Wizard of Oz stars upset by use of song
Sunday 14 Apr 2013 11:16 a.m.
BBC bosses are refusing to play the whole track from the song
The Wizard of Oz star Ruth Duccini feels "ashamed" and "very sad" that the film's song "Ding Dong! The Witch is Dead" has been used to celebrate the passing of former UK Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher.
The veteran politician's death on Monday divided Brits and an online campaign was launched by activists in a bid to get the beloved 1939 family film's track to number one in the singles chart on Sunday.
Duccini, who played a Munchkin in the Judy Garland movie, is stunned by the furore, and tells Britain's The Sun, "Nobody deserves to be treated in such a way. When we were filming the movie no one intended it to be used in this way. I am ashamed, I really am.
"Why are they allowed to use the music like that? I thought British people were better than that. I don't understand them. All over the world The Wizard Of Oz is cherished as a family film.
"Mums and dads and their children sit down to watch it together and enjoy the story, songs and dancing. Everyone loves the movie - it is magically heart-warming. This campaign makes me feel very sad."
Jerry Maren, another surviving Munchkin star, adds, "It is shocking that the song is being used to celebrate the death of someone. It's a shame that the song is being used in this way.
"Thatcher was a great lady and I'm upset she has passed away. It's sad that people feel like this. I'm so proud to be a part of one of the greatest films of all time - I hope people respect the memory of the film forever more."
BBC bosses revealed on Friday they will not ban the song from the radio when it charts on Sunday, but they are refusing to play the whole track. Instead, they will air a five-second clip in a news bulletin to explain the reasons behind its comeback.