“Let her be mine and mine alone” | The Hunchback of Notre Dame (1996)

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In 1831 Parisian publisher Gosselin released Notre-Dame de Paris, the first full-length novel by author Victor Hugo. It is a dark, overtly sexual tragedy set in 15th century Paris, in which a gypsy performer named Esmerelda becomes the target of Notre Dame’s conflicted and laviscious Archdeacon Claude Frollo. He sends his adopted son, the orphaned hunchback Quasimodo, to kidnap Esmerelda – only Quasimodo falls in love with her and refuses to obey Frollo’s commands. Meanwhile Esmerelda seems most interested in city guard captain Phoebus, so Frollo arranges to have Phoebus murdered and Esmerelda hanged for the crime. By the novel’s conclusion Esmerelda is executed on Frollo’s orders, Frollo himself has been fatally thrown from the bell tower of Notre Dame cathedral and a heartbroken Quasimodo has starved himself to death.

162 years later directors Gary Trousdale and Kirk Wise set about the task of adapting this dark, sensual near-six hundred page novel into a family friendly animated musical for Walt Disney Pictures. It is one of the most bizarre creative choices I have seen: bizarre that someone had the idea, bizarre that they actually developed it to pitch, bizarre that Disney executives Frank Wells, Michael Eisner and Jeffrey Katzenberg greenlit it for production, bizarre that it actually made it into cinemas and most of all bizarre that it reached the screen with so much of its tragedy, violence, Catholicism and deep-seeded sexual obsessions intact.

It is an outstanding achievement in feature film animation, but there’s no questioning the fact that it is about the strangest animated film ever released by the Walt Disney Company. It simply defies rational explanation.

Early development

The original idea to adapt Hunchback came from Disney development executive David Stain. When he took the idea to Disney’s studio chair Jeffrey Katzenberg, it was Katzenberg who decided to enlist directors Gary Trousdale and Kirk Wise – who had recently finished working on Beauty and the Beast. Following Beauty and the Beast Gary Trousdale had taken the opportunity to take a break from directing, instead spending several months developing storyboards for The Lion King. He and Kirk Wise subsequently attempted developing an animated feature based on the Greek myth of Orpheus, adapting it to make the central character a whale and setting it in the open ocean. The concept obstinately refused to pull together, but while they were working on the project they were summoned to meet with Katzenberg.

‘During that time,’ explained Trousdale, ‘while we working on it, we got a call from Jeffrey. He said, “Guys, drop everything – you’re working on Hunchback now.”’ [1]

By the time Trousdale and Wise were appointed to direct The Hunchback of Notre Dame both composer Alan Menken and lyricist Stephen Schwartz had also been convinced to join the nascent project. Menken had worked with the directors on Beauty and the Beast. Schwartz had recently collaborated with Menken on Pocahontas, replacing Menken’s former song-writing partner – the late Howard Ashman. Menken would later cite Hunchback as his most ‘artistically ambitious’ score for Disney. [2]

To understand why Disney would pursue such a dark, mature text for an animated feature, it is worth looking on the films it had been producing in the preceding years. For much of the 1980s the Walt Disney Animation Studio was in a rut, forced to find co-production partners to afford its animated films and failing to find a mass audience through a string of misfires and under-performers: The Fox and the Hound (1981), The Black Cauldron (1985), The Great Mouse Detective (1986) and Oliver and Company (1988). In 1989 they suddenly managed to score a major hit with The Little Mermaid, which managed to both earn $200 million dollars in cinemas and revive critical interest in Disney’s animated films.

Trousdale and Wise’s Beauty and the Beast (1991) took Disney to unprecedented heights. Not only did it gross $150 million dollars in the USA alone, it also became the first animated film to be nominated for the prestigious Academy Award for Best Picture. To come so close to winning the award had a profound effect on several key figures within the company – notably studio chair Jeffrey Katzenberg. He set about looking for a property that could not just get a second Best Picture nomination, but win it as well.

Because of the long lead time required to animate a full length feature, upcoming films such as Aladdin (1992) and The Lion King (1994) were too far along in their production schedule to be suitable for Katzenberg’s needs. He instead turned his attention to potential films that would be released in the years afterwards, and ensuring they were crafted into unusually mature, adult-friendly dramas. His first attempt was 1995’s Pocahontas, the first of Disney’s features to be based on a real-life historical figure. While beautifully animated, the finished film seemed so concerned with being worthy and respectable that it came across as fairly static, cold and unlikeable. It seems extremely likely that his second attempt was The Hunchback of Notre Dame.

Tab Murphy (Gorillas in the Mist) was hired to develop a story treatment. Hunchback marked the beginning of a long professional relationship between Murphy and Walt Disney Animation Studios: he would subsequently write or co-write the screenplays for Tarzan (1999), Atlantis: The Lost Empire (2001) and Brother Bear (2003).

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The Hunchback of Notre Dame was formally pitched to Walt Disney executives in November 1993. Accompanying the directors and story heads were composer Alan Menken and lyricist Stephen Schwartz, who performed early versions of the film’s proposed songs. Schwartz said: ‘After Alan Menken and I had been working on Pocahontas for about a year and it was clear that the project and collaboration were going well, the folks at Disney offered us a choice of a couple of ideas they had been developing as a follow-up. We more or less immediately chose Hunchback of Notre Dame.’ [3]

While there were clear concerns about the film’s dark themes and tone, the project was given a tentative green light – on the condition that the film did not overplay the overt Catholicism of Hugo’s original work.

One of the first changes made to accommodate Disney’s request was to turn the villainous Claude Frollo into a judge rather than an archdeacon, thus reducing the number of religious undertones in the finished film. Another was, unsurprisingly, the film’s conclusion. While Frollo’s death was retained – and, indeed, made even more horrific – both Quasimodo and Esmerelda were spared their fates and given a happy ending. This revised ending was based in part on Victor Hugo’s own libretto to a Hunchback opera, in which he had allowed Captain Phoebus to save Esmerelda from her execution.

‘We knew it would be a challenge to stay true to the material,’ said Wise, ‘while still giving it the requisite amount of fantasy and fun most people would expect from a Disney animated feature. We were not going to end it the way the book ended, with everybody dead.’ [4]

‘We had an extra year that we didn’t have on Beauty,’ said Trousdale, ‘so it was a little more relaxed that way. Rather than a vague concept – you know, Beauty and the Beast has so many different versions of it going back to Roman times and Greek mythology all the way through to the classic Jean Cocteau version and everything else – Hunchback of Notre Dame was, you know, Victor Hugo: here’s the book.’ [5]

With most of Disney’s animators busy working on Pocahontas and The Lion King, many new animators were hired from Canada and the United Kingdom to join the nascent production. The production team was housed in a warehouse facility in Glendale, California, while the development process got underway.

The directors watched all of the previous film adaptations of the novel, to see how each production team had gone about adapting the novel. The art team made several visits to Paris, where artists took numerous photographs of Notre Dame Cathedral for research purposes.

Creating the cast

Quasimodo was a difficult protagonist for the production team to develop. In the novel the character was deaf, physically deformed and an unlikeable social outcast. While the Disney version had his hearing restored, he still needed to be deformed – it’s in the title – and simultaneously be an appealing lead that audiences would like. Finding the balance between the grotesque and the heroic would take the film’s design team eight months. In one particular respect, the Disney adaptation translated Quasimodo more accurately to the screen than any previous movie version. In most films, the hunchback was portrayed as a middle-aged character, whereas in the Disney film (and the novel) Quasimodo is much younger.

To provide Quasimodo’s voice, Wise and Trousdale turned to acclaimed British actor Tom Hulce, who had been nominated for an Academy Award for his performance in Amadeus (1984). Hulce also provided the character’s singing voice. ‘It was hard for me,’ he said, ‘I’d never done anything that was just standing in front of a microphone in a little glass booth.’ [6]

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The film’s female lead, the gypsy dancer Esmerelda, presented a different sort of challenge. The initial designs for the character were seen as tooattractive and sensual, and the art team were instructed to tone down her sexualised appearance and ensure she was fully clothed at all time. It can’t help but be noticed, however, that in the final released film she is still the only Disney heroine to perform a pole dance.

Esmerelda was voiced by Demi Moore. She was specifically courted for the role based on her distinctive husky voice. Following the recording of her lines for Hunchback, and before Hunchback’s theatrical release, Moore starred in the risqué drama Striptease (1996). While this film was unrelated to Walt Disney Pictures or Hunchback (it was a Warner Bros production), the strip dancing and nudity in Striptease nonetheless gave conservative religious and family group fresh ammunition with which to accuse Walt Disney Pictures of licentiousness and moral corruption.

The guard captain Phoebus was reimagined into a considerable more likeable character compared to the book. He was also given a unique look among Walt Disney’s animated romantic leads: Wise and Trousdale insisted upon giving him a beard. This conflicted with a long-standing rule within the company that had been championed by Jeffrey Katzenberg: male characters were not allowed to have facial hair. The directors had to fight to keep their preferred Phoebus design. ‘There was some discussion,’ said Trousdale, ‘that he was not handsome enough.’ [7]

Phoebus was played by Oscar-winning actor Kevin Kline, another noted performer with a distinctive and evocative voice. The use of famous actors to perform roles in animated films had always been a factor in Hollywood’s animation industries. Disney’s own The Adventures of Ichabod and Mr Toad (1949), for example, used both Basil Rathbone and Bing Crosby. In recent years, however, the practice gained a new currency. The casting of Robin Williams as the Genie in Aladdin had resulted in a burst of publicity and increased box office. It was clear that using famous actors allowed animated films to be marketed at adults as well as families and children. As a result Disney and its competitors began using more and more stars to bolster their marketing. The Lion King had featured James Earl Jones, Jeremy Irons and Matthew Broderick, while Pocahontas was promoted heavily on the back of co-star Mel Gibson. In Kline and Moore Disney had yet another marketing ‘hook’; one they were keen to exploit when taking the finished film to market.

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In Parisian judge Claude Frollo, Wise and Trousdale found the most disturbing villain in the history of Walt Disney Pictures. Not only officious, callous, manipulative and racist, they decided to give him a contradictory lust for Esmerelda. Their primary inspiration for the character came from Amon Goeth, the monstrous Nazi commandant in Steven Spielberg’s Schindler’s List who would shoot Jews from his balcony while engaging in an affair with his Jewish housemaid. According to Hunchback’s supervising animator James Baxter, Frollo made ‘the people upstairs freak. He’s not just a power-hungry megalomaniac – he’s lustful.’ [8]

Frollo was designed by animator Kathy Zielinski. ‘The very first hook I got for Frollo,’ she said, ‘was Hans Conreid. I study a lot of different faces in movies, real life, or whatever. I do some caricatures of these faces to start developing something. Frollo’s design came out of Hans Conreid, based on his appearance in The 5,000 Fingers of Dr T.’ [9]

Frollo was played by theatrical actor Tony Jay. ‘He’s similar to Anthony Hopkins in The Silence of the Lambs,’ said Jay. ‘He controls by a look. He wants to control everyone, except himself.’ The actor added: ‘I wanted to inject a little bit of humour into him; archness is probably a better word. There was a real sense of irony in the writing, and I just embroidered and enhanced that a little.’ [10]

There was considerable debate about Frollo’s death. While it was fairly traditional for Disney villains to die during a film’s climax few died as horribly as Frollo’s fall into molten metal from Notre Dame’s bell tower. For Gary Trousdale, it was the only sensible option: ‘We said, “it will not work if we ‘pants’ Frollo, or make his hat catch on fire.” He’s a horrible, horrible person.’ [11]

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Trousdale and Wise investigated the possibility of giving Quasimodo some sidekicks: characters with whom he could talk and process his thoughts while isolated in the bell tower of Notre Dame Cathedral. Initial concepts included Quasimodo befriending the birds that nested in the tower as well as the bells themselves – brought to life in a similar fashion to the talking furnishings of Beauty and the Beast. Ultimately they decided to create three gargoyles, ugly stone statues that would come to life and keep Quasimodo company when he was alone. As a tribute to three notable big screen Quasimodos, they named them Chaney, Laughton and Quinn (after actors Lon Chaney, Charles Laughton and Anthony Quinn, respectively).

Pop star and occasional actress Cyndi Lauper was the first voice artist hired for the film. A lifelong admirer of Disney, the singer leaped at the chance to play the part of Quinn – the most sensitive and heartfelt of the three gargoyles. Shortly afterwards Tracy Ullman Show co-star Sam McMurray was cast as the brash, crude Chaney.

The Walt Disney Pictures legal department objected to the proposed names of the gargoyles, fearing that the estates of Lon Chaney or Charles Laughton or the still-living Anthony Quinn might file a lawsuit over the use of their names. The Hunchback production team briefly toyed with naming the characters Lon, Charles and Anthony – which resulted in the same legal concern – before instead naming them Hugo, Victor and Laverne. The name Laverne was selected by Kirk Wise as a tribute to Andrews Sisters singer Laverne Andrews.

As the script developed, it was decided that the gargoyles Hugo and Laverne were not working sufficiently well. While Cyndi Lauper and Sam McMurray’s performances were widely admired, they did not appear to gel with the rest of the film. Laverne in particular, who had been portrayed as energetic and youthful, needed to come across as wiser and more mature. While replacement recording sessions were undertaken with Lauper and McMurray, the decision was reluctantly made to drop both performers and recast the roles.

McMurray was replaced with Seinfeld star Jason Alexander, who had previously voiced one of the villains in Disney’s direct-to-video feature The Return of Jafar. After toying with removing Laverne from the film altogether, the production team re-envisaged the character in the vein of a crazy grandmother. Mary Wickes, who had most recently played the popular Sister Mary Lazarus in Disney’s 1994 comedy Sister Act 2, was cast in the part.

Tragedy struck the production on 22 October 1995 when Mary Wickes suddenly passed away, leaving several of her scenes as Laverne incomplete. Rather than completely re-cast the part (for the second time), former child actress Jane Withers filled in to record Wickes’ final six lines.

Animating a classic

The film’s powerful opening, in which Quasimodo’s mother is brutally murdered by Frollo in under four minutes and as part of a musical number, was the result of a tight collaboration between animators and composers. Stephen Schwartz said: ‘The storyboard artists, the Brizzi brothers, had done a series of drawings, and Alan and I incorporated them into the structure of the song, which we had decided to write for the character of Clopin acting as a narrator. We went back and forth with the artists a couple of times before the final structure was arrived at.’ [12]

The Brizzi brothers, Paul and Gaëtan, were to have a profound effect on the tone and aesthetic of The Hunchback of Notre Dame. They started their animation career working under acclaimed director Paul Grimault in the early 1970s. By the 1980s they were running their own Paris-based animation studio, directing the popular animated feature Asterix versus Caesar (1985) and contributing extensively to the Babar television series. In 1989 their studio was purchased by Disney Television, which was eager to expand its operations to cope with the rapid growth of Disney animated product. From 1990 the Brizzi brothers worked in various production and directing roles on Ducktales, Talespin and A Goofy Movie (1995). They also acted as joint general managers of their studio, now renamed Walt Disney Animation France. In early 1994 they were approached about contributing to The Hunchback of Notre Dame.

‘Gaëtan, myself, we say, What do we do?’ said Paul Brizzi. ‘We better forget our “hat” as general managers – it was too much administration for us. We will take the risk.’ [13]

The Brizzis arrived in Los Angeles in May 1994 and set about storyboarding seven key scenes for the film, including the crucial prologue and Frollo’s iconic “Hellfire” sequence. These sequences were then subsequently animated back in Paris under the supervision of producer Roy Conli. ‘Hunchback for us was a great experience,’ said Paul, ‘because we feel close to the black romanticism of Victor Hugo, which is full of power.’ [14]

The Brizzis’ contribution to The Hunchback of Notre Dame was enormous, as it was predominantly their sequences that delivered much of the darker, more gothic elements of the film. Without their input, it seems likely that Hunchback would not have come to the screen in quite as ominous and transgressive a way as it did.

The Brizzis have continued to work with Walt Disney on a number of projects, including directing the Firebird sequence of Fantasia 2000 and contributing extensively to Tarzan (1999).

To achieve large-scale crowd scenes, particularly for the film’s climax, computer animation was used to generate several hundred characters at a time. Computer-generated images (CGI) had been in use at Disney for some time, but with The Lion King a major breakthrough had been made. Rather than animate a frightened herd of wildebeest frame by frame, a software application generated each animal automatically and procedurally calculated their movement through a canyon. The result was a dynamic, impactful action sequence featuring more animals than would ever have been achieved using conventional pen-and-ink animation.

Trousdale and Wise had seen the wildebeest stampede in development, and hit on the idea of adapting to software to generate not animals but people. The resulting software allowed for vast crowds of people to appear throughout the film, particularly during the film’s climax where Quasimodo swings heroically over hundreds of people to rescue Esmerelda.

In the end approximately 600 artists contributed to the production of The Hunchback of Notre Dame across three separate studios in Los Angeles, Paris and Florida.

Into the fire

The finished film was far and away the darkest and most challenging animated feature that Walt Disney Animation Studios had ever produced. Disney films had always been fairly dark, as far back as Snow White and the Seven Dwarves for example, where Snow White runs through a demonic, shrieking forest. By comparison, however, The Hunchback of Notre Dame seems positively perverse. The first thing that happens in the entire movie is a hate crime. The central narrative is about the bigoted oppression of a minority group. The villain tries to burn the heroine at the stake, while in another scene the second male lead gets shot in the chest. There are scenes of sexual perversion and longing, violent torture, attempted hangings, religious hypocrisy and generous helpings of self-doubt and Catholic guilt. At one point an obsessive Frollo even reaches out to sniff at Esmerelda’s hair.

Far and away the most disturbing sequence in the film is “Hellfire”, a musical number in which Frollo sings about his passionate sexual longing for Esmerelda while rubbing her discarded scarf over his face.  While Frollo sings, he imagines illusory monks around him chanting the Catholic Confessional, as well as growing flames and a demonic, fiery apparition of Esmerelda dancing. ‘Like fire,’ Frollo sings, ‘hellfire, this fire in my skin. This burning desire is turning me to sin.’

Like much of the film’s score and songs, “Hellfire” is mostly composed in a minor key. This gives it an even darker and more oppressive tone than the animation would give it on its own.

The animation was primarily undertaken by Kathy Zielinski with the support of a visual effects team and working from a detailed series of storyboards. The visual imagery of flames, red-cloaked monks and a dancing Esmerelda form the latest in a long series of similar hallucinatory sequences in Disney animation. The tradition of the ‘drug trip’ sequence originated in Dumbo (1941) and its legendary “Pink Elephants on Parade” sequence, and had re-surfaced periodically through the numerous films that followed. As recently as 1994, The Lion King had featured its own surreal animated musical number (“I Just Can’t Wait to be King”). Despite continuing this tradition, Hunchback presented the bleakest and most disturbed scene of its kind so far, and to date nothing produced by Walt Disney since has come close to matching it.

Even at its conclusion, Hunchback refuses to pull its punches. Frollo falls to his death into a lake of boiling oil, while Esmerelda rejects Quasimodo in favour of the taller, more conventionally attractive Phoebus. The film shockingly defies expectation and convention. What is the ultimate message of this movie? For Quasimodo it seems that while beauty may come from within, sometimes ugly is simply too damned ugly. He does not get the girl, as is the Disney tradition, and must be content instead with the people of Paris no longer screaming and throwing rotten fruit at him.

Despite the dark, threatening tone of the film as a whole, Walt Disney’s marketing division advertised The Hunchback of Notre Dame as a relatively light-hearted movie. ‘Disney would have us believe,’ said Jason Alexander, ‘this movie’s like the Ringling Bros., for children of all ages, but I won’t be taking my four year-old.’ [15]

‘This could be a tough one,’ said one rival studio executive, speaking anonymously to the Los Angeles Times. ‘Basically you have a child (Quasimodo) held captive. Then there’s that whole handicap, societal misfit aspect. But you know Disney, if there’s a way to sell it, they’ll figure it out.’ [16]

Gary Trousdale said: ‘All the marketing at that time was “It’s a celebration! It’s a festival!”, and you’d go to Disneyland and they were throwing confetti around and had the gypsy parade.’ [17]

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The Hunchback of Notre Dame was released during a period when the Walt Disney Company was coming under fire from the USA’s ‘religious right’, with lobby groups and church coalitions appearing to find fault with everything the company released. The confirmation that Hunchback would openly feature Christianity, the Church and scenes of prayer gained the film considerable advance acclaim from these communities. The Reverend Lou Sheldon of the Traditional Values Coalition said ‘I am thrilled at what I hear about Hunchback, that Disney is seeking to honour Christianity and its role in Western civilization. I only pray that it will accomplish much good in the minds and hearts of its viewers.’ [18] PBS-based critic Michael Medved, however, was in a better position to comment, having actually seen the finished film. ‘This is not a film that is going to be reassuring to the religious community,’ he remarked. [19]

Upon release, The Hunchback of Notre Dame was highly divisive with critics. The New York Times’ Janet Maslin was dismissive: ‘Disney, having exhausted the entertainment value of teapots and candelabra, concocts dancing gargoyles who romp and wisecrack their way through the cathedral. It’s a wonder that the stained-glass windows don’t come to life.’ [20]

On the other hand Time magazine critic Richard Corliss claimed that ‘with The Hunchback of Notre Dame, directors Gary Trousdale and Kirk Wise (who made Beauty and the Beast) have splashed the broody emotions of Victor Hugo’s epic novel with a bold, dazzling palette.’ [21]

Despite its significant changes from the novel, Hunchback became a massive success in France, where many critics and audiences found resonance with a real-life incident from August 1995 where French police stormed a Parisian church and took away more than 200 illegal immigrants who were seeking sanctuary from deportation. ‘It is difficult not to think of the undocumented immigrants of St. Bernard when Frollo tries to sweep out the rabble,’ wrote one critic. [22]

Not all French viewers were happy. Victor Hugo’s descendants took to a French newspaper to condemn the film, accusing the Walt Disney Company of ‘commercial debauchery’. Their open letter remarked: ‘We believe that civilization should protect itself against the commercial looting and hijacking of great artistic works.’ [23]

It is not surprising that The Hunchback of Notre Dame received such a mixed response. It is a genuinely bizarre film, taking a gothic, lengthy and decidedly adult novel and adapting it into a 90 minute animated musical for families. The collision of style, tone and technique is, depending upon the perspective of the viewer, either jarring and ridiculous or provocative and striking. I am not entirely sure that the film can tolerate a middle ground.

For my own part, I am firmly in the latter camp: this is a fantastic, richly detailed animated film. It does not behave in the way Disney animated features are supposed to behave. It’s dark and cynical, and yet regularly punctures that darkness with moments of levity, lightness and hope (Quasimodo’s song “Out There” manages to do both darkness and light in the one number). It is, above all things, an untrustworthy film. We expect our animated heroes to win the day and win the girl. This hero almost dies. He does not win the girl. Said girl almost dies at the hand of a sexually obsessive religious zealot.

Even the gargoyles, easily the most jarring and Disney-esque element in the film, cannot fully be trusted. With one exception they only move when they’re alone with Quasimodo. Only he seems them as alive. It’s not entirely unreasonable to imagine that they don’t move at all, and that an isolated, abused Quasimodo simply hallucinates that they’re there.

The Hunchback of Notre Dame opened in American cinemas on 21 June 1996. In its theatrical run it grossed a little over US$100 million dollars, less than Pocahontas’ $144 million and a long way short of The Lion King’s $422 million. Internationally the film fared somewhat better, grossing US$225 million for a worldwide total of $325 million dollars. This large international gross, markedly larger than the one earned by Pocahontas, ultimately brought Hunchback’s takings within $20 million dollars of that film. While The Hunchback of Notre Dame was perhaps a commercial disappointment for Walt Disney – it was their lowest grossing animated feature since 1990’s The Rescuers Down Under – given the source material and tone it was to be honest about as good as Disney should have expected.

Regardless of its commercial fortunes, The Hunchback of Notre Dame remains a unique and fascinating animated feature: dark, strange, and absolutely one-of-a-kind.

 

REFERENCES

1. Quoted in “The Gary Trousdale interview”, The Animation Guild Blog, 12 October 2012.

2. Michael Bodey, “Alan Menken, top scorer”, The Australian, 9 October 2010.

3. Quoted in “Stephen Schwartz comments on Hunchback of Notre Dame”, http://www.stephenschwartz.com, accessed 23 January 2013.

4. Anne Thompson, “Playing a hunch”, Entertainment Weekly, 21 June 1996.

5. The Animation Guild Blog, 2012.

6. Thompson, 1996.

7. Thompson, 1996.

8. Thompson, 1996.

9. Dan Scapperotti, “Animated Villainy”, Cinemafantastique, July 1996.

10. Quoted in Disney Adventures, 31 July 1996.

11. The Animation Guild Blog, 2012.

12. http://www.stephenschwartz.com, accessed 2013.

13. John Canemaker, Paper Dreams: The Art and Artists of Disney Storyboards, Hyperion Books, New York, 1999.

14. Canemaker, 1999.

15. Thompson, 1996.

16. Judy Brennan, “Disney is ready for Hunchback protests”, Los Angeles Times, 16 June 1996.

17. The Animation Guild Blog, 2012.

18. Mark I. Pinsky, “Hunchback arrives at the right time for Disney”, Orlando Sentinel, 21 June 1996.

19. Pinsky, 1996.

20. Janet Maslin, “The Hunchback of Notre Dame”, New York Times, 21 June 1996.

21. Richard Corliss, “A Grand Cartoon Cathedral”, Time, 24 June 1996.

22. Craig R. Whitney, “A Disney cartoon becomes a morality play for Paris”, New York Times, 5 January 1997.

23. Quoted in “Hugo family upset at Disney about Hunchback film”, Sarasota Herald-Tribune, 11 March 1997.

  1. […] context. Fiction Machine is still pretty new –  it’s maiden essay on Disney’s Hunchback of Notre Dame was posted in early June and there’s only a handful of entries since then – but this […]

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