It has been three years since there has been a new film from director Sam Raimi. Not a conspicuously long absence by today’s standards, but for fans like myself, long enough. Last night, Disney released the first trailer for his upcoming film Oz, The Great And Powerful and it looks like a welcome return for the director.
There’s a lot to comment on in the clip, but I’ll only hit upon a few. First off, I love how it looks as if the film will be aping the 1939 MGM classic version of The Wizard Of Oz by starting off in black and white (though the original was sepia tone) and then having color bleed into the picture once James Franco’s Professor Marvel arrives in Oz. Another nice touch is how at that point the film expands on that idea by switching from the screen ratio used in 1939 to modern widescreen. There seems to be other touches that call back to the MGM film as well. I’ll leave you to find them, but I will start you off by pointing out the quick glimpse of one of the Wicked Witch of the West’s palace guards.
If any director is going to have fun with 3D it will be Sam Raimi, and even though the trailer is in 2D, it definitely shows here. From the fire-eater “breaking the frame” in the first moments of the trailer to the shot of the green-skinned arm shooting out towards the viewer at the end, it looks like Raimi is enjoying himself with this film.
Oz, The Great And Powerful will hit theaters next March.