An Interview with Oz the Great and Powerful’s Michelle Williams #DisneyOzEvent
In Oz the Great and Powerful (in theaters March 8th, 2013), Michelle Williams (My Week with Marilyn) takes on the iconic role of Glinda the Good. This is Williams’ first role in a family friendly film. When asked if she was prepared for the little girls who would be drawn to her after seeing this film, she replied, “I hadn’t entertained this possibility at all, that I would delight young children. I was thinking about delighting one young child.” While on set, Williams got a taste of what it might be like for her in the public eye once young girls see Oz the Great and Powerful. Little girls who portrayed the Quadling children “oohed” and “ahhed” when Michelle walked past them in full costume.
(Photo credit: Jeanne of Inside Out Motherhood)
In addition to working full time, Williams is also devoted to raising her 7-year-old daughter. Because most of us in the room with Michelle are working moms as well, we asked her how she balances her career with motherhood. She responded, “I was afraid you might ask something like that…how does anybody do it? It’s like an Olympian undertaking.” Williams shared with us that it took her a long time to realize there never will be that perfect balance. “It’s not possible to do both things well at the same time, especially not if you are exacting, and maybe a Virgo, and really critical, and ask a lot of yourself.”
The Glinda in Oz the Great and Powerful is very different than the version we are familiar with in 1939’s The Wizard of Oz. Michelle shared with us a snippet of a conversation she had with director Sam Raimi about Oz the Great and Powerful’s Glinda: “He said there’s a reason that Glinda the Good Witch doesn’t go down the Yellow Brick Road, and that she’s not on the journey–because she’s one dimensional… We don’t wanna do that, you know. We want people to feel like they’re on a journey with Glinda, too, and that she isn’t this sort of crystalized version who knew it all along… we want her to struggle, we want her to be human.”
Williams’ final insights on her character of Glinda summarize perfectly why Glinda will be a wonderful role model for not only young girls, but all people with struggles in their lives. “I thought a lot about transformation and how Glinda transforms these dark and dire situations…I thought about her as somebody who transforms tears into bubbles, that she makes the best out of a rotten situation because of a way that she chooses to look at it.”
Later on in the morning, we also got to meet with director Sam Raimi, but I particularly loved what Williams had to say about him and her experience working with him. “I kinda thought a lot about Sam as kind of Glinda the Good Witch…Can you imagine, like all those personalities, like a hundred and fifty people, all their personalities, all their jobs, all their questions, and Sam is, like, the funnel for all of it. And he maintained this exuberant and this buoyancy, and this belief in the possibility, and he was interested in what everybody had to say.”
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