New Oz on the Horizon

New Oz on the Horizon

"Hopefully, Raimi has put together a great story which utilizes all the talents of his cast."

The Oz franchise has been the target of several movies and television series ever since the original Wizard of Oz hit the screens in 1939.  The newest addition to the fable is the Sam Raimi-directed Oz: The Great and Powerful, set to release in March of 2013.  While Sam Raimi has done some excellent work in the past, his more recent creations have been very hit-or-miss, leading me to wonder if this film is a classic-in-the-making or is going to end up being just one more forgettable piece of the attempt to recapture the glory of the past.

Unlike other Oz films, this one is a prequel to the original Wizard of Oz, told from the point of view of the wizard himself as he arrives in Oz.  It follows the journey from his first steps in the strange, mythical land to the eventual outcome of him becoming its ruler.

One thing that impresses me about this film (and will eventually get me to spend the $10 to go see it) is the cast.  James Franco, though not the best of actors, has a natural charisma that will lend itself well to the role of the young Oz.  Mila Kunis, Michelle Williams and Rachel Weisz will be taking on the roles of the various witches who populate the land.  And, last but not least, Zach Braff (of Scrubs fame) will be playing the role of Oz’s assistant.

Hopefully, Raimi has put together a great story which utilizes all the talents of his cast.  Hopefully too he is feeling inspired and devoted enough to pull this project off.  Most of the previous attempts to revisit Oz have been miserable, and it would be a shame to see the potential of this film get sent to the cinematic rubbish heap.