Before bursting onto the scene with films like Beetlejuice and Batman, Tim Burton directed a handful of short films, many of which have been included as bonus features on the DVD releases of his movies. One short which has never seen release, however, is Burton’s take on Hansel and Gretel, which aired only once on the Disney Channel before vanishing forever.
Featuring special effects work by Stephen Chiodo, who went on to direct Killer Klowns from Outer Space, the live-action 45-minute TV movie was apparently deemed too frightening by Disney Channel executives, who ensured that it would never air again after its initial premiere.
Since then the short was thought to be lost, one of the few Tim Burton films that even his most die-hard fans had never seen.
All these years later, a video of the film has finally surfaced over on YouTube, thanks to a fan who managed to capture it on a VHS tape on that night back in 1982.
“This is Burton’s unique, twisted, Burtonesque version of the classic Grimm Fairy Tale featuring an all Asian cast,” reads the video’s description. “Hansel and Gretel are the two children of a poor toymaker, whose evil stepmother wishes to do away with them to avoid starving. After being intentionally led away in the woods, they come across a gingerbread house attended to by a bizarre, but seemingly nice old hag with a candy cane nose, who turns out to have evil designs for our heroes!”
Check out the newly discovered film below, which serves as an interesting insight into the early talents of a young Tim Burton.
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