Although I’ve seen the iconic 1939 film, The Wizard of Oz, countless times since first falling in love with it as a kid, I couldn’t pass up the chance to see it up on the silver screen. The Oscar-winning film, starring the legendary Judy Garland, is celebrating its 75th anniversary and scored itself an incredible makeover from Warner Bros. for the occasion. The Wizard of Oz has literally been cleaned up frame-by-frame and digitally re-mastered into IMAX 3D technology, and starting today is now playing at the movies for one week only. The other night I went to an advance screening at the newly renovated TCL Chinese Theatre here in Hollywood (outfitted with a huge IMAX screen), and I was amazed by how crisp and clean the film looked and sounded, it was almost as if I had never truly taken a trip over the rainbow to Oz until now. I caught details I hadn’t been able to notice before such as Dorothy’s freckles or the Scarecrow’s burlap textured face. Oz purists might be scoffing at the thought of giving the film a hi-tech facelift but it merely enhances the experience and doesn’t go overboard or try to be flashy with 3D at all, watch the video below that explains the process a bit more. If you’re a fan of the film, you seriously cannot pass up the chance to see The Wizard of Oz as it was originally intended. For locations and tickets, head over to IMAX.com and for more information on film, visit its official website.
The Wizard of Oz received five Academy Award® nominations , including Best Picture (Outstanding Production), and captured two Oscars®—Best Song (“Over the Rainbow”) and Best Original Score — plus a special award for Outstanding Juvenile Performance by Judy Garland. The film was an overwhelmingly popular and critical success upon its initial release and repeated its ability to captivate audiences when M-G-M reissued the film in 1949 and 1955. The film made a new kind of history with its network television premiere in 1956 on CBS. Nearly 45 million people tuned in for this initial telecast, marking the beginning of an annual tradition. Ever since, The Wizard of Oz has been shown virtually annually on network (and then cable) television; its magical story and heartfelt performances have enabled it to grow from a perennial classic to its current status as a treasured icon of popular culture.
- The Wizard of Oz is the oldest film to ever be converted to 3D & IMAX® 3D.
- The Warner Bros. restoration team spent approximately 16 months working with Prime Focus on the 3D conversion.
- More than 1,000 people worked on the 3D & IMAX® 3D conversions.
- IMAX’s Digital Re-mastering team spent thousands of hours over the past year optimizing the image and sound of the film for The IMAX® 3D Experience.
- On October 1, Warner Bros. Home Entertainment will debut a limited and numbered The Wizard of Oz 75th Anniversary Collector’s Edition, a five-disc set including Blu-rayTM, Blu-ray 3DTM, DVD and UltraVioletTM versions of the film, plus myriad bonus features, new documentaries and collectible items.