An early look at "Oz, the Great and Powerful" was unveiled at Disney's D23 Expo on Saturday, August 20. While neither director Sam Raimi nor lead actor James Franco was present, they both appeared in a video which compiles footage from the first day of production.
Wearing an old-fashioned black tie and dark suit, Raimi opened the video and explained that the film will focus on the origin of the wizard and who he was beforehand. "Oz is almost part of our DNA, this fantastic take on our own world where our dreams can come true, where we can become the people we long to be," he said. "But also there are dangers along the yellow bring road."
"When we first meet Oz, he's a carnival showman, a magician," the helmer, best known for his work on three "Spider-Man" films starring Tobey Maguire, said about Franco's character. "Though he has a good heart, it's gotten lost somewhere along the way."
Franco, meanwhile, described his character as "a bit of a con, a bit of a Lothario and a seducer. When he gets to Oz, it's a chance to redeem himself." Concept images of the emerald city, munchkins, people travelling Oz via giant bubbles, the yellow brick road, as well as a small girl made entirely of porcelain were additionally displayed.
At one point, Oz was seen performing magic acts in a packed theater, clinging to the rope of a hot air balloon which is dragged into a tornado and floating above the Land of Oz. The video ended with a shot of the titular character preparing to step into a storm while saying, "Let's go make some magic."
"Oz, the Great and Powerful" is currently in production in Detroit for a March 8, 2013 U.S. release. Beside Franco, other stars signing up for the action adventure movie are Mila Kunis, Michelle Williams, Zach Braff and Rachel Weisz.