The Wiz: A Masterpiece
The Wiz was a staple in my childhood. i remember watching it over and over again at sleepovers with my neighbors. i am so grateful and blessed to have been able to experience such a brilliant piece of black art at such a young age. revisiting The Wiz in my adult years i am completely blown away! not only is it brilliant but it was light years ahead of its time! the costumes, music, set design, make up, and overall artistic direction are incredible! i'm in awe! we are so used to having mythology, fantasy, and storytelling, with purity and innocence told and shared by white people. no wonder i was obsessed with The Wiz as a child it gave me all the fantasy and mythology i needed.
learning that film was not well received by audiences and was a flop actually pains my heart. The Wiz was the first film produced by Motown Productions. since it lost millions of dollars in the box office it discouraged folks from investing in black films. this is extremely sad, nothing The Wiz has been made since its release in 1978. The Wiz set the standard for musicals and fantasy films. there would be no Avatar if there wasn't The Wiz, in fact the same makeup artist worked on both films. i hope the tv remake of The Wiz will ignite a modern day revival of this master piece that should not be forgotten.
The Wiz is based off of The Wizard of Oz interpretation by William F. Brown. it stars Diana Ross, Michael Jackson, Nipsey Russell, Ted Ross, Lena Horne, and Richard Pryor. the score is by Charlie Smalls, Ashford and Simpson, Anthony Jackson, Luther Vandross, and Quincy Jones. please enjoy some images from this breathtaking and awe inspiring film.