Oz the Great and Powerful, Sam Raimi‘s first Disney film, is oddly two-faced. Here we have a director who made his name with low budget horror, who became a household name when he infused the superhero genre with his do-it-yourself, energetic visual style. And then there’s Oz, a massive film that gives Raimi the most toys he’s ever had to play with, but also the commitment to make a movie that’s fun for all ages. The result is a Sam Raimi movie wrapped up tightly in a Disney package. And the Raimi elements are willing themselves out.

There’s not a frame of Oz The Great and Powerful that doesn’t bear Raimi’s mark. The production design, the camera moves, the pulpy performances, everything screams his name. I mean, the movie is basically Army of Darkness, right? (Normal guy lands in magical land, is forced to go on quest to save that land.) But just when you see that kinetic, signature style starting to unleash, the story forces the film back into its Disney shell to play to the masses. We’re left with a film that’s entertaining, a little scarier than you’d expect, but extremely inconsistent. Read More »

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There’s no better place than the Oscars to see all your favorite movie stars assembled in one place, but the trailer for Jimmy Kimmel‘s Movie: The Movie V2 might be a close second.

In his post-Oscars show last year, Kimmel debuted an epic, star-studded 9-minute trailer poking fun at every obnoxious movie trope under the sun. This year, he’s back with an even more epic, even more star-studded trailer for Movie: The Movie V2. Because as Kimmel quips, “When you have a big success in Hollywood, there’s only one reasonable thing you can do, and that is cheapen it with a sequel.”

Watch Movie: The Movie V2 after the jump, followed by Kimmel’s other big movie parody, Life of Psy. Yup, that’s exactly what it sounds like.

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‘Oz the Great and Powerful’ Super Bowl Spot

Disney isn’t showing off as much new stuff in the Super Bowl commercial for Oz the Great and Powerful as it did for The Lone Ranger , but here’s a quick look at the March release.  We know pretty much what to expect from Sam Raimi‘s Oz prequel, but if you need a refresher check out the spot below.

Watch other 2013 Super Bowl spots at these links: Iron Man 3World War ZStar Trek Into DarknessThe Lone Ranger, Fast & Furious 6.
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In October 2011, I got to visit the wonderful world of Oz and watch director Sam Raimi direct his preboot (prequel/reboot) of the classic L. Frank Baum book series. I learned much on the set of Oz: The Great and Powerful. Most fascinating to me was some of the things Disney had to do satisfy legal concerns over possibly violating copyrighted imagery from the classic 1939 film adaptation, owned by Warner Bros.

And while trailers for the film focus on wholly computer-generated worlds and characters, you might be shocked to learn the lengths that Sam Raimi went through to shoot a lot of the film practically. For example, it was interesting to see Raimi inventing new practical solutions to help the supporting actors create and react to live performances for characters who would eventually be created in CG — and I’m not talking about performance capture.

After the jump you can watch a video blog we recorded talking about the visit, followed by many more things I learned while on the set.

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A few weeks ago, Disney dropped a striking poster featuring the Wicked Witch of the West, adding fuel to the ongoing debate about whether it’s Evanora (Rachel Weisz) or Theodora (Mila Kunis) who goes green in Oz: The Great and Powerful. A new batch of posters doesn’t answer that question, but it does give us a closer look at who the individual players in the movie are. Hit the jump to see individual characters for Evanora, Theodora, Glinda (Michelle Williams), and of course, the Wizard himself (James Franco).

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So far, most of Disney’s promos for Oz: The Great and Powerful have played up the lush fantasy world created by Sam Raimi, or perhaps the epic tale of James Franco‘s Oscar Diggs. The newest featurette, however, delves into the movie’s more comedic aspects.

Or perhaps that should be “comedic,” in quotes, since the jokes are more groanworthy than funny. And they’re definitely not any better when delivered by a CG flying monkey. On the bright side, the video does offer some better insight into who the three witches (played by Mila Kunis, Rachel Weisz, and Michelle Williams) are, and what makes each one tick. Watch it after the jump.

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Most doubt about who the baddest of them all will be in Sam Raimi‘s Oz The Great and Powerful can now be put to bed. In the film, which opens March 8, simple trickster Oscar Diggs (James Franco) ends up in Oz and meets three witches, Theodora (Mila Kunis), Evanora (Rachel Weisz) and Glinda (Michelle Williams), who are struggling for control of the land. As Diggs figures out his role in Oz, he must also figure out whose intentions are true and whose are not.

Too bad his character didn’t catch a glimpse of this new poster. It prominently features Weisz’s character, Evanora, looking like an iconic Wicked Witch. The poster comes out at an interesting time for the Oscar-winning actress, who recently got a Golden Globe nomination for the film The Deep Blue Sea, which is now on Netflix Instant. See the full poster and read more below. Read More »

There’s a lot to be said for timing when it comes to film awards, and in that respect things couldn’t have worked out better for Kathryn Bigelow‘s Zero Dark Thirty. While most audiences won’t even have a chance to see the film until early next year, the first screenings of the movie have drawn rave reviews. And now it has picked up what will likely be the first of many awards.

Today the New York Film Critics Circle voted on awards for 2012, and Zero Dark Thirty and Lincoln were the big winners, with nothing scored by The Master, Django Unchained, Les Miserables, or other potential awards faves. Kathryn Bigelow took Best Director and her movie won Best Film, which is the same dual wins the filmmaker enjoyed in 2009 before The Hurt Locker went on to Oscar success. Get the full list of recipients below. Read More »

This March, Sam Raimi takes us off to meet the Wizard, who’ll become the wonderful Wizard of Oz. Oz the Great and Powerful opens March 8 and stars James Franco as a Kansas magician who is whisked off to the magical land of Oz and forced to help save it from a trio of feuding witches, played by Mila Kunis, Rachel Weisz and Michelle Williams.

The new full length trailer has just been released and in it you’ll catch a glimpse at just how massive and bright Raimi’s movie is. Check it out below. Read More »