Legacy Content

Toon Talk: Lady and the Tramp 50th Anniversary Platinum Edition
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Making up for the paucity of bonuses on disc one, disc two is full of ’em, beginning with a pair of Deleted Scenes, complete with optional introduction by former Disney animator/director Eric Goldberg. The first, “Turning the Tables?, was an elaborate fantasy sequence, wherein dogs were the masters and people were the pets, that lasted well into development. Playing like an extravagant Pluto cartoon, the scene would have compromised the film’s overall realistic tone, and it was gratefully axed. “The Arrival of the Baby? offers an alternate version of this scene that did survive to the final film, and includes unused lyrics for “What is a Baby?/La La Lu?. Both of these deleted scenes are bridged by actual scenes from the completed film to demonstrate their placement in the original story concepts, a nice touch.

In Music & More, we find a short featurette (again hosted by Goldberg) titled The Siamese Cat Song: Finding a Voice for the Cats. Here you’ll find out optional names for the frisky felines, such as Flik and Flak and Nip and Tuck (interesting, as their final names, Si and Am, are never actually mentioned in the final film) and hear rare studio recordings of two men singing the song in three separate, exaggerated (read: more stereotyped) takes. Unused lyrics are also heard; this featurette plays well as a fitting companion piece to the footage of Peggy Lee herself singing the roles, found later on this disc. This section also has a new Music Video of the song “Bella Notte?, sung by William Petersen look-alike Steve Tyrell; the song will be included on his new CD, Once Upon a Dream: The Disney Standards, also released today.

Games & Activities offers a DVD-ROM exclusive: baby versions of Lady, Tramp, Jock and Trusty that you can download onto your DVD-ROM-equipped PC as your own Disney Virtual Puppy. Disney Dog Trivia is a “virtual board game? playable on your DVD player; brush up on your favorite Disney dog stars (from 101 Dalmatians and Old Yeller to Oliver and Company and Air Bud, plus Lady and the Tramp, of course, and, surprisingly, even Frankenweenie) to get ready for this “Scene It?-style game, available in single player and multiple team modes. Skip the single player game (no nifty 3-D playing board) though, and play against yourself if you don’t have anyone to join you; this is a DVD game that you can actually play more then once. Disneypedia: Going to the Dogs brings you Best in Show host Fred Willard visiting a dog park while an off-screen narrator relates, using clips from classic animated and live action Disney films, the history of dogs. Informative and fun, the highlight here is Willard staging a live action recreation of the spaghetti scene. Rounding out this section is the Your Inner Bark, a, you guessed it, all-too familiar and controllable personality profile activity.

(c) Disney

Now, for the real grade-A bones of the set, Backstage Disney. Lady’s Pedigree: The Making of ‘Lady and the Tramp’ is the 53-minute feature I’ve been talking so much about. It truly is a complete background on the picture, even uncovering a scandal or two. Beginning with “Return to Marceline?, which would have been more appropriate attached to, say, So Dear To My Heart, the documentary real digs deep in “A Perfect Little Lady?, finally giving full story credit to Joe Grant, who developed the original story based on elements from his own life, yet he was not even listed in the film’s credits. Also revealed are early names for Tramp (including Rags and Bozo), how Trusty was originally a goner in that penultimate scene, and whether or not the legend of Walt giving his wife Lillian a dog in a hatbox is true or not. “Ruff Animation? peruses the involvement of the “Nine Old Men? on the picture, while “Canine Chorus? covers the music and songs and “Teaching a Dog to Talk? highlights the voice cast, including rare footage of Barbara Luddy (Lady), Bill Thompson (Jock) and Bill Baucom (Trusty) recording their memorable roles. “Pretty as a Picture - Art and Design? uncovers some intriguing details on how the film, which was well into production before the decision was made to switch to Cinemascope (Lady was the first animated feature in that format), dealt with the unique aspects of the larger screen, and how there were actually two versions of the film: one in Cinemascope and one created for smaller theaters that were not equipped with that technology.

Finding Lady: The Art of the Storyboard serves as a lead-in to the next feature, but yields further interest. Way back in the 1920s, it was Walt who pioneered the use of storyboards in the development of stories for his cartoons. When he segued into animated features, storyboards went along with him, as they did with the advent of live action production at the studio. Eventually, the storyboard became an invaluable tool to filmmakers the world over, and is still extensively used today, as seen here with clips from such modern Disney films as Atlantis: The Lost EmpireThe Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe and The Greatest Game Ever Played.

This brings us to a recreation of the Original 1943 Storyboards for Lady. In this early incarnation, Tramp was “Homer? and the Siamese cats were featured more prominently. The original storyboard art was found in the Disney vaults, and pieced together specifically for this DVD, with Goldberg and storyman Burny Mattinson recreating the “pitch? meeting that presented this to Walt and his staff, resulting in a unique trip back in time to this early working of the film that would eventually be the one we all know and love today.