Off with her head! Er, wait that's the wrong movie -- one of the few that Disney didn't "honor" with a direct-to-DVD sequel. As for other classics, they weren't so lucky. At first, it seemed like only the more recent animated hits would be affected. In the 90's, we got videos like The Return of Jafar and Beauty and the Beast: The Enchanted Christmas. Of course, this was a short-lived blessing as old-school films started getting picked up. In 2001 it was Lady and the Tramp II: Scamp's Adventure. Then there was Cinderella II: Dreams Come True (followed this year by a second sequel). Then, the whole thing became unstoppable and almost nothing was sacred -- 101 Dalmations, Bambi and The Fox and the Hound all got sequels. Now, amazingly, Disney has decided to halt future sequels citing inferiority to the originals -- duh!

Some sources, like the previous AHN link, say it's the crappy quality, but over at Variety, there's a little different news about the who and what of the switch. Disney has sacked Sharon Morrill, who has been head of DisneyToons direct-to-DVD work for a while now. She's not completely gone, however, as a Disney rep says that she's being moved to some sort of "special projects" work, whatever that means. The reasoning behind her dismissal, according to V -- the costs for the upcoming Tinker Bell adaptation have skyrocketed to the not-so-costly $50 million (AHN says it's $30 million). Apparently the movie has had around two dozen script versions and a ton of different directors attached. To top that off, sources say that she's not getting along so well with Pixar heads, since Disney bought the company last year.

What the exact story is, remains to be seen. I would imagine that if this was all about Morrill, then Disney wouldn't be bringing their DVD sequels to an end, they'd just find someone to replace her. Whatever the exact numbers and rationale are, I can't help but be a little relieved that it's coming to an end, and relieved that Disney CCO John Lasseter acknowledged that not only are the sequels inferior, but they "erode" the brand. Quality over money...wonders never cease!
categories Movies, Cinematical