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Fun facts from The Wizard of Oz film (1939) trivia

• Toto was played by a female Cairn terrier named Terry.

• Shirley Temple was not cast as Dorothy because 20th Century Fox would not lend her to MGM.

• The special effects in the scene where Margaret Hamilton (Wicked Witch of the West) departs Munchkinland went awry and Hamilton was severely burned. Her hands were so badly injured, she had to wear green gloves instead of green makeup.

• The Scarecrow’s costume was made of asbestos in order to protect him from being burned.

• Buddy Ebsen and Ray Bolger were originally cast as the Tin Woodman and Scarecrow, respectively, but swapped roles. As the Tin Woodman, Ebsen fell ill as a result of the aluminum dust in his makeup. He was replaced by Jack Haley.

• Haley went on to become a Knight of Malta and the Pope honored him for his philanthropy. “He did a job with the Tin Woodman that’s never gotten the acclaim that it should,” said Hamilton (Wicked Witch of the West). “He was inside that armor, and it was only his eyes and his personality that made the Tin Woodman so endearing. He was so perfect for that person who wanted a heart. I believed him thoroughly. I always believed that a heart was the most important thing to Jack.”

• "The Jitterbug," sung by Dorothy, Scarecrow, Tin Woodman, and Cowardly Lion in the Haunted Forest, was left on the cutting room floor, but still cost $80,000 to produce. The only footage of it that remains is a home video.

• L. Frank Baum was 43 years old when he published The Wonderful Wizard of Oz (1900). He went on to write 13 more novels in the Oz series.

• Professor Marvel’s coat formerly belonged to Baum.


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