Check out these gorgeous images from director Sam Raimi’s fantasy movie Oz the Great and Powerful starring James Franco, Mila Kunis, Rachel Weisz and Michelle Williams.

In the new Disney movie Oz the Great and Powerful, a small-time circus magician,Oscar Diggs (James Franco), with dubious ethics, is hurled away from dusty Kansas to the vibrant Land of Oz. There, Oscar thinks he’s hit the jackpot—fame and fortune are his for the taking—that is until he meets three witches, Theodora (Mila Kunis), Evanora (Rachel Weisz) and Glinda (Michelle Williams), who are not convinced he is the great wizard everyone’s been expecting. Reluctantly drawn into the epic problems facing the Land of Oz and its inhabitants, Oscar must find out who is good and who is evil before it is too late. Putting his magical arts to use through illusion, ingenuity—and even a bit of wizardry—Oscar transforms himself not only into the great and powerful wizard but into a better man as well.

“This film explains how all the characters became who they are and explains their origins so you understand them a little more,” says Mila Kunis.  “It brings a little more sincerity and truth to all the characters. And, while being funny and endearing, it very much stays true to the original concepts that L. Frank Baum created.”

Director Sam Raimi also says it fun to explore this famous story and how it originated. “It’s very interesting to me that we learn about this mysterious character of Oz, who is really an enigma in Baum’s book. Who is this guy? How did he get there? How did he end up with this fantastic apparatus and become a ruler if he’s a fake?”

Adds Franco: “In some ways, the story in our film is a metaphor and an analogy to what we all do as filmmakers. Oz is a magician. He puts on shows. In the Land of Oz, he creates illusions for different reasons. And that’s basically what a movie is, it’s creating an illusion. It’s creating an imaginary world for an audience.”

Oz the Great and Powerful opens March 8.


—Toni-Marie Ippolito


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