Watch: New TV Spot For Sam Raimi's 'Oz The Great & Powerful' With James Franco & Mila Kunis

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by Oliver Lyttelton
January 14, 2013 11:20 AM
3 Comments
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Adapting a beloved TV series to the big screen is always a risky prospect, particularly when you start departing from the source material. Be it giving a post-modern meta spin on classics like "Bewitched" or "Starsky & Hutch," or chucking big-budget effects at lo-fi favorites like 'The A-Team" or "Lost In Space," the results are rarely positive, pleasing neither fans or neophytes. We thought we might be on safer ground when we discovered that Sam Raimi was directing a film called "Oz." Surely the brutal prison drama that preempted the golden age of HBO and shows like "The Sopranos" and "The Wire" would make it to the big-screen unscathed, especially in the hands of the director of "The Evil Dead" and "A Simple Plan."

But so far, we're not sure what Raimi was thinking, and that's been cemented by the latest TV spot for the film, entitled "Oz The Great & Powerful," which debuted during the Golden Globes last night. Gone are the neo-Nazis, gang-rape, shivvings and c-words, replaced by gaudy fantastical backdrops, cartoonish special effects and James Franco in a top hat and tails. Of all the TV adaptations that have departed from their subject matter, this seems to be the most egregious offender.

Still, for those who are interested in the film, there's some new footage in this spot, focusing on the three witches (presumably some kind of lesbian prison gang?) played by Mila Kunis, Michelle Williams and Rachel Weisz. "Oz The Great & Powerful" will be released by Disney (which really should have been a sign, to be honest) on March 8th.

Wait, The Wizard of what? [Screen Crush]

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3 Comments

  • Alan B | January 15, 2013 1:56 AMReply

    Congratulations Oliver: you took a terrible, terrible joke and squeezed an entire article out of it. That's courageous. Misguided and stupid, of course, but courageous, nonetheless. Bravo!

  • Alan B | January 17, 2013 6:08 AM

    Firstly, I understand that the gag revolves around a deliberate misinterpretation of the source material. I just don't understand why you thought it was funny, why you could have sustained it for an entire article or why you felt that no-one else had seen the 'people confusing Oz for Wizard of Oz' gag from 'Arrested Development'. I understand that your intention involves irony, however your joke didn't involve any target: is it the film itself, the show, bloggers, yourself etc? It can't be you, because you're playing a coy 'aren't I so clever' attitude that seems in love with your own banal joke (maybe the target of the humor is the reader for wasting their time on it, hoping - foolishly - that the joke would get better). You're right about one thing, Oliver: I should consider why I am the most disliked commentator on this site because the competition is impressive. On the comments section of this site, I have read racial epithets, nasty digs at new writers, insensitivity shown towards victims of national tragedies, but I am the worst? Or, as you charmingly put it, I am like "the least popular form of cancer". OK, then, I must have said some really EVIL things, right? Well, I told Christopher Bell that a real horse being unnecessarily hurt and a horse appearing to be hurt ON SCREEN are different things, I said that Gabe Toro should probably stop alluding to Michael Fassbender's personal life in different forums, I told Jessica Kiang that a criticism like 'too long' is subjective and entirely meaningless, I explained to Katie Walsh that she probably read some of the books she chastises, I said that David Cronenberg probably shouldn't blame a pesky "journalist woman" for his words and I have now told you that your joke was a bad idea ... yeah, OK, I am the one who went WAY OVER THE LINE. *sighs*

  • Oliver Lyttelton | January 15, 2013 9:56 AM

    No, congratulations to you, Alan, for successfully identifying a stupid joke as... a stupid joke. Have a biscuit. In the process, you've also managed to cement your position as every Playlist writer's least favorite commenter. And when you're the most disliked commenter on a website, it's a bit like being the least popular form of cancer, so maybe it's time to rethink some of the decisions that brought you to this point? Because your joyless, humorless, consistently rude, pointlessly argumentative contributions are adding exactly nothing to the discourse here.

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