Basically an elaborate marketing fan dance, the Disney company’s whole approach to video releases is based on the art of creating allure through elusiveness. For years now, Disney has been priming demand for titles by holding them back from video release, then finally making them available to stores for limited periods — then pulling them, and later rereleasing the same titles. But the company has out-Disneyed itself with Fantasia: Never before on video, the film will be available to stores for only and precisely 50 business days, starting Nov. 1. In the words of Disney chairman Jeffrey Katzenberg, ”It will be the first and last time the original Fantasia will ever be released” in any form.
It’s not that we don’t believe him, just because Disney’s animated Robin Hood has disappeared and reappeared twice in the past decade. But to double-check Katzenberg’s prediction, we telephoned a few leading psychics for their own readings on the future of Fantasia.
New York’s Madame Mediga (Yellow Pages ad — ”See the Woman Who Knows…Available for Parties”): ”I feel psychically that after 50 days Fantasia will not be seen again.”
Chicago’s Robert N. Crawford: ”My feeling is that this is a promotional gimmick, a good one. It’ll cause panic among the public. Within two to three months Disney will say, ‘Back by popular demand.”’
Dallas’ Madame Lynn ”I know it’ll return. Look at Gone With the Wind. After 50 years, they wrote a sequel.”