Charlotte's Web (1973 film)

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Charlotte's Web
Directit bi
Produced bi
Story biEarl Hamner Jr.
Based onCharlotte's Web
bi E. B. White
Narratit biRex Allen
Muisic biIrwin Kostal
  • Dick Blundell
  • Ralph Migliori
  • Roy Wade
  • Dennis Weaver
Eeditit bi
  • Larry C. Cowan
  • Pat Foley
Distributit biParamount Pictures
Release date
  • 22 Februar 1973 (1973-02-22) (Premiere-New York Ceety)
  • 1 Mairch 1973 (1973-03-01) (Unitit States)
Rinnin time
94 meenits
KintraUnitit States
Box office$2.4 million (rentals)[1]

Charlotte's Web is a 1973 American animatit muisical drama film produced bi Hanna-Barbera Productions an Sagittarius Productions an based upon the 1952 bairns' beuk o the same name bi E. B. White. The film, lik the book, is aboot a pig named Wilbur that befriends an intelligent speeder named Charlotte that saufs him frae bein slaughtered. Released tae theaters bi Paramount Pictures, Charlotte's Web featurs a sang score o muisic an lyrics written bi the Sherman Brothers, that haed previously written muisic for faimily films lik Mary Poppins (1964), The Jungle Book (1967), an Chitty Chitty Bang Bang (1968). It is the first o anly three Hanna-Barbera featurs nae tae be based upon ane o thair famous telly cartoons, Heidi's Song (1982) an Once Upon a Forest (1993) bein the ither twa.

Charlotte's Web wis released on Februar 22, 1973, tae moderate critical an commercial success. The film haes developed a devoted follaein ower the follaein years due tae telly an VHS; in 1994 it surprised the marketplace bi becomin ane o the best-selling titles o the year, 21 years efter its first premiere. No ither non-Disney muisical animatit film haes enjoyed sic a comeback in popularity, prompting a direct-to-video sequel, Charlotte's Web 2: Wilbur's Great Adventure, which Paramount released in the US on Mairch 18, 2003 (Universal released it internationally), followed bi a live-action film version o the oreeginal story, which wis released on December 15, 2006.

Plot[eedit | eedit soorce]

When farmer John Arable decides tae "do away wi" the runt o a litter o piglets, his dochter, Fern, intervenes, telling him that it is absurd tae kill the piglet juist acause he is smawer than the ithers. John decides tae spare the piglet an let Fern raise him as a pet. She nurtures him lovingly, naming him Wilbur. Sax weeks later, Wilbur, due tae bein a spring pig, haes matured, an John tells Fern that Wilbur haes tae be sauld (his siblings war already sauld). Fern sadly says good-bye tae Wilbur as he is sauld doun the street tae her uncle, Homer Zuckerman. At Homer's farm, a goose coaxes a sullen Wilbur tae speak his first words. Awtho delighted at this new ability, Wilbur still yearns for companionship. He attempts tae get the goose tae play wi him, but she declines on the condeetion that she haes tae hatch her goslings. Wilbur an aw tries asking a rat named Templeton tae play wi him, but Templeton's anly interests are spying, hiding, an eatin. Wilbur then wants tae play wi a lamb, but the lamb's faither that sheep dae nae play wi pigs acause it is anly a matter o time afore thay are slaughtered an turned intae smoked bacon an ham. Scunnert at this depressing discovery, Wilbur reduces himsel tae tears until a mysterious vyce tells him tae "chin up", an wait until morning tae reveal hersel tae him. The follaein morning, she reveals hersel tae be a speeder named Charlotte A. Cavatica, livin on a web overlooking Wilbur's pig pen. She tells him that she will come up wi a plan guaranteed tae spare his life.

Later, the goose's goslings hatch. Ane o them, named Jeffrey, befriends Wilbur. Eventually, Charlotte reveals her plan tae "play a trick on Zuckerman", an consoles Wilbur tae sleep. The next morning, Homer's farm assistant, Lurvy, sees the words, SOME PIG, spun within Charlotte's web. The incident attracts publicity amang Homer's neighbors wha deem the praise tae be a miracle. The publicity eventually dies doun, an Charlotte requests the barn ainimals tae devise a new wird tae spin within her web. Efter several suggestions, the goose suggests the phrase, TERRIFIC! TERRIFIC! TERRIFIC!, tho Charlotte decides tae shorten it tae ane TERRIFIC. The incident becomes anither media sensation, tho Homer still desires tae slaughter Wilbur. For the next message, Charlotte then employs Templeton tae pull a wird frae a magazine clipping at the dump for inspiration, in which he returns the wird, RADIANT, ripped frae a soap box tae spin within her web. Follaein this, Homer decides tae enter Wilbur in the coonty fair for the simmer. Charlotte reluctantly decides tae accompany him, tho Templeton at first haes no interest in daein sae until the goose tells him aboot aw the fuid thare. Efter ane nicht thare, Charlotte sends Templeton tae the trash pile on anither errand tae gather anither wird for her next message, in which he returns wi the wird, HUMBLE. The next morning, Wilbur awakens tae find Charlotte haes spun an egg sac containing her unborn affspring, an the follaein afternoon, the wird, HUMBLE, is spun. Houiver, Fern's brither, Avery, discovers anither pig named Uncle haes won first place, tho the coonty fair staff decides tae haud a celebration in honour of Homer's miraculous pig, an rewards him $25 an a gowd medal. He then announces that he will allou Wilbur tae "live to a ripe old age".

Exhausted frae laying eggs an writin words, Charlotte tells Wilbur she will remain at the fair tae die. Not willin tae let her bairns be abandoned, Wilbur haes Templeton retrieve Charlotte's egg sac tae tak back tae the farm, juist afore she dies. Once he returns tae Homer's farm, he guards the egg sac until the winter. The next spring, Charlotte's 514 bairns are hatched, but leave the farm, causin Wilbur tae become saddened tae the pynt o wantin to run away. Juist as he is aboot tae dae sae, the ram pynts oot that three o them didnae flee away. Pleased at findin new friends, Wilbur names them Joy, Nellie, an Aranea, but as much as he loves them, thay will never replace the memory o Charlotte.

Voice cast[eedit | eedit soorce]

  • Henry Gibson as Wilbur, a pig wha wis awmaist killed due tae bein a runt. Ower time, houiver, he grows sae much that ane wad never hae kent that he wis ance a runt. When Wilbur learns o his fate o bein slaughtered, he instantly breaks doun intae tears, until Charlotte tells him that she will dae whatever it takes tae save him. Wilbur is a friendly pig, but an aw prone tae anxeeity.
  • Debbie Reynolds as Charlotte A. Cavatica, a speeder that bides in a corner o Homer's barn abuin Wilbur's pig pen. She is very luvin an mitherly, but whiles grows frustrated at Wilbur's anxeeity issues. At the end o the film, she dies efter laying 514 eggs, but three o them decide tae stay wi Wilbur.
  • Paul Lynde as Templeton, a care-free, egotistical rat wha lives at Homer's farm. He helps Charlotte get new ideas for her webs on the condeetion that he is promised fuid. At the end o the film, as well as the sequel, he haes fower bratty bairns o his ain: Henrietta, Lester, Ralphie, an Junior.
  • Agnes Moorehead as the Goose, an unnamed goose that is the ane that encourages Wilbur tae speak for the first time. Her seiven goslings later hatch, awtho thare war actually aicht eggs (ane wis rotten). In the sequel, she wis named Gwen.
  • Don Messick as Jeffrey, a young, undersized gosling that Wilbur befriends shortly efter his birth. He initially lives, eats, an sleeps wi Wilbur rather than his mither an siblings. At ane pynt, Avery remarks that he sounds mair lik a pig than a gosling, which pleases Jeffrey. When Wilbur is loaded intae a crate destined for the fair, Jeffrey casually walks in to jyne him, amusing the humans but thay still remove an restrain him nevertheless. The Swedish version shows a deleted scene in which Jeffrey is briefly seen riding in the back o the Arables' truck wi Avery until it stops sae Avery can put him doun in the middle o the road. Distressed at bein separated frae Wilbur, Jeffrey tries tae catch up wi the truck tae no avail, leaving him heartbroken. His mither gently directs him tae the pond tae jyne his siblings. Jeffrey daes nae reunite wi Wilbur when the latter returns frae the fair nor daes he appear in the rest o the film.
  • Herb Vigran as Lurvy, Homer's assistant that is the first tae notice the messages in Charlotte's webs.
  • Pamelyn Ferdin as Fern Arable, the dochter o John that convinces him tae spare Wilbur's life.
  • Martha Scott as Mrs. Arable, Fern's mither that first tells her o what wis going tae happen tae Wilbur.
  • Bob Holt as Homer Zuckerman, Mrs. Arable's brither an Fern's uncle.
  • John Stephenson as John Arable, Fern's faither. He wis aboot tae "do away" wi Wilbur until she intervened.
  • Danny Bonaduce as Avery Arable, Fern's aulder brither.
  • William B. White as Henry Fussy, a boy o aboot Fern's age, that she suin starts spendin time wi while Wilbur is at the fair.
  • Dave Madden as the Ram, ane o the first ainimals Wilbur meets at Homer's farm. He is the first tae tell Wilbur that it is a pig's fate tae be slaughtered an turned intae smoked bacon an ham. Madden an aa voiced ither chairacters in the film.
  • Joan Gerber as Edith Zuckerman, Homer's wife. She comes up wi the idea o giein Wilbur a buttermilk bath. Gerber forby vyced Mrs. Fussy, Henry's stern mither that never lets him hae fun.
  • Rex Allen as the Narrator

Five members o the cast (Henry Gibson, Paul Lynde, Agnes Moorehead, Danny Bonaduce, an Dave Madden) haed previously appeared on the ABC televeesion situation comedy Bewitched (1964-1972).[2]Template:Unreliable source? Hanna-Barbera an aa animatit the openin credits o the show. Houiver, Bonaduce an Madden are better kent for thair roles on anither ABC-TV sitcom, The Partridge Family (1970–1974), which wis still in production when the film wis made. An aa, Ferdin an Lynde baith appeared on The Paul Lynde Show, anither ABC sitcom creatit to fill the contract of Bewitched[3] Bonaduce, Lynde, Gerber, Messick, an Stephenson haed previously worked for Hanna-Barbera in thair telly shows: Lynde appeared in The Perils of Penelope Pitstop (uncredited), Bonaduce an Gerber war stars in Partridge Family 2200 A.D., an Stephenson an Messick war Hanna-Barbera reglars that lent thair vyces to mony of thair shows on the reglar.

Production[eedit | eedit soorce]

Efter the studio decidit tae mak the film, Joe Barbera visited E. B. White in Maine. White hielichtit pairts o the book he did nae want tae chynge, an pairts "subject to discussion."[4]

Barbera wrote that Debbie Reynolds cried him an said that she wis willin to jyne the project even wioot bein peyed.[4]

White discussed the makin o the film wi Gene Deitch, a director of animation an friend of his.[5]

Czech painter Mirko Hanák produced unused artwork o the film afore dying of leukemia.[6]

Release[eedit | eedit soorce]

Template:Multiple issues The film wis released tae theaters on Mairch 1, 1973, bi Paramount Pictures in the United States. It haed a leemitit release on Februar 22, 1973, in New York City, an an aa released in West Germany on Mairch 30, 1973, as well as August 11 in Swaden, August 25 in Japan, an September 4, 1981, in Australia.

Home media[eedit | eedit soorce]

The film wis first released on VHS in 1979, followed bi three mair releases in 1988, 1993, an 1996. It made its DVD debut in 2001. A seicont DVD release o the film wis released in 2006.

Reception[eedit | eedit soorce]

Charlotte's Web received generally positive reviews. Review aggregation site Rotten Tomatoes reportit that it haes a 75% approval rating based on 20 reviews, wi an average score of 6.6/10.[7] Craig Butler of Aw-Movie Guide criticized the animation an the muisical score, but cried it a faithful adaptation, notin that "no attempt has been made to soften the existential sadness at the story's core".[8] Dan Jardine criticized the sangs an the "Saturday morning cartoon quality" o the animation, but an aa says that Hamner "retains just enough of White’s elegant prose in the dialogue and narration to keep the film from being simply a painfully well-intended experiment."[9] Christopher Null of stated that the animation is whiles "downright bad", but that White's classic fable needs little to mak it come to life.[10] When it wis reissued on DVD it wis awairdit an Oppenheim Toy Portfolio Gowd Awaird.[11]

The film is recognised bi American Film Institute in thir lists:

E.B. White's reaction[eedit | eedit soorce]

Accordin to Gene Deitch, White wrote the follaein words in a 1977 letter, "We have never ceased to regret that your version of 'Charlotte's Web' never got made. The Hanna-Barbera version has never pleased either of us ... a travesty ..."[13] E. B. White an aa wrote o the film, "The story is interrupted every few minutes so that somebody can sing a jolly song. I don't care much for jolly songs. The Blue Hill Fair, which I tried to report faithfully in the book, has become a Disney World, with 76 trombones. But that's what you get for getting embroiled in Hollywood."[14] He haed previously turned doun Disney when thay offered to mak a film based on his book.[15] Accordin to its writer, Earl Hamner Jr., White — that whiles offert advice an suggestions tae the filmmakers — wad hae preferred Mozart in it, rather than the muisic o the Sherman Brothers.[16]

Sequel[eedit | eedit soorce]

A direct-to-video sequel titled Charlotte's Web 2: Wilbur's Great Adventure wis released in 2003. The sequel centers on Wilbur's relationship wi a lonely lamb named Cardigan an an aa shows Charlotte's childer as adolescents. Reviews for the sequel war generally unfavorable, wi critics panning its animation an plot.

Soundtrack[eedit | eedit soorce]

  1. "There Must Be Something More"
  2. "I Can Talk!"
  3. "Chin Up!"
  4. "We've Got Lots in Common"
  5. "Deep in the Dark/Charlotte's Web"
  6. "Mother Earth and Father Time"
  7. "A Veritable Smorgasbord"
  8. "Zuckerman's Famous Pig"

"Zuckerman's Famous Pig"[eedit | eedit soorce]

"Zuckerman's Famous Pig" is the title that saves Wilbur, the pig hero, frae bein slaughtered in the story. It is the theme o the finale song in the film. It wis componed an arranged in a barbershop quartet style bi the Sherman Brothers, in keepin wi the time an place o the story.[17] It wis covered bi the Brady Kids an wis chosen for release on thair first single taken frae The Brady Bunch Phonographic Album bi producer Jackie Mills.[18]

See also[eedit | eedit soorce]

References[eedit | eedit soorce]

  1. "Big Rental Films of 1973", Variety, Januar 9, 1974, pg 19.
  4. a b Barbera, Joseph (1994). My Life in 'toons: From Flatbrush to Bedrock in Under a Century. Atlanta, GA: Turner Publishing. pp. 228–29. ISBN 1-57036-042-1.
  5. Gene Deitch (2001). "How to Succeed in Animation: Chapter 29: The Charlotte Papers". Animation World Network. Retrieved 5 August 2015.
  6. Gene Deitch (2001). "How to Succeed in Animation: Chapter 30: Charlotte's Web Graphics". Animation World Network. Retrieved 5 August 2015.
  7. "Charlotte's Web (1973) - Rotten Tomatoes". Flixster. Retrieved 4 Februar 2012. Italic or bold markup not allowed in: |publisher= (help)
  8. Butler, Craig. "Charlotte's Web: Review". All-Movie Guide. Macrovision Corporation. Retrieved 28 Januar 2009.
  9. Jardine, Dan. "Charlotte's Web". Apollo Guide. Apollo Communications Ltd. Archived frae the original on 6 December 2008. Retrieved 28 Januar 2009.
  10. Null, Christopher (2001). "Charlotte's Web (1973)". Archived frae the original on 12 Februar 2009. Retrieved 28 Januar 2009.
  11. "Early School Years: Feature-Length Films". Oppenheim Toy Portfolio. Archived frae the original on 26 October 2011. Retrieved 22 Apryle 2009.
  12. "AFI's 10 Top 10 Nominees" (PDF). Archived frae the original (PDF) on 16 Julie 2011. Retrieved 19 August 2016. Unknown parameter |deadurl= ignored (help)
  13. Gene Deitch (2001). "How to Succeed in Animation: Chapter 28: A Tangled Web". Animation World Network. Retrieved 27 September 2008.
  14. Burr, Ty (10 December 2006). "Bard of the barn". The Boston Globe. Retrieved 27 September 2008.
  15. Clark, Beverly Lyon (2003). Kiddie Lit: The Cultural Construction of Children's Literature in America. The Johns Hopkins University Press. p. 178. ISBN 0-8018-8170-6.
  16. Holleran, Scott (22 December 2006). "Interview: Earl Hamner". Box Office Mojo. Retrieved 16 December 2008.
  17. Richard Chigley Lynch (26 Juin 1989). Movie Musicals on Record. ISBN 978-0-313-26540-2.
  18. Kim Cooper; David Smay; Jake Austen (1 Juin 2001). Bubblegum Music is the Naked Truth. ISBN 978-0-922915-69-9.

Freemit airtins[eedit | eedit soorce]

Template:Charlotte's Web Template:Sherman Brothers Template:H-B films