A lot of films tried to steal Disney’s thunder in the 1990s, but none of them really succeeded. Some, however, left a more lasting impression than others. 1994’s The Swan Princess was one of the breakouts, retaining a cult following to this day….or at least more fans than Once Upon A Forest has right now. It received about 10,000 sequels in the heyday of direct-to-video movies, the last of which came out fairly recently.
The narrative is a basic fairy tale structure, loosely based on the ballet Swan Lake: an evil sorcerer wants to get rid of Princess Odette, so he lures her to a pond and turns her into a swan. She’s doomed there unless she can enlist the help of her animal friends Jean-Bob the frog, Speed the turtle and Puffin the bird, and somehow catch the attention of the prince who can break the spell. This film was the very last American animated feature to be created with traditional ink, paint and cels.
Now The Swan Princess is coming to 4K Blu-Ray in a remastered edition that will make its debut on the big screen at ArcLight Cinemas in Hollywood on October 24. Creator and producer Seldon Young will be there, and he’s pleased as punch his creation has endured for so long.
“For the restoration and remastering process we retrieved the vintage, vaulted negatives and set to work using the amazing advances in HD conversion technology, to create an even more vivid and stunning film than ever before,” boasts Young. “How has the legacy of our original THE SWAN PRINCESS film continued for 25 years? It’s all because of the fans, and now we’re so excited to share this beautifully restored version with them and new generations to come!”
The 4K version of The Swan Princess contains an all-new featurette called“A Look Back, Tease Ahead,” plus unspecified additional archival features. It’ll be available on Blu-Ray and digital October 29, just a few days after the premiere.