From the Archives: Munchkins at premiere of ‘Wizard of Oz’

Aug. 15, 1939: Munchkins join the "Wizard of Oz" festivities at the Grauman's Chinese Theatre.
(Gordon Wallace / Los Angeles Times)

The Aug. 15, 1939, premiere of “The Wizard of Oz” in Los Angeles was complete with Munchkins at Grauman’s Chinese Theatre.

Actor Wallace Beery, kneeling, was joined by his daughter Carol Ann, center, “Wizard of Oz” producer Mervyn LeRoy, far right, and several actors dressed in Munchkin costumes at Grauman’s Chinese Theatre.

Beery almost played the Wizard in the MGM film but because of other commitments with the movie house, he was forced to turn down the role, according to his IMDb page.


This image appeared in the Aug. 16, 1939, Los Angeles Times. The movie opened nationwide on Aug. 25.

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