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September 17th, 2014

Raimi & Downey Jr. Are Off To The Merry Old Land Of Oz

While reading breaking movie news, it’s hard not to form an immediate opinion, write about it, rethink and change your initial opinion, then spend weeks defending it. My first response when learning that Robert Downey Jr. may star in a “Wizard of Oz” prequel with Sam Raimi directing: What in God’s name are they thinking? After some thought, analysis, and deep personal reflection, I’ve backed off my initial gut reaction.

First of all, let me just say that I’m not a big fan of “The Wizard of Oz”. Those flying monkeys scared the bejeezus out of me when I was a kid and that’s kind of stayed with me as an adult. Honestly, how traumatizing is that movie? Houses dropped on people, creepy green witches, trippy midgets with candy? Well, that last one is pretty awesome. However, syncing up Pink Floyd’s “Dark Side of The Moon” with “The Wizard of Oz” is definitely a great idea. I think. I did it in college a few times but for some odd reason, those memories are a bit fuzzy. Hm.

Anyway, if you are going to try to pull this off, is there really a more entertaining and perfect choice than Downey Jr.? He has charm and charisma to spare, so casting him as The Wizard is definitely a good choice.

After a bit of thought, this doesn’t sound like a terrible idea. I even think that Sam Raimi is a great choice to direct it. Raimi is interested in making entertaining movies more than a director like Tim Burton, who is interested in making movies more like a Tim Burton movie.

Of course, it’s naturally upsetting that Nipsey Russell passed away several years ago and won’t be able to return to the Tinman role. Yes, that’s a reference to “The Wiz”. Insert you own Diana Ross joke.




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