Oz in the News 8.15.16

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‘Almost’ ready for the big screen  One hundred local people are on their way to the big screen. They are the cast of Myron Smith’s locally produced films, which will be part of the Virginia Sweded Film Festival. A Sweded film is a condensed, low-budget version of a popular movie. Smith, his cast and his crew have made versions of “Almost Famous,” “Willie Wonka and the Chocolate Factory,” “The Wizard of Oz” and “A Nightmare on Elm Street.” Each film runs between 15 and 20 minutes, Smith said. They will be shown together. The First Annual Virginia Sweded Film Festival is coming Oct. 1, at the Historic John D. Bassett Event Center. Filming was done around Martinsville. The Kansas scenes for “The Wizard” were filmed at Infinity Acres. Once in Oz, Dorothy met the Scarecrow, Tin Man and Cowardly Lion along the Silver Bell Trail. The witch’s castle in “Wizard” was inside Piedmont Arts. That worked out well, Smith said, because “the guards surrounded people from upstairs and downstairs.” The large mobile gave the feel of the castle’s chandelier.

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