Now that Disney owns Marvel and Star Wars, it should be no surprise that they are the second largest media conglomerate after Comcast. Immensely powerful with money in far more than just films, they are slowly taking over the film industry and maybe the world. Just this week it was announced that they are seriously considering buying Twitter. Who knows, maybe in a decade Disney will own just about everything.
Disney has been around since the early 1920s and quickly became the most reliable film studio for producing high-quality animated films. With Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs in 1937, they changed the way we think of movies and redefined the entire industry. Since then, they've had their highs and lows but have been a staple of American childhoods for the better part of the past 75 years and counting.
Like all studios with such a large and transformative history, though, Disney has some skeletons in their closet. Throughout its long history, Disney has a number of films and moments that have raised some eyebrows among audiences. The depiction of women and race has always been an object of controversy, and while Disney does seem to be trying to write the wrongs of their past, there is no ignoring that moments in even more recent Disney films like Pocahontas can be pretty uncomfortable for audiences who have any grasp of history.
Movies like Peter Pan, Dumbo or even The Jungle Book certainly have their dark secrets that Disney would rather forget, but that only scratches the surfaces on the Disney films that are even worse, that maybe Disney wishes everyone would forget (and mostly have). While this list won't touch on films produced by Miramax during the period it was owned by Disney (1993-2010), it's worth mentioning that without Disney, some of your favorite films were never made. During that seven year period, Miramax released Pulp Fiction, Clerks, Kids and Dogma - not exactly what comes to mind when you think of Disney!
For a variety of reasons, the films on this list have been more or less pushed into obscurity by Disney, because they are offensive, weird or a bit too scary. How many have you seen?
15 The Devil and Max Devlin
14 Mickey’s Mellerdrammer
13 The Watcher in the Woods
12 Escape to Witch Mountain
11 Bon Voyage
10 Old Yeller
9 Der Fuehrer's Face
7 The Black Hole
6 The Littlest Horse Thieves
5 Something Wicked This Way Comes
4 Miracle of the White Stallions
3 Song of the South
2 Return to Oz
1 The Story of Menstruation
Whether you're quite old or your school never updated its health class, you might be among the few people who actually watched The Story of Menstruation in sex-ed. Part of a series made for schools, The Story of Menstruation was intended to educate young women not only on what menstruation was but on managing life around it. Among other films the film discourages the use of tampons (because Tampax was a rival of Kotex, who also sponsored the film), tells young women they can still do anything they like and gives advice on avoiding constipation and still looking your best. Bizarrely, the depictions of menstruation in the animated film are all white, and the movie doesn't mention reproduction at all. The real focus of the film is focused on sanitation, which shouldn't be too much of a surprise considering the film is promoting Kotex products. The film has more or less been forgotten, though it is available to watch on YouTube.
Sources: Bloomberg, Huffington Post, Independent, AV Club, Deadline, NY Times, Chicago Reader
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