Disney+ adds content warning for racist depictions in films

Disney+ Updates Content Advisory with More Direct Language, Stating

Disney's 'Peter Pan,' 'Aristocats' get racism advisories

Now, as the service has grown and even earned a massive original hit of its own with The Mandalorian, Disney+ is doubling down (and improving upon) its warning system for its older, racist content.

But unlike Disney's treatment of Song of the South, which Disney has made a concerted effort to make unavailable on home video and streaming, the House of Mouse is attempting to have a fuller conversation about the racist elements of its beloved classics like Peter Pan, Dumbo, and The Aristocats.

"This program includes negative depictions and/or mistreatment of people or cultures", read the warnings, which appear on audience screens for ten seconds after the films are selected for viewing, according to Variety.

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"These stereotypes were wrong then and are wrong now", the new warning adds.

The movie studio said that 1953 film "Peter Pan" refers to Native people as "redskins" and that the dancing in headdresses by Peter and the Lost Boys is a "form of mockery and appropriation of Native peoples' culture and imagery".

"We can't change the past, but we can acknowledge it, learn from it and move forward together" Disney said on its webpage detailing the new advisory, "to create a tomorrow that today can only dream of".

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Other films to receive the updated content warning include "Peter Pan", "Swiss Family Robinson", and the animated versions of "The Jungle Book" and "Aladdin". 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. "This program is presented as originally created", it read.

Even Dumbo has come under fire for referring to segregationist laws in late 19th and early 20th century America - the lead crow in the film is called Jim Crow. In the same movie, faceless Black workers are shown laboring to offensive lyrics like "When we get our pay, we throw our money all away".

The website explains The Aristocats contains a "racist caricature of East Asian peoples with exaggerated stereotypical traits such as slanted eyes and buck teeth", whereas Dumbo references "racist minstrel shows, where white performers with blackened faces and tattered clothing imitated and ridiculed enslaved Africans on Southern plantations". He is voiced by a white person singing in a poorly accented voice. The company did not further specify how it would work toward that goal. "What children see sets the framework for what they believe is possible in life".

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