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Noel Langley
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    (December 25, 1911-November 4, 1980)
    Born in Durban, South Africa
    Author of 'The Land of Green Ginger' (1937)
    Chief screenwriter for 'The Wizard of Oz' (1939)
    Co-wrote the final draft of the script with Florence Ryerson and David Allan Wolf
    Penned the screenplays for 'Ivanhoe,' 'Knights of the Round Table,' 'The Pickwick Papers,' 'King of the Damned,' 'Secret of Stamboul,' 'They Made Me a Fugitive,' 'Tom Brown's Schooldays,' 'A Christmas Carol,' and 'Svengali'
    Other literary works included 'Queen Cargo,' 'For Ever,' 'Farm of Three Echoes,' 'There's a Porpoise Behind Us,' and 'Cage Me a Peacock'
    Became an officially Naturalized US citizen (1961)
    He had an estranged relationship with his father, who viewed him as effeminate.
    The estrangement got to be so bad that he was known for joking that he had helped to kill his father by sending him money to buy alcohol.
    He may have originated the 'life after Happily Ever After' story line concept with 'The Land of Green Ginger' (it focused on now-Emperor Aladdin's son and his adventures).
    He was harshly critical of the revisions made to his 'Wizard of Oz' draft script, which he characterized as 'so cutesy and oozy that I could have vomited.'
    Among some of the weirder (scratched) elements to his 'Oz' script was his giving the Wicked Witch a deadbeat son, named Bulbo.
    He trashed the 'Oz' movie at the time of its release, saying: 'I saw it in a cinema ... and I sat and cried like a bloody child ... I loathed the picture. I thought it missed the boat all the way around. I had to wait for my tears to clear before I went out of the theater.'
    For all his misgivings, this didn't stop him from writing an unsold screenplay for a sequel to the 'Wizard' movie, based on L. Frank Baum's 'Marvelous Land of Oz.'
    He's credited as working on the 'Prisoner of Zenda' remake, but his contribution was pretty minimal (the dialogue was an almost exact copy of the original).
    He wrote short stories for the Saturday Evening Post.
    He served in the Canadian Navy during World War II.
    In his later years, he did part-time work in drug rehabilitation programs.
    His 'Land of Green Ginger' book is known for its creative and amusing wordplay.
    'Land of Green Ginger' was dramatized in an episode of Shirley Temple's Storybook.
    Of the fourteen screenwriters who contributed to the making of 'Oz,' he was arguably the most important.
    He originated the idea of Oz being a dream, and for the various Oz characters having real-life counterparts in Dorothy's hometown.
    He was behind the crucial decision to change Dorothy's silver slippers (as originally in the book) to ruby slippers.
    The 'pay no attention to the man behind the curtain' line, as well as Dorothy's closing 'no place like home' sentiments are both attributed to him.
    Arthur Freed championed him through production and brought him back to 'reverse' many of the changes made to the script that they both took issue with.
    He later (somewhat begrudgingly) revised his negative opinion about the final cut of the 'Wizard of Oz.'
    Perhaps his most enduring contribution to the film was the opening dedication ('For nearly forty years this story has given faithful service to the Young in Heart... To those of you who have been faithful to it in return... we dedicate this picture').

Credit: BoyWiththeGreenHair

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