Disney’s Saving Mr. Banks is re-edited to remove cigarettes

Disney has kind of shied away from the evil overlord and controlling behavior which created a reputation that leaves a bad taste in people’s mouths. There has actually been very little controversy from Disney for a while, the studio even allowing surreal psychological horror movie Escape From Tomorrow to see the light of day even though it was filmed at Walt Disney World without permission. However, it’s now been reported that the upcoming Saving Mr. Banks – which stars Tom Hanks as Walt Disney – has been re-edited to omit any cigarettes. Bob Iger set the company’s ban on lit cigareetes in 2007 with this to say, “We expect that depictions of cigarette smoking in future Disney-branded films will be non-existent”.

While normally this is the sort of thing that makes me upset, in the context of the movie I don’t have a problem with this.  Walt Disney picking up the habit during World War I, and eventually died from lung cancer, so a story about Walt Disney obviously needs to have some mention of his smoking habit.  But, this isn’t a Walt Disney biopic; this is focused on what happened to P.L. Travers (Emma Thompson), the author of Mary Poppins, as Disney attempted to purchase the rights to her book. This is the one time I’m with a little restriction on creative freedom. What are your thoughts? Let us know in the comments below…

Saving Mr. Banks is set for release on November 28th in the UK and December 20th in North America.

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