Prior to screening the trailer for the thousands on hand, Raimi revealed that the movie would specifically follow James Franco as he goes from a carnival magician in Kansas to becoming the Wizard.
It's based on L. Frank Baum's great books that he wrote at the turn of the century. It’s really the story of The Wizard. It's who the Wizard was and how he came to be the great wizard we know. And really it's a story of a selfish man, who is a bit of a lothario, a bit of a cad, not a great guy at first. The story takes place, like the great Wizard of Oz, in Kansas, and he starts off as a carnival magician. And we see that he's a good magician, but he lacks a lot in social skills and human skills; being a good person. He has a good heart, but he isn’t in touch with it. He thinks the way to greatness is through fame and fortune, when really it’s about the sharing of his gifts and the selfless expression of his talents. So he's a little bit of a character in the beginning and his life becomes untenable in Kansas and he's forced out, in fact, he’s been sleeping with this woman — he’s an adulterer — [and] he’s chased out of Kansas and he takes a balloon up and that balloon gets swept up in a tornado and that’s how he ends up in the land of Oz.