Category Archives: Oz Film, TV & Radio

Oz in the News 5.31.17

As Part Of Wizard Of Oz Festival, Museum Hosting Film, New Exhibit And Contest For Best Munchkin Story This year the Judy Garland Museum will be celebrating memories of the much-loved Munchkins from “The Wizard of Oz” film with three events: the showing of a film, “We’re Off to see the Munchkins,” a contest, and a new exhibit. This year at the Wizard of Oz Festival the Museum will open a new exhibit titled “The Munchkins in Grand Rapids.” In conjunction with this, a contest is being held for the best story (and/or picture) of meeting a Munchkin in Grand Rapids. The winner will have the opportunity to share their story/picture in the new exhibit, win a Household Membership to the Museum and a free ticket to the documentary film, “We’re Off to See the Munchkins.” The 90-minute film includes interviews with eight little people. The film will be shown on Saturday, June 10, at 3 p.m. in the Judy Garland Museum art room. To take part in this contest, you may submit your story in one of three ways: E-mail: jgarland@uslink.net; by mail: Judy Garland Museum, Box 724, Grand Rapids, MN 55744; or drop it off at the Judy Garland Museum, 2727 Pokegama Ave. South, Grand Rapids. The deadline for the contest will be June 5.

The Judy Garland Show Channel Comes to StreamNet.TV Featuring Tony Bennett, Liza Minnelli, and Guests StreamNet.TV is adding 26 one hour episodes of The Judy Garland Show Channel to its platform. This historic collection of 26 one-hour-long episodes includes an unprecedented list of guests — including Barbra Streisand, Mickey Rooney, Count Basie, Lena Horne, Tony Bennett, Ethel Merman, Bob Newhart, Donald O’Connor, Peggy Lee, Steve Allen, Jane Powell, Peter Lawford, Vic Damone, Jack Jones, and Garland’s daughter Liza Minnelli, among others. Judy Garland also performed solo concert performances as part of this amazing, wonderful TV show.

Oz in the news 5.17.17

Discotek Shares Episodes Of “Wizard of Oz” Anime Discotek describes Panmedia‘s version of The Wonderful Wizard of Oz:

Dorothy and her canine pal Toto live a quiet life on a Kansas farm with Uncle Henry and Aunt Em. But one day, the little girl and her dog find themselves spirited away from the fields of Kansas, to the magical land of Oz! Dorothy and Toto meet many friends on the yellow-brick road to Emerald City, where she hopes to find a way home to Kansas– but when she arrives, the city’s mysterious ruler, the Wizard of Oz, is not what she expects! The Wizard can help Dorothy get home, but at a daunting price: she and her friends the Tin Woodsman, the Scarecrow, and the Cowardly Lion must kill the Wicked Witch of the West and free the Winkies from her rule.

Dorothy’s journey to Emerald City is only the beginning of this celebrated 52-episode adaptation of L. Frank Baum‘s beloved series of children’s books, which goes beyond the tale of Wizard of Oz to introduce you to new friends, like the Gump, the Sawhorse, Jack Pumpkinhead, and Billina– plus new adversaries in the witch Mombi, General Jinjur and the All-Girl Army, and the bitter and scheming Nome King. Dorothy must team up with old friends and new to save all of Oz and return Emerald City to its rightful ruler, the mysterious Ozma. One way or another, Dorothy’s not in Kansas anymore! Discotek will release the entire 52-episode series on standard definition Blu-ray Disc and on DVD on August 29. The company is offering the international version of the series with the English dub, including narration by Margot Kidder (Superman). Lightyear Entertainment previously released the series on DVD. The series originally aired in 1986-1987.

Oz in the News 5.15.17

Unknown Stories of WNY: The Man Behind The Wizard Had Ties To Allegany County Years before The Wizard of Oz sprang from L. Frank Baum’s imagination, he was imagining wealth of a different kind. He and his father made their home in the Allegany County town of Richburg. It, like many other Allegany County and Northern Pennsylvania communities, was enjoying instant wealth. Richburg was a small farming hamlet, until 1881 that is. A group of businessmen formed the Richburg Oil Company and bought 90 acres of farm land. On April 27, 1881 a crowd gathered to witness the first shooting of the well. It was a geyser. The well produced 250 barrels in the first hours, then settled in to about 50 barrels a day. That discovery led to a rush on the area. Towns of a few hundred people grew to thousands. Among the many who came here in search of fortunes was Benjamin Baum. He and his son Frank ran a skimming company. As oil wells were struck,much of the product wound up in the creeks. Baum & son went into business skimming and recovering oil from the streams.

3 Series To Take You Back to Oz After ‘Emerald City’ s Cancellation For those of us who enjoy a journey to the Land of Oz, the recent cancellation of NBC’s felt truly wicked. Sure, it wasn’t a perfect season, but what first season is? The unique, adult-oriented take on showed promise and left us anticipating all that would happen in season two, but now we’re left stranded at the end of the rainbow –– or are we? While there is no planned return to Oz on television, we continue to get fresh content through the original Wizard of Oz medium –– literature. Since L. Frank Baum’s The Wonderful Wizard of Oz was released 117 years ago, this merry old magical land has been the setting for numerous novels; some of which were released just this year. Thanks to the freedom that comes with Oz being under public domain, authors have the ability to reimagine, recreate, and elaborate on Baum’s creations. Of all the books that have arrived in the wake of Dorothy’s first trip to Oz, three recent titles offer up fresh and exciting new narratives. If you are reeling from the loss of Emerald City, or just looking for a way back to Oz, these series maybe be just what you need.

Oz in the News 5.10.17

Eerie ‘Land of Oz’ theme park in North Carolina finally opening up for tours In 1970, people from around the country flocked to Beech Mountain, North Carolina to check out the new “Land of Oz” theme park. Its popularity was short-lived — the attraction shut down in 1980 after its owner passed away and a fire took down the site’s Emerald City. It hasn’t been left completely abandoned, though. In 1991, the park was opened for one day to curious visitors. And as we’ve previously reported, locals have taken it upon themselves to keep the amusement park in relative working order to open for the annual “Autumn in Oz” event. But this year, as they did last year, they’re opening it up on Fridays in June for visitors to come and enjoy an entirely different kind of Oz. The tours on June 2, 9, 16, 23 and 30 will last for 45–60 minutes, and will introduce visitors to Dorothy as she guides you around her country home on the Yellow Brick Road. During your visit to the Land of Oz, you’ll meet Dorothy and accompany her on a tour of her country home — just before a cyclone whisks you away to the yellow brick road. This massive winding trail reaches all the way around the top of Beech Mountain, and is made of 44,000 actual yellow bricks. Tickets for the scheduled tours are on sale now for $25. For more information on the park and to buy tickets, head to the “Land of Oz” website.

Oz in the News 5.5.17

‘Emerald City’ Canceled at NBC After One Season It’s the end of the yellow brick road for NBC’s “Emerald City.” The fantasy series, inspired by L. Frank Baum’s “Wizard of Oz” tales, has been canceled after one season, Variety has confirmed. Debuting in January, “Emerald City” never found an audience over its 10 episodes. Opening to 4.5 million viewers, the drama dipped week-to-week to a season low of 2.3 million viewers, slightly ticking up for its finale with an audience of just under 2.9 million. In Variety‘s review, critic Maureen Ryan said the unavoidable comparison to “Wizard of Oz” was the series’ problem from the start. “In look and tone, it does not imitate the classic 1939 film starring Judy Garland, but this darker take on the story remains so familiar that, although it’s gorgeous, there’s too little tension and suspense driving it,” she wrote.

Oz actor turns 100 Ambrose Schindler, one of few remaining ‘Wizard of Oz’ actors, turns 100 in Petaluma: Ambrose — known in his youth as “Amblin’ Amby” — and currently a resident of Petaluma’s Adobe House, marked his 100th birthday on April 22. He is, indeed, one of only nine surviving cast-members of the 1938 classic “The Wizard of Oz,” in which he served as Jack Haley’s Tin Man stunt double, and also appeared as one of the Wicked Witch’s marching Winkies (“Oh-Oh Oh-eeee-Oh!”). His proudest claim to fame, though, is playing quarterback for the USC Trojans, and being named MVP of the 1940 Rose Bowl. A happy birthday to you, Mr. Schindler.

Oz in the News 5.4.17

Jim Denomie’s ‘Wizard of Oz’ inspired art Celebrated Minneapolis artist Jim Denomie reveals his latest creation, a mural-sized painting that’s inspired by The Wizard of Oz. Titled Oz, the Emergence, Denomie details his own nightmarish vision of the 21st Century, using characters and scenes from the 1939 film as entry points. Denomie has a way of speaking immense truths, revealing injustices through both humor and dark commentary. You won’t want to miss his latest marvel.

‘Star Wars’ and ‘The Wizard of Oz’: Back in 1977, People Couldn’t Stop Comparing the Two How would you describe Star Wars to someone who’s never seen it? It’s not unusual for actors on a press tour to compare their movie to other beloved films, in hopes of getting audiences into the theater. But when Star Wars — Episode IV: A New Hope was first released in 1977, there really hadn’t been another film like it. So when the actors were asked to describe the film in interviews, they found a comparison that might not occur to modern audiences: the 1939 musical fantasy The Wizard of Oz.

 

Oz in the News 4.14.17

To Preserve Dorothy’s Ruby Slippers, Smithsonian Relies On Custom Q-Tips And A Lot Of Cash The shoes that magically transported Dorothy from the Land of Oz back to Kansas are now about to take a trip of their own — to a conservation lab at the Smithsonian. The National Museum of American History is getting ready to take the ruby red slippers from The Wizard of Oz off display for preservation. Dorothy’s slippers will be spending a lot of time in a basement laboratory after they go off display April 23. “We’ll be doing pretty much all the work underneath the microscope, going sequin by sequin,” says conservator Dawn Wallace. The ruby slippers aren’t actually covered in rubies. The shoes are decorated with plastic sequins, which were fairly advanced material in the 1930s. Analyzing the condition of each and every sequin could take a while, Wallace says — there are roughly 2,400 of them per slipper. Cleaning the shoes requires special Q-Tips that are custom made at the museum. The shoes also must be housed in a highly sophisticated display case to prevent light from fading their color. Although the shoes looked gleaming red in Technicolor, in person they’re a tamer burgundy. All these preservation efforts require extensive research and time — and money. But according to the museum, it’s what must be done to ensure visitors enjoy the slippers for decades.

Wizard of Oz shoes which Latchingdon man bought for shoe-crazed wife go on sale for charity In March, Latchingdon resident Andy Walker bought a 14ft long and 7ft high pair of red slippers – previously used for a Wizard of Oz display in Harrods, London – to satisfy his wife’s obsession with shoes. The shoes became a local sensation overnight with many residents and neighbours noticing them when passing by the house in Cold Norton Road. With the excitement somewhat subsided, Andy has decided to put the shoes up for sale on the auction website eBay, with all proceeds going towards Great Ormond Street Hospital in London. The shoes were put on the site this week, with the auction running until Bank Holiday Monday. So far, bidding has increased to £112. Andy added: “It’s been incredibly popular since it went live, the page has already had 15,000 views and I’ve had people message me from America asking how much it would cost to ship them over there.

American Gods: Gillian Anderson talks Judy Garland “It was a curious process into Judy because there’s something very specific about her and an aspect of her personality that is kind of uncopy-able,” says Anderson. “And for a long time that I was working on her, I was struggling with that, working in my own space, trying to figure out what it was that was quintessentially her. I came to the conclusion that, actually, I might be barking up the wrong tree. [Laughs] Whereas with other characters, there were things I could hook onto that felt like [I] was tapping into an essence of some kind, I found Judy actually the most elusive or the most challenging to bring an element of her to the picture. So I had to ultimately make different decisions about how to represent her.”