The first trailer for director Sam Raimi’s Oz the Great and Powerful has been released. The pic serves as a prequel to the classic fantasy The Wizard of Oz and stars James Franco as the eponymous wizard. The story centers on Franco’s small-time circus magician with dubious ethics who finds himself transported to Oz and drawn into a battle between the three witches Theodora (Mila Kunis), Evanora (Rachel Weisz) and Glinda (Michelle Williams). I love how the trailer begins in Academy ratio and black-and-white before expanding to widescreen and color once Fracno’s whisked away to Oz. The visuals are gorgeous and it’s obvious that this is one big movie, I’m just hoping that Raimi’s quirkiness and signature style isn’t pushed to the side in order to make “the next Alice in Wonderland.”
Hit the jump to check out the trailer. The film also stars Zach Braff and Abigail Spencer. Oz the Great and Powerful opens on March 8th, 2013.
Click over to Apple to watch in HD. You can also read our recap of today’s Comic-Con panel with Sam Raimi, Michelle Williams and Mila Kunis here.
Disney’s fantastical adventure “Oz The Great and Powerful,” directed by Sam Raimi, imagines the origins of L. Frank Baum’s beloved character, the Wizard of Oz. When Oscar Diggs (James Franco), a small-time circus magician with dubious ethics, is hurled away from dusty Kansas to the vibrant Land of Oz, he thinks he’s hit the jackpot—fame and fortune are his for the taking—that is until he meets three witches, Theodora (Mila Kunis), Evanora (Rachel Weisz) and Glinda (Michelle Williams), who are not convinced he is the great wizard everyone’s been expecting. Reluctantly drawn into the epic problems facing the Land of Oz and its inhabitants, Oscar must find out who is good and who is evil before it is too late. Putting his magical arts to use through illusion, ingenuity—and even a bit of wizardry—Oscar transforms himself not only into the great and powerful Wizard of Oz but into a better man as well.
“Oz The Great and Powerful” is produced by Joe Roth and written by Mitchell Kapner and David Lindsay-Abaire (credit not final). Grant Curtis, Philip Steuer and Palak Patel are serving as executive producers. “Oz The Great and Powerful” opens in U.S. theaters on March 8, 2013.