Oz in the News 8.15.14

1408015853019_Image_galleryImage_BNPS_co_uk_01202_558833_PThey’re not in Kansas anymore! Rare storyboard paintings used to plan out The Wizard of Oz emerge 75 years after film’s release We don’t know of they were hidden by the Wicked Witch or just lost somewhere over the rainbow, but a pair of incredibly rare paintings used to plan the filming of timeless movie The Wizard of Oz have emerged for sale – 75 years after its release. The watercolours came from the brush of famed art director Jack Martin Smith and showed how the sets might look once filming of the Hollywood classic began. One of the paintings features Dorothy – who was played by child star Judy Garland – and two Munchkins walking down the Yellow Brick Road to Oz while the other shows Dorothy with the Scarecrow. Each painting is tipped to fetch around $6,700 when they go under the hammer at Heritage Auctions in Beverly Hills, California. Margaret Barrett, head of entertainment, said: ‘Before filming started, the production crew’s art team painted quick, off-the-cuff paintings of scenes which were then shown to the art director. He would then be able to plan how scenes were going to look before filming began. ‘Jack Martin Smith was the lead artist and at the time would have just created these artworks very quickly, but he was exceptionally skilled and they are now viewed as art in their own right.

Reston gallery’s new Wizard of Oz art to benefit Habitat There’s no place like Reston. At least not now, in light of the 75th anniversary of The Wizard of Oz. “ArtInsights is one of the few officially licensed purveyors of Warner Bros. studio art,” Peter Larson says. “They worked with Warner Bros. to do this art show that highlights new original pieces of art that relate to The Wizard of Oz.” The opening party for There’s No Place Like Home is Sunday, Aug. 17, from 5 to 9 p.m. Exhibition runs to Sept. 15. ArtInsights Animation and Film Art Gallery, 11921 Freedom Drive. Reston, Va. Call 703-478-0778 or 703-521-9890, or visit habitatnova.org or ArtInsights.com.

Eric Shanower Gets Sleepy for “Little Nemo: Return to Slumberland”  “I just finished the paintings for ten tarot cards for “The Shadow of Oz” tarot card set to be published in July by Illogical Associates. I drew a three-page story for “Fables” #142, to be published by DC/Vertigo. I wrote and drew a 20-page comics story for an anthology of mostly prose short stories called “Taking Aim: Twelve Stories about Guns and Gun Culture,” edited by Michael Cart from HarperCollins in fall 2015. Marvel Comics has compiled all the “Oz” comics that Skottie Young and I did the past several years into one big volume, “The Oz Omnibus,” to be published in September. I wrote a new introduction for that. I’m painting variant covers for “Little Nemo: Return to Slumberland. My time is currently consumed with producing a vintage 1913 stage musical titled “The Tik-Tok Man of Oz,” with script and lyrics by “Oz”-creator L. Frank Baum. As soon as that play is over in August I’ll be getting back to “Age of Bronze” from Image Comics.”

Bright Now Beyond: This new musical looks to put a fresh spin on the familiar Land of Oz, but the storytelling isn’t always clear Brightly colored costumes and lighting. An effervescent, whimsical set. Techniques of “story theatre.” The Land of Oz. These were all things that I expected to experience at Bright Now Beyond, playwright Daniel Alexander Jones and composer Bobby Halvorson’s new musical adaptation of The Marvelous Land of Oz. And the world premiere production from Salvage Vanguard Theater does deliver them. Shadow puppets feature prominently on the shimmering curtains that constitute most of the set, for instance, and splashes of light bedazzle the environment and imaginative wardrobe.

Cakewalk to Oz: Students lend a wizard’s touch to dessert creations Courtesy of students from Chicago’s After School Matters program, the lobby and ballroom of the Palmer House Hilton was transformed into a sweet fantasy world fit for beloved characters Dorothy, the Tin Man, Scarecrow, Cowardly Lion, Toto and the Wizard. The students, who hail from Chicago’s Southeast Side and the Hegewisch area, went to great lengths to create Wizard of Oz-themed three-tiered cakes, specialty cupcakes and other desserts in an end-of-the-season final for their cake decorating/culinary class taught by instructor Gloria Hafer. Hafer said the class was invited to hold their competition last month at the Palmer House by the hotel’s director of catering who liked the idea of the Oz-themed event presented in celebration of the 75th anniversary of the popular movie. The Palmer House actually has a history with “Oz” in that author Frank L. Baum stayed at the hotel while he was participating in a book fair to debut his original edition. And in musical history, Judy Garland performed at the Palmer House’s Empire Room while on a tour to promote the film in 1938.



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