Viewers who signed up to stream Disney+ were greeted with disclaimers about racist and offensive content in some older movies.
“Dumbo,” for example, had this statement at the bottom of the movie’s description: “This program is presented as originally created. It may contain outdated cultural depictions.”
The original “Dumbo” notoriously featured a character named Jim Crow, leader of a group of black crows, that was voiced by a Caucasian actor using a stereotypical African-American accent.
Director Tim Burton chose to not include the original crow scene in his live-action remake of “Dumbo.”
He also omitted the scene in which black characters put up circus tents while singing “Song of the Roustabouts.”
Disney is not the first studio to add a disclaimer on old titles that feature racial prejudices or other troubling content. For example, Warner Bros. used this on an old “Tom and Jerry” release:
“The cartoons you are about to see are products of their time. They may depict some of the ethnic and racial prejudices that were commonplace in American society. These depictions were wrong then and are wrong today. While these cartoons do not represent today’s society, they are being presented as they were originally created, because to do otherwise would be that same as claiming these prejudices never existed.”
WarnerMedia is the parent company of Warner Bros. and CNN.