LOS ANGELES (CelebrityAccess) Rhys Thomas has updated a book he wrote 30 years ago, “The Ruby Slippers of Oz,” because a lot has happened since then, especially the story of how one of the pairs was recovered by the FBI.
The Ruby Slippers of Oz: Thirty Years Later is expected to arrive after Christmas, according to Amazon. This version has the author tied indelibly to the story he tells.
There are four known pairs of the shoes worn by Judy Garland in “The Wizard of Oz.” The one known as The People’s Shoes is on permanent display at the Smithsonian Institute’s National Museum of American History. “The Witch’s Shoes” was bought for $2 million on auction by Steven Spielberg, Leonardo DiCaprio and Terry Semel and donated to the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences to be put on display at its Museum of Motion Pictures. A third, “Dorothy’s Shoes,” is privately owned.
The fourth is known as the Traveling Shoes and is the focus of the revised version of the book, having been stolen and recovered, with Thomas himself being inserted into the tale. The pair had been stolen in 2005 from the Judy Garland Museum. He recently received a call from the FBI, which left a phone message.
“Could this be a crank call?” he asked, according to Deadline Hollywood. “Am I a person of interest in some investigation I know nothing about?”
He learned that the FBI wanted him to go to Minnesota and asked why.
“May we speak confidentially?” an FBI official reportedly said. “Mr. Thomas, this is about the ruby slippers.”
Thomas was asked to attend a press conference, which he did.
Authorities reveal pair of iconic ruby red slippers worn in original “The Wizard of Oz” film, which were recovered after a years-long search.
— ABC News (@ABC) September 4, 2018
The new version of the book includes all of the traveling of the Traveling Shoes and notes that, with the recovery, it turns out that one of the shoes is actually part of The People’s Shoes and vice versa.
“The shoes never fail to surprise me,” Thomas told Deadline. “I didn’t even knew the FBI was involved. But once I got there, the two FBI agents on the case were kind enough to give me a private briefing. It remains an ongoing investigation, and the FBI is keen to find the individuals who stole the shoes and attempted to extort the insurance company that had paid a claim on the shoes.
“Because of the notoriety, I estimate the stolen pair to be worth $5 million-$7 million.”