Welcome to my blog, featuring various pieces from my collection of Oz books, artwork and memorabilia!

Friday, February 22, 2008

The MGM Wizard

The 1939 MGM film of The Wizard of Oz has had a profound influence on American pop culture. There are few people who have not seen the movie at one time or another, and even they can usually quote some of the more famous lines. I did have a friend who was quite proud of the fact that he had never seen the movie, but I think that was the result of a lot of determination.

The number of collectible items spawned by the film are almost uncountable, and I don't make an effort to collect film related pieces. Above, I have a set of Wizard of Oz Paper Par-T Masks from 1939. A similar set of masks was released by Gillette the same year for Walt Disney's Pinocchio, although that movie didn't open until 1940.

I don't have a clear recollection, but The Wizard of Oz movie must be what inspired me to read the Oz books in the first place. I know I watched it on TV every year for as far back as I can remember - early on, we used to visit an Aunt & Uncle for the big night, as they had a color television set. Much more impressive than watching it on our small black & white!

In 1975, Marvel comics created an oversized comic book of the film. Below is the artwork for a page of that comic. This was followed by an adaptation of The Land of Oz, but the series faltered and plans for a third comic adaptation were dropped.

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