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The Wonderful Wizard of Oz (1910)

Not Rated | | Adventure, Fantasy, Short | 24 March 1910 (USA)
An early version of the classic, based more on the 1902 stage musical than on the original novel.

Director:

Otis Turner

Writers:

L. Frank Baum (novel), Otis Turner (scenario)
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Cast

Cast overview:
Bebe Daniels ... Dorothy Gale
Hobart Bosworth ... Wizard of Oz and King
Eugenie Besserer ... Aunt Em
Robert Z. Leonard ... Scarecrow
Winifred Greenwood ... Momba
Lillian Leighton ... Union Enforcer
Olive Cox Olive Cox ... Glinda the Good
Alvin Wyckoff Alvin Wyckoff
Marcia Moore
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Storyline

Chased off by the antics of Hank the Mule, Dorothy ends up in her cornfield, where she realizes her family's Scarecrow is alive. She helps him down and he takes a tumble on the turnstyle. A cyclone soon arrives and leaves Dorothy, Scarecrow, Toto and Hank spinning around on a haystack, with Imogene the Cow flying soon after. Soon after their arrival, the Wizard of Oz issues a public decree that he is a humbug, to make sure no one ever finds out. Glinda pops up out of the background and transforms Toto into a man in a bulldog suit to serve as a better protector for Dorothy. Then they encounter the Tin Woodman, the Cowardly Lion, and Eureka. Nevertheless, she is captured by Momba, the Wicked Witch of the West (suggesting Baum thought the other witches were Mombe, Mombo, and Mombu, in keeping with the council in _Queen Zixi of Ix_) and her flying lizards and soldiers. Dorothy defeats Momba, and they arrive at the Emerald City just in time for the Wizard's going away party. Written by Scott Andrew Hutchins <scottandrewh@home.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

24 March 1910 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

The Wizard of Oz See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Silent

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Many of the costumes and much of the make-up in this film resemble those used in the 1902 Broadway musical "The Wizard of Oz". None of the songs in this show, however, were used in The Wizard of Oz (1939). See more »

Goofs

When Glinda appears, you can clearly see the actress jerking into position when the harness has stopped pulling her up. See more »

Connections

Version of Return to Oz (1964) See more »

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User Reviews

Spastic
5 September 2009 | by CineanalystSee all my reviews

I suppose the best thing that could be said about this primitive kiddy one-reeler from 1910 is that it's cute or somewhat interesting. As noted elsewhere, this adaptation is based more so on Baum and Julian Mitchell's 1902 play rather than on the original book by Baum. Everyone's familiar with the 1939 Judy Garland musical (if you're not, why are you here?), so this 1910 film can be interesting as comparison. Baum himself supervised three adaptations of his stories in 1914, beginning with "The Patchwork Girl of Oz"; all three have been available on video, as has a 1925 "The Wizard of Oz".

This 1910 Oz is very theatrical, and most of its tricks are theatrical, too: moving backdrops and strings for flying. A couple stop-substitutions are about the only thing cinematic here. A static camera, tableau style and staginess are to be expected in a film this early that was adapted from the stage. This film, however, features annoying spastic performances—even more so than in the 1914 trilogy. The filmmakers didn't have to do any cramming for a 13-minute adaptation, nor use lengthy title cards to explain the basic plot; in fact, much of the picture is spent by characters jumping around as though they're hopped up on sugar, including some dance interludes probably held over from the stage version. Furthermore, this edition was followed by two subsequent Dorothy Oz installments, which are now lost. I wouldn't recommend this kiddy flick, but, apparently, some like it.

Among the cast is a young Bebe Daniels as Dorothy. Daniels later worked in a few silent films by Cecil B. DeMille and is now mostly famous for her role in "42nd Street" (1933). Reportedly, Alvin Wycoff, who would be DeMille's longtime cinematographer during his early career, which included the innovatively photographed "The Cheat" (1915), also has an on screen role in this production somewhere.


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