Prince Michael Uncovers 'Oz' Casting Secrets

By ETONLINE STAFF

February 21, 2013

While on his first assignment as an ET correspondent, Michael Jackson's 16-year-old son Prince Michael got the scoop on who else was in the running with James Franco for the lead role in Oz the Great and Powerful.

PICS: Bewitching Oz the Great & Powerful Posters

Despite director Sam Raimi's decade-long friendship with Franco (they worked together on the Spider-Man trilogy), Raimi revealed that he initially didn't even consider the 34-year-old actor for the part.

"When I first read the script, I heard that Robert Downey Jr. was attached to star in it," said Raimi. "I met with Robert a few times. It turned out not to be right for him. And then briefly Johnny Depp considered the project. It turned out not to be right for him either. And then I heard that James had read it and liked it, and I hadn't even thought of James."

Franco's reactions to Raimi's comments suggest that he was hearing this for the first time.

"What?" Franco said with a chuckle.

The movie imagines the origins of L. Frank Baum's beloved character from The Wizard of Oz. After Oscar Diggs (Franco) is hurled away from dusty Kansas to the vibrant Land of Oz, he first thinks he's hit the jackpot -- 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.

Oz the Great and Powerful hits theaters March 8.



More On: James Franco, Michael Jackson, Oz the Great and Powerful, The Amazing Spider-Man 2 (2014)

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