Sam Raimi debuted a lush, visually inventive trailer for his film Oz: The Great and Powerful in Hall H at Comic Con today-- read more about that panel here if you like-- and now, through the magic of the internet, you can watch it below. Keep an eye out for a brief appearance from Rachel Weisz and Mila Kunis as two sister witches, and of course Michelle Williams as Glinda the Good Witch-- though since she's got dialogue, you probably can't miss her.
The trick of the change from black and white to color, and from the square aspect ratio to glorious widescreen, is such a great twist on The Wizard of Oz's classic change from black and white to color that it makes me automatically want to see what else Sam Raimi has up his sleeve. The world of Oz, as i mentioned in the liveblog, has a lot of similarities to Alice in Wonderland, though Mila Kunis talked effusively about how great the practical sets were, so I"m hoping it all winds up feeling a bit more authentic than Alice. The casting of James Franco as the Wizard still seems a little strange, but his story is all about being a charlatan who's falsely trusted as a savior, and Franco seems to be striking a good balance between huckster and guy who really wants to do right. And how can you beat the casting of Michelle Williams as the embodiment of goodness? She practically floats off the screen.
Oz: The Great and Powerful opens March 8 next year-- not coincidentally, the same time of year that Alice opened and became a monster success. Sam Raimi isn't the same director as Tim Burton, obviously, but Disney seems to be aiming to market the two movies the same way. But for now I'm more interested in Oz, both because of Raimi's strength as a storyteller, some fascinating casting decisions, and a lifelong affection for the land of Oz that I think we all share. Let us know what you think of this revisit in the comments below.
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