“The Wizard of Oz,” the Hollywood epic beloved by generations of Individuals for its fantastical allegory rooted in love of heartland, residence and household, appeared on tv for the primary time on this date in historical past, Nov. 3, 1956.
“For generations, this 1939 MGM fantasy musical has held a cherished place in American fashionable tradition,” reported the Smithsonian Establishment’s Nationwide Museum of American Historical past.
“With its dazzling particular results, costumes and units rendered in vibrant Technicolor, ‘The Wizard of Oz’ represents one of many best achievements in film magic.”
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“The Wizard of Oz” was a best-selling 1900 ebook by Frank L. Baum. The story loved a number of stage and display screen productions within the a long time that adopted.
The 1939 movie featured 17-year-old actress Judy Garland performing “Over the Rainbow,” her beloved terrier Toto, a terrifying twister and the groundbreaking use of coloration know-how.
It turned a vital success and was nominated for six Academy Awards.
It was “a uncommon occasion by which a terrific ebook turned a terrific movie,” the Library of Congress reported.
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However even then, the film did not make a revenue, Forbes reported in 2019.
“The Wizard of Oz” solely began to generate profits for MGM after it was re-released in theaters in 1949 and 1955.
Tv, not the silver display screen, made “Wizard” the pop-culture sensation it is generally known as in the present day.
The debut 1956 broadcast on CBS attracted 35 million viewers, in line with a 1967 report by Time journal, which known as the manufacturing “the most well-liked single movie property within the historical past of U.S. tv.”
That was extra viewers than any film might ever attain in a single evening.
The TV broadcast “modified the entire nature of that film,” Hollywood historian Scott Essman advised the LA Occasions in a 2013 interview.
“It turned an occasion to see this movie.”
“The Wizard of Oz” was not proven once more on tv till December 1959. Watching it turned an annual holiday-season custom in thousands and thousands of American households.
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“Over time, ‘Oz’ has captured a mean 53% of all units in use on the time (30% is taken into account excessive),” Time reported of the film’s first decade on TV.
Tv, not the silver display screen, made “The Wizard of Oz” a pop-culture sensation.
The arrival of cable tv and now on-demand TV has rendered “The Wizard of Oz” out of date as an annual custom. It moved from broadcast to cable tv in 1999.
But the legend of “The Wizard of Oz” had already been secured within the hearts of American film followers.
“Due to its many tv showings … it has been seen by extra viewers than some other film,” wrote the Library of Congress.
“The Wizard of Oz” has been named America’s favourite movie of all time in quite a few polls, whereas the Nationwide Endowment for the Arts and the Recording Business Affiliation named its signature tune, “Over the Rainbow,” the best tune of the twentieth century.
“Over the Rainbow” stays a basic of American songcraft. It is a hovering ode of hope — “the place troubles soften like lemon drops/away above the chimney tops” — sung by a younger woman from the rails of a struggling dusty Kansas household farmhouse.
“‘The Wizard of Oz’ has been seen by extra viewers than some other film.” — The Library of Congress
The tune captured the spirit of an optimistic nation because it struggled to emerge from the Nice Melancholy, whereas battle clouds swirled ominously abroad.
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The film was launched nationally on August 25, 1939 — only one week earlier than Germany invaded Poland on Sept. 1, plunging Europe into World Battle II.
The film, and the tune, launched teenager Garland into the stratosphere of American film icons.
When she died of a drug overdose in London in 1969, Garland was simply 47 years outdated. However she stays considered one of Hollywood’s most beloved performers based mostly largely on her function as Dorothy Gale.
Tv saved her legend alive for generations in a means no different film has ever loved.
“Gone with the Wind” gained the Oscar for greatest image in 1939, whereas “Citizen Kane,” additionally launched that 12 months, is taken into account by many critics the best American movie, in an unimaginable 12 months of Hollywood magic.
But “Gone with the Wind” didn’t seem on tv till 1976, 20 years after “Wizard.” And for all its deserved vital acclaim, “Citizen Kane” by no means loved the identical widespread attraction of its 1939 counterparts.
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“There is no place like residence,” Dorothy whispers hopefully on the finish of the “The Wizard of Oz,” tapping her ruby purple slippers collectively, wishing the wizard would ship her and Toto again to Kansas.
Individuals discovered that there was no place like residence to observe her dreamy journey to Oz 66 years in the past in the present day.