Danny DeVito loves the dark side of Disney movies

  • Bang Showbiz
  • 20 March 2019
Danny DeVito

Danny DeVito

'Dumbo' star Danny DeVito has admitted he prefers the "dark" side of Disney movies, and said it's fine scaring children in films as long as you help them "get down" again after "chasing them up a tree"

Danny DeVito prefers the "dark" side of Disney movies.

The 'Dumbo' actor – who plays circus ringmaster Max Medici in the new live action remake of the 1941 animated classic about the titular flying elephant – admitted he always enjoyed the scarier moments in films like 'Cinderella' and 'Snow White and the Seven Dwarves'.

Asked which Disney classic he wants to see rebooted for a modern audience, he told PEOPLE: "Well, 'Pinocchio'. What I like in the Disney movies, I really dig it when the witch give [Snow White] the apple.

"So that's my sensibility, I like that part of it, the dark part of it where you go, 'Oh man, no, don't eat that apple! This witch is gonna give her the apple, this sweet woman that I love, Snow White don't do it! Or Cinderella get locked in the [tower]... I love those moments!"

And the 74-year-old star shrugged off the idea such scenes could be "too dark" for children watching, and pointed to the big screen adaptation of Roald Dahl's 'Matilda' – in which he starred as the lead character's father Harry Wormwood – as an example of doing it the right way.

He explained: "The thing about it is, even in 'Matilda', people say it's too dark – you need that edge for the kids. In movie making, you chase them up a tree, you shake a stick at them, and you let them down again.

"In movie's like 'Matilda' or in 'Dumbo', you do that. You have to chase them up a tree but you give them a stepladder to get down so it's easier to navigate it."


  • 3 stars
  • 2019
  • US
  • 1h 52min
  • PG
  • Directed by: Tim Burton
  • Cast: Colin Farrell, Michael Keaton, Danny DeVito, Eva Green, Alan Arkin
  • UK release: 29 March 2019

In this remake of the 1941 film, one-armed circus worker Holt (Farrell) is struggling to reconnect with his bereft children while a certain large-eared pachyderm is figuring out the ropes. It looks lovely, but there’s a lot of extra plot shovelled in and it’s arguably overloaded, compared to the sincerity and simplicity…

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