‘Oz the Great and Powerful’ Trailer: James Franco is Off to Be the Wizard

Published 3 years ago by

A new trailer for Oz the Great and Powerful - a prequel film to the Wizard of Oz - debuted today at the Comic-Con 2012 Disney panel, and now you can check out the trailer for yourself. The film stars James Franco as a hack magician who happens into the titular mystical land, only to complicate the lives of three familiar witches – Evanora, Glinda, and Theodora, played by Rachel Weisz, Michelle Williams, and Mila Kunis. As the magician tries to deal with his lady troubles, he starts down a path that leads him to his famous destiny.

Spider-Man trilogy director Sam Raimi has definitely made a colorful and imaginative version of the land of Oz for audiences to experience with a combined sense of familiarity and new awe. The colors are so vibrant that they nearly pop out of the screen without the aid of 3D – but speaking of the stereoscopic format, there are plenty of “in your face” 3D scenes and action moments abound in the trailer. Depending on how you feel about that use of the format (Disney used a similar tactic (bright colors, pop-out effects) for their Alice In Wonderland re-imagining) you’ll either be very excited or put-off by what you see here.

For myself, the most impressive bit of the trailer is the opening, in which we are transported back to depression-era Kansas in black and white footage. Those scenes recall with uncanny detail the early parts of the original Oz movie – as created by uncredited director King Vidor – making the disparity between the black and white scenes and the later rainbow of digital 3D, even more drastic in contrast.

As for the three leading ladies: Weisz is not the most intimidating evil witch we’ve ever seen, and Kunis feels a bit out of place (or was that just her line delivery?). But, as usual, Michelle Williams has managed to virtually disappear into her role as Glinda – the “good” witch who would eventually go on to give a young girl named Dorothy some very important ruby slippers to wear.



oz great powerful poster 570x840 Oz the Great and Powerful Trailer: James Franco is Off to Be the Wizard

Check out the official synopsis for Oz the Great and Powerful:

When small-time magician Oscar Diggs (James Franco) pulls one flimflam too many, he finds himself hurled into the fantastical Land of Oz where he must somehow transform himself into the great and powerful Wizard—and just maybe into a better man as well.

Oz the Great and Powerful opens in U.S. theaters on March 8th, 2013.

Source: Walt Disney Pictures

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  1. I kinda believe that the Wizard Of Oz is one of the few movies that should be left alone. This trailer did nothing for me at all.

    • I was actually interested in seeing this film, until I saw the trailer. The beginning in black and white looked fine, but once in Oz, it just appeared way too campy and wild, like a Tim Burton movie. No thanks….I’ll wait for the DVD, if at all.

  2. “But, as usual, Michelle Williams has managed to virtually disappear into her role as Glinda – the “good” witch who would eventually go on to give a young girl named Dorothy some very important ruby slippers to wear.”

    What are you her agent? Michelle Williams looks terrible with that wig and looks more out of place than Mila does.

  3. I agree with Tay. I feel this will go very much like Burton’s ‘Alice in Wonderland’, absolutely nowhere. I could be wrong, but like many today I am jaded by this desperate attempt at revisiting the unnecessary. (looking at you NOT so Amazing Spiderman)

    • “Absolutely nowhere”? Alice in Wonderland made over $1 billion worldwide!

      • -the story went absolutely nowhere. Tim Burton’s name/former glory made $1 billion world wide, not his directing/story telling abilities.

  4. -obviously a ‘Wizard of Oz’ remake is looming on the horizon. Sheesh!

  5. Too much Burton and not enough Raimi for my liking.

    • got exactly the same feeling, looked to much like slice in wonderland

      • “slice in wonderland?”. That sounds like an amazing premise for a slasher flick.

        • haha didn’t realice the typo i ment Alice in Wonderland , especially the part in the trailer when they say “you are the one to save us all”

  6. What cameo will Bruce Campbell have in this movie? Flying monkey? He’d probably be the best actor in this if he does have a role.

    • He would make a good tin woods man.

  7. I think this may be a good role for Mila Kunis if it lets her grow as an actor and gets her away from the stuff she has been doing. I have the utmost confidence in Raimi to save this from being another Alice in Wonderland while also making it more watchable than The Wizard of Oz. TWoO doesn’t have an arc; it has a road. Any movie that old that’s meant to transport you to a magical fantasyland is going to appear severely dated effectswise even with a story. Rehashing the transition from b&w to color has to be done more out of tribute than necessity. After watching the trailer I’ve become very interested in this.

  8. Actually this looks awesome. And the slippers were Silver NOT Ruby.

    • Red, Ruby slippers are what I remember.

      • Yes, in the movie they made them Ruby – in the books, they’re Silver.

    • Elfman IS doing the score.

  9. I’m not sure anyone can accurately evaluate the accuracy of the casting for this film based on the teaser trailer. Seems premature to do so based on the very limited acting seen (especially considering the bulk of this teaser is to delve into the visual merits of the film).

  10. Hmm who really cares how the Wizard became the Wizard of Oz?!

    Nobody cared how Anakin became Vader or how Hannibal became a cannibal, hell nobody cared how Harry met Lloyd! I’d rather not know, the mystery defines the character!

    • I agree, nobody cared how Hannibal became a cannibal.

    • People cared about how Anakin became Vader, until they saw the movies.

      People like good movies.

      I’m interested. Aren’t you aware that there are a ton of books in the OZ series?

      • personally I would like to see all of the Oz books made into movies. yes the original was great, but its time to see all the stories told. to me this looks like a great start to it

    • What about “Wicked?” A best selling book and musical about the evil witch from the movie?

  11. L. Frank Baum wrote 14 books that took place in and around Oz. I owned them all as a child and have always thought they’d make great movies. While this doesn’t really appear to be based on any of them, it does seem to combine elements in an attempt to provide back-story…is this an attempt to create a franchise of films? If so, I’m all for it and wouldn’t mind seeing Raimi continue them (and Danny Elfman would be a great choice as composer!).

    This looks like fun and I’m looking forward to it.

    • I agree 100% Making more films doesn’t diminish the first but if done well, can honor it.

  12. I was intrigued by this until I saw a piece on EW about it, and the moment they said, “The Wicked Witch of the West isn’t “evil” she’s just “misunderstood.”” I’m getting a little tired of this new cliche. Why can’t a movie villain JUST be a movie villain? I mean, look what happened to Vader.

      VADER’S TRUE SELF IS A GUY NAMED ANAK- oh, yeah, that last one was mentioned in the original trilogy.
      The prequels could have been great. Lucas just got too much control over them.
      And then there’s that “Wicked” show.

      It may be a little late to paint moral relativism as the problem here.

    • Ignoring the SW prequels, people are always interested in Villains. They are more interested if there is something relatable or agreeable about them. In the real world people rationalize and justify “evil” actions everyday. They don’t think of themselves as evil. They are people who think and act differently, so audiences want to explore the “fine line” between the villain and themselves. I’m not religious but the expression “There, but for the grace of God, go I” is apt. It simply means “that could be me under different circumstances. With different ‘luck.’”

  13. Like others have said here my 1st thoughts were that it looks just like Alice in Wonderland. That’s find I guess but I’m still not sure about this movie.
    I am happy though to see Michelle Williams in something that’s not so dark. She’s such a great actress but it seems like everything she’s in is so depressing. I’m all for good drama but I want to see her in something different…

  14. I’m sorry but I hate the visuals on this. It looks like the actores are walking around on a 2D painting. I have a distaste for the overuse of CGI and this film is nothing but actors in front of screens.

  15. The link doesn’t seem to be working for me…?

  16. alice in wonderland part 2

  17. Awesome trailer.

  18. Ding dong can’t that wicked old Witch finally be dead?

  19. This looks like it doesn’t work. Nothing seems to fit together. The actors don’t fit the background or the dialogue.

    And I can’t guess at the tone of the movie, it looks quite serious, too serious for the subject matter.

  20. Just read a very funny novel, DA YELLER BRICK ROAD, that tells the original Oz story as it was “originally written” by Uncle Remus and later “appropriated” by Baum. It’s a funny take on Oz and well-worth a read.

  21. Wow–I was blown away by the trailer…don’t really know what you all are talking about. I love the idea of an ordinary man going up against real witches with nothing but his brain and a bunch of parlor tricks. I’ll be first in line for this one.

    • I agree! I don’t understand all of the hate for this movie. I guess maybe the original Wizard of OZ was so loved that no one wants to see any other movies with the word “OZ” in the title(?)