of a male lead, here you have Dorothy,” Baum muses. “When you stop to think about it, Dorothy’s a woman leader. She’s a leader of her own little crew there. So maybe it rubbed off way back then with that connection in the family. When I used to go to the Smithsonian, on the same floor, you have not only the ruby slippers, but you go across the way and there’s Great-great-grandmother and Susan B. Anthony.”

No place like Coronado for ‘Oz’ author  In 1909, the Baums rented a two-story house on Star Park Circle, a short distance from the hotel, for six months. It’s now believed to be the only house still standing that the author lived in. The Meade family has owned it since 1965. Jane Meade, a Coronado native, said she and her husband, Pike, bought it without knowing the Baum connection. They know it now. So do the five children they raised there, who all still live in town. “We love the wizard, and the house is full of Oz memorabilia,” Jane Meade said. “Figurines on top of the furniture, a set of dishes, the script from the movie. We used to act out the different parts.” They’ve had to get accustomed to strangers who think the house is a museum and knock on the door, or simply walk in. “They see me sitting there and they realize it’s not a museum,” Jane said. Tour buses sometimes idle outside. People take pictures of the “Wizard of Oz Ave” street sign hanging near the front door.

Wizard of Oz prequel ‘a risk’ for Franco and Braff  Franco takes the lead role as Oscar Diggs and Braff stars as his side-kick monkey Frank. The pair spoke to the BBC’s Georgie Rogers about how they re-created the fairytale world for a new take on the beloved story.

‘Oz the Great’ review: Wonderful wizard  Here you’ll find the 3-D almost as good as Ang Lee‘s “Life of Pi,” with the three dimensions in service of a much better story. Screenwriters David Lindsay-Abaire and Mitchell Kapner devise a satisfying history for “Oz,” supposedly by going back to L. Frank Baum‘s books. But watching the movie, it becomes pretty clear that they kept the 1939 classic in mind, thought about what might have happened years before and let their imaginations rip. That’s why the more you like the Judy Garland film, the more you might appreciate “Oz the Great and Powerful.” Appreciate. Enjoy. Admire. Be glad to see. Have fun with … But as for love – well, love will be harder to come by.

Meet Ruth Duccini, a Munchkin From ‘The Wizard of Oz’  Ruth, have you heard about the new movie Oz the Great and Powerful? “Well, that’s put out by Disney, I understand. What I’ve heard so far doesn’t sound so good. I haven’t seen the ads on TV. I don’t know why! Everybody else has seen them. I’m in a retirement hotel, and they pay for the television, and mostly we get commercials. But I haven’t seen any yet, so I don’t know. My son said he might take me to see it. It’s supposed to be a different time frame or something.”

‘Wizard of Oz’ Prequel Is a ‘Great and Powerful’ Disappointment  “This movie is disrespectful to the Wizard of Oz, to me,” says Travers. “I loved it because it touched my heart – this movie doesn’t touch anything. It’s just out there to touch your pocketbook and your wallet and every other piece of money you have to buy all the little toys and gadgets they’re gonna sell you. This is sad, sad, sad.”

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