The Wizard of Oz
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A Note Regarding Spoilers

The following FAQ entries may contain spoilers. Only the biggest ones (if any) will be covered with spoiler tags. Spoiler tags have been used sparingly in order to make the page more readable.

For detailed information about the amounts and types of (a) sex and nudity, (b) violence and gore, (c) profanity, (d) alcohol, drugs, and smoking, and (e) frightening and intense scenes in this movie, consult the IMDb Parents Guide for this movie. The Parents Guide for The Wizard of Oz can be found here.

Yes. The Wonderful Wizard of Oz (1900) was written by American author L. Frank Baum [1856-1919]. Baum also wrote 16 sequels: The Marvelous Land of Oz (1904), Queer Visitors from the Marvelous Land of Oz (1905), The Woggle-Bug Book (1905), Ozma of Oz (1907), Dorothy and the Wizard in Oz (1908), The Road to Oz (1909), The Emerald City of Oz (1910), The Patchwork Girl of Oz (1913), Little Wizard Stories of Oz (1913), Tik-Tok of Oz (1914), The Scarecrow of Oz (1915), Rinkitink in Oz (1916), The Lost Princess of Oz (1917), The Tin Woodman of Oz (1918), The Magic of Oz (1919, posthumously published), and Glinda of Oz (1920, posthumously published).

The Kansas scenes are sepia-toned, not pure black-and-white. In sepia tone, a brownish layer is placed over a black-and-white photo or film scene in order to give it a certain quality. (See http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sepia_tone#Sepia_toning.) The dramatic change to color as Dorothy (Judy Garland} goes through the doorway was accomplished by having a stand-in, dressed in a sepia-toned costume, open the sepia-toned door. As the camera comes closer to the doorway we lose sight of the stand-in; then Garland appears in a full-color costume. Before the film received its 50th anniversary restoration, the Kansas scenes were always shown on TV in regular black-and-white. This is because when the film was re-released to U.S. movie theatres in 1949, ten years after it was made, the Kansas scenes were printed on the film that way, not in sepia. The sepia was not restored to the film until 1989. This means that moviegoers, not just TV audiences, had not seen the Kansas scenes in their original sepia tone for many years. The 1998 re-release of the film to movie theatres marks the first time that the Kansas scenes were seen in sepia in a movie theatre since just after World War II, when the film was still opening in parts of Europe and Asia.

Watch closely and you'll notice that the carriage Dorothy rides in follows the red brick road. The road leads right up to the front steps of Munchkin City Hall.

No to all three. As Dorothy, Scarecrow (Ray Bolger) and the Tin Man (Jack Haley) set off down the Yellow Brick Road, we see a large bird stretching its wings. There is no stagehand on the set, no one hanging himself, and no one falling out of a tree. The website devoted to urban legands, Snopes.com, has a more detailed explanation.

Audiences have claimed to hear various lyrics to the "Winkie Chant" performed by the Wicked Witch of the West (Margaret Hamilton)'s guards. They include "All we own, we owe her"; "Oh we love the old one"; and "Oh we loathe the old one." The screenplay shows that the correct lyrics are "O-Ee-Yah! Eoh-Ah!." The chant acts as a sort of audio inkblot.

In Baum's books, Oz is no dream. By contrast, the movie makes it clear that Dorothy dreamt the whole thing up. Of course, children of all ages refuse to accept that the vivid, colorful Oz is a dream, while the dull sepia-toned Kansas is reality. Audiences of the day were leery of fantasy and demanded this cop-out.

There's no evidence that Pink Floyd intended their album "The Dark Side of the Moon" to be a soundtrack for The Wizard of Oz. Whether the album makes a good soundtrack for the movie is a different question. Aficionados claim more than 100 instances of the album matching the actions on screen--assuming one begins playing the album at a certain point early in the movie. "The Great Gig in the Sky," in particular, matches up well with the tornado sequence. Proper synchronization is tricky. You may want to rely on a copy of Dark Side of the Rainbow, which is a DVD of The Wizard of Oz with "The Dark Side of the Moon" as its soundtrack. See also: Dark Side of the Rainbow.

Whether it really happened or not, Dorothy having seen Miss Gulch in the tornado turn into the Wicked Witch of the West (or East as it is open to interpretation) is meant to be metaphorical. For one thing, if Dorothy really did see Miss Gulch, she didn't really turn into the Witch, but rather died in the disaster. Thus, Dorothy imagined her turning into the Witch or applied it as a coping mechanism to witnessing a death. To go about with death to a different aspect of the scene, Miss Gulch turning into the Witch is intended to represent her either changing form or crossing over from one world to the next (whether it be from life to the after life or Kansas to Oz). All that aside, with the Witch's death and Miss Gulch's absence in the end of the movie, the problem is meant to be solved and that goes along with the idea that one world mirrors another. Thus, a problem in one is solved leading to the solution of the reflected problem in the other.

As of January 2014 these are the known surviving members of the cast of "The Wizard of Oz": (1) Priscilla Montgomery Clark , child munchkin (can be seen on the yellow brick road); (2) Joan Kenmore, child munchkin (can be seen in the background outside of one of the little huts with the other munchkins around her), (3) Ardith Dondanville Todd, child munchkin (can be seen in the background); (4) Betty Ann Kai'ihilani Bruno, child munchkin (she can be seen waving from one of the huts), (5) Jerry Maren, lollipop guild munchkin (wearing the green outfit, can be seen in many sections of the munchkin scenes); (6) Dorothy Barrett, Emerald City manicurist (she can be seen as the group is exiting the Wash and Brush Up Co., she had dark hair); (7) Caren Marsh-Doll, Judy Garland's stand-in (the back of her can be seen when Dorothy exists her home and enters the Land of Oz for the first time). Unconfirmed is: Ambrose A. Schindler, Winkie Guard and Jack Haley's stunt double (he can be seen holding onto the Cowardly Lion's tail as they climb the mountain up to the witch's castle to rescue Dorothy). He was living as of 2011; there are no reports of his passing.

Page last updated by BWRocks, 8 months ago
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