Sunday, August 17, 2014

75 Years of Dorothy Gale

"For nearly forty years this story has given faithful service to the Young in Heart; 
and Time has been powerless to put its kindly philosophy out of fashion. 
To those of you who have been faithful to it in return...and to the 
Young in Heart...we dedicate this picture."

Do you remember the first time you saw The Wizard of Oz? I know I don't. It's one of those movies that has always been there, a staple of most peoples' childhood. Growing up in the 90s, it was a big deal when TBS or whatever station would play The Wizard of Oz on TV. It only happened once, maybe twice, a year! I grew up a little girl in Kansas, mostly living in the country & tornadoes were just a part of life. It was fun to see Dorothy growing up in Kansas on my television, with the Hollywood version of a tornado. Are you shocked that's not quite how they look, how the twister looks on The Wizard of Oz? While it's been fun being a real life version of Dorothy (okay, in my head I am), trust me when I tell you the The Wizard of Oz references I hear from people when I tell them where I am from are so overplayed and totally not funny. But my fake laugh has gotten pretty believable!

An early costume test for Dorothy

A Scarecrow makeup test

Flying monkey costume test

Buddy Ebsen in a Tin Man costume test.
He was the original Tin Man but was allergic to the aluminum
makeup, therefore replaced by Jack Haley.

Dorothy and her sidekick, Toto

Judy Garland looks stunning in this photo

 "A place where there isn't any trouble.
Do you suppose there is such a place...?"

"What makes the elephant charge his tusk in the misty mist, 
or the dusky dusk? What makes the muskrat guard his musk? Courage!"

"Some people without brains do an awful lot of talking, don't they?"

"I'll see you reach the Wizard, whether I get a heart or not."

"And now, my beauties, something with poison in it, I think."

"Don't get excited. Obstacles make a better picture."
-Director Victor Fleming

The Wizard of Oz is said to be the most watched film
in history.

The Wizard of Oz premiered at Grauman's in Hollywood on August 15, 1939.
It was released nationally on August 25, 1939.

It was not a box office success, contrary to belief.
It wasn't until it's re-release in 1949.

Walt Disney originally wanted to make The Wizard of Oz into a movie after
the success of his Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs.
However, MGM owned the rights to the book.

This issue of Movie Life was released prior to the release
of The Wizard of Oz. It featured photos of Judy Garland's
early life.

"Gaiety! Glory! Glamour!"
That pretty much sums it up in this 1939 movie poster.

A 1970 reunion of Ray Bolger, Jack Haley, and Margaret Hamilton.
At the time, they were the last remaining main characters from the film.

They still had it.

The best thing about The Wizard of Oz is how timeless it is. Here we are, 75 years after its initial release, and I can sit with my toddler and watch it, and he is thoroughly entertained. I know it will continue on for generations. It's so easy to get lost in that wonderful Technicolor land of Oz with Dorothy and all her friends. We feel Dorothy's sadness when she can't get home to Aunt Em and Uncle Henry on their farm in Kansas. We feel elated along with her when she finally clicks her heels together and wakes up in her own bed. 

My love for Oz will never end.

Until next time,

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