75 years after "The Wizard of Oz" first hit the big screen, it seems we still can't get enough of that wonderful land. Last spring we saw the big-budget prequel "Oz the Great and Powerful" which earned nearly $500 million worldwide. And there are currently no fewer than five different TV shows in development at different networks (including one where Dorothy is a modern-day doctor, and another where Oz is a post-apocalyptic wasteland).
But the one that might be closest to the original spirit of the books is "Legends of Oz: Dorothy's Return," and that's because it keeps it in the family. The new animated movie is based on the book "Dorothy of Oz," written by Roger S. Baum, the great-grandson of "Oz" creator L. Frank Baum. It's the story of Dorothy Gale's return to the magical land, where she reunites with old pals the Scarecrow, the Tin Man, and the Cowardly Lion. Together they must face a new threat, the Jester, who is trying to control Oz with the wand of the Wicked Witch of the West.
'Legends of Oz: Dorothy's Return' (Photo: Clarius Entertainment)
"Glee" star Lea Michele provides the voice of Dorothy in the animated musical (Michele has been vocal in the past about her love of all things "Oz" and her desire to play the Witch in a movie version of the Broadway hit "Wicked"). She's joined by comedy vets Dan Aykroyd as the Scarecrow, Jim Belushi as the Lion, Kelsey Grammer as the Tin Man, and Martin Short as the evil Jester. Bernadette Peters, Patrick Stewart, Megan Hilty, Hugh Dancy, and Oliver Platt also provide voices for the other inhabitants of Oz.
"Legends of Oz: Dorothy's Return" will drop into theaters on May 9, 2014.