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"The Wiz" (30th Anniversary Edition W./ Bonus CD) NOW ON DVD!!!!


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The Wiz (30th Anniversary Edition w/ Bonus CD) (1978)

 

 

Ease on down the yellow-brick road with the 30th Anniversary Edition of "The Wiz", starring superstars Diana Ross and Michael Jackson! Relive all of the magic of this beloved musical when Dorothy is whisked away to the enchanting wonderland of Oz, where she encounters the Scarecrow, the Tinman and the Lion. The Wiz features spectacular musical numbers from legendary producer Quincy Jones and an all-star cast including Lena Horne, Richard Pryor, Nipsey Russell and Ted Ross. With a digitally remastered picture and the unforgettable soundtrack in new 5.1 surround sound, it's an experience of the land of Oz unlike anything you've seen before!

 

Starring: Diana Ross, Michael Jackson, Lena Horne, Richard Pryor

 

Directed by: Sidney Lumet

 

Filmography Sidney Lumet:

 

12 Angry Men (1957)

Stage Struck (1958)

That Kind of Woman (1959)

The Fugitive Kind (1959)

A View from the Bridge (1961)

Long Day's Journey Into Night (1962)

The Pawnbroker (1964)

Fail-Safe (1964)

The Hill (1965)

The Group (1966)

The Deadly Affair (1967)

Bye Bye Braverman (1968)

The Sea Gull (1968)

The Appointment (1969)

King: A Filmed Record... Montgomery to Memphis (1970)

Last of the Mobile Hot Shots (1970)

The Anderson Tapes (1971)

Child's Play (1972)

The Offence (1972)

Serpico (1973)

Lovin' Molly (1974)

Murder on the Orient Express (1974)

Dog Day Afternoon (1975)

Network (1976)

Equus (1977)

The Wiz (film) (1978)

Just Tell Me What You Want (1980)

Prince of the City (1981)

The Verdict (1982)

Daniel (1983)

Garbo Talks (1984)

Power (1986)

The Morning After (1986)

Running on Empty (1988)

Family Business (1989)

Q & A (1990)

A Stranger Among Us (1992)

Guilty as Sin (1993)

Night Falls on Manhattan (1997)

Critical Care (1997)

Gloria (1999)

Strip Search (2004)

Find Me Guilty (2006)

Before the Devil Knows You're Dead (2007)

Getting Out (2008)

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I'm not sure what you mean by your comment, but Glenn Close did do a film version, not a stage version. Nellie Forbush is a naive, very young "cockeyed optimist". Someone in their 50s would have been around the block a few times. She was horribly miscast (she cast herself) in the role.

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I understand that The Wiz was not a box office favorite. May i chime in and say i LOVED Diana Ross in Lady Sings The Blues and Mahogany. Diana was originally offered The Bodyguard in 1979 to co-star her then boyfriend Ryan O'Neal. But Diana was completely uncomfortable with doing the nude scenes that were on paper. And she tried like gangbusters to get a biopic of Josephine Baker off the ground around 1989 but i suspect the financing collapsed and/or the script was not good enough at that time. I would have loved to see her play Miss Baker as i think she did a moving portrayal of Billie Holiday. Oh well, at least i still get to hear her on the radio.

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  • 3 weeks later...

Glenn Close did do a film version, not a stage version. Nellie Forbush is a naive, very young "cockeyed optimist". Someone in their 50s would have been around the block a few times.

 

Film, videotape - whatever.... It was made for TV, not theatrical release.

Mary Martin, chosen by R&H for the Broadway original cast, was 35 when she started; but then, people (before the days of TV) have gotten away all through history "playing young" onstage. She was between 42 and 47 when she played "Peter Pan" on TV, and nobody seemed to think anything of it. The only thing necessary to consider (and few did) about Glenn Close was ... can she sing (and dance) it?? After all, living out there in all that sunshine would have been enough to "stress" anyone's skin and prematurely age them, right?

 

I have the tape (TV and commercial). Not a patch on Mitzi's performance. But it was ok; about as ok as Reba's for "Great Performances," which was a concert version, unstaged. It's a great play (especially if uncut/uncensored) that can stand most anything.

 

As to the original thread and other comments about Diana: It is, indeed, shocking that she didn't get to do Josephine Baker's story. That would have given her at least two (three?) movies for which she was totally suited (and maybe an Oscar). There was a very good made-for-HBO (or similar) documentary; the movie would no doubt have beat that into the dust!

 

Bill

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I have no idea what that means, but a film is a film, regardless of whether it is shown theatrically or not. The Glenn Close version of South Pacific is a film. They did tamper with it. That was one of its biggest problems. Glenn Close as star and executive producer was at the core of all its problems. As you say, Mary Martin's age wasn't a factor because it was on stage, not film; and, she exuded tons of energy. As for Peter Pan, when you're a woman playing a boy, age isn't really an issue.

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> {quote:title=BlueBonnie wrote:}{quote}

> I have no idea what that means, but a film is a film, regardless of whether it is shown theatrically or not. The Glenn Close version of South Pacific is a film. They did tamper with it. That was one of its biggest problems. Glenn Close as star and executive producer was at the core of all its problems. As you say, Mary Martin's age wasn't a factor because it was on stage, not film; and, she exuded tons of energy. As for Peter Pan, when you're a woman playing a boy, age isn't really an issue.

 

I think the broad consensus is that ti's a TV movie. As for age not being an issue when playing Peter Pan... what if they cast an 80-year-old woman? :P

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  • 3 weeks later...

The Wiz is an ambitious clunker at best. Not even the film's original director wanted Ross for the lead. She's in good voice to be sure but she's hardly the 12 year old Kansas waif Frank L. Baum wrote about in his original story or, for that matter, the physical manifestation in The Wiz as a Broadway show!

 

The score is engaging, but the action is dull. The land of Oz - unlike its 1939 incarnation - is not magical but oppressive and dull with weird characters that do not engage as much as they repulse. The 'Poppy Girls' as example (a female manifestation of the flowers in the '39 version) are fishnet sporting drug addicts cavorting like a bunch of prostitutes.

 

The best staged numbers in the film are "Brand New Day" and "No Bad News." The Emerald City sequence at the base of the Twin Towers is also impressive in scope - but the 'dancing' degenerates into just a bunch of gyrating bodies flailing about the scenery.

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  • 1 month later...

I saw the original stage play with Stephanie Mills as Dorothy.

 

That was a delight and was worthy of the Tony it won.

 

The music and the dancing, all the energy on stage made it a great experience.

 

When it was anounced that it was going to be a movie i was really looking forward to it.

 

But when they didn't cast Stephanie Mills as Dorothy in the movie and changed the very exciting and energetic ending I was very disapointed.

 

Dianna was miscast in this movie, she was great in Lady Sings the Blues.

 

Michael was Michael.

 

It had it's moments and Richard Pryor seemed like he was restrained from really being the WIZ like in the stage play.

 

Ted Ross was as good as he was in the Stage play, Nipsey was also very good.

 

Eveline's factory and the crow's scenes were very enjoyable

 

But it wilts under the Stage Version. (get the original cast soundtrack)

 

To bad that couldn't be on video

 

 

just my opinion

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  • 1 month later...

Very good opinion in my opinion. I own the newly minted 30th Anniversary. It's not a great effort from Universal but given the film's clunky thud at the box office I suppose it's the best we're likely to get.

 

In reviewing it again, I think one of the biggest misfires of The Wiz - the movie is the choreography that amounts to basically a bunch of jumping and kicking and not much else. There's no style to the dance moves, just a lot of jumble and busy flailing.

 

I'll agree with you that Ross was utterly and tragically miscast. Oh well, it was her own doing. Not only did she campaign loudly for the part - she practically demanded the role of Dorothy go to her. Remember your Irving Berlin: "After you get what you want you don't want it anymore!"

 

I also think that Sidney Lumet - while one of my favorite directors - was poor casting behind the camera for this project in much the same way that I believe John Huston (another personal fav) made mince meat out of the filmic adaptation of the original stage version of Annie.

 

Ditto for Martin Scorsese's abysmal New York New York - still a flat footed, over produced super spectacle minus the joy factor every musical requires to be successful.

 

Musicals require a light touch and a special attention to every detail. Neither Huston nor Lumet, nor even Scorsese had what it took to deliver the goods and their finished movies illustrates a shortcoming inherent in all three.

 

As gifted as they are in their own genres - they can't do musicals!!!

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  • 3 weeks later...

I agre with you NZ

 

I know you like theatre like I do

 

I was in a small theatre group when I was younger and it helped me appreciate live theatre.

 

I love to see live theatre but it's so expensive now.

 

one Of my favorite is "PHANTOM OF THE OPERA"

 

and the movie version was pretty good, but you know.

 

and I Love "JESUS CHRIST SUPERSTAR"

 

at least the Music and the songs are great

 

so, maybe we'll just never be satisfied

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