In 1992, the world was treated to a “whole new world” when Disney released an animated film with a character unlike no other. Though the project was called Aladdin, the real reason to watch the movie was to see and hear the antics of Robin Williams portraying the role of the blue Genie. The result turned out to be something different that Disney had never done before. Knowing how Williams like to improvise on the spot, the studio allowed Williams to come in and do his thing.
This month, Disney opened it’s famous “vault” to re-release Aladdin on Blu-Ray and digital HD for a new generation to discover this world and their parents to enjoy a little bit of what could have been. As with all Disney home releases, the studio always seems to manage to find something new to include in the extra features. This time, the studio is playing a tribute to Williams by adding a bunch of “outtakes” that the actor did for the movie that never made it in the final version.
Since Disney worked the actual animation after Williams’ taping of the script and adding his craziness to the scene, the clips are actually of Williams in the sound booth as opposed to finished animation that just wasn’t used. This may be a disappointment to some, but for others, it’s great to see how an actor works when they are just using their voice. If you close your eyes while listening to Williams, you can imagine what those scenes would have looked like.
Source: Shutterstock / Jorge Hackemann
In an interview on ABC’s Good Morning America, George Stephanopoulos interviewed directors John Musker and Ron Clements about their decision to use Williams with the cartoon. “We were totally walking down the plank. If he said no, we were going to be in big trouble because the whole concept was built around Robin,” said Musker.
Clements added: “There was nobody else who could be the Genie, and, fortunately, he agreed to do it. He had so much energy and so much passion.”