The Mouse House is gearing up for a bunch of "platinum edition" releases on a raft of its old animated classics. Features like Peter Pan, Jungle Book, and a dozen others.
And why does Disney issue fancy-dancy versions of features that have been out in the marketplace for years and years? Uh, maybe because of this:
This month, the Platinum Edition of "Pinocchio," which debuted in theaters in 1953 (sic), gave "Borat" a serious run for its money in stores when both titles came out the same day. In October, the Platinum Edition of "The Little Mermaid," a big-screen hit in 1989, sold 4 million copies in a single week. In October 2003, "The Lion King" sold 3 million DVDs in two days; in October 2001, "Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs," the first Platinum Edition DVD, became the first DVD to sell 1 million units in a single day.
Pinocchio debuted in 1940, but let that small error go. The larger point here is that there are zero live-action films released in 1940 that could give Borat a "run for its money" in 2007. Or much anything else.
And The Lion King? Animation buffs will remember that LK sold 30 million videocassettes the year after its release in '94. And Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs? Putting aside the question of why any work of art should be under copyright seventy years after its creation, SW sold 26 million units when it was first released to home video.
But a million "Platinum Editions" of the brunette and the dwarfs in one day? Not bad for a picture that made so much money on its initial releases in '37 and '38 that it paid for Walt Disney Productions' Burbank studios. Not bad at all.
We should all have such diamond mines.