The Meg is Closer to ‘Jaws’ Than ‘Sharknado’

MOVIE REVIEW When Steven Spielberg’s Jaws opened in theaters in 1975, it took the world by storm. Not only was the movie hugely popular as it was genuinely scary, it actually affected society in a strange way. Audiences began to have an irrational fear of sharks even when swimming at a lake. When Jaws 2 came to theaters three years later, everyone knew the catchphrase, “Just when you thought it was safe to go back into the water…” Since then, it’s been hard for movie studios to be able to drum up the same excitement with their own Jaws knock-offs. Shark movies became a joke. Even Jaws 3 and Jaws: The Revenge were met with disdain (and with good reason). But sharks are still a popular subject, just not one that we take very seriously anymore.
This brings us to next big shark movie, The Meg which judging from the trailers alone, looks like another campy knock-off movie and while it indeed is campy, it isn’t as much as you would think. When comparing movies, The Meg is closer to Jaws tha…

This Day in Pop Culture for November 12

"Song of the South" was released on November 12, 1946.

Controversial 'Song of the South' Opens in Theaters

A year before one of Walt Disney’s most controversial film arrived in theaters, Disney produced a Sunday morning comic strip titled, Uncle Remus & His Tales of Br’er Rabbit. Meant to be a short-lived promotion for the film Song of the South, the comic proved so popular that it continued to run through December 31, 1972. Meanwhile, back in 1946, the movie premiered on this day in 1946 at the Fox Theater in Atlanta, Georgia – a move that Disney probably regretted. The movie was Disney’s first live action film that also featured about 25 minutes on animation with Uncle Remus telling his tales of Br’er Rabbit, Br’er For and Br’er Bear. The film starred James Baskett as Uncle Remus whom Disney described as "the best actor, I believe, to be discovered in years.” Unfortunately, Baskett was unable to attend the premiere since Atlanta was a racially segregated city at the time, but Baskett did win an honorary Oscar for his work on the film "for his able and heart-warming characterization of Uncle Remus, friend and story teller to the children of the world” in 1948. The score by Daniele Amfitheatrof, Paul J. Smith, and Charles Wolcott was nominated and the song, "Zip-a-Dee-Doo-Dah," written by Allie Wrubel and Ray Gilbert, won the award for Best Song. Though the Disney Company has faced backlash from the film’s portrayals of the African Americans in the movie, it was still re-released in U.S. theaters several times in 1956, 1972, 1973, 1980 and as late as 1986 in promotion of Disneyland’s newest ride, Splash Mountain. Still, Disney has yet to release Song of the South in full for home viewing, but during her acceptance as one of Disney’s “Legends” in July of 2017, actress Whoopie Goldberg expressed about how she wished that the movie would be re-released publicly for American audiences.

Bela Lugosi once posed for Walt Disney for the movie "Fantasia."

Bela Lugosi Poses for Disney

The Walt Disney Company has a long history of using models to help them animate their films. On this day in 1939, actor Bela Lugosi, better known by some as Dracula, modeled for the role of Chernabog in the “Night on Bald Mountain” sequence of the film Fantasia. However, head animator Bill Tytla was unhappy with the results and later had director Wilfred Jackson redo the poses.

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