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Extra "Fantasia" commentary audio may still exist...

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Somebody brought this up in a private forum and after some brief digging it turns out they weren’t kidding: according to the 1942 continuity draft, the dreadfully trimmed down RKO cut of Fantasia contains interstitial audio that isn’t even available on the longer general release prints. The first half of the Nutcracker commentary was kept (the drafts on Hans Perk’s animation blog confirm that there were more lines after the fade out present in the 2000 roadshow reconstruction), only one missing line from the Sorcerer’s Apprentice intro, a very decent portion of the Rite of Spring commentary (even the off-screen crash that interrupts Deems’ first attempt at introducing the segment was kept) and the full “Meet the Soundtrack” intro. See below…



My question now is does anybody have this version of the movie? Or at least aware of any collectors that may have it? It runs for a measly 80 minutes, and it apparently did show up once on eBay in 8mm and then never again. 35mm would be close to impossible to track down as those prints were likely nitrate and have long since deteriorated, but 8mm/16mm safety stock reprints of this thing, even if they’re faded beyond salvage, have to exist somewhere-- the main objective here is saving the sound. The missing interstitial audio isn’t substantial, but it’s still more of the original audio than we currently have access to for preservation projects, and I think it’d be really cool to restore it.

Holding out for a hero here.

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Does any of this match with the missing Deems narration that Corey Burton was brought in to dub?

originaltrilogy.com Moderator

Where were you in '77?

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SilverWook said:

Does any of this match with the missing Deems narration that Corey Burton was brought in to dub?

Identically. Save for just one word in the Sorcerer’s Apprentice intro (in the draft it’s “wrote his music,” but in the dub it’s “wrote the music” instead) it’s all the same.

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SpringBoob SquirePin said:

Identically. Save for just one word in the Sorcerer’s Apprentice intro (in the draft it’s “wrote his music,” but in the dub it’s “wrote the music” instead) it’s all the same.

I think another word may have been changed from the Night on Bald Mountain/Ave Maria intro. On the VHS tape that I own, Deems Taylor describes Ave Maria as “immortal”, whereas in the DVD version, he describes it as “world-famous”. I’m not sure whether Deems Taylor says “immortal” in the original roadshow version, but I think the VHS tape implies that he does.

UncutIsSuperior

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The general release version of the finale introduction has to be a dub. In the reinstated roadshow footage, Taylor is very clearly mouthing “world famous” instead of “immortal.” To be sure, I tried lining up the LaserDisc audio with the roadshow footage and it didn’t sync properly without constantly cutting up the audio and shifting it every which way. Might post a video of that soon.