Almost 25 years on from Disney’s Aladdin, the classic animation is finally getting a digital upgrade. Aladdin: Diamond Edition will be released in a few days time on Blue Ray and to celebrate, the cast, director and composer reunited on Friday’s Good Morning America, promoting the new edition and paying tribute to the late Robin Williams who voiced the magnificent Genie.
As you can watch in the above clip, a wonderful, sugar coated surprise was in store for fans as the actors responsible for Aladdin and Princess Jasmine’s singing parts (Lea Salonga and Brad Kane) gave a special performance of the movie’s hit ‘A Whole New World’, accompanied by composer Alan Menken. Warning; this song that signified the moment when our favorite street urchin and Arabian Princess fell in love is guaranteed to cause sentimental gooyness and childhood nostalgia!
Disney’s 31st animated feature; Aladdin was originally released in 1992 and was the most successful film of this year. It’s award winning success prompting two sequels, an animated TV series and a Broadway musical. The standout role within the movie is undoubtedly Williams’ Genie, showcasing the comedic actor at his frenetic and spontaneous best. Among the special features included for the Diamond Edition is a nine minute collage of outtakes showing Williams hilarious voice work for the role that was written for him. Catch a glimpse of these clips (shared by the Hollywood Reporter) below:
Aladdin is soon to be getting another upgrade in the form of a live action prequel entitled Genies. Following the positive reception of Maleficent and Cinderella, this Aladdin adaptation is one of a number of projects lifted from Disney’s archives receiving the live action treatment. 2016 will see a remake of The Jungle Book and Alice In Wonderland sequel; Through The Looking Glass, followed by the star studded Beauty And The Beast in 2017. With even more planned, this could soon become known as Disney’s live action era.
Releasing this new edition will give those who treasured Aladdin as children a chance to share it with their own offspring ahead of the upcoming live action that is set to explore Genie’s origin and how he came to inhabit Aladdin’s lamp. It is likely those same fans will be concerned with how Disney plan to handle this character, made iconic by an irreplaceable actor. The choice will be to go in the route of homage, which could appear overtly sentimental or in poor taste. The alternative being a completely different take which could alienate their audience. Will Genies be the the project that displays the pitfalls of this relentless plundering of past material?
With never before seen material in addition to comprehensive special features from Aladdin‘s 2004 Platinum Edition, the Diamond Edition release should be a worthy inclusion for any Disney fan’s library and a bittersweet reminder of one of Williams’ greatest roles.
Aladdin: The Diamond Edition is being released on Blue Ray on October 13th 2015