Interview: James Franco – Oz The Great and Powerful #disneyoz #disneyozevent

by Carrie with Children with comments closed

The fantastic James Franco plays the leading man, Oz in the new Disney film Oz The Great and Powerful.  And after interviewing him following the premiere of the film – I have an entirely new outlook on this great actor.  He’s definitely a man that is passionate about films.

James Franco and Michelle Williams in Oz The Great and Powerful

image credit – Disney

Oz Memories As A Child

When I was a boy, that was the days before Harry Potter was around, I read all of the L. Frank Baum Oz books on my own.  They were some of the first books I read for pleasure outside of school.  It was fourteen or fifteen that he wrote, and I just sped through them.  There was a local book store called The Printer’s Ink in Paulo Alto. It was an independent book store and they had all the Oz books there and I remember just like getting excited seeing all of them and going through each one.

Learning Magic Tricks

I trained with Vegas magician, Lance Burton and he showed me a lot of the secret tricks and I got pretty good at it.  There’s a scene in the beginning of the film where we see Oz doing his act in the traveling circus.  There were more tricks in the original act that I learned so I could make doves materialize out of nothing and pull rabbits out of hats.  But, it didn’t make the cut.  It was fun to learn anyways.

James Franco and Mila Kunis in Oz The Great and Powerful

image credit – Disney

Working with Director Sam Raimi

Sam is a very collaborative director.  Everyone is welcome to bring things to the table.  And so with the character Oz, not only did we rehearse in advance two weeks of the film, we rehearsed throughout the film. So, I actually didn’t ever have a lunch to myself.  I was spending all my lunches going over the script and the scene with Sam and the other actors, and through that process, I think the character of Oz changed quite a bit.

Some of my students are here from my English class at UCLA and we looked at an early draft of the script. I was surprised at how different that early draft was to where we ended up and that’s just because of the way Sam works and the way the project develops through the whole process.  I’m sure some of me made it into the character that wasn’t originally on the page.

James Franco at Premiere of Oz The Great and Powerful

image credit – Disney

For the Latest News on Oz The Great and Powerful

Be sure and “Like”  OZ THE GREAT and POWERFUL on Facebook and follow along on Twitter at @DisneyOzMovie.

Also, for the latest news, check out

OZ THE GREAT AND POWERFUL lands in theaters on March 8th!

** Walt Disney Pictures invited me on this all-expenses paid trip as their guest . Thoughts and opinions here are 100% my own and not influenced by others. **