A history of troubles and time before becoming a film classic
This documentary about the making of a movie is unusual in its length. "The Making of the Wonderful Wizard of Oz" runs 68 minutes. While most such film are shorts, this film gives full documentary treatment to the background of the 1939 classic movie.
Because it was made more than 70 years after "The Wizard of Oz," there are no actors or crew members from the original film. Instead, it has film historians, music composers, and modern film technicians. They talk about various aspects of the movie and quality of production.
Martin Sheen narrates this special that was made for DVD release. It has the usual movie clips. The film background is especially interesting. Considering the difficulties MGM had, it's a wonder that the movie ever came out. Even then, it barely covered its budget at the box office. But 1939 was "the" year of so many great films, and "The Wizard of Oz" was up against great competition. It won two of eight Oscar nominations.
Still, the film didn't achieve recognition as a classic until much later. MGM rereleased it to theaters in 1949. Then, CBS aired it on TV for the first time in 1956. And, after another broadcast in 1959, it was soon to become an annual holiday favorite. This special tells about the struggles MGM overcame - including five different directors and cast changes, to make a film that has become a family classic.
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