The Wizard Of Oz Scene You Never Got To See Until Now

As of August 25, "The Wizard of Oz" has been both delighting and terrifying children of all ages for 82 years. Known for its loveable protagonists and flying monkeys, the film has been studied, analyzed, and pontificated on by film buffs, academics, and anyone curious as to exactly what makes a great story tick.

As Teach with Movies explains, the movie's influence on popular culture is difficult to dispute. Tellingly, it is often taught side-by-side with the Rosetta Stone of storytelling, "The Hero's Journey," as a more easily accessible version of the "Monomyth." In addition to being just plain beautiful and fun to just kick back and watch, the film is such a study in pacing, plot, and character development that's it's easy to forget that — just like every other movie — there's a whole lot that ended up on the cutting room floor; scenes that didn't progress the story, or even worse, detracted from it.

One particularly expensive scene never made the final cut

One such scene from "The Wizard of Oz" that has come to light is often referred to as "the lost jitterbug scene." The Independent reported that the scene was part of a larger subplot that ended up being scrapped during script revisions. Although the jitterbug scene made it to an early cut, when producer Mervyn LeRoy voiced concerns that the film was too long and some would have to get cut, he decided that cutting the jitterbug scene was a no-brainer.

The story goes that while our beloved gang of four made their way through the Haunted Forest, the Wicked Witch of the West sent mosquito-like flying insects their way to give the travelers "the jitters" (per The Independent). This caused Dorothy, the Scarecrow, the Tin Man, and the Cowardly Lion to break into an ebullient jitterbug. When it was cut, the producers mentioned concerns that the scene with the dance craze would ultimately jeopardize the film's timeliness, so it seems like a good call all around.

What a shame that the scene cost $80,000 to shoot! The professionally shot footage was lost, but you can watch a blurry, amateur-shot version that somehow survived on YouTube.