TALENTED STAR VOICES HELP LEAD “OZ” FURTHER DOWN THE YELLOW BRICK ROAD AND INTO A BRAND NEW DIMENSION

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Contact: Charley Walters, CW3PR June 11th, 2010 (323) 476-1050 | charley@cw3pr.com

 

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   songs   and   lyrics   for   the   film   along   with   writing   partner   Jim Vallance,     and   additional   songs,   lyrics  and  score  will  be  provided  by  Emmy-­‐award  winning  composer  Jim Dooley  (Pushing Daisies).

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.

Dorothy of OZ   is   the   first   in   a   slated   series   of   animated   feature   films   by   Summertime   Entertainment,   based   on   the   writings   of   acclaimed   children’s   author   Roger S. Baum.     Mr.   Baum’s   work   continues   the   legacy   of   his   great-­‐grandfather   L.   Frank   Baum,   author   of   The Wonderful Wizard of Oz   series   of   books,
through   new   stories   of   Dorothy’s   adventures   in   the   enchanted   Land   of   Oz,   and   the   magical   friends   she   meets   along   the   way.     ‘Summertime’   is   a   family   genre   entertainment   company   run   by   filmmakers   Ryan   Carroll   and   Roland   Carroll,   and   executive   team   René   Torres,   James   A.   Jones,   and   Neil   L.   Kaufman.  “We   are   very   excited   to   be   transitioning   from   filmmakers   to   creators   of   branded   story   franchises”   shared   James,   “and   are   delighted   to   have   this   ideal   opportunity   to   bring   the   Oz   brand   forward   into   the   21st   century.”

The   “Oz”   sequel   is   being   helmed   by   veteran   animation   producer   Bonne Radford   (who   also   produced   Curious George, The Road the El Dorado,   Balto   and   creatively   contributed   on   over   20   more   films   including  Who Framed Roger Rabbit, The Goonies and E.T.: The Extra-­‐Terrestrial).    The  film  is  directed  by   long-­‐time   Disney   contributor   Dan St. Pierre   (whose   various   credits   include  Everyone’s Hero, the Little Mermaid, Beauty and the Beast, Aladdin, The Lion King   and   Shark Tale).     Musical   components   will   be   supervised   by   Vicki Hiatt   (Ali, Hannibal, Madagascar   and Open Season),   additional   songs   by   Grammy-­‐ award  winning  songwriter  Tift Merritt  and  lyricist  Mike Himelstein.    Rounding  out  the  musical  team  will   be   pop   choreographer   Tyce Diorio,   who   also   recently   won   an   Emmy   award   for   his   work   as   a   choreographer  and  guest  judge  on  FOX’s  hit  “So You Think You Can Dance”.    Dorothy of Oz is  being  cast   by   Matthew Jon Beck   (Lilo & Stitch, The Incredibles, Finding Nemo)   and   the   screenplay   is   written   by   Randi Barnes, Adam Balsam and Barry Glasser.

Regarding  the  new  casting,  Bonne  Radford  says  “We  could  not  be  more  thrilled  to  have  this  new  cast  in   place.     Each   of   these   amazing   actors   AND   singers   will   immensely   help   with   our   constant   goal:   to   pay   homage  to  this  indelible  and  beloved  franchise  while  updating  it  for  a  brand  new  generation,  and  in  the   exciting  medium  of  3D  animation  ,  perfectly  suited  to  this  magical  land”.

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.

For  further  information,  interview  requests,  or  to  request  publicity  materials,  please  contact  Charley   Walters  at  CW3PR,  (323)  476-­‐1050.

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