or


[08/26/04 - 12:00 AM]
The Muppets' Wonderful Wizard of Oz' Release

[via press release from ABC]

GRAMMY AWARD WINNER ASHANTI IS SET TO STAR ALONG WITH KERMIT THE FROG, MISS PIGGY AND THE WHOLE GANG IN "THE MUPPETS' WONDERFUL WIZARD OF OZ" (wt)

Academy Award Nominee Queen Latifah to Star as "Auntie Em"

Academy Award Winner Quentin Tarantino Set to Make Hilarious Cameo as Himself

Production to Begin in September

International R&B super star Ashanti is set to make her leading lady debut as "Dorothy" in the original telefilm, "The Muppets' Wonderful Wizard of Oz," for the ABC Television Network. Joining her in this madcap adventure movie are actress/rapper/producer superstar Queen Latifah ("Chicago," "Barbershop 2") as her beloved guardian "Auntie Em" and action film master, director Quentin Tarrantino ("Kill Bill," vols. 1 and 2) in a cameo as himself. "The Muppets' Wonderful Wizard of Oz" is slated to begin production in Vancouver, BC on September 20 and will air in the 2004-05 season as part of the hit family franchise, "The Wonderful World of Disney."

Of course the biggest star in the telefilm - she's absolutely certain - is Miss Piggy, who will take on the roles of all four witches: Wicked Witch of the East, Wicked Witch of the West, the Good Witch of the North and Glinda, the Good Witch of the South. Kermit the Frog is the Scarecrow, in search of a brain; The Great Gonzo is the Tin Man, in search of his heart, and Fozzie Bear is the Lion looking for some courage. Pepe the King Prawn takes on the role of Toto, Dorothy's constant - and constantly chattering - sidekick.

"We're excited to be working with these award-winning and talented artists on our first project since the Muppets joined The Walt Disney Company earlier this year," said Chris Curtin, general manager and vice president, Muppet Holding Company. "I know that Kermit, Miss Piggy and the rest of the Muppet gang, together with Ashanti and Queen Latifah, will certainly add a one-of-a-kind twist to this classic story and will entertain and inspire television audiences everywhere."

Based on the book "The Wonderful Wizard of Oz" by L. Frank Baum, the Muppets version gives the story a couple of twists and tweaks without ever losing the central meaning of the classic story. Contemporary teenage Dorothy is a girl with dreams of showbiz that seem far from coming true in the Kansas trailer park where she lives. When she's transported to the magical land of Oz, she joins with the Scarecrow, the Tin Man and the Lion to fight the Wicked Witch of the West and journey to the Wizard, who, she hopes, will make her a star!

The last Muppets telefilm, "It's a Very Merry Muppet Christmas Movie," won its time-slot with a 3.8 rating and over 11 million viewers. The numbers are just as impressive for Ashanti. In 2002 her debut album, "Ashanti," topped the Billboard Album Chart and also won the Grammy for Best Contemporary R&B Album. Her follow-up release, "Chapter II," debuted in the no. 1 slot on the Billboard Album Chart and spawned two Top-10 singles. She is certainly no stranger to television, having performed on virtually every music awards show from the American Music Awards to the Grammys, the MTV Video Music Awards, MTV Europe Awards, the Soul Train Awards and the Kids' Choice Awards.

"This one movie brings together three of entertainment's most recognizable franchises," said Quinn Taylor, senior vice president, Motion Pictures for Television and Miniseries, ABC Primetime Entertainment. "'The Wonderful World of Disney," the Muppets and the story of 'The Wonderful Wizard of Oz.' It's thrilling to have a project where there is something to motivate literally every single demographic to watch."

Lisa Henson and Brian Henson are executive producers of "The Muppets' Wonderful Wizard of Oz." Martin G. Baker and Warren Carr are producers and Bill Baretta and Kristine Belson are co-producers. The telefilm is being directed by Kirk R. Thatcher ("It's a Very Muppets Christmas Movie.)" "The Muppets' Wonderful Wizard of Oz" is being produced by The Jim Henson Company in association with Touchstone Television and Muppets Holding Company, the Disney subsidiary responsible for managing the overall Muppets franchise.





  [august 2004]  
S
M
T
W
T
F
S


· IT'S A VERY MERRY MUPPET CHRISTMAS MOVIE (NBC)
· MUPPETS' WONDERFUL WIZARD OF OZ (ABC)
· WONDERFUL WORLD OF DISNEY, THE (ABC)





[07/25/16 - 01:42 PM]
E!'s Scripted Series "The Arrangement" Begins Production in Vancouver
The 10-episode one-hour series is a multi-layered, Hollywood love story about the darker side of celebrity where nobody is what they seem.

[07/25/16 - 01:38 PM]
Digital Star Hannah Hart Joins Food Network Lineup
Plans for the partnership include a six episode series along with an array of complementary digital and social content leveraging both Hart's and the network's respective digital footprints.

[07/25/16 - 01:10 PM]
Destination America Earns #1 Telecast Ever in P25-54 with "Ghosts of Shepherdstown" Season Finale
Destination America further spins the numbers for Sunday, July 17.

[07/25/16 - 12:53 PM]
National Geographic Channel Greenlights Second Season of Critically Acclaimed Series "Breakthrough"
Production has begun on the new season, which is slated to air in spring 2017 in 440 million homes in 171 countries and in 45 languages, as well as on the Spanish language network Nat Geo Mundo.

[07/25/16 - 11:57 AM]
Netflix Announces Steve Aoki Doc: "I'll Sleep When I'm Dead"
In the lead-up to Aoki's biggest show of his career, this introspective doc examines the driving force behind his passion: Rocky Aoki, daredevil showman, Benihana founder, and Steve's looming father figure.

[07/25/16 - 11:11 AM]
Senior Television Executive Justin Rosenblatt to Head Original Programming and Development for Pop
Rosenblatt, who currently serves as Senior Vice President, Alternative Programming at The CW Network, will join Pop starting in September.

[07/25/16 - 11:00 AM]
Freeform Greenlights New Drama Pilot "The Deep"
"The Deep" is a one-hour drama that takes us inside Bristol Cove, a coastal town known for its legend of once being home to mermaids.

[07/25/16 - 10:44 AM]
David Spade Tapped as Roast Master for the "Comedy Central Roast of Rob Lowe"
The event (#LoweRoast) will tape at Sony Studios on Saturday, August 27 and premiere on Labor Day at 10:00 P.M. ET/PT.

[07/25/16 - 10:00 AM]
CBSN Sets New Weekly Viewership Record for Convention & Breaking News Coverage
CBSN spins the numbers for the week of Sunday, July 17 through Saturday, July 23.

[07/25/16 - 09:52 AM]
Video: Trailer Debut - David Cross "Making America Great Again!" on Netflix
Filmed during SXSW 2016, the one-hour special premieres Friday, August 5.

[07/25/16 - 09:05 AM]
Sunday's Broadcast Ratings: "Sunday Fun and Games" Puts ABC on Top
The Alphabet leads the night in total viewers and adults 18-49.

[07/25/16 - 08:45 AM]
2016 PaleyFest Fall TV Previews Dates, Venue, Initial Lineup and Talent Announced
Among the featured panelists: Sterling K. Brown, Mark Paul Gosselaar Katy Mixon, Mandy Moore, Dermot Mulroney, Piper Perabo, Milo Ventimiglia, Damon Wayans, Sr., and more!

[07/25/16 - 08:43 AM]
Video: "The Get Down" Official Trailer Release
Part One of "The Get Down," comprising six episodes, premieres Friday, August 12 on Netflix around the world.

[07/25/16 - 08:05 AM]
Don't Miss the Boat! Bravo Media Hits the High Seas with Season Four of "Below Deck" Premiering Tuesday, September 6 at 9PM ET/PT
Climb aboard the "Valor," a 154' mega yacht and sail into the sunset with a few familiar faces from seasons past.

[07/25/16 - 07:05 AM]
Destination America Launches "The Hauntist" Blog, Exploring All Things Creepy, Spooky, and Odd
The Hauntist is every paranormal fan's one-stop shop for the latest paranormal news and in-depth analysis from elite paranormal researchers and investigators.