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The Censored Eleven is a term referring to 11 pre-1948 a.a.p.-owned, Merrie Melodies and one Looney Tune, shorts that were taken out of circulation by United Artists, (by then the owners of the pre-1948 Looney Tunes and Merrie Melodies cartoons) in 1968 due to racial stereotyping from United States television. In these cartoons, racial themes are so prominent in the cartoons that the copyright holders believe that no amount of selective editing could ever make them acceptable for distribution.
Dubbed versions exist for every pre-1948 cartoon, but it is unknown if the Censored Eleven have dubbed versions. The Censored 11 have a.a.p. prints, like all other cartoons at the time.
Censored Eleven list
The cartoons featured in the Censored Eleven are:
- Hittin' the Trail to Hallelujah Land (1931, directed by Rudolph Ising)
- Sunday Go to Meetin' Time (1936, directed by Friz Freleng)
- Clean Pastures (1937, directed by Freleng)
- Uncle Tom's Bungalow (1937, directed by Tex Avery)
- Jungle Jitters (1938, directed by Freleng)
- The Isle of Pingo Pongo (1938, directed by Avery)
- All This and Rabbit Stew (1941, directed by Avery)
- Coal Black and de Sebben Dwarfs (1943, directed by Robert Clampett)
- Tin Pan Alley Cats (1943, directed by Clampett)
- Angel Puss (1944, directed by Chuck Jones)
- Goldilocks and the Jivin' Bears (1944, directed by Freleng)
- Angel Puss is the only Looney Tunes entry in the Censored Eleven. The other ten shorts are in the Merrie Melodies series.
- Goldilocks and the Jivin' Bears is the only one to be not produced by Leon Schlesinger. It was also the first cartoon to be produced by Eddie Selzer.
- Hittin' the Trail for Hallelujah Land is the only black and white short on the list. All the others are in color.
- Hittin' the Trail for Hallelujah Land was the only Piggy cartoon on the list. The Isle of Pingo Pongo was the only Egghead cartoon on the list, and All This and Rabbit Stew was the only Bugs cartoon on the list. The other eight on this list are one-shot cartoons.
- Friz Freleng directed the most cartoons on the list (4 cartoons in the list), followed by Tex Avery (3 cartoons in the list), Bob Clampett (2 cartoons in the list) and lastly, Rudolf Ising and Chuck Jones (with only 1 cartoon each in the list).
Official DVD release
TCM showed 8 of these in 2010 at the Egyptian Theater in Hollywood, for a possible DVD release. The 3 that were not shown were Jungle Jitters, Angel Puss, and All This and Rabbit Stew.
At the New York Comic Con in October 2010, Warner Bros. confirmed that an uncut DVD release of the Censored Eleven via the Warner Archives would come soon. However, on December 1st, animation expert Jerry Beck announced that WB was planning to just go ahead with a traditional retail release, which would feature the Censored Eleven, fully restored, as well as some other rare cartoons and bonus material. As of March 2012, this has not come to fruition. However, on August 10, 2016, Jerry Beck mentioned that the WB market is too dead for DVD releases.
He said, from an email, "None of those announced DVDs are coming out. Warner Bros. considers the DVD market dead for classic cartoons. There are no plans for further DVDs or Blu-rays featuring classic cartoons. I am talking to Warner Archive and maybe at some point they will release some older MGM or WB cartoons, but there are no plans to do so at this time."