Happy birthday, Roger!: ‘Who Framed Roger Rabbit’ Special Blu-Ray Edition to be Released March 2013
Where can one find Mickey Mouse living next door to Dumbo and Betty Boop? Why, in Toon Town, of course! And when talking about Toon Town, one can hardly neglect to mention another famous inhabitant of that particular ‘burb – Roger Rabbit!
The Who Framed Roger Rabbit: 25th Anniversary Edition, comprised of a two-disc Blu-Ray/DVD combo pack, will be released on March 12, 2013. The film debuted in June 1988 and grossed an estimated $349,200,000 worldwide. Blending live-action footage with animation, the film was an instant hit. Film critic Roger Ebert himself praised the ambitious flick, saying “this movie is not only great entertainment but a breakthrough in craftsmanship – the first film to convincingly combine real actors and animated cartoon characters in the same space in the same time and make it look real.” It seems everyone agreed with Ebert’s assessment: the film won multiple Oscars, including (among others) best visual effects and special achievement in animation direction.
The release of the special Blu-ray/DVD combo isn’t the only special recognition Roger Rabbit has received recently: on December 15, the Disney Studios Ink & Paint Collection released a new limited-edition work titled “Hop On In, Jessica.” Jessica herself, was inked by hand by the Studios Ink & Paint team. The first 750 framed pieces sold with a likewise limited-edition pin.
Not many may realize it, but Who Framed Roger Rabbit? was actually based on a novel by author Gary Wolf entitled Who Censored Roger Rabbit?, which was published in 1981. While I wouldn’t recommend this book as bedtime reading for your kids, it is a “hare-raising” mystery with more than just a dash of cartoon hilarity. Wolf penned another Roger Rabbit book in 1991, Who P-p-p-plugged Roger Rabbit? This text can best be described as a spin off, as it doesn’t really function as a prequel to either the original book or the film, nor is it a sequel to either (although several elements of the characters established in the film are maintained in this story).
Roger is also popular, of course, in Disneyland’s famous ride Roger Rabbit’s Car Toon Spin. Disney describes the fun as follows:
Hop on a toon cab and embark on a turbulent taxi ride through the streets of Toontown. When your tires hit some “Dip” in the road, they start to dissolve! Your taxi then spins wildly out of control — sometimes with your help as you twist the wheel. And the inanimate objects laugh hysterically at your plight.
Are you “valiant” enough to enter Toon Town with Roger Rabbit and Eddie Valiant on Blu-ray this coming March? Watch out for the dreaded “dip,” and beware – you just might laugh yourself to death!