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Will the next CEO have the guts to release Song of the South?

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  • [Question] Will the next CEO have the guts to release Song of the South?

    With Iger's 2016 exit approaching and with someone recently reminding me that Song of the South is STILL untouchable, I became curious. How big was Song of the South? The information is muddy across the board.

    The wiki says the budget was 2.125 million, it's initial box office was 3.3 million, and that was a $226,000 profit. No those numbers don't line up, but there is no listing of the marketing, so who knows. However, it's total box office is listed as $65 million because of the re-releases. You can't just straight adjust that because it was multiple releases with different values for each, but if you do adjust that amount based solely on the last release adjustment, it's about even, as inflation of 1986 prices make a ticket's value $7.91 versus today's average $7.92. This didn't sound right to me either. Disney wouldn't have built Splash Mountain if the recognition wasn't there, $65 million isn't enough to do that.

    So I found the number of tickets sold for each release at boxofficechampions and adjusted those tickets manually for each release using a ticket price adjustment calculator and added them all up.

    Release Year Total Tickets Ticket cost after inflation Adjusted Box Office
    1946 19,428,571 $4.22 $81,988,569.62
    1956 8,000,000 $4.31 $34,480,000
    1972 6,941,176 $9.50 $65,941,172
    1980 7,360,595 $7.64 $56,234,945.80
    1986 4,759,932 $7.91 $37,651,062.12
    Total $225,684,229.54
    This is was way bigger than it gets credit for. Yes it's racially charged now, but couldn't they do a documentary as a special feature along with an explanatory prologue on the actual film and finally release this thing? Will the next CEO have the guts?

  • #2
    Re: Will the next CEO have the guts to release Song of the South?

    Probably not.

    The next "milestone" anniversary is the 70th, which will be during the transitional period for Iger's departure. Racial issues are if anything touchier than they have been of late, it'd be safer to simply ignore the issue entirely and let the press focus on the smoke and mirror show at the top of the food chain.

    I *MIGHT* believe they'd be willing to bring it out in time for the 75th anniversary, but that would likely be another theatrical run before I'd expect a DVD release. I'd imagine they'd do a DVD release for the 100th, If we're still on DVDs by then.
    Boggard LIEEEEF!

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    • #3
      Re: Will the next CEO have the guts to release Song of the South?

      The guts?
      That is not what it's about.

      Is it economically feasible. Probably not. Because nobody has done it.
      Be Cool Stay in School!
      Next year I'm trying for a summer internship at Stark Industries.

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      • #4
        Re: Will the next CEO have the guts to release Song of the South?

        Highly doubtful.
        But it would be nice to have a HD Blu Ray release. If they had a disclaimer at the beginning of the movie, touching upon the mentality of the time it could be released.

        What still baffles me though is that we have movies like Gone with the Wind that portray slavery in almost the same way as SotS, yet I own a 5 disc DVD of GwtW. It just baffles me.
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        • #5
          Re: Will the next CEO have the guts to release Song of the South?

          Originally posted by LordVader View Post
          Highly doubtful.
          But it would be nice to have a HD Blu Ray release. If they had a disclaimer at the beginning of the movie, touching upon the mentality of the time it could be released.

          What still baffles me though is that we have movies like Gone with the Wind that portray slavery in almost the same way as SotS, yet I own a 5 disc DVD of GwtW. It just baffles me.
          Heck, you can even get Birth of a Nation streaming straight into your living room on Netflix, and it'd be hard to find ANYONE who wouldn't at least acknowledge the potential for controversy.
          Boggard LIEEEEF!

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          • #6
            Re: Will the next CEO have the guts to release Song of the South?

            Jim Korkis wrote a great book about it called Who's Afraid of the Song of the South. For those who haven't yet had a chance to read it, the short answer is ( and always will be ) no. I doubt this movie will ever be released in the US. The potential for backlash outweighs the potential for the positive sharing of information/entertainment. There is a certain element in society that will gripe about anything no matter how small and no matter how erroneously out of context their assumptions are. For example when Song of the South originally was released in 1946, Disney didn't clarify that this picture took place after slavery and after the reconstruction of the south.

            To compound that... Well, here, I'll just quote Jim Korkis' book:

            Neither the NAACP nor the American Council on Race Relations had any opportunity to review the project before the press screening. Walter White, the executive secretary of the NAACP, telegraphed major newspapers around the country with the following statement:

            "The National Association for the Advancement of Colored People recognizes in Song of the South remarkable artistic merit in the music and in the combination of living actors and the cartoon technique. It regrets, however, that in an effort neither to offend audiences in the North or South, the production helps to perpetuate a dangerously glorified picture of slavery. Making use of the beautiful Uncle Remus folklore, Song of the South unfortunately gives the impression of an idyllic master-slave relationship which is a distortion of the facts."


            ...but the movie didn't take place during slavery. Too late, the damage was done, the ball was now rolling and couldn't be stopped. Even back in 1946 there were protesters at the movie claiming it was racist. Today's atmosphere wouldn't be any more enlightened, more critical and vocal if anything.

            No, you will likely never see Song of the South released during your lifetime.


            The Sad Song of the South (Korkis Korner) by Jim Korkis

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            • #7
              Re: Will the next CEO have the guts to release Song of the South?

              I've seen Song of the South, and honestly, I don't see what the big racism issue is with it.

              There are slaves in it. Ooooohhhh.

              I don't recall them ever using the "n" word in it, and I sure as heck know they didn't involve any whipping or graphic violence like that against them.

              In the modern world, with films like Django Unchained and 12 Years a Slave being released, I think Disney should release Song of the South finally. Will they? Eventually, I know that's for sure.
              The Disney Renaissance
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              1989-1999

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              • #8
                Re: Will the next CEO have the guts to release Song of the South?

                Actually, the movie takes place during reconstruction. So there is no slavery in the movie. Proof: Uncle Remus leaves. Not to mention the fact that this movie places the role of the father figure for this white boy in the hands of this African American man. Plus, it is the first film to give an African American and academy award. Those who say that this movie is racist hasn't seen the movie. No one who has seen the movie has said that it has bad undertones. They could release it with and intro by a significant black figure like Morgan Freeman to talk about the historical period that this film takes place in.

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                • #9
                  Re: Will the next CEO have the guts to release Song of the South?

                  Gone with the Wind was the first to award an Oscar to an African American actor/actress (Hattie McDaniel- Best Supporting Actress).
                  sigpic

                  What is thy bidding, my Mouseter?

                  Check out my tumblr: http://dvader2015.tumblr.com/








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                  • #10
                    Re: Will the next CEO have the guts to release Song of the South?

                    Who even knows? How would anyone know the question to that?!

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