If there were a real world “Wizard of Oz,” one wish for fans of the famous movie would be to bring Judy Garland back to life.
But that can’t be done, and with June 22 marking the 51st anniversary of Garland’s death, all fans can do is turn back the clock and remember the life of the woman who played one of the most iconic characters in cinema history: Dorothy.
While always best-known for her role as Dorothy, Garland appeared in several movies and also starred on "The Judy Garland Show" in 1963-64.
If Garland were still alive, she would be 97 and probably still fielding a bunch of questions about “The Wizard of Oz,” which in August will celebrate the 80th anniversary of its release.
But just as a fictional tornado swept through Dorothy's town in the movie, Garland’s real life was also full of twists and turns, despite her fame and all-time place in movie lore.
Below are five facts of note about Garland’s life as the world acknowledges the 51st anniversary of her death.
Garland's name change
Garland was born Frances Ethel Gumm in 1922, but she and her sisters changed their name from the Gumm sisters to the Garland sisters in 1934. It is suggested on judygarlandmuseum.com that the name change came after a comedian suggested they have a last name that was more theatrical.