Disney Censors ‘Aladdin,’ ‘Bluey,’ ‘The Little Mermaid,’ and More for “Woke” Audiences

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The Genie points at Ariel

Credit: Disney

Disney is renowned for creating family-friendly content – but has censored plenty of projects over the years to meet these standards.

Despite boasting hundreds of TV shows and movies available on the platform, Disney’s first streaming service has received plenty of flack since its launch in 2019. One of the biggest complaints is that it lacks variety or a steady stream of new content.

Disney+ logo with Iron Man, Darth Vader, Elastigirl, Moana
Credit: Disney+

Related: Disney Erases Iconic Character to Satisfy Sensitive Viewers

Another big criticism many have about the service is Disney’s tendency to edit or erase details from older projects. In its efforts to make content suitable for young viewers, The Walt Disney Company has famously altered films over the years, but it’s never been as obvious as it has since all of its media was available in one place.

What shows and films has Disney censored?

Disney’s taken multiple approaches to censoring its content. In some regions with different moral guidelines, like the Middle East, some films have been erased from the platform entirely. In others, Disney has made infamously problematic movies like Peter Pan (1950) and Dumbo (1941) off-limits for children below a certain age – a change that has earned the company plenty of criticism for supposedly bowing down to “woke” audiences.

Disney Plus landing screen
Credit: Disney

The studio has also taken the liberty to change scenes or lines that some viewers may now find offensive. These edits apply to everything from Walt Disney-era content to more recent projects, like Marvel TV shows – and some are more dramatic than others.

A Goofy Movie (1995)

Directed by Kevin Lima, one of Disney’s most quintessentially nineties films received some edits before Disney+ launched.

While the film’s plot seems fairly innocuous – following a cross-country father-son trip between Goofy (Bill Farmer) and his son, Max Goof (Jason Marsden), while the latter tries to go and see Powerline – Disney allegedly feared that some scenes would be perceived as too sexual by viewers.

Goofy and his son Max Goof walking together and smiling in a scene from 'A Goofy Movie'
Credit: Disney

A scene in which Max catches his love interest, Roxanne, was edited so Max’s face is further away from Roxanne’s body. Another shot where Goofy’s pants originally fell down to reveal his boxers was removed, while one where Roxanne’s father’s buttcrack was visible was altered.

In a scene where Max dances with a staff member from his school, his hands have either been edited or removed entirely to be more appropriately positioned. Meanwhile, one where Goofy walks in on a dancer dressing was censored by Disney so the dancer’s legs are now covered. All in all, relatively minor edits – but ones that make the film notably less edgy than on its release.

Aladdin (1992)

While Aladdin is one of the most beloved films of the Disney Renaissance, it’s also one of the most controversial.

Jasmine (L) and Genie (R) in 'Aladdin'
Credit: Disney

Back in the 1990s, Disney altered a line from the opening song, “Arabian Nights,” penned by the legendary Howard Ashman.  Due to complaints of racism from the American-Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee, the line “Where they cut off your ear if they don’t like your face” was changed to “Where it’s flat and immense and the heat is intense.”

The Sultan being hypnotized by Jafar in Aladdin
Credit: Disney

This new version persists on the Disney+ version of the film, which also features another edit. Now, a scene where Aladdin says, “good tiger, take off and go,” has had its volume lowered after accusations that it sounded like “c’mon teenagers, take off your clothes.”

Bluey (2018 – today)

Who knew an Australian cartoon would have such a firm grip on the world? Following the adventures of a Blue Heeler puppy named Bluey, the series has racked up incredible views on Disney+.

The Wheelers jumping in front of their house
Credit: Ludo Studio / Outright Games

Related: Disney Criticized After “Baffling” Censorship In Popular Children’s Show Goes Viral

It’s also been censored by Disney – a lot. Scenes featuring any activity that may be dangerous for a kid to replicate or anything overtly gross (such as poop or vomit) have been heavily edited or removed. Certain potentially controversial lines, such as one where Bluey asks how babies get into moms bellies, have also been edited.

Censoring sparks controversy at the best of times, but when it comes to Bluey, fans have dubbed the episode changes “disappointing and wild.”

Deadpool (2016)

“R-rated” and “Disney” rarely go together in the same sentence. Since Disney bought 21st Century Fox in 2017, fans have worried what changes the studio will make to the series and its eponymous mercenary Wade Wilson.

Deadpool grabs his face
Credit: 20th Century Studios

Fortunately, Disney has confirmed that they’ll keep the bawdy essence of the franchise when they bring back Ryan Reynolds and Hugh Jackman (and, rumor has it, Taylor Swift) for its next installment, Deadpool 3 (2024) – however, a few small edits have been made to its predecessors in the meantime.

In countries beyond the United States (or anywhere without Hulu), Deadpool (2016) and Deadpool 2 (2018) are available on Disney+. With one small change: a scene in the strip club censors all crotch shots.

DuckTales (1987 – 1990)

The original version of DuckTales wrapped up on the Disney Channel over 30 years ago. Unsurprisingly, times have changed since then – and Disney has taken extra care to cover up the cultural changes evident within the show.

Donald Duck as a pharaoh in a pulled episode of 'DuckTales'
Credit: Disney

Two episodes from season one of the show were cut entirely. “Sphinx for the Memories” (in which an ancient Egyptian Civilization abducts Donald Duck) and “Launchpad’s Civil War” (which contains a recreation of the American Civil War) are both unavailable on the platform due to concerns about racism.

In season two, Disney also censored (for some reason) a scene that shows the Beagle Boys kicking out Scrooge McDuck and Bubba.

The Falcon and The Winter Soldier (2021)

Disney’s second MCU show only aired on Disney+ two years ago, but the studio has already found things to edit.

Sebastian Stan as Bucky Barnes in Falcon and the Winter Soldier
Credit: Marvel

Focused on Sam Wilson (Anthony Mackie) and Bucky Barnes (Sebastian Stan) in the wake of Avengers: Endgame (2019) – and in the wake of Steve Rogers naming Sam the next Captain America – the show was always going to feature some form of Marvel-level violence.

However, in 2022, the third episode, “Power Broker,” was altered to make it less explicit. A scene where Hydra scientist Dr. Wilfred Nagel (Olli Haaskivi) dies was modified to remove the blood. Another scene where Bucky throws a pole was also changed so that instead of piercing a bounty hunter’s shoulder, it bounces off.

Anthony Mackie holding Captain America's shield
Credit: Marvel

Related: Disney Accused of Censoring Old Content, Rewriting Cinematic History

Strangely, Disney reversed the edits a few days later with the release of Moon Knight. Disney has since claimed that someone uploaded these changes by accident in a case of “human error.”

Fantasia (1940)

Walt Disney’s passion project didn’t find a massive audience in the 1940s, but the animation has since become a cult classic.

A blue centaur in 'Fantasia,' which Disney censored
Credit: Disney

It’s also been heavily censored by Disney. In the 1960s, a centaur named “Sunflower” drew accusations of being a racist stereotype. All of his scenes – including those in which he groomed a white centaur’s hooves and held out a chair for a drunk man – were removed. Fantasia now also contains a pre-film warning.

Hannah Montana (2006 – 2011)

During its run, Hannah Montana star Miley Cyrus attracted her fair share of controversy. The show, not so much – but Disney still found something to change for streaming.

Hannah Montana (Miley Cyrus) smiling against a pink background
Credit: Disney

Related: How ‘Hamilton’ is Censored on Disney+

In the episode “Yet Another Side of Me,” Hannah Montana – the alter-ego of Miley Stewart – meets another singer who tells her she needs to switch up her image.

In the original episode aired on Disney Channel in 2008, the singer’s name is Isis (Rachel York). Now, however, the audio has been edited to make her name sound like “Ice” – assumedly to avoid any similarity to the terrorist organization Islamic State, which is often referred to by the same name.

The Little Mermaid (1989)

When Disney released its live-action adaptation of The Little Mermaid earlier this year, several songs sounded slightly different. Lyrics from “Kiss the Girl” and “Poor Unfortunate Souls” were altered to be more appropriate for viewers who may interpret them as sexist or predatory.

The priest officiates Ursula and Eric's wedding
Credit: Disney

Disney hasn’t made the same changes to the original animation. It has, however, changed the scene in which Eric (Christopher Daniel Barnes) nearly marries Ursula (Jodi Benson) thanks to years of internet jokes that the priest appears to have an erection.

The Muppet Christmas Carol (1992)

Today, Disney is very firmly anti-smoking. In the 20th century, not so much.

The Great Gonzo AKA Charles Dickens in The Muppet Christmas Carol
Credit: Disney

Several films have had old scenes containing cigarettes or cigars censored or removed by Disney. In the case of The Muppet Christmas Carol – the puppet-packed adaptation of the Charles Dickens Christmas classic – a shot of Bobby Benson (David Rudman) holding a cigarette was edited. Ghosts are fine. Tobacco is not.

The Simpsons (1989 – today)

Created by Matt Groening, The Simpsons has produced over 750 episodes. Unsurprisingly, some of them are less appropriate today than they were at the time of their release.

Homer with 'Michael Jackson' in 'The Simpsons'
Credit: Fox

“Stark Raving Dad,” the first episode of season two, sees Homer Simpson (Dan Castellaneta) sent to a mental institution, where he shares a room with a man claiming to be Michael Jackson (and is actually voiced by Jackson). In the wake of child sexual abuse accusations towards Jackson, Disney decided to pull the episode entirely.

Another episode, “Goo Goo Gai Pan,” is also unavailable on Disney+ in Hong Kong due to references to the 1989 Tiananmen Square massacre. The episode “One Angry Lisa” was also pulled from the platform over a comment made by Lisa (Yeardley Smith) about “forced labor camps” in China.

Simpsons characters do the Harlem Shake in an opening gag that has since been censored by Disney
Credit: Fox

Disney’s also made two other significant edits. A reference to “The Catholic Church” was changed to simply “the church” in the episode “Sunday, Cruddy Sunday.” An opening gag featuring Homer’s take on the 2012 “Harlem Shake” craze was also removed from the episode “Gorgeous Grampa” – although this was less to do with controversy and more to do with regret. The Simpsons writer and executive producer Matt Selman said he wished they hadn’t used the trend in the show.

Splash (1984)

The internet went wild in 2020 when viewers realized that Disney had censored the 1980s classic.

Directed by Ron Howard, the film sees Allen Bauer (Tom Hanks) fall in love with a mermaid named Madison (Daryl Hannah). While it originally featured several examples of non-sexual nudity, one scene was changed to have Hannah’s hair digitally extended to cover her rear, while another shot in which she’s nude by the Statue of Liberty was blurred.

Darryl Hannah's character censored with extra hair in 'Splash'
Credit: Disney

Audiences were concerned about the quality of the edits than the edits themselves, comparing them to the CGI used in the theatrical flop Cats (2020).

Disney+ didn’t want butts on their platform so they edited Splash with digital fur technology.

In an unexpected twist, Disney actually reversed its decision to censor the film in November 2022, restoring the original version to its streaming service. One, zero to butts.

Who Framed Roger Rabbit (1988)

Overlapping the world of animation with reality, Who Framed Roger Rabbit was always slightly more risqué than Disney’s usual fare.

If you stream the film today, you’ll notice that multiple scenes look different (although most of these were actually censored long before Disney+).

Jessica Rabbit with Eddie in 'Who Framed Roger Rabbit?' which has been heavily censored by Disney over the years
Credit: Disney

Baby Herman no longer raises his middle finger or walks under a woman’s dress. Betty Boop’s dress is no longer drawn low enough to reveal her chest. There’s no flash of Jessica Rabbit’s underwear and a line where Donald Duck says “doggone stubborn little…” to Daffy Duck was removed due to the fact that audiences often misheard “little” as a racial slur.

Wizards of Waverly Place (2007 – 2012)

Wizards of Waverly Place is famous for launching the career of Selena Gomez but not for anything scandalous enough to warrant censorship.,

Alex and Theresa Russo stand together in 'Wizards of Waverly Place'
Credit: Disney

Related: The Disney Channel Shows That Defined Each Decade

Regardless, audiences noticed a change once the show hit the streaming platform. Theresa Russo – the mother of Gomez’s character, Alex Russo, who’s played by Maria Canals-Barrera – has her cleavage blurred in a scene from the episode “Baby Cupid.”

Fans have since disputed whether this edit already existed when Disney Channel first aired the episode in 2008. Regardless of when Disney censored the episode, if anything, it draws more attention to the area – similar to their edits to Splash.

Do you agree with Disney censoring old content for Disney+? Let us know in the comments!

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