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'Oz: The Great and Powerful' trailer debuts at Comic-Con (+video)

'Oz: The Great and Powerful' is director Sam Rami's prequel to the original Wizard of Oz. The movie, 'Oz: The Great and Powerful' is about how the ruler of Emerald City came to Oz and became the character known in the 1939 film.

By StaffAssociated Press / July 13, 2012

Director Sam Raimi and actor Michelle Williams attend Disney's "Oz: The Great and Powerful" panel at Comic-Con on Thursday, July 12, 2012 in San Diego, Calif. Disney debuted a trailer for the movie at Comic-Con. Williams stars in the new movie with Mila Kunis, James Franco, and Rachel Weisz.

(Photo by John Shearer/Invision/AP)

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San Diego

There's no scarecrow, tin man, or Dorothy in Sam Raimi's Land of Oz. No ruby slippers or Toto, too.

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Raimi offered a crowd of about 6,000 fans at the Comic-Con fan convention Thursday a sneak peek at his prequel "Oz: The Great and Powerful," due in theaters next year.

The maker of "Spider-Man" and its two sequels told fans that his film is the story of how the ruler of Emerald City came to Oz, so characters and many other familiar facets of the classic 1939 musical "The Wizard of Oz" do not appear.

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The film stars James Franco as a Kansas carnival magician whose hot-air balloon is blown to the magical realm by a tornado. Raimi says Franco's Oz is a selfish womanizer who's forced to become a nobler man in Oz.

Johnny Depp also made a splash at Comic-Con, and he wasn't even there.

Comic-Con fans got the first look at "The Lone Ranger," which stars Depp as Tonto.

He wears long hair and full-face makeup to portray the Lone Ranger's Native American companion. The brief clip hinted at the character's craftiness, with one scene showing him riding beneath a speeding train. It also offered a peek at Armie Hammer as the Lone Ranger and Helena Bonham Carter as a dame of interest, amid a backdrop of trains crossing the Western desert. Jerry Bruckheimer is producing the film.

Disney unveiled the footage at the conclusion of its panel presentation that included glimpses of Tim Burton's "Frankenweenie," Sam Raimi's "Oz: The Great and Powerful" and the video-game romp "Wreck-It Ralph," which features the voices of Sarah Silverman and John C. Reilly.

"The Lone Ranger" is directed by Gore Verbinski, who worked with Depp on the first three "Pirates of the Caribbean" films and the animated "Rango." It is set for release next summer.

Comic-Con continues through Sunday.

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