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Disney Will Air Its Classic Cartoons on Time Warner’s TCM


In one of the more bizarre recent examples of cross-corporate collaboration, Disney has announced a new TV program called “Treasures From the Disney Vault” that will air on Time Warner-owned Turner Classic Movies (TCM). The programming block will include classic Disney films, shorts, documentaries, and episodes of TV series including “Disneyland” and “Walt Disney’s Wonderful World of Color.” TCM will air the block of Disney programming quarterly.


Some of the already-announced titles that will air on TCM include live-action Disney features as Treasure Island (1950), Darby O’Gill and the Little People (1959) and Pollyanna (1960); animated films like The Three Caballeros (1944) and The Adventures of Ichabod and Mr. Toad (1949); classic nature documentaries, including The Living Desert (1953) and The African Lion (1955); made-for-television series such as Davy Crockett; special episodes from Walt Disney’s Wonderful World of Color; documentaries about the studio, including Walt & El Grupo (2009) and Waking Sleeping Beauty (2010); and animated shorts, such as Flowers and Trees, Chip an’ Dale and Santa’s Workshop.

The first 9-hour Disney Vault program is scheduled to air during the evening of December 21st, according to the TCM website.

The TCM deal between Disney and Time Warner is part of a bigger cross-collaboration effort in which Turner Classic Movies will help Disney revamp the pre-show and finale of its Great Movie Ride at Disney’s Hollywood Studios in Orlando, Florida. TCM will be credited with “Presented by” credits on the ride.

  • John A

    Anything that helps bring Disney’s films to the general public is a good thing. Since I ‘m the first to post I’ll start off the conversation with MAYBE this will give Disney a chance to air “Song of the South”.

    • WarriorMermaids

      Don’t get your hopes up. I don’t think the film has ever even had a home release.

      • Kenshiroh

        It was released on Laserdisc outside of the USA.

        • Hal J.

          …Meaning that there are digital copies to be had. One simply has to know where to download them.

          • Especially the long-awaited BBC digital airings from a decade ago!

        • Bobby Bickert

          It also was released on VHS in the UK.

    • Tim Tran

      YES! jUST YES!!!
      and maybe all the Disney Channel movies that never re-aired.

    • jjsemp

      Funny how when you make it hard for people to see something, it takes on this mythic status, as if it’s THE GREATEST ANIMATION EVER CREATED IN THE HISTORY OF EVER. I’ve seen “Song of the South” many times. I used to rent it in 16mm and show it at my film series in college. I also once owned a Japanese import laserdisc of it. It’s great fun, but really, calm down. It’s not the be-all and end-all of Disney animation. If Disney had made it available all along, I’m sure that by now very little attention would be paid to it, as is usually the case with most media in the U.S. that feature a largely all-black cast.

      • sidney

        Not sure if it’s still there, but not too long ago it was available on You Tube. I agree that it’s pretty much a serviceable Disney product, nothing spectacular.

      • John A

        What I mean is, that broadcasting SOTS could help deflect some of the misinformation that’s built up around this movie since the ’80s.( I actually own a copy of this movie( laserdisc I bought in Japan almost thirty years ago) I’ve seen the movie, I think other people should see it too. putting it on a channel like TMC helps give the movie a historical perspective that even the Disney Channel can’t provide.

        I understand completely why a studio backed home video release will never happen, but it doesn’t deserve to be thrown into a locked vault forever. As for the animation, this is the work of some of the biggest names in the business, in their prime, churning their stuff out on a regular schedule. It may not look like much to you, but that’s because animators working today have spent decades studying the work of these guys. I don’t think the animation is as consistently good as “Icabod and Mr. Toad” or the features that preceded it, but some of the effects work, particularly the combination footage of James Baskett and the bullfrog couldn’t even be topped by “Roger Rabbit”.

        Showing Disney’s stuff on another channel might also allow them to air movies like “Melody Time” without all the PC editing. That goes for a lot of the shorts too, like “Runaway Brain”. I didn’t mean to make my argument yet another thread on SOTS, I just cited it because it was the most notorious.

    • itsthatbriguy

      One Brer Rabbit short aired during “The Disneyland Story”. Really surprised it wasn’t edited out.

  • boyraisin2

    Disney and TCM. Braingasm. Or heartgasm. Whichever.

    • Still thinking of the time they played Only Yesterday on TCM. Love to see that one again!

  • Kristen Ramirez

    I’m really excited for this program block, it’s a magnificent showcase of what Disney Entertainment is. I look forward to see it.

  • Over the years, I’ve had visions of something like this happening.
    Will there be an evolution toward studio interdependence, and is it even important that the studios join forces? We all….shall see.

    • Bobby Bickert

      WB has been releasing DVD’s of feature films owned by Universal, Paramount and Columbia, either through the Warner Archive or the TCM Vault Collection.

  • blandyblottschalk

    That sounds unlike Disney, but it’s exciting news for sure.

  • Tim Tran

    Why cant Disney make a programming block in their own channels? ABC?

    • hupto

      Hell, they don’t even air them on their own cable channels anymore. (Remember Vault Disney, which ran overnights on the Disney Channel?)

      • This is why I miss what The Disney Channel use to be 30 years ago (when it did cost more to get).

  • Jeffrey Gray

    We’ve come a long way in 15 years – back in 1998, when Cartoon Network did the 50 Greatest Cartoons marathon, I read in a news article that they actually approached Disney asking for permission to air the shorts Jerry Beck had included in his book – just for that one marathon – and they were turned down. I remember being floored that they even tried.

  • Squidhead

    Smells like Song of the South might be down the line….

    • Harrison

      Boy wouldn’t that be something?

  • Tom

    This is great. Disney films are great for Disney as IP, but first and foremost, they are great pieces of cinema history, and nobody presents the history of film like TCM.

  • rbrtck

    I guess this stuff is not “Disney” enough anymore. ;)

  • Matt Norcross

    Why not air this on Disney Channel? Oh right, because Disney Channel’s too busy aiming garbage like Kirby Buckets and I Didn’t Do It at the teenybopper crowd. I do hope it has Disney deciding to do a new all-classic channel named after their fan club.

  • Tim Tran

    How bout their other networks? Like ABC??

  • Alex Dudley

    Disney should really have their own channel dedicated to their classic works. The only channels they have that airs old Disney movies is ABC Family.

    Ah well, interesting corporate move.

    • Hmm… sort of like the Old Boomerang. I like the idea.

    • Josué A. Advincola

      Disney DID have a channel like that, Toon Disney. Most of the shows that ran on it were DIsney movies later adapted as series. Like Aladdin, The Little Mermaid and so on. Other shows that were not movie based were Gargoyles and Darkwing Duck. But it later became DisneyXD, which was for the newer generation.

      • the

        I wish they would bring Toon Disney back. It was way better than Disney XD.

  • Ken Martinez

    This is nuts, as some have noted below. Disney does not lack for television venues for this classic material, at all. But, I guess that’s how classic-phobic TV has become.

    Disney has licensed movies to TCM in the past (including a suite of Studio Ghibli films) but nothing on THIS scale.

    • Bobby Bickert

      I still have a VHS recording of a TCM airing of Return From Witch Mountain.

      I’ve noticed that some of the live action Disney features from the 1960’s and 1970’s have been airing on the Brigham Young University channel. Unfortunately they have a “squeezed” look, like a CinemaScope film projected with the wrong lens, and there are commercial breaks. I don’t know whether any of them have been edited for time.

      • You mean like “Pan & Scan” or simply modified to fit the entire thing in a 4:3 or 16:9 frame? Don’t suppose BYU broadcasts in HD if that’s the case.

        • Bobby Bickert

          This is what I mean:

          But I don’t think any of the Disney features from that era were filmed in 2.35:1 widescreen, so I don’t know why they look distorted on the BYU network.

  • Bobby Bickert

    “Brer Rabbit and the Tar Baby” was released on Super 8 in the 1970’s. (I don’t have it, but it’s in the catalog that came with the B & W 8mm print of “The Tortoise and the Hare” my parents bought to show at a birthday party.) It also aired on the Disney Channel, along with other excerpts from Walt’s animated features that were released on Super 8, like “The Dwarfs’ Dilemna” and “Alice and the White Rabbit”.

  • Craig Svonkin

    What people are missing is the other half of the deal. TCM will become the sponsor of The Great Movie Ride at Disney’s Hollywood Studios theme park in Florida. I think that’s what’s in it for Disney, mostly.

  • JodyMorgan

    So, Time-Warner’s TCM will show Disney cartoons, but not Warner Brothers or MGM cartoons?

    What’s up with that?

  • If they do, they’ll be totally let down this is the tamest TV-MA rated flick they ever saw!

  • Oh yeah, that was good moment.

  • Matt Norcross

    Her successor, Ben Sherwood, doesn’t seem to be any better. He was an executive producer for Good Morning America who transformed that show into tabloid gossip similar to the vein of Entertainment Tonight. Odds are he’ll make the Disney Channel even more teenybopper oriented than it is now.