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Disney slaps racism warnings on classics

Disney has slapped racism warnings on beloved classics including Peter Pan, The Jungle Book and Dumbo.Content advisory warnings on the Disney+ streaming service alert viewers they contain “negative racial depictions”.Viewers wanting to watch the animated flicks will be told: “This program includes negative depictions and/or mistreatment of people or cultures.“These stereotypes were wrong then and…

Disney has slapped racism warnings on beloved classics including Peter Pan, The Jungle Book and Dumbo.

Content advisory warnings on the Disney+ streaming service alert viewers they contain “negative racial depictions”.

Viewers wanting to watch the animated flicks will be told: “This program includes negative depictions and/or mistreatment of people or cultures.

“These stereotypes were wrong then and are wrong now.

“Rather than remove this content, we want to acknowledge its harmful impact, learn from it and spark conversation to create a more inclusive future together.”

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The move is understood to be part of an ongoing review by Disney of content in all its films.

Other classics that will include the warning will be the 1970 musical comedy The Aristocats, the 1955 love story Lady and the Tramp and the 1960 film Swiss Family Robinson.

In the Aristocats, Disney warns viewers that one of the cats “sings in poorly accented English voiced by a white actor and plays the piano with chopsticks”.

In the 1953 film Peter Pan, viewers are warned that Native American Indians are referred to as “redskins”.

Viewers are also warned that the scene where Peter and The Lost Boys dance in Native American headdresses are a “form of mockery and appropriation of Native peoples‘ culture and imagery”.

The Jungle Book has also been highlighted for its perceived use of negative racial stereotypes.

Critics have claimed ape King Louie – voiced by jazz great Louis Prima – caricatures African-Americans as lazy.

In the 1941 film Dumbo, viewers are warned about its references to racist segregationist laws in the deep South and its use of affected African-American voices.

The Lady and the Tramp was added to the list because of the heavily accented Mexican and Russian dogs in the pound, while the Siamese cats are said to perpetuate Asian stereotypes.

The streaming service has also made the decision not to add certain films at all – such as the controversial Song of the South.

The 1946 film is set on a plantation during America‘s Reconstruction Era.

It has never been given a DVD or video release in the US because of its handling of race.

This article originally appeared in The Sun and was reproduced with permission.

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