Don't buy the Fantasia DVD unless you want to waste money.

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Patrick McCart, May 22, 2001.

  1. Patrick McCart

    Patrick McCart Lead Actor

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    Disney has lied to the public again.
    The Fantasia DVD released by Disney has the crudely-edited "Pastoral" segment.
    According to the packaging, it's "Walt Disney's Original Uncut Version"
    Please do not buy this DVD unless you want to pay 20+ dollars for a drink coaster.
    I'm trying to contact Disney's DVD department to ask why they have lied again to sell a movie.
     
  2. Ryan Peter

    Ryan Peter Screenwriter

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    Thanks for the news, btw, Bush won the election!!! Wowie, wow, wow, wow! [​IMG]
     
  3. Rob Gillespie

    Rob Gillespie Producer

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    Patrick, welcome to the forum.
    Unfortunately, this is old news. Disney 'zoomed' the shot featuring the black centarette because of the PC ramifications. I kind-of agree with the reasoning behind it, though the edited is exceptionally poor and perhaps it would have been a better option to off a seamless-branching version so you can make the choice yourself. Whatever - that's Disney for ya.
    But apart from that one scene, but Fantasia and Fantasia 2000 are outstanding DVDs in terms of quality and I don't think a few seconds of badly implemented retro-guilt on behalf of Disney makes it into a drinks coaster at all.
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  4. Ken_McAlinden

    Ken_McAlinden Producer
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    This censorship is mentioned in the Fantasia anthology supplement disc when it lists the history of the various Fantasia edits.
    Regards,
    ------------------
    Ken McAlinden
    Livonia, MI USA
     
  5. andrew markworthy

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    Patrick, what I'm sure Ryan meant to say is first, welcome to the Forum, and second, sorry, but it's old news here.
    I think it's also fair to say that we're talking about a 30 second clip in a section of the movie so saccharin that most people can't bear to watch it anyway and that what was excised was deeply offensive. Yes, for completeness's sake it should have been included, but IMHO only as an extra, explaining why it was removed. However, artists have a right to change their work if they feel it's not being interpreted correctly. It seems curious that we are so intolerant of film-makers doing this, but seem blithely unaware that, for example, fiction authors often amend their works between different editions.
     
  6. Ben Motley

    Ben Motley Supporting Actor

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    So what's so offensive? Does the Centaurette have a fro?
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    M. Hyde
     
  7. Rob Gillespie

    Rob Gillespie Producer

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    I don't know what a 'fro' is, but the image was considered inappropriate due to the 'slave' appearance of the black centaurette. I think she was basically serving the others. Can't remember exactly.
    And it's the one section of Fantasia I can never sit through without falling asleep.
     
  8. Damin J Toell

    Damin J Toell Producer

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    the Centaurette servants had a "pickaninny" look to them (if you'll excuse the use of the phrase; it's an appropriate characterization of the stereotyped style in which they were drawn). they had braided hair and other exaggeratedly stereotypical features. i had seen an image of one of the frames on a website some months back but i've no longer got the link. perhaps someone else can provide it.
    while having the uncut version might be useful as a historical curiosity, i think it would defeat the flow of an otherwise inocuous film for modern audiences. it really is fairly offensive and doesn't have much place in such a film.
    (insert endless debate about original intent and the like [​IMG])
    DJ
     
  9. Artur Meinild

    Artur Meinild Screenwriter

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    Patrick,
    as mentioned before, if you changed your mind and bought the excellent Fantasia Anthology Box Set, you would learn that the pastoral segment was censored for the forth reissue of Fantasia in December, 1969.
    you'll also see that all (except two) home video releases uses printmasters from a latter date, and is therefore censored too.
    The 50th anniversary edition used the 1947 master, but the censorship deletions was remade as a part of the digital restoration.
    The 60th anniversary edition used the 1940 master (the uncut roadshow version), and again the shots were censored afterwards.
    short thing is, if you want Fantasia on home video, it'll be censored! the 60th anniversary edition is still the uncut roadshow version, as the running time match that of the original Fantasia release!
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    ~ Stud. Polyt. ~ Artur Meinild ~
     
  10. Ryan Spaight

    Ryan Spaight Supporting Actor

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    On balance, I think Disney did the right thing here. Judging from the still I've seen, the servant centaurettes are not something I could in good conscience sell for viewing by children. It was par for the course in 1940, but by contemporary standards it has no place in a children's movie.
    As a piece of cultural history, though, it has value and is worth seeing, much like Triumph of the Will or Birth of a Nation. In a perfect world, Disney would offer the uncut version, perhaps via mail order only, making it very clear to consumers what they were getting and that Disney disowns the content in question.
    But they certainly don't *have* to do that, and I'm very happy with the Anthology box set in every regard.
    Ryan
    PS - Should we mention Deems Taylor being dubbed, or would that just cause more harm than good? [​IMG]
    PPS - Oops. [​IMG]
     
  11. Bjorn Olav Nyberg

    Bjorn Olav Nyberg Supporting Actor

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  12. Michael St. Clair

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    I do agree that the "Original Uncut" verbage should not be used on the packaging due to the zooming on the racist footage and the narration overdub.
    The biggest problem I have is with the verbage.
     
  13. Patrick McCart

    Patrick McCart Lead Actor

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    I just posted here to see if there's anyone who hasn't found out yet.
    I did notice that a good amount of reviews for the DVD mention this flaw...but there's some other flaws:
    1. Deems Taylor's impersonator.
    After watching the 1991 tape, it's jarring to hear a different voice...I would have liked a "blend" mix with as much original Taylor dialogue possible mixed in with a rerecorded voice or subtitles.
    2. No credits
    There's no credits at all for the movie...was there credits in the original version? I would have at least liked to see a "digital" credit roll at the end along with credits for the restoration. If it wasn't for the 1991 video and the IMDB, the credits could not be accessed easily.
    3. Identical flaws in Pastoral sequence as the 1991 video
    I noticed that the film flaws are nearly the same as the 1991 video (When Baccus enters, the "rain" of specks is the same in both versions.)
    4. Grain
    I noticed that "Sorceror's Apprentice" is of much higher quality than the rest of the movie (Cel dust gone, grain nearly invisible) Did they simply put the restored SA into the DVD from the Fantasia 2000 master?
    I really like the box set...the quality is outstandding (The supplemental disc is worth the price)
    But the editing really lowers the value of the disc since it does say it's uncut...you wouldn't buy Goodfellas on DVD if ever instance of the word "f***" was bleeped out with "forget you," would you? [​IMG]
     
  14. John Gregorich

    John Gregorich Auditioning

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  15. Philip Hamm

    Philip Hamm Lead Actor

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    Thanks for that link John. Good stuff. I agree with the general consensus that it's good that this was removed from an otherwise very enjoyable movie.
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    Philip Hamm
    AIM: PhilBiker
     
  16. Tom M

    Tom M Stunt Coordinator

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    I think it's important to note that the offending footage has NOT been cut as was done in the past, but has just been zoomed in on. So in that respect, it IS uncut. Just not uncensored.
    Disney claims that so little of Deems Taylor's narration from the roadshow version survived that they had no choice but to go with an impersonator. The background sounds of the orchestra seem to have been re-created too.
    The roadshow version never had credits of any sort. It was meant to be presented as much like an evening at a concert hall as possible. This is mentioned in the supplements.
    Finally, I'm VERY glad I wasted my money on this terrific box set! [​IMG]
     
  17. Lars Vermundsberget

    Lars Vermundsberget Supporting Actor

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    I understand you are very disappointed with the editing while Disney still claimed that this was the "uncut" version. (For all I know, maybe it is only "zoomed" and slightly rearranged, and therefore uncut, in the very strictest sense of the word.) I recognize that this is somewhat unfortunate, but I strongly disagree that the Fantasia DVD is a waste of money. I have the FA box set, and I think it's great, but I admit that I don't think the Fantasia (1940) DVD is the most valuable part of the set...
    QUOTE:
    "...but there's some other flaws:
    1. Deems Taylor's impersonator.
    After watching the 1991 tape, it's jarring to hear a different voice...I would have liked a "blend" mix with as much original Taylor dialogue possible mixed in with a rerecorded voice or subtitles."
    I might be wrong, but I think they mentioned somewhere that they tried this and it didn't work very well. IMO, the DT impersonator does a very acceptable job under the circumstances (the circumstances being that you can hardly expect to find two people with the exact same voice). However, I'd say they should have included that blend mix as an alternate track.
    QUOTE:
    "2. No credits
    There's no credits at all for the movie...was there credits in the original version? I would have at least liked to see a "digital" credit roll at the end along with credits for the restoration. If it wasn't for the 1991 video and the IMDB, the credits could not be accessed easily."
    They didn't use credits a lot in 1940, and certainly not a long credit scroll at the end, so this is in keeping with the original version. The credits on the 1991 VHS and LD were added for that release. Aren't the credits accessible in the extras somewhere?
    QUOTE:
    "I really like the box set...the quality is outstandding (The supplemental disc is worth the price)"
    I totally agree that the supplemental disc is worth the price. To me, the Clair De Lune segment alone is worth the price. If I'd been offered a laserdisc with nothing but CDL for $100 four or five years ago, I would probably have bought it.
    QUOTE:
    "But the editing really lowers the value of the disc since it does say it's uncut...you wouldn't buy Goodfellas on DVD if ever instance of the word "f***" was bleeped out with "forget you," would you?"
    Disney trusts that enough people are buying it anyway, so they don't bother to use the finer nuances of the English (or any other) language for marketing purposes.
     
  18. James D S

    James D S Screenwriter

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    Great link John. I was very curious myself about what the zoomed bits contained. But, I'm almost dissapointed in seeing them. That stuff WAS pretty bad. I think Disney made the right choice in zooming. Those scenes would have turned a great family movie into hate fodder. Kudos Disney.
     
  19. Ryan Spaight

    Ryan Spaight Supporting Actor

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    Thanks for the link, John. All I'd seen before was the still.
    quote: But the editing really lowers the value of the disc since it does say it's uncut...you wouldn't buy Goodfellas on DVD if ever instance of the word "f***" was bleeped out with "forget you," would you? [/quote]
    No, but Goodfellas isn't being marketed as a children's movie, and never was.
    I agree that "uncut" is misleading, if literally true in a hypertechnical sense. I'd prefer they used something like "original full-length roadshow version."
    Ryan
     
  20. george kaplan

    george kaplan Executive Producer

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    I really hate censorship, but find myself semi-applauding Disney's decision here. This is a very rare case where I think the editing is a good thing. I hate what they did to Roger Rabbit - that was not a children's movie, and the cuts while too fast to really notice in real time are deplorable on principle. The only thing I wish Disney had done with Fantasia would have been to include the unedited scenes in the extras.
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    "That audience - 12 to 19 year old pimply faced, mean spirited males - came, watched and went on to whatever god-awful other pursuits" USA Network CEO describing professional wrestling fans
     

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