Black Entertainment : THE WIZ AND THE WIZARD OF OZ

Discussion in 'Black Entertainment' started by MysteryDoors, Jul 28, 2008.

  1. MysteryDoors

    MysteryDoors Well-Known Member MEMBER

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    THE WIZ
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Wiz
    The Wiz is a 1975 Broadway musical, based on The Wonderful Wizard of Oz by L. Frank Baum, exclusively featuring African American actors.

    A motion picture adaptation of The Wiz was produced in 1978 (see 1978 in film) by Motown Productions and Universal Pictures, starring Diana Ross, Michael Jackson, Nipsey Russell, Ted Ross, Lena Horne, Richard Pryor, and Mabel King.

    The resulting film version of The Wiz also starred former Motown star Michael Jackson as The Scarecrow, Nipsey Russell as the Tin Man, and Lena Horne as Glinda the Good Witch. Ted Ross and Mabel King reprised their respective roles of the Cowardly Lion and Evilene from the Broadway production. Sidney Lumet served as director, working with screenwriter Joel Schumacher (who used none of Brown's stage script) and music supervisor Quincy Jones. Although the stage musical's setting begins in Kansas before moving into the fanciful Oz (as do most other versions of the Oz stories), the film version of The Wiz is set in New York City: Dorothy's real-life home is in Harlem, and the Oz of the film is an alternate fantasy version of the rest of New York City. The $22 million production was poorly received by critics and grossed only $12 million during its original theatrical release.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]


    THE WIZARD OF OZ
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Wizard_of_Oz_(1939_film)
    The film, set in what is most likely late nineteenth-century Kansas, follows schoolgirl Dorothy Gale who lives on a farm with her Aunt Em and Uncle Henry, but dreams of a better place "somewhere over the rainbow." After being struck unconscious during a tornado, by a piece of broken window, Dorothy dreams that she, her dog Toto, and the farmhouse are transported to the magical Land of Oz. There, the Good Witch of the North advises Dorothy to follow the yellow brick road to Emerald City and meet the Wizard of Oz, who can return her to Kansas. During her journey, she meets a Scarecrow, Tin Man and a Cowardly Lion, who join her, hoping to receive what they lack themselves (a brain, a heart, and courage, respectively), all of this is done while also trying to avoid the many plots of the Wicked Witch of the West, in her attempt to get the ruby slippers that Dorothy received from the squashed Wicked Witch of the East.

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    Dorothy - Diana Ross
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8rY9zOd0f-k


    Dorothy - Judy Garland - Somewhere Over The Rainbow
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=10w_sEcHlGs


    Which character from The Wiz or The Wizard of Oz movie is your favorite?
     
  2. YungMiss

    YungMiss Well-Known Member MEMBER

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    from the wizard of oz i like the scarecrow...and the lion [put em up put em up] ..from the wiz i like the tin man [ateee..slide some oil to me]..lol.. another interesting activity to do with the wizard of oz is see how it relates to the guilded age..many things in the movie seem as if this story was written with the guilded age in mind..even though a man wrote it for his child.. interesting stuff
     
  3. Zulile

    Zulile Well-Known Member MEMBER

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    *deep sigh* as my eyes cloud over in memory...

    I remember the day so clearly - November 21st, 2007 - I attended Brother Oldsoul's weekly Black Consciousness Raising class - this one was entitled Homicide in Oz. I attended the class, certain he would be referring to the TV prison series OZ.. but lo and behold, it was about the Wizard of Oz and all the cute sidekicks.. the lion, the scarecrow, the tinman.. and within the next hour the magic of Oz was cruelly ripped from my mind and torn to shreds by the info that was revealed that fateful day. *sigh again*

    I urge everyone who still fancies this as a magical childhood movie to listen to the class here: http://www.ebonyminds.com/conraise/ ... you'll start the tumble into reality within the first 5 minutes... I cant even repeat it.. I'm still healing ;)

    Still, despite the facts.. I continued to research with the hope of finding one redeeming aspect of this movie that would return some of it's magic to me. I failed. :(

    The story was purposely written in order to prepare white children for a violent future enforcing racism. The Irishman, Frank Baum (author) was an extreme racist (late 1800's) - violently so, calling for the complete extermination of the Native Indians. In the original story the wicked witch of the west was a "Brown Pickaninny" with long black braids.. Baum created Emerald City after Emerald Isle - sacred place to the Irish.. the poppy fields.. were opium fields.. drug warfare.. Lets not forget the Imperial Wizard of 1869 (the KKK) (one hides behind a mask, the other a curtain..) and the Jim Crow lynch laws & the scarecrow.. the entire book/movie is absolutely riddled with these blatant symbols.

    Bottom line taught is "there is no place like home" so no matter what it takes or who you have to kill for whatever reason - to secure your newly adopted home.. you should. redemption through violence.

    :spin:
    Zulile

    (I haven't seen the Wiz)
     
  4. MysteryDoors

    MysteryDoors Well-Known Member MEMBER

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    IS the wizard still wonderful?

    L. Frank Baum was a racist who called for exterminating American Indians . . .

    IS the wizard still wonderful?


    Story behind the story
    http://www.concordmonitor.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20060827/REPOSITORY/608270352
    The first time I saw the movie The Wizard of Oz, my parents sat close by to protect me from wicked witches and flying monkeys. It was 1969, and when Oz burst onto the screen in glorious Technicolor, alas, the effect was lost on our black and white television.

    The second time I saw The Wizard of Oz, it was on the big screen. Jenny Campbell's fifth birthday was announced outside on the marquee, and at intermission (!) we ate hot dogs and cupcakes in

    the lobby. I was hooked!

    I saw the movie again and again. I read the books. I attended a stage production of The Wiz. And in college a terrific American history professor clued me in to the secret grown-up allegory behind the children's story:

    Baum, it turned out, was a silverite, part of a populist Western movement to switch the U.S. dollar from the gold standard, favored by Eastern power brokers, to silver. In The Wonderful Wizard of Oz, Dorothy's first conquest is the wicked Witch of the East- which frees the Munchkins from servitude.

    Her slippers are silver (not ruby, as in the film), and she follows the yellow brick road, creating parity between silver and gold. Along her journey she meets the Scarecrow (symbolizing the small farmer), who's been told he has no brain; the Tin Woodman (the industrial worker), who fears he has become heartless; and the Cowardly Lion (reformers who had lost the courage to fight).

    Should kids be taught about all this?

    I haven't answered these questions for myself yet. I watched The Wizard of Oz again the other night, happily singing along with Judy Garland - but unable to lose myself fully in the story. I was on the lookout for hidden racism and found none. But when the Wizard was once again shown to be a fraud, it didn't seem startling at all.
     
  5. YungMiss

    YungMiss Well-Known Member MEMBER

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    hm sometimes people try to analyze things to a point till they do seem racist... anything can be stretched.. and yes they should be taught the connections to the guilded age later on in life...like i was.. its interesting how people create things and they can relate to real life events without intent
     
  6. MysteryDoors

    MysteryDoors Well-Known Member MEMBER

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    WELL I LIKE MICHAEL JACKSON AS THE SCARECROW IN THE WIZ.

    Michael Jackson - You Can't Win
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=11-sI8f2rXE
     
  7. oldiesman

    oldiesman Well-Known Member MEMBER

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    hahaaaaaa,this is funny because whenever i watch this flick i point out the same things[and laugh my head off at the ironies]the witch of the east is the drug dealer of oz and the monkeys are her enforcers,as for the good and powerful wizard he's just like the politicians of today-as long as they keep it in the ghetto and out of the emerald city then what's the problem[bring me the broomstick]political assassination[take her out and no charges will be filed]oh and what about the munchkins?the suburbs with their private security[glenda the good witch of the north]halarious.
     
  8. MysteryDoors

    MysteryDoors Well-Known Member MEMBER

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    Critics say 'Wizard of Oz' writer was racist
    http://archives.cnn.com/2000/books/news/10/11/us.baum.racism.ap/

    University of Kansas professor Joe Reitz says the project honoring characters including Dorothy, The Tin Man and the Cowardly Lion should be reconsidered.

    "To build a monument to a man who advocated genocide among Native Americans in this part of the country seems to be financially suicidal," Reitz said. "If you give people a reason not to spend money, they probably won't do it."

    Historian Nancy Koupal, director of research and publishing at the South Dakota State Historical Society, which recently published a book, "Baum's Road to Oz: The Dakota Years," said Baum was concerned for his safety when he wrote the editorials and that genocide was not a theme he returned to in later writings.

    "It was not a deeply felt conviction," she said. "You scratch any of your heroes, you're not going to like what you find in the closet."

    [​IMG]
     
  9. Zulile

    Zulile Well-Known Member MEMBER

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    "Pay no attention to that man behind the curtain!" :welldone:

    ;)
     
  10. Zulile

    Zulile Well-Known Member MEMBER

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    When folks question intent/purpose of highly popular media, it is often they'll be called conspiracy theorists in an passive aggressive attempt to silence/ridicule them. Some are so outraged at the mere thought of looking behind the curtain they wont even glance at it in fear or being forced to see what's behind it.

    Yet - outside of the racist/cult symbolism throughout the movie, the story line is... amazing. How easily we accept this as a feel good movie. First you kill a stranger, then another stranger shows up to celebrate death and steals the deceased belongings and gifts them to you - haha - Then LIES to you and sends you on a wild journey of death and carnage.. conveniently murdering folks that stand in opposition to a cause you are led to believe is your own... lied to every step of the way by someone you assume is good (although they never said that)... only to find out at the end that it was all for nothing and you could have gone home anytime you liked.

    :terrific:
     
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