The greatest Wizard of Oz

Picture by Insomnia Cured Here on Flickr

Picture by Insomnia Cured Here on Flickr

The Wizard is one of the most important characters in the movie. He is supposed to be a powerful man but then, he is just an ordinary guy, without any special power. That shows you an important lesson: that behind the characters, there is always a person, a human. But to play the role of the Wizard, the producers had to make a long research to finally find an actor that was extraordinary because he played 5 different roles.

The first option for the producers was Ed Wynn. They were sure that he would be the best man to play the Wizard in the film. He was a popular radio presenter. He is well known for giving his voice in ‘Alice in Wonderland’ as the Mad Hatter. But he refused the role because he considered that it was too small for him. Maybe his ego was too big? That’s a reason that I’ll never understand.

In the other hand, Wallace Beery was happy to play the role, but finally, he wasn’t able to make it because of his agenda. It was impossible for him and for the producers of the film to organise both agendas. They decided to look for another actor. And they found him. He was W. C. Fields. The producers loved him after his performance in ‘David Copperfield’, but the time run out after long negotiations about his salary.

Frank Morgan got the role. And he was great; he was memorable in the film. Probably it was the most important role in his career. He participated in some more musicals such as ‘Annie Get Your Gun’ and ‘Broadway Melody of 1940’. He played 5 roles in one movie: the Wizard, Professor Marvel, the Doorman, the Driver and the Guard. He could prove his talent and enthusiasm performing and that’s the best legacy we can remember of him.




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