Oz: The Great and Powerful trailer meets the witches

Disney has unveiled the first full-length trailer for its upcoming readaptation prequel of The Wizard of Oz.

Frank L. Baum created the world of Oz for his series of children’s books in the early 1900’s, and since then it has become one of the most widely adapted story worlds ever, owing much of its fame to the famous partly colorized

 film The Wizard of Oz.

This new film depicts the origin story of The Wizard. When it begins, Oscar Zoroaster Phadrig Isaac Norman Henkel Emmannuel Ambroise Diggs (played by James Franco) is a circus magician, who is magically transported to Oz, years before Dorothy arrives.

He meets up with a few of the witches, and gets dragged into some Oz politics before figuring out how to become The Wizard which was spoken of in the prophesies. Of course, it helps that in Oz, his powers of illusion are real. The new trailer delivers a lot more of the plot than we’ve seen up until now.

We also have this new synopsis and a new poster:

When Oscar Diggs, a small-time circus magician with dubious ethics, is hurled away from dusty Kansas to the vibrant Land of Oz, he thinks he’s hit the jackpot–fame and fortune are his for the taking–that is until he meets three witches, Theodora (Mila Kunis), Evanora (Rachel Weisz) and Glinda (Michelle Williams), who are not convinced he is the great wizard everyone’s been expecting. Reluctantly drawn into the epic problems facing the Land of Oz and its inhabitants, Oscar must find out who is good and who is evil before it is too late. Putting his magical arts to use through illusion, ingenuity–and even a bit of wizardry–Oscar transforms himself not only into the great and powerful Wizard of Oz but into a better man as well.

Personally, I’m really looking forward to this one, but there is still a lot to learn about the project. For example, more than anything else, I want to know if it’s been produced as a prequel to the MGM film, or more directly as a prequel to the original book. I have a feeling it’s the former, but wouldn’t it be great if the film was more connected to the books, perhaps even as the beginning of a new franchise.

Oz the Great and Powerful, helmed by genre veteran Sam Raimi, is slated to drop into theaters on March 8, 2013.