The Most Famous Road In All The World...
- "Follow the Yellow Brick Road, follow the Yellow Brick Road... follow, follow, follow, follow... follow the Yellow Brick Road! "
- ―The Munchkins (1939)
- "Follow the yellow Brick Road..., now which way do we go?"
- ―Dorothy Gale (1939)
The Road Paved With Yellow Bricks...
- "...Just follow the Yellow Brick Road..."
- ―Glinda the Good (1939)
- "The road to the City of Emeralds is paved with yellow brick," said the Good Witch of the North. "So you cannot miss it, and when you get to Oz do not be afraid of him, but tell Oz your story child, and ask Oz to help you. "
- ―The Wonderful Wizard of Oz (1900.
The Yellow Brick Road, (Road paved with yellow bricks in the book), is a fictonal element ivented by L. Frank Baum, author and creator of the Oz legacy. This particular road is a very special one and can only be found in the magical Land of Oz. The Yellow Brick Road was first introduced in Baum's first Oz book titled 'The Wonderful Wizard of Oz' in circa 1900. The road is an important key character for the plot of the storylines foundation and is an element which moves the story along.
- "There was many roads nearby, but it did not take Dorothy too long to find the one paved with bright and smooth yellow bricks. And while following it, with Toto soberly at her heel, she was walking briskly toward the Emerald City. Her Silver Shoes tinkling merrily on the hard paved road bed. "
- ―The Wonderful Wizard of Oz (1900)
The Yellow Brick Road begins in the heart of the Munchkin Country in Oz. It is said to be made entirely of heavy bricks. Bricks of which are all painted completely of a bright glowing yellow and each brick is polished very smooth. The road is a very wide one in width and a very, very long one in length, running hundreds of miles on and across the vast landscape of Oz. The road is not all entirely straight. Like seen in the various movie adaptations of Oz and Oz's stories, it gracefully curves and swoops, looping around mountains and swiggles over rich grassy green hills and attractive flowery meadows. And runs through other places throughout Oz's delightful landscapes. Even though the majority of the road is all neatly polished and smooth, it does have areas where many bricks are broken or have been uprooted from it's foundation, such as in the dark abandoned forests and jungles in Oz where not many people wish to pass due to the wild beast who dwell within, such as the flesh eating Kalidahs. Those places have missing bricks or large potholes and dead ends by steep cliff edges cutting the road in half. There are also edges where the road meets deep raging rivers and waterfalls or run straight into traps such as the field of deadly Poppies. Overall, the yellow path leads through more safer, friendlier places of Oz. And if travelers follow it long enough it will lead them to the Emerald City, which stands in the exact center of Oz. In the original book by Baum, it takes many weeks to follow the road to reach the city.
The road finally stops at the green emerald studded gates of the Emerald City's main entrance. The city is now ruled fairly by the long lost, lovely Princess Ozma of Oz, the child Queen, and daughter of the late King Pastoria. Ozma resides comfortably in the Royal Palace of Oz, which is in the heart of Emerald City.
However, long, long before she was found by Glinda the Good and put back into her proper place, the city was once ruled by the humbug Wizard for many, many years. When he first came to Oz via hot air balloon, the people in the land thought him to be a real powerful Magician, one who was worthy enough to be King. Even though he wasn't, he was just a skilled illusionist. But since the people in Oz were a gullible folk, they did not think otherwise. Soon he proclaimed himself as ruler. And when he did he also ordered construction on the city to be built by his subjects in his honor. And a handsome road paved of yellow bricks was also made to go with the city.
Since the Emerald City is in the very middle of Oz, it is also the imperial capital of the land. Thus, making the yellow brick road the most important and popular road in all of Oz.
Roads Long History
The Wizard orders the construction of the bright paved road that leads to his precious green city. The yellow brick road was built shortly after Oscar Diggs aka The Wizard arrived in Oz via Hot-Air Ballon. When the citizens of Oz were truly convinced that he really was a great Magician, and force to fear and be reckoned with, the people who lived in Oz built the Emerald City in his honor as he took the Royal Throne to claim for his own. His subjects constructed the yellow brick road that started in the East country in Oz which is the county of Munchkins, and ended at the gates of the Emerald City in the center of the land. The road is mostly known for being the road that Dorothy Gale, her dog Toto and her companions the Scarecrow, Tin Woodman, and Cowardly Lion followed on their first adventure to see Oz.(The Wonderful Wizard of Oz).
In each version of an Oz story, many characters and places slightly or even drastically change looks and appearances over time, regardless of the plot lines taking place, the yellow brick road is always the same. The yellow brick road of Oz is nearly identical in each movie adaption despite the differences and events of everything else happening around it.
The Wizard of Oz 1939
- "...follow the Yellow Brick Road?"
- ―Judy Garland (1939)
The Yellow Brick Road was first brought to life in the 1939 film The Wizard of Oz, starring Judy Garland. Cardboard murals were delicately painted by artist to connect the real road to the illustrated one. This trick allowed the road to appear much longer than it actually was on the MGM stage to add on to it's look in the background sets since CGI did not exist yet. The paintings gave the road a realistic look for the technicolor camera, which gave the illusion of being one long road that was connected and went on for miles and miles over the grassy hills and beautiful landscapes in Oz.
Journey back to Oz 1974
Judy Garland's very own daughter voices the character her mother once played and became famous for.
In the 1974 animated sequel to the Judy Garland movie, this version has an all star cast with none other than Liza Minnelli, Judy's daughter for the voice talent of the cartoon Dorothy. Dorothy and Toto get sent back to Oz again to meet new characters as well as reunite with old famous friends.
The Wiz 1978
- "The Munchkins told me to follow the Yellow Brick Road, but I haven't been able to find it. "
- ―Diana Ross as Dorothy in The Wiz.
Ease on Down the Road!
In the 1978 African American Version of The Wizard of Oz, a shy 24-year-old kindergarten teacher named Dorothy Gale (whose last name is never mentioned in the film) is (played by actress and then-Mowtown star Diana Ross). Dorothy must set out to find the road just as in the original book. She does finally find the road after meeting the Scarecrow (played by dancer and Jackson Five star Michael Jackson).
The road goes through all the land of Oz, on which the attributes of New York City are imposed.
Return to Oz 1985
- "No Billina, you don't understand. This was the Yellow Brick Road! It leads to the Emerald City! "
- ―Return to Oz (1985)
The 1985 Disney Cult Classic. In Return to Oz, Dorothy Gale returns to the magical land of walking Scarecrows, talking Tinmen and Ruby Slippers, only to find that Oz is in apocalyptic ruins. With a destroyed yellow brick road and stone cold Emerald City. Dorothy finds the road in ruins in a desolate and abandoned Munchkin Country.
These bricks were actually constructed out of real yellow bricks (Not linoleum tile flooring made to look like bricks like in many versions).
These real bricks were all dug into the soil of the ground, then unevenly placed one by one in a long row to give the road a more realistic look. And a faithful portrayal to the road in Baum's original Oz stories/books. The bricks lead to the Emerald City, which surprisingly in this version, is only about a run away.
In the end, Dorothy defeats the Nome King she uses the Ruby Slippers to wish everything in Oz back to normal again, it is not clarified if the road is magically put back together. But since everything else in the Emerald City is restored to it's rightful condition, it suggest that the road possibly is as well, despite not being seen on screen.
Muppets' Wizard of Oz 2005
The Muppets follow the yellow brick road to Oz with Ashanti!
In this made-for-TV movie by Disney, Dorothy Gale wants to be a superstar, who is played by contemporary R&B singer Ashanti. Dorothy follows the Yellow Brick Road, which also has brick walls on each side of the pathway in this version.
One hundred years after the original Dorothy.
In this made for TV mini series, that is set circa one hundred years after the original Dorothy Gale aka "the first Slipper" arrived, to Oz aka "Outer Zone".
The yellow brick road aka "the old road" is no longer used and is nearly forgotten about in present day, since cars and automobiles are driven by the people who live in Oz now.
Tom & Jerry in the Wizard of Oz 2010
In the Tom and Jerry animated cartoon. Tom and Jerry live on the Kansas farm with Dorothy. They also get swept away in the farmhouse with her and Toto when the Cyclone comes.
Tom and Jerry are both taken to Oz and go on a set of adventures also while following the yellow brick road to catch up with Dorothy who is a few hours ahead of them.
Dorothy & the Witches of Oz 2011
The yellow brick road is seen in the land of Oz while the Witches both good and bad, are in a war. The Wizard also takes part in the events while battle the Witches and Dorothy Gale fight each other, over a magic key and powerful spell book.
Oz the Great and Powerful 2013
Three decades before the arrival of Dorothy.
In Disney's 2013 prequel to the 1939 film, Theadora the Good Witch helps a very young and lost Pre-Wizard of Oz aka Oscar Diggs to the Emerald City believing he is the Wizard who has come to Oz to fulfill the Prophecy.
Once Upon A Time 2014
In the popular Tv show 'Once Upon A Time', in the Oz episodes revolving around Zelena the Witch of the West, the yellow brick road is shown in the land of Oz.
When Dorothy Gale arrives in Oz and melts Zelena, Glinda takes Dorothy on the yellow brick road to the Emerald City to speak with the Wizard who is Zelena in disguise after turning the Wizard into a Flying Monkey.
Legends of Oz Dorothy's Return 2014
Dorothy Gale is back, to save Oz once again.
In the CGI animated Oz movie with the voice talents of an all-star cast, the yellow brick road is looked for by a returned Dorothy and Toto, and found in they're amazing adventures in the land of Oz.
In the VeggieTales 2007 episode "The Wonderful Wizard of Ha's", Darby (Junior Asparagus) and his pet dog "Tutu" are told by Splenda the Sweet but non-fattening fairy (Madame Blueberry) and the Munchies (The French Peas) to follow the old Yellow McToad.
Elton John sang "Goodbye Yellow Brick Road" in 1974.
Real-Life Yellow Brick Roads
The inspiration behind the Yellow Brick Road is disputed. According to local legend, the Yellow Brick Road was derived from a road paved with yellow bricks near Holland, Michigan, where Baum summered. Yellow Brick Roads can also be found in Aberdeen, South Dakota; Albany, New York; Rossville (Baltimore County), Maryland; Bronxville, New York (on Prescott and Valley roads); Chicago, Illinois; Liberal, Kansas; Sedan, Kansas; and Syracuse, New York, as well as a school in Abington, Pennsylvania[disambiguation needed] and abroad in Sofia, Bulgaria. Historian John Curran believes the original road was in Peekskill, New York; older maps show that it would have been the quickest route from the docks on the Hudson River to the Peekskill Military Academy, which Baum attended as a child. 
The Vision Oz Fund was established in November 2009 to raise funds that will be used to help increase the awareness, enhancement, and further development of Oz-related attractions and assets in Wamego, Kansas. The first fundraiser is underway and includes selling personalized engraved yellow bricks, which will become part of the permanent walkway (aka "The Yellow Brick Road") in downtown Wamego.