Category Archives: Oz Film, TV & Radio

Oz in the News 3.10.18

The Dark Side of the Rainbow It’s unknown who first came up with the idea of playing the two works simultaneously, but it was first brought to the public’s attention by Charles Savage, who penned an article for the Fort Wayne Journal Gazette on Aug. 1, 1995. In it, he noted that if you start the band’s CD as the MGM lion roars for the first time onscreen, the songs and the video sync up in eerie ways during several places. The piece was called “The Dark Side of the Rainbow,” which has since become the common name given to the mashup. Over the years, Savage’s story spread and, two years later, MTV gave it a national audience in a featured news segment. The album’s engineer, Alan Parsons, was asked at the time if all this was intentional. He denied it. “There simply wasn’t mechanics to do it,” he said. “We had no means of playing videotapes in the room at all. I don’t think VHS had come along by ’72, had it?” Parsons is correct. Even though recording television programs via videotape was introduced in 1956, they were originally designed for professional use, and didn’t become available for home users until the mid-’70s. Floyd drummer Nick Mason, however, had a droller denial. “It’s absolute nonsense,” he said. “It has nothing to do with The Wizard of Oz. It was all based on The Sound of Music.”


Oz in the News 2.28.18

Jurassic Park, Mary Poppins and The Wizard Of Oz prove that films CAN be better than books, new survey reveals BRITS prefer a night out at the movies to watch their favourite books being played out on the big screen, rather than reading the book itself. The Wizard of Oz, Mary Poppins and Jurassic Park are among the book-to-movie adaptations Brits prefer in film-form, a study has found.  Classic tales were the favourite of a poll of 2,000 adults. It found that after reading the book and seeing the story unfold on the big screen, many were won over by the movie version of classic tales.  The research was done by Vue cinemas to celebrate World Book Day (Thursday 1st March 2018) and identify the greatest movies which have made masterpieces of memorable story tales. A spokesperson for Vue said: “Some of the greatest films ever made have their roots in literature and there are plenty of high-profile book-to-film adaptations like Ready Player One hitting the big screen soon.

Oz in the News 2.21.18

Black Panther Beats Wizard of Oz as Rotten Tomatoes’ Best Movie Ever Black Panther has passed The Wizard of Oz to become Rotten Tomatoes top movie of all time. The aggregated review site keeps a list of the top 100 movies, based on the number of reviews a movie receives and how positive those scores are. The wave of overwhelming positivity has helped push Marvel’s latest to the very top, above some of the most classic movies ever made, including The Wizard of Oz, which has held the number one spot on the list for quite some time. But there’s a new king in town and his name is T’Challa. Rotten Tomatoes’ top 100 movies of all time list takes into account every movie on their site with at least 40 different reviews counted. They then use what they call their “Adjusted Score” to determine the ranking. Their Adjusted Score is said to account for the variation in the number of reviews per movie and uses it as a weighted formula to determine the ranking. Whatever the case may be, their formula has placed Black Panther above the likes of The Wizard of OzCitizen Kane and The Third ManThe Wizard of Oz has a better Tomatometer score, with 99 percent. The movie has 110 reviews counted and just a single one of them is negative. Black Panther may have the lower score, sitting at 97 percent, but with 310 reviews counted, that helped it rank higher on Rotten Tomatoes’ list.

Oz in the News 2.16.18

‘Judy’: Finn Wittrock, Jessie Buckley Join Garland Biopic Led By Renée Zellweger American Horror Story’s Finn Wittrock has been set to play Mickey Deans, the fifth husband of Judy Garland, in Judy, the true story of the singer and actress’ final concerts in London. Also joining the cast s Beast‘s Jessie Buckley as Rosalyn Wilder, the production assistant who looked after Garland during those performances. Renee Zellweger is playing the legendary singer/actress. From Pathe and Calamity Films, Judy will be helmed by British stage director and Tony nominee Rupert Goold. The film is based on a script written by Tom Edge (The Crown) and will be produced by BAFTA winner David Livingstone (Pride) for Calamity. Pathé will distribute Judy in the UK, France and Switzerland and is handling sales throughout the rest of the world. It will screen footage for buyers in Cannes after shooting March-May. Set in winter 1968, the story takes place 30 years after Garland played the iconic role of Dorothy in The Wizard Of Oz. When she arrives in Swinging London to prepare for a sell-out run at The Talk of the Town, she battles with management, charms musicians and reminisces with friends and adoring fans. Even her dreams of romance seem undimmed as she embarks on a courtship with Deans. And yet Garland is fragile. After working for 45 of her 47 years, she is exhausted; haunted by memories of a childhood lost to Hollywood and gripped by a desire to be back home with her kids. The film will feature some of Garland’s best-known songs, celebrating her voice, capacity for love and the pizzazz of “the world’s greatest entertainer.” Zellweger notably showed off her pipes in 2002 musical Chicago, for which she was nominated for a Best Actress Oscar.

‘Cabaret’ costume among vast Liza Minnelli collection for auction Liza Minnelli’s signature “Cabaret” bowler hat, boots and halter top vest is going up for auction in a sale of more than 1,000 lots belonging to the singer, her mother Judy Garland and movie director father Vincente Minnelli. California auction house Profiles in History announced on Wednesday that the “Love, Liza” auction in May, the first from Minnelli’s vast personal collection, would also include her 1971 Rolls Royce Silver Shadow as well as her hand-annotated shooting script for “Cabaret.” The Judy Garland memorabilia includes an MGM studio paycheck that was issued when she was 13, before she appeared in her first film, along with a green tramp clown tailcoat she wore for a 1956 photograph by Richard Avedon.

Oz in the News 2.13.18

Wizard of Oz movie party is coming to El Paso Alamo Drafthouse Wizard of Oz, the classic 1930’s film that follows Dorothy through her adventures in the mystical land of Oz will be screened at El Paso’s Alamo Drafthouse Cinema on Friday, March 2 at 7 pm. The movie is considered to be one of the greatest films in cinema history. It’s a local favorite that draws large crows at screenings around El Paso. Alamo Drafthouse invites everyone to their movie party, which will have special movie props, Wizard of Oz-themed contests, and even an Emerald City cocktail. Alamo Drafthouse also offers free refills on popcorn and soft drinks, although you’ll probably enjoy yourself a bit more sipping on that Emerald City cocktail, or any of their delicious drinks for that matter. Everyone 18 and up is welcome. Children 6 and up may attend with an adult. No one under 6 years of age will be allowed. Tickets to the Wizard of Oz screening are $12.99 per person and may be purchased here.

Oz in the News 12.31.18

Kat Cunning Spins A Queer Narrative In Her First Music Video “I’m queer, and the song itself is — I mean, it’s loosely based on Wizard of Oz, which I’ve been obsessed with since I was as young as I can remember. And then, growing up, coming into my own and realizing I was gay, it was a funny realization that The Wizard of Oz is also actually such an emblem for the gay community. It’s ‘Over the Rainbow,’ Dorothy, Judy Garland — it’s like a poster story for gay people finding themselves. In a way, this song was a version of The Wizard of Oz where Dorothy doesn’t come home. Like that ending monologue, when she’s like, ‘And you were there, and you were there! But it couldn’t have been you, could you?’ I saw that as kind of a bummer. She literally goes back to a world made of black and white after you’ve seen — at the time — one of the first color films, ever. She has so many adventures, and for me that story is akin to finding your community of people and particularly a colorful queer world full of beautiful freaks. For me, that’s what the song is about — finding that family.”

Oz in the News 1.17.18

Why Did The Good Place Hide So Many Wizard of Oz References in Last Week’s Episode? A decade ago, Lost fans went a little batty with Oz-related theorizing, guessing that the show would end with a twist ripped straight from L. Frank Baum and the Yellow Brick Road. Very few of those bets paid off. Still, because Schur is a Lost fan himself, and because The Good Place has made a habit of springing its own “everything you know is wrong” surprises, it wouldn’t be completely out of line to think that the Wizard of Oz parallels in “Best Self” are some kind of larger clue to where the show might be headed. Like: Will Eleanor Shellstrop wake up in the series finale and find herself back in Arizona, living around people who look like Janet, Chidi, Jason, Michael, and Tahani? While we break out the scratch paper to get busy postulating, here’s a handy reminder of just how Wizard of Oz–like “Best Self” actually is. Some of these references are overt, some more subtle, and some, to be honest, probably unintentional. They’re all collected from the vaguest Oz nod to the strongest.

UMS Adds Free Performance And Livestream To U.S. Premiere Of FK Alexander’s OVER THE RAINBOW The University Musical Society (UMS) of the University of Michigan will add a free performance of Glasgow-based performance artist FK Alexander’s (I Could Go On Singing) Over the Rainbow on Monday, January 29, 2018 at 7 pm. This special performance, which will last about an hour, will be streamed at and via Facebook Live at Tickets for the free, in-person experience will be distributed via lottery at UMS will also host a livestream viewing party at Light Box Performance Space in Detroit (8641 Linwood Street). Admission to the viewing party is free and open to the public. FK Alexander’s sonically immersive production of (I Could Go On Singing) Over the Rainbow will run from Friday, January 26 through Saturday, February 3 in the Stamps Gallery in downtown Ann Arbor (201 S. Division Street). The production receives its U.S. premiere with these performances and is not currently scheduled to be seen anywhere else in the country this year.