The Real Reason Disney Stopped Selling ‘The Rescuers’ VHS In 1999


Again in the dead of night ages earlier than Amazon Prime and YouTube in the event you wished to look at a film you needed to acquire a bodily copy of that movie on videotape. You probably did this by going to a retail retailer or a film rental retailer and hoping they’d the film in query in inventory. If you happen to had been tech savvy and actually wished to look at a specific film you can order it on-line and in just a few weeks you’d have the ability to watch the film in your personal house.

If the film you wished to look at was a Disney film, the method was much more difficult. Disney had a particular follow of making synthetic shortage by releasing their movies for a restricted time after which making the movies unavailable for buy, putting them within the “Disney Vault“. Movies would then rerelease to theaters and residential video each ten years. This drew elevated consideration and gross sales to Disney motion pictures throughout their restricted runs. This follow ended considerably in 2019 when Disney bought twenty first Century Fox and the Disney+ streaming platform was created.

In 1999, an animated Disney film referred to as The Rescuers from 1977 was up for rerelease on VHS. The film is about a global society of mice who assist kidnapping victims referred to as the Rescue Support Society. Two members, Bernard (voiced by Bob Newhart!) and Miss Bianca (voiced by Eva Gabor!), agree to assist a younger orphan named Penny who’s being held hostage on a river boat in Louisiana.

Children cherished this story of mice rescuers a lot it turned Disney’s first animated film to get a sequel. The Rescuers Down Under follows Bernard and Miss Bianca, now elite area brokers on the Rescue Support Society, as they enterprise to the Australian Outback to rescue a kidnapped boy named Cody. The film was launched in 1990 and went into the Disney vault in 1993.

In 1999 it was time to consider rereleasing The Rescuers and The Rescuers Down Underneath. Three days after this second launch, on January 8, 1999 Disney introduced it was recalling all 3.4 million copies of the VHS. The explanation given was an “objectionable picture” within the background of the film.

After all, individuals scrambled to determine precisely what the “objectionable picture” was and the recalled VHS rapidly turned a collector’s merchandise.

It seems, a picture of a nude girl had been inserted into two nonconsecutive frames within the film within the scene the place Bernard and Miss Bianca are flying via New York Metropolis and lots of buildings and home windows seem within the background. The photographs of the nude girl wouldn’t be seen to anybody who isn’t in search of them out as they solely seem in two frames and the movie runs 24 frames per second. There are 110,000 frames complete within the film. Nonetheless, as an organization that markets primarily to households and kids, Disney made the choice to recall the tape.

Right here is the part of the film the place the pictures are positioned slowed down so they’re seen:

Disney claims the picture of the nude girl was not created by their animators however was inserted into the movie post-production by a non-Disney vendor. They could have been current within the film for the reason that authentic theatrical launch in 1977! Nevertheless the model of The Rescuers that was launched to VHS in 1994 was a special print which didn’t comprise the pictures in any respect.

The overwhelming majority of the general public had no concept there have been nude photos hidden in The Rescuers till Disney introduced they had been recalling the film and why. The corporate had acquired zero complaints about the images. It may very well be that this was simply one other technique Disney used to create synthetic shortage. As quickly because the recall was introduced, copies of the VHS turned extra worthwhile and wanted. Maybe Disney launched this model of The Rescuers with a nuclear choice. In the event that they determined to do nothing, it’s unlikely anybody would ever discover the pictures of the nude girl (keep in mind, that is earlier than the web of right this moment existed). Nevertheless, if gross sales of the VHS had been gradual, Disney may announce the recall to invigorate curiosity within the film.

This story may solely happen within the 90s because it’s unlikely that we’ll hear rumors of hidden scenes in motion pictures anymore. Now you may instantly stream, pause and screenshot just about each film ever made after which simply share that screenshot with everybody you already know. As soon as one individual notices one thing, everybody else is aware of it too.

It will likely be fascinating to see what Disney’s technique for creating shortage will appear like when it’s utilized to a technology that grows up having instantaneous entry to all the pieces.

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