Turner Entertainment opposes use of ‘Wicked Witch’ in trademark Turner Entertainment Company has filed an opposition with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office to stop witch and Pagan elder Dorothy Morrison from trademarking her brand name ‘Wicked Witch Mojo.” Turner Entertainment, a subsidiary of AT&T’s WarnerMedia, serves as the copyright holder for a large library of productions made by its sister subsidiary Warner Bros. Entertainment Inc. (aka, Warner Brothers), that includes The Wizard of Oz (1939). In 2001, Turner successfully trademarked the terms “Wicked Witch” and “Wicked Witch of the West.” In 2008, the company trademarked “Wicked Witch of the East” and expanded that of “Wicked Witch”. Then, in 2014, it trademarked “Wicked Wiches” [sic] It is for this reason that Turner has decided to file an opposition notice in response to Morrison’s own attempt to trademark her business name.
The Kansas City Ballet’s ‘Oz’ Takes Musical Cues From Jazz, Disco, Glam Rock, Country Fiddling… The newest production, “The Wizard of Oz” by choreographer Septime Webre, receives its world premiere on Friday with the Kansas City Ballet. “We kind of found inspiration in unexpected corners,” Webre says, drawing from brash jazz, grooving disco, glam rock guitar, country fiddling, Middle Eastern timbres, and new wave. Matthew Pierce wrote the music, performed by the Kansas City Symphony. This is Webre and Pierce’s fifth project together, which includes “Alice (In Wonderland),” performed by Kansas City Ballet in 2014. Pierce sends recordings to Webre and they begin a volley of edits and suggestions, until the ballet is mapped out musically. “It takes about six to eight months to build the score. And that’s well before a single step is danced,” says Webre. “Once the score is done, then I create the dance.”
The Wizard Behind the Curtain Robert O’Hara brings female-themed production of ‘The Wiz’ to TUTS Openly gay thespian Robert O’Hara promises a “contemporary” feel for this month’s production of The Wiz at Theatre Under The Stars, sparked by the casting of several women who will play male characters in this 1975 musical based on The Wizard of Oz. The Cowardly Lion, for example, is played by a female “because the female lion is the hunter and the gatherer,” O’Hara explains. “For a lioness to have no courage, it takes your imagination to a different place.” That place is today, he says. “Our Dorothy lives right now. She is a teenage girl in the age of Beyoncé, Trump, and the Internet, where social media tells you everything that’s wrong with you.” The Wizard, too, is a female in O’Hara’s mounting, which runs October 23–November 4 at the Hobby Center. “Since the actor playing the Wizard is usually double-cast as Uncle Henry, I’m calling her Aunt Henrietta,” he says. “That means that Dorothy will be raised by two women. We’re not saying they are two lesbians. We call them her two aunts. We just let the audience take it on face value.”
THE 5 SCARIEST SCENES IN RETURN TO OZ Return to Oz isn’t a light family romp; it’s a downright horror movie. It even takes place on Halloween! It’s hard to top the sequence in Mombi’s castle. Earlier in the film, we learn that Mombi lives in a grand palace with halls full of beautiful, decapitated female heads. The witch captures Dorothy and her friends, who learn that Mombi possesses a magical powder capable of reviving once-living things. At night, Dorothy sneaks into Mombi’s closet to steal the powder so she can escape on her moose plane, but the headless witch awakens, along with her hall of heads, who scream after her. To this day, I consider this one of the scariest scenes ever put to film. It’s not just the stuff of children’s horror, but the sort of thing that leaves a permanent scar.