The Wizard of Oz returns to theaters this weekend for its 80th anniversary

The 80th anniversary of what has been called by film critics the greatest year of movies is here.  In 1939 audiences were first introduced to the landmark Western, John Ford’s Stagecoach, John Ford also released Young Mr. Lincoln, Frank Capra released his most patriotic film, Mr. Smith Goes to Washington, and Charles Laughton starred in The Hunchback of Notre DameDrums Along the Mohawk, The Little Princess, Goodbye Mr. Chips, Only Angels Have Wings, Gunga Din, Dark Victory, Son of Frankenstein, Golden Boy, Destry Rides Again–all premiered in 1939.  And then there was director Victor Fleming, who released not only the definitive historical romance, Gone With the Wind, but the celebrated greatest fantasy movie of all time, The Wizard of Oz.  To celebrate its 80th anniversary, Turner Classic Movies/TCM Big Screen Classics and Fathom Events have teamed up to show special screenings of The Wizard of Oz beginning Sunday, to appear at more than 700 theaters nationwide.

Starring Judy Garland, Ray Bolger, Bert Lahr, Jack Haley, Margaret Hamilton, Frank Morgan, Billie Burke, and Terry as Toto, The Wizard of Oz, in a controversial and competitive year of Oscars, would take home the Academy Award for best song (Harold Arlen and E.Y. Harburg‘s “Over the Rainbow“) and Herbert Stothart‘s musical score (it was also nominated for Best Picture, Best Cinematography, Best Art Direction, and Best Special Effects).

It’s the classic that would be celebrated by generations as one of the rare films re-broadcast on television year after year before the advent of home video, but hundreds of millions of fans have never seen it as it was meant to be seen.  Take the advice of author Elizabeth C. Bunce, who reviewed the movie for its 75th anniversary here at borg, if you have never seen it in the theater, do yourself a favor and grab everyone you care about, and get to the theater to see The Wizard of Oz.  

There’s no place like home, and the film returns to its home, the big screen, beginning Sunday.  Fathom Events kicks off the 2019 TCM Big Screen Classics series with special screenings of this fantasy masterpiece, which will play on nearly 700 movie screens nationwide for three days only: Sunday, January 27, 2019; Tuesday, January 29, 2019; and Wednesday, January 30, 2019.  Check for theater available, find movie start times, and order tickets at the Fathom Events website here.  The Fathom Events presentation will also include special commentary before and after the film by TCM Primetime host Ben Mankiewicz.

If you can’t make the big-screen return, check out the Blu-ray and 3D re-release home edition here.

Keep up with all the Fathom Events at the Fathom Events website,

C.J. Bunce

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