Lea Michele, Oliver Platt, Dan Aykroyd, and Patrick Stewart Lend Their Voices to DOROTHY OF OZ

     June 11, 2010

The upcoming 3D animated film Dorothy of Oz has made a very smart casting decision by having Glee star Lea Michele provide the lead voice in their animated-musical family film.  It’s not just smart because Michele is an amazing singer.  It’s smart because Glee is one of the hottest shows on television right now and studios should be rushing to pick up any star from the show as fast as possible.  The actor or actress won’t be able to open a movie on their own, but if paired with the right project and with a fairly talented ensemble, it could really help garner attention to a project.

The fairly talented ensemble backing up Michele includes Oliver Platt, Dan Aykroyd, Kelsey Grammer, and Patrick Stewart.  The film is also launching an interactive teaser website at dorothyofoz.com.  Hit the jump to check out the press release.  And for our previous coverage of the film at the American Film Market, click here.

Here’s the press release for your viewing pleasure:

TALENTED STAR VOICES HELP LEAD “OZ” FURTHER DOWN

THE YELLOW BRICK ROAD AND INTO A BRAND NEW DIMENSION

Casting and Further Details Announced for

Upcoming 3D-Animated Musical Feature, “Dorothy of Oz”

Los Angeles, CA — Today production company Summertime Entertainment makes an official casting announcement for their anticipated animated musical feature film, “Dorothy of Oz”.  This announcement also includes the decision to produce the film in Stereoscopic 3D, and the launch of a new interactive teaser website, www.dorothyofoz.com.

In the film, the title and beloved role of Dorothy Gale will be played by Golden-Globe nominated actress Lea Michele, star of television’s hit series “Glee”.  Also known for her acclaimed Broadway roles in Spring Awakening and Les Misérables, Lea makes her feature film and animation voice-over debut with “Oz” and will also be providing vocals on several original musical numbers.

The new comedic book character roles of Wiser the Owl and the delicate China Princess will be respectively voiced by Oliver Platt (2012, Frost/Nixon, Nip/Tuck, Huff, West Wing), and Broadway veteran Megan Hilty (star of the musical ‘9 to 5′).  “Dorothy of Oz” also marks Hilty’s second venture into Oz after a successful run as Glinda in the national tour of Wicked.  British Actor Hugh Dancy (Ella Enchanted, Confessions of a Shopaholic, Black Hawk Down) will play the soft-hearted and candy-coated Marshall Mallow, and Patrick Stewart (X-Men, Star Trek) will voice the humorous old soul and adventure-seeking Tugg.  Set to be a musical with its main singing talents now in place, legendary singer/songwriter, Oscar nominee and 15-time Grammy winner Bryan Adams is currently moving forward on the first songs and lyrics for the film along with writing partner Jim Vallance.

Emmy and Tony award-winning Martin Short will play the Jester, the new arch-nemesis of Dorothy and all of Oz.  The Jester is “a performer without his coveted audience” and the role is rife with comedy, song, and lighthearted wickedness.  Comedian/actor Jim Belushi will portray the Lion, who is reveling in his new role as guardian and protector of Oz.  Continuously attempting to remove the word “Cowardly” from his moniker with little success, he is forced to overcompensate with acts of exaggerated bravado.  Academy award-nominated Dan Aykroyd will be voicing the Scarecrow, who famously once sang “If I only had a brain,” but has learned one should be careful what they wish for as now he finds himself in a position of authority that is entirely unfamiliar.  Emmy award-winning and current Tony-nominee Kelsey Grammer rounds out the cast as the Tin Man, who with his new found heart is literally wearing his emotions on his sleeve and now needs to carry an extra oil can due to all his weeping.

An interactive teaser website has been launched at www.dorothyofoz.com, and the film’s marketing campaign being run by CW3PR intends to use corresponding social networking sites to launch several online apps and activities over the coming months including a grassroots “gift a yellow brick to help re-pave the Emerald City road” viral game.  A release date for the film has yet to be set, but production is scheduled to finish in late 2011.

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