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The streaming service Disney+ has blocked several cartoons for audiences under the age of seven, the Daily Mail reported, citing reports from British users of the platform.
- Dumbo and The Aristocats among those removed from the children’s section
- They were found to have breached ‘content advisories’ recently installed
- Parents are shocked after trying to watch films on the £5.99-per-month service
Generations of children have been charmed by the magical tale of the boy who never grew up, but Peter Pan is now on a list of banned movies.
Bosses at Disney have blocked anyone under the age of seven from watching the 1953 animated classic on its streaming service over concerns that it portrays racial stereotypes, The Mail on Sunday can reveal.
Three other long-standing family favourites – The Aristocats, Swiss Family Robinson and Dumbo – have also been removed from children’s accounts for breaching ‘content advisories’ that were recently put in place.
Parents have been left dumbfounded after trying to watch the films on Disney’s £5.99-per-month service. One said: ‘I wanted to watch Peter Pan with my daughter, but I couldn’t find it anywhere.
‘Then I realised they had all gone – they had been removed from the kids’ accounts. It was shocking.’
It is understood the main reason behind Peter Pan being blocked is because it features a Native American tribe whose members are referred to as ‘redskins’.
Meanwhile, the 1970 movie The Aristocats has a Siamese cat character called Shun Gon, whose slanted eyes and prominent teeth have been described as a caricature of East Asian people.
Swiss Family Robinson, which was made in 1960, has been criticised for its ‘yellow face’ and ‘brown face’ pirates.
Loveable elephant Bambi has also been cut from the children’s section of the subscription service
Dumbo, the 1941 cartoon about a lovable flying elephant, has been accused of ridiculing enslaved African-Americans on Southern plantations. At one point during a musical interlude, faceless black workers toil away to offensive lyrics such as, ‘When we get our pay, we throw our money all away’.
Disney implemented a revised content advisory in October to flag up any issues surrounding racial stereotypes and concerns were raised in relation to Peter Pan and the other productions. The decision to ban the films from children’s accounts was made by a group of external experts who were brought in to assess if the content ‘represented global audiences’.
While the films remain available on adult accounts, they come with a disclaimer that says: ‘This programme 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.’
Disney says on its website that it is committed to creating stories with inspirational and aspirational themes that reflect the diversity of the human experience around the globe. The statement reads: ‘We can’t change the past, but we can acknowledge it, learn from it and move forward together to create a tomorrow that today can only dream of.’
A spokesman for Disney declined to comment. ~ By KATIE HIND SHOWBUSINESS EDITOR FOR THE MAIL
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