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Adventures in Oz with Cheryl is a three part direct to video educational children's exercise film released in 1999 loosely based on the Oz books. Though independently made with the Giraffe Film Company (which now focuses on television ads), it had a rather big budget and marketing campaign that is not common with other children's exercise videos.

Background

The film stars Cheryl Ann Silich who was a popular contestant during the first season of the original American Gladiators competition show and went on to create an exercise video series called The Body Perfect. She had been an avid Oz collector with over 3,000 memorabilia items which was started by her late mother, so she came up with the idea for the film for children since her previous excercise videos were aimed at adults. The program consisted of each part having its own video tape before being combined in later releases and intially sold through infomercials for $29.95 + $7.95 shipping & handling for a total of $38. As an full-length exercise video, there are songs that feature the characters dancing while Cheryl also appears on a small screen so it is easy for kids to follow along.

Plot

After being caught up in a cyclone, Dorothy land house lands in Oz and meets the Lizard of Oz who works as librarian. The Lizard explains that the land has been cursed to be lazy by the Wicked Ice Witch who was formally known to be the Nice Witch. After singing a song about being lazy and then another about active, a large flower opens up displaying the Witch's talking white sneakers Archie and Lefty but as she touches them, an alarm goes off and alerts the mayor who comes to question her. After realizing the mayor is overweight from eating too many sweets, Dorothy makes the goal of bringing fun and fitness back to Oz. She heads down the Yellow Brick Road and meets the Scarecrow, TinKid, and Cowardly Lion before getting the Emerald City to meet the Wizard who does nothing but watch televison from his throne. They confront the Ice Witch who has literally frozen herself in place and unthaws herself after being told jokes.



Trivia

  • The idea of a "Lizard of Oz" was previously used in children's books such as 1974 anthology entitled The Lizard of Oz by Richard Seltzer.  and Dorothy and the Lizard of Oz written in 1980 by Richard Gardner. Also, the concept also was ironically used for a 1988 non-fiction book on occult studies entitled The Sacred Magick of the Lizard of Oz. The idea would be later used for a 2003 self-published children's book called The Wonderful Lizard of Oz by Diane Kwiecien, a 2004 adult comic book written by Mark Bode as a tribute to his cartoonist father Vaughn Bode, and an entry in the Goosebumps series by R.L. Stine.
    • The Lizard replaces Toto and seems to be very simliar to the Wogglebug.
  • Dorothy ironically has a stuffed Lion, Scarecrow, and a Dorothy doll holding Toto on her bed.

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