“Over the Rainbow” was nearly cut from the film; MGM felt that it made the Kansas sequence too long, as well as being too far over the heads of the children for whom it was intended. The studio also thought that it was degrading for Judy Garland to sing in a barnyard. A reprise of the song was cut: Dorothy sang it to remember Kansas while imprisoned in the Witch’s castle. Judy Garland began to cry, along with the crew, because the song was so sad.
Judy Garland had two characters say the same thing to her: “Why didn’t you tell me I was in love with you?”. The first was Gene Kelly in For Me and My Gal (1942) and second was Fred Astaire in Easter Parade (1948)
Dress rehearsal for the Jitterbug sequence from The Wizard Of Oz (1939)
Here’s where I get sentimental. Those of you who’ve been following me for a while know that among my MANY obsessions, vintage color films, movie making technicalities, swing music and 1930s pop culture are at the top of the list. This is where it all came from. When I was a kid, I was an avid watcher of Ripley’s Believe It Or Not! (the Jack Palance version), and one episode featured Harold Arlen’s home movies of the Oz set, along with the deleted Jitterbug number. Little did I know those brief clips would leave a mark on my brain like few other things. I debated myself about posting gifs from this now well-known sequence because… well, everyone knows of it now, but dammit, I had to pay my respects to these influential snippets of 16mm Kodachrome.