Disney Erases Iconic Character to Satisfy Sensitive Viewers

in Movies, Updates

Bambi scared in the snow

Credit: Disney

Disney’s animated masterpieces might be the bedrock on which the medium is founded, but not everything is all Mickey Mouse and Bambi.

The Jungle Book
Credit: Disney

Even before the ongoing Snow White saga with Rachel Zegler, Disney’s live-action remakes have always had something of a stigma about them. While there have definitely been exceptions to the rule, like Jon Favreau’s Jungle Book or Tim Burton’s Dumbo, most completely miss the mark by taking away what made the originals so iconic.

Related: The Future of Disney: The Best and Worst Live-Action Remakes That Could Be Next

By little exaggeration, Disney has likely been doing this to appease a modern audience with a far different set of tastes than decades prior. Unfortunately, the studio has sacrificed its integrity and artistry to appease the vocal minority.

Overly-Sensitive Viewers Make Disney Censor Bambi

Esmerelda and Frollo in 'The Hunchback of Notre Dame'
Credit: Disney

Although the studio has had a long season of hits and misses, Disney hasn’t shied away from more gruesome subject matter. Many films of the Disney Renaissance have covered topics like murder, guilt, trauma, and even religion and lust (we’re looking at you, Hunchback of Notre Dame).

Related: Four Wins of the Disney Renaissance that Happened in Spite of Jeffrey Katzenberg

Of course, that’s become incredibly hard to do nowadays. As audiences and social culture change, so do movies and television. Unfortunately for Disney, that same audience has led to lackluster releases and remakes that rarely meet fan expectations.

Bambi exploring the woods with friends
Credit: Disney

After the disaster that Snow White promises to be, Disney has reportedly set their sights on remaking Bambi as their next project. The 1942 adaptation of Felix Salten’s novel was one of Walt Disney’s original projects that remains a prominent image in pop culture, but not for the adorable deer on the poster.

Related: Disney Announces Live-Action ‘Bambi,’ Bringing A Dwayne Johnson SNL Sketch To Life

Even if Disney fans have never seen Bambi, they already know what becomes of his mother through cultural osmosis alone. Spoiler alert: Mom gets shot by an off-screen hunter, the sequence fades to black, and onto the next scene.

The grim scene with Bambi’s mother is one of the most infamous scenes in Disney history, likely being a young viewer’s first introduction to the subject of death. Although the scene is pretty much well-known by anyone who knows the film’s name, Disney is reportedly cutting this central plot point out of the new adaptation.

@ethantrace

Live Action “Bambi” Plan to Change a HUGE part of the story 🥶🦌 #bambi

♬ original sound – Ethan Trace

@ethantrace’s reaction hit the nail on the head when he posted his take on the subject in the TikTok above. This is truly a misstep on Disney’s part, and the film’s director’s comment doesn’t help its case either.

Lindsey Beer, the director of Pet Sematary: Bloodlines (ironically), had this to say regarding the subject of the scene’s alteration.

“Not to spoil the plot, but there’s a treatment of the mom dying that I think some kids, some parents these days are more sensitive about than they were in the past, and I think that’s one of the reasons that they haven’t shown it to their children.”

There’s no denying that Bambi is an emotional movie; it’s perhaps one of Disney’s saddest films for a reason. However, trying to erase one of the quintessential points from the story isn’t just wrong; it’s potentially dangerous for the studio.

Related: Disney’s Most Traumatic Movie Moments

Not only is this a bad reflection on Disney’s filmmaking practices, but it’s also trying to eliminate the original classic’s emotional storytelling. The reason is that some parents don’t want their kids exposed to a harsh reality Disney made accessible and understandable decades ago.

Have audiences become too sensitive, or is it time for a change? Tell Inside the Magic what you think in the comments below!

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