Magic Lantern Video & Book Store

"The  Wizard  of  Oz"
1939  Movie

L. Frank Baum Page
at Spirit of America

Best Picture Oscars
1931-40 Page

           color still of "The Wizard of Oz" foursome: the Cowardly Lion, the Scarecrow, Dorothy Gale, and the Tin Woodsman           

synopsis & history

the movie

the principals


poster gallery



            A cyclone picks up a house, a girl, and her dog Toto and transports them to the strange land of Oz, where she meets the Munchkin people and Glinda, Good Witch of The North, who gives Dorothy protective ruby slippers. In order to return home to Kansas, Dorothy must travel the Yellow Brick Road to the Emerald City, to seek help from the 'great and powerful' Wizard of Oz. Along the way she is joined by a Tin Woodsman, a Cowardly Lion, and a Scarecrow.
           But the Wizard refuses to help them unless they bring him the broomstick of the Wicked Witch of The West. They set off; Dorothy & Toto are captured by the Witch's flying monkey army, and then rescued by her three friends. They overcome the Witch and bring her broomstick back to the Wizard.
           Again, the Wizard balks at helping Dorothy, until frisky Toto pulls aside a curtain to reveal a little old man operating levers & dials to produce the awesome 'Wizard'. The apologetic man quickly rewards the Scarecrow with a diploma, the Lion with a medal of valor, and the Tin Woodsman with a heart-shaped watch, and appoints them rulers of Oz in his absence. He then reveals a hot-air balloon and agrees to transport Dorothy back to Kansas; but Toto gets loose and the Wizard flies off without them. Glinda appears and reveals that Dorothy has always had the power to return home by clicking the heels of her ruby slippers, so Dorothy says goodbye to her friends and returns to her family in Kansas.

Judy Garland & Frank Morgan 'great & powerful Oz' soundbite [38-second wav file]

History of The Film

           After publication of the first book in 1900, the new motion picture industry was soon to make Oz shorts & feature films, including three in 1910, three in 1914, a major silent production in 1925, an animated cartoon feature in 1933, and sound features in 1932, 1936 & 1938.
           The pre-production of Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer's 1939 film was fraught with the usual problems: Shirley Temple was considered for the role of Dorothy, but her vocal style was deemed wrong; Buddy Ebsen filmed in costume as the Tin Woodman for nine days, and serious reaction to the makeup put him in the hospital (to be quickly replaced by Jack Haley); Gale Sondergaard was originally cast as the Wicked Witch, but became unhappy with changes to the script and was replaced by Margaret Hamilton.
           The film was nominated for 6 Academy Awards, including Best Picture, but fellow M.G.M. feature "Gone With The Wind" won that honor. "The Wizard of Oz" won Oscars only for Best Original Music Score & Best Original Song. Judy Garland won a Special Juvenile Award Oscar® that year, which was for her work in both "The Wizard of Oz" and the musical "Babes In Arms".
           The movie opened in August of 1939; box-office receipts were good, but barely more than the high production cost. M.G.M. did not see a profit on the film until the theatrical re-release of 1949. The Kansas sepia sequences were changed to plain black-and-white from 1949 to the 60th anniversary restoration of 1998, when they reverted. The film was not considered a classic until the showings on television, which became an annual tradition from 1959 to 1991.
           The owners at M.G.M decided to promote the 75th anniversary by creating 70mm IMAX prints in 3-D for national U.S. release in September 2013, followed by foreign releases.

list of Oz movies on Spirit of America's L.Frank Baum Page

The Wonderful Wizard of Oz 1900  
"The Wonderful Wizard of Oz" [1900] by L. Frank Baum
Young Dorothy and her dog, Toto, are swept away by a Kansas cyclone and find themselves in a strange land called Oz; she meets the Munchkins and joins the Scarecrow, the Tin Woodman, and the Cowardly Lion on a journey to the Emerald City to seek help from the all-powerful Wizard of Oz.
Signet Classics mass pb [10/2006] for $3.95

"The  Wizard  of  Oz"
[M.G.M./Loew's Aug 1939]

Warner Bros. 'The Wizard of Oz 1939' movie site
film credits at Internet Movie Database
film entry at Wikipedia
'Wizard of Oz' posters category at
Warner Bros. Online 'Wizard of Oz' Shop

A.F.I. September 2013 promo [3:24 MP4 file for QuickTime]

Produced by Mervyn LeRoy, directed by Victor Fleming {Kansas scenes directed by King Vidor}; based on the novel
by L. Frank Baum [1856-1919]; starring Judy Garland, Frank Morgan, Ray Bolger, Bert Lahr, Jack Haley, Billie Burke, Margaret Hamilton,
Charley Grapewin & Terry {as Toto}; won Oscars for Best Music Score & Best Song, Juvenile Award for Judy Garland; Oscar noms for
Best Picture, Best Color Cinematography, Best Special Effects & Best Art Direction; listed on National Film Registry (1989)

Warner Home Video 75th Anniversary Edition
Blu-ray 3-D/Blu-ray/Ultraviolet combo [10/2013] 2 disks for $25.11

Warner Home Video 75th Anniversary Edition
widescreen color DVD [10/2013] 2 disks for $11.79

Warner Home Video 70th Anniversary Ultimate Collector's Edition
Blu-ray set [9/2009] 5 disks - out of prodn/many used

Wizard of Oz poster   Warner Collector's Edition color DVD pkg [10/2005] 3 disks for $36.99
Warner Special Edition color DVD set [10/2005] 2 disks for $19.99
Warner/Turner color DVD [10/99] out of prodn/many used

M.G.M. color clamshell VHS [9/96] out of prodn/many used
M.G.M. color VHS [4/92] out of prodn/many used

soundtrack CDs from Rhino/W.E.A.  soundtrack CDs from Rhino/W.E.A. and M.G.M.
M.G.M. soundtrack CD [11/2007] for $12.99
Rhino/W.E.A. Special Edition soundtrack CD [9/98] for $14.99
Rhino/W.E.A. Deluxe Edition soundtrack CD [7/95] for $22.99
"Somewhere Over The Rainbow" sung Hawai'ian-style [5:26]
by slack key guitarist Kawika Kahiapo at YouTube

·                         ·

The Making of The Wizard of Oz book  "The Making of The Wizard of Oz: Movie Magic & Studio
Power In The Prime of M.G.M." [1984]
by Aljean Harmetz, Introduction by Margaret Hamilton

Hyperion 9¼x6¼ pb [12/98] out of print/used
Limelight Editions pb [1/84] out of print/used
"The Making of The Wizard of Oz" documentary [1979 TV]
Script by Aljean Harmetz, based on her book; hosted by Angela Lansbury;
interviewees include Margaret Hamilton, Ray Bolger & Jack Haley
video/DVD not available; full credits from IMDb

"The Wonderful Wizard of Oz: 50 Years of Magic" documentary [CBS-TV special Feb 1990]
Co-produced, co-written & directed by Jack Haley, Jr.; hosted by Angela Lansbury; Emmy nomination for Outstanding
Directing; available on the 2-disk & 3-disk editions above; full credits from IMDb

1992 "Out of Kansas" essay by Salman Rushdie in The New Yorker Magazine about the "Wizard of Oz" 1939 movie being his very first literary influence
read essay at New Yorker Magazine website {requires signup/login}

·                         ·

Under The Rainbow movie poster  "Under The Rainbow" [Warner Bros. / Orion Pictures July 1981]
The German Führer sends a midget secret agent to Culver City, California to meet with a Japanese spy. The meeting turns out to be the same weekend that The Culver Hotel [est. 1924] receives 150 'little people' working as Munchkins on the movie "The Wizard of Oz", a busload of Japanese tourists, and a paranoid Duke and his bumbling Secret Service escort. {Reviewed as awful but hilarious.} Directed by Steve Rash; starring Chevy Chase, Carrie Fisher, Eve Arden, Joseph Maher, Robert Donner, Billy Barty, Mako, Cork Hubbert, Pat McCormick, Adam Arkin, Richard Stahl, Freeman King, Zelda Rubinstein & Jerry Maren
Warner Home Video widescreen color DVD [undated] out of prodn/used
Warner Home Video color VHS [4/92] out of prodn/used
11"x17" poster from Amazon for $14.99
full credits from IMDbmovie entry at Wikipedia

·                         ·

Murder On The Yellow Brick Road mystery novel co-starring Judy Garland  "Murder On The Yellow Brick Road" [1978] by Stuart M. Kaminsky
Studio mogul Louis B. Mayer hires private detective Toby Peters to solve the murder of a munchkin on a soundstage at Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Studios. Unfortunately, the prime suspect seems to be a drugged-out Judy Garland, the teenage star of last year's "Wizard of Oz" box-office smash.
Penguin 7x5 pb [6/79] out of print/many used
iBooks 8¼x5¼ pb [5/2000] out of print/many used
iBooks hardcover [5/2000] out of print/used
St. Martin's Press 8x5¼ hardcover [1978] out of print/many used

The  Principals

author L. Frank Baum [1856-1919]

directed by Victor Fleming

Ray Bolger [1904-87] as Scarecrow

Billie Burke [1884-1970] as Glinda, the Good Witch

Judy Garland [1922-69] as Dorothy

Jack Haley [1898-1979] as Tin Woodman

Margaret Hamilton [1902-85] as Elphaba, the Wicked Witch

Bert Lahr [1895-1967] as Cowardly Lion

Frank Morgan [1890-1949] as The Wizard

Books  About  The  Film

Wizard of Oz Official Pictorial History  "The Wizard of Oz: The Official 50th Anniversary Pictorial History"
book & CD [1989] by John Fricke, Jay Scarfone & William Stillman

Grand Central Publng 11x8½ pb & audio CD [8/90] out of print/many used
Warner/St. Martin hardcover 11¼x8¾ [8/89] out of print/many used
Hodder & Stoughton hardcover & audio CD [10/89] out of print/used
Piggy Toes Press hardcover & audio CD [10/2000] out of print/used
Ruby Slippers of Oz  "The Ruby Slippers of Oz" [1989]
by Rhys Thomas

Tale Weaver 9x5¾ pb [8/89] out of print/used
Wizard of Oz Collector's Treasury  "The Wizard of Oz Collector's Treasury" [1992]
by Jay Scarfone & William Stillman, photographs by Tim McGowan

Schiffer Publng 11x8½ hardcover [3/92] for $59.95
Wizard of Oz critical text  "The Wizard of Oz" critical text [1992]
Essay & short story by Salman Rushdie

British Film Institute 7¼x5¼ pb [5/92] for $10.17
Wizardry of Oz   "Wizardry of Oz: The Artistry & Magic of The 1939 M-G-M Classic"
[1999] by Jay Scarfone & William Stillman

Applause / Hal Leonard Publng 10¾x8½ revised & expanded pb [7/2004] for $14.96
Gramercy 11¼x9 hardcover [10/99] out of print/used
The Munchkins of Oz   "The Munchkins of Oz" [orig 1989, rev 2001] by Stephen Cox
Cumberland House Publng 10x8 3rd edition pb [3/2002] out of print/used
Cumberland House Publng 10x8 pb [12/2001] out of print/used
"The Munchkins Remember: The Wizard of Oz and Beyond" [1989]
by Stephen Cox

Plume 7x5 pb [6/89] out of print/used
Autobiography of the Dog who was Toto  
"I, Toto: The Autobiography of Terry, The Dog Who Was Toto" [2001]
by Willard Carroll

Stewart, Tabori & Chang 8½x10 hardcover [9/2001] for $14.96
Terry's credits at IMDb
Memories of a Munchkin   "Memories of A Munchkin: An Illustrated Walk Down The Yellow Brick Road" [2005]
by Meinhardt Raabe, with Daniel Kinske

Watson-Guptill / Back Stage Books 10½x8¾ hardcover [4/2005] for $31.16
Short and Sweet   "Short and Sweet: The Life & Times of The Lollipop Munchkin" [2006]
by Jerry Maren

Cumberland House Publng 9x7 pb [10/2006] for $16.47

"Wizard  of  Oz"  Poster  Gallery

dark Oz / Dorothy poster

11"x17" poster
from Amazon
dark Oz / Scarecrow poster

11"x17" poster
from Amazon
dark Oz / Tin Woodsman poster
Tin Woodsman

11"x17" poster
from Amazon
dark Oz / Cowardly Lion poster
Cowardly Lion

11"x17" poster
from Amazon
blue sky Wizard of Oz poster
blue sky

24"x36" poster
from Amazon
orange Dorothy poster
orange Dorothy

27"x40" poster
from Amazon
Wizard of Oz yellow sky poster
yellow sky

11"x17" poster
from Amazon
red letters Wizard of Oz poster
red letters

11"x17" poster
from Amazon
white Wizard of Oz poster
white poster
24"x36" poster
from Amazon
rainbow Wizard of Oz poster
rainbow poster
24"x36" poster
from Amazon
French Wizard of Oz poster
French poster
12"x16" poster
from Amazon
red, white & blue poster
red, white & blue

11"x17" poster
from Amazon
Wizard of Oz foursome poster
Oz foursome

17"x11" poster
from Amazon
wide black-yellow Wizard of Oz poster

14"x11" poster
from Amazon
Wizard of Oz ruby slippers poster
ruby slippers

16"x16" poster
from Amazon
Wizard of Oz lobby card poster
lobby card

20"x16" poster
from Amazon
limited-edition Wizard of Oz poster signed by two Munchkins
"Wizard of Oz"
poster signed by
two Munchkins

24"x36" poster
from Amazon

Wizard  of  Oz  Links

L. Frank Baum [1856-1919] Page at Spirit of America Bookstore

"Wizard of Oz' portal at Wikipedia
Warner Bros. 'The Wizard of Oz 1939' movie site
film entry at Wikipedia

JRW's "Wizard of Oz" movie fansite
Halloween Costumes {dot} com [est. 2002] high-quality 'Wizard of Oz' costumes for adults & kids
Halloween Express {dot} com [est. 1990] high-quality 'Wizard of Oz' costumes for adults & kids
Oz Con Intl.'s Winkie Con [June-July 2017 = #53]

See also Magic Lantern Video & Book Store's
"A Christmas Story" 1983 Movie Page
"A Star Is Born" Movies Page
"The African Queen" 1951 Movie Page
"All The President's Men" 1976 Movie Page
"Apocalypse Now" 1979 Movie Page
"The Birth of A Nation" 1915 Movie Page
"Blade Runner" 1982 Movie Page
"Casablanca" 1942 Movie Page
"Citizen Kane" 1941 Movie Page
"Doctor Who" TV Series Page
"Easy Rider" 1969 Movie Page
"Walt Disney's Fantasia" 1940 & 2000 Movies Page
"Fellini's 8½" 1963 Movie Page
"The General" 1926 Movie Page
"Ghostbusters" Movies & TV Page
'The Godfather Saga' Page
"Gone With The Wind" 1939 Movie Page
"The Grapes of Wrath" 1940 Movie Page
von Stroheim's "Greed" 1924 Movie Page
'Harry Potter' Movies Page
'Lone Wolf & Cub' Samurai Film Series Page
'Lord of The Rings' & 'The Hobbit' Movies Page
"Metropolis" 1927 Movie Page
"Pandora's Box" 1929 Movie Page
'Pirates of The Caribbean' Movie Series Page
Godfrey Reggio's 'Qatsi' Trilogy Page
'Rocky' Movies Page
"Salt of The Earth" 1954 Movie Page
"Seven Samurai" & "Magnificent Seven" Movies Page
"Sunset Blvd." 1950 Movie Page
"Treasure Island" Movies [1912-2010] Page
Stanley Kubrick's "2001: A Space Odyssey" Movie Page
"The Wizard of Oz" 1939 Movie Page  «« you are here
and also BlackHat Mystery Bookstore's 'The Thin Man' Movies Page
and BlackHat Mystery Bookstore's "The Maltese Falcon" 1941 Movie Page
and Spirit of America Bookstore's "Alice In Wonderland" Books, Stageplays & Movies Page
and Spirit of America Bookstore's "Ben-Hur" Novel & Movies Page
and Spirit of America Bookstore's 'Tarzan' Movies Page

more Oz movie & TV productions (and books & stageplays & Kindle Editions) on
Spirit of America Bookstore's L. Frank Baum [1856-1919] Page

˜                   ˜

Online sales in association with  search all 'Wizard of Oz' on DVD at Amazon

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