Ahoy, squirts! Quint here with today’s Behind the Scenes Pic!
Hey, look at that! Despite 14+ hours of travel I’m on time with this column! I have to thank Air New Zealand’s brilliant business class, which I was pleasantly surprised at being bumped up to, for me not being so dead that you’re not seeing this rather beautiful behind the scenes picture. So, if you’re mega rich or lucky enough to be bumped up like I was and traveling to/from New Zealand, I highly recommend their business class!
So, I’m here at the Hilton Anaheim getting ready for my first D23, which begins tomorrow, as well as my first visit to Disneyland in over a decade. With Disney on my mind, I went searching for a great classic Disney animation picture and found one at Alt Film Guide from one of my favorite early Disney picture and one that most Disney execs wish was never made: Song of the South.
I even talked to an ex-Disney Studios head honcho once and asked if we’d ever see a DVD release of Song of the South and his response: “No way. That movie’s racist!” I asked him if he’d ever seen it. He paused and said, “Well, no…” That’s the problem. The reputation of this movie has become the identity of the movie. Sure, the Tar Baby sequence carries a lot of negative connotations with it, but I wouldn’t call the film racist, nor would most who watch it beginning to end.
Uncle Remus is just about as likable a character as any to appear on cinema's screens, but doesn’t come across as pandering. There’s a reason James Baskett won an Oscar, the first African-American man to be awarded the award. It was an honorary Oscar as the 1948 Academy Awards weren’t exactly as inclusive as they became in later years. In fact, Baskett wasn’t even allowed to go to the Atlanta premiere because of the heavily segregated south at that time.
Baskett makes Remus a character not a caricature and it’s a damn shame that his ground-breaking work is being kept hidden in the Disney vault.
Not only is Baskett’s work not fully celebrated, but also some of the great Disney animation as well, including work by one Milt Kahl, one of the 9 Old Men. Mr. Kahl and Br’er Rabbit feature in today’s great picture.
Click to embiggen!
If you have a behind the scenes shot you’d like to submit to this column, you can email me at email@example.com.
Tomorrow’s behind the scenes pic continues the Disney love with Uncle Walt making an appearance.