A Journey into the World of Oz The Great and Powerful

The world of Oz, as created by L. Frank Baum, is rich enough to have spurred dozens of additional works by authors and artists beyond the 14 original books. But none of those works dealt with how the Wizard himself arrived in the land of Oz.

Much like the 1939 film, Disney Oz The Great and Powerful opens in black and white (Well the Wizard of Oz was more Sepia toned). It focuses on the backstory of Oscar Diggs, a traveling carnival magician and con-man, and sets him up as a good man who has just strayed from the path of righteousness while consumed by his search for success. Also like the first movie, we’re introduced to actors who will later reappear in the film in the guise of other characters giving Oz (and the viewers) some touchstones to help stay grounded when the goings get wild.

The version of Oz created for this movie is amazing. We get a look at it when Oz crashes his hot air balloon and again when they’re on the Yellow Brick Road. However, I wish they had spent more time exploring its otherworldly aspects.

Disney Oz The Great and Powerful – Two Preview Clips

A few lucky preview audiences have already seen Oz the Great and Powerful. While I’ve been avoiding spoiler reviews, I had read that the production is at least on par with Alice in Wonderland. That should be a good sign for Disney, since Alice did over a billion at the box office.

As the release date of March 8 approaches, Disney’s marketing efforts are reaching a fever pitch. Here are two clips from the film that I think, hope, shows what a great film we can look forward to:

epcot flower and monorail

20th Epcot International Flower & Garden Festival Announces New Details for March 6-May 19 Event

epcot flower and monorail

It’s a big year for the Epcot International Flower & Garden Festival. It runs March 6-May 19 and is celebrating it’s 20th year with a whole host of exciting new exhibits at the event. Add to that new food, new music, and new botanical delights and you have another can’t miss year.

First, let’s look at some of what’s new:

  • Epcot chefs will cook up first-time festival food and beverage fun, with special cooking stations offering exclusive-to-the-festival bites along the park’s World Showcase promenade. (This is so over due!)
  • A new circus-like “Land of Oz Play Area,” based on the Disney fantastical film adventure “Oz: The Great and Powerful” to be released in March 2013, will debut a kaleidoscope of interactive fun.
  • Disney topiary experts will grow, shape and manicure a Fab Five Disney character topiary with Mickey Mouse, Minnie Mouse, Goofy, Pluto and Donald Duck (with Daisy Duck in a cameo) featured in a celebratory floral cookout scene in living topiary color at the park’s front entrance.
  • New illuminated gardens in the park’s Future World and World Showcase will cast a colorful glow over each festival evening.

Throughout the 75-day garden party, guests will discover festival surprises around every corner including new topiary triumphs, colorful garden displays, a butterfly bounty, HGTV celebrity designers, interactive gardening seminars and whimsical children’s play areas. On weekends, top Flower Power rockers of the 1960s and ’70s will perform.