Poster - Ali Baba and the 40 Thieves

Ali Baba and the 40 Thieves must be the next anime film that is tackled by the fansub community.  If someone would just put the raw video online, that would be a terrific improvement over the US dubbed version we have, an old VHS of Ali Baba's Revenge.  At least the dub is pretty good.

Hayao Miyazaki's memoirs, Starting Point, includes an interview from 1984 where he discusses his career to that point.  He said the following about his involvement with Ali Baba and the 40 Thieves and the state of Toei Doga in 1971:

Ali Baba and the Forty Thieves was hopeless; I changed the entire storyboard thinking that I'd make my part interesting.  I made it too interesting, and it seemed like the whole movie was over when my scene ended.

In those days, Toei Animation's feature-length movies were divided into A-films and B-films.  The length and budget were different.  Robin and Cyborg 009, if I remember correctly, were B-films.  Ali Baba and Flying Ghost Ship were also B-films.  A-films consisted of 50,000 pages or so, at two frames.  Puss in Boots, Animal Treasure Island, and Horus, Prince of the Sun were A-films.  We had high expectations for Animal Treasure Island, but in box office terms it lost out to Ultraman or some such film [laughs].  So A-films died off.  That was the end of the era of two-frame animation.

...When Animal Treasure Island didn't do so well and we realized A-films were doomed, our hopes were shattered.  So I thought, "Eh, what the hell," when doing Ali Baba.  The story was terrible.  I was able to work on it without a single hour of overtime.


ObiJuan said...

Back in the late 70's I enjoyed this cartoon/movie a lot the spanish dub of it is hilarious, most of the translation pretty sure is not even close to the original since they accomodated regional pop/culture knowledge of the time, if youn were a kid in Mexico during that time period you will get the jokes but that is as much as acurate as I think they were able to release it here in America.

Anonymous said...

The poster looks very good, specially for children. I like it.

Daniel Thomas MacInnes said...

This is definitely a movie that kids would like. It's very wacky and zany and there are some great chases. It's much closer to American cartoons like Tom and Jerry or Looney Tunes than typical anime. It's such a shame that it's not available here on DVD.

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