Public domain means there’s a powerful property up for grabs…
So I was recently reading an article Hollywood Reporter about the new Oz the Great and Powerful, and learned that the source material is in the public domain.
Now, I should have known this… if I was a responsible screenwriter, I’d be doing that kind of research to find more sources of inspiration with cultural cache. Not that I’m lacking in concepts… but again – “cultural cache”.
But that’s another story… the important thing is, now I know this.
So that gets the brain working. I’ve got a personal attachment to this series… I learned how to read by sharing the Oz books with my mother… she’d read a paragraph, then I’d take a turn. Now, that was nearly 50 years ago, so I don’t rightly remember all the books and characters well, but perhaps it’s time to revisit them.
And of course, back in the days of 3 channels and no DVRs, we looked forward to the once annual airing of The Wizard of Oz on TV… my parents behind TV trays, and me with my face buried in the couch cushions whenever the witch was onscreen.
So what kind of re-imagining of the Oz universe could I do? Should it be a big-budget screenplay? Or an indie micro-budget interpretation? A fantasy setting, or a contemporary revisit like Romeo and Juliet? I don’t know yet, but I’m sure intrigued by the possibilities. (I do know that I’ll strive to avoid anything like SyFy’s Tin Man… that about ruined Zooey Deschanel for me.)
What public domain works strike your fancy? How would you approach them?
Where to find public domain source material:
Got a favorite source for public domain research? Let us know!