Ned Brown and Al Badham were completely fictitious characters with no real-life equivalent. A tall tale exists that Baum was challenged to a duel over mention of a bride's "roughish" smile in The Aberdeen Saturday Pioneer (called the Dakota Pioneer in the film). In tellings previous to the film, both men ran from the duel at the sound of apparent gunshots. A version of this story first appears in print in Baum's 1912 novel, Aunt Jane's Niece's on Vacation, and was recounted for The Baum Bugle in a series of biographical articles by Harry Neal Baum. Nancy Tystad Koupal's research into the Pioneer (see the introduction to Our Landlady) shows that the only instance of "roughish" was in a story in which Baum recounted having unwittingly walked in on a community theatre rehearsal, and the smile of an actress. The film's depiction of "big" presented as "pig" was fictitious. The identity of the duelist, if the story is true, has never been identified, so the filmmakers had to invent a character, whom they named Al Badham, simply to present the anecdote. There is no indication that this story actually inspired the Cowardly Lion. See more »
Kenneth Gage Baum, the Baum's fourth son, was omitted from the film, although he was present for much of the time period that the film shows. See more »
If you've ever wondered why was Wizard of Oz written, you have to see this movie. It's a little sentimental, but it is inspiring. I'd often wondered why he named the little girl Dorothy--and here the sad story is revealed. The part where author goes to the publisher hoping he can get a little money for Christmas is worth watching for alone.
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