Because of an FCC ruling in 1971 declaring networks could no longer syndicate programs they produced themselves, National Telefilm Asscociates (NTA) purchased the syndication rights for "Kimba" from NBC; this arrangement lasted until late September 1978. In the interim, however, two negative developments arose: (1) Mushi Productions, the animation company behind "Kimba," went out of business (bankruptcy) in June 1973; and (2) because of heightened "political correctness," some viewers were offended by the portrayal of a few human characters. With regard to Mushi's bankruptcy, however, NBC (carrying out orders from Japan) instructed NTA at the end of their "Kimba" syndication duties in 1978 to return all syndication prints, etc. of "Kimba" to NBC's New York offices; the prints and all other "Kimba" - related material were then stored away in NBC's warehouse "until further notice." In early 2005, however, after many years of waiting, Right Stuf Home Video secured the DVD rights to the entire "Kimba" series (presumably, the late Osamu Tezuka, an animator at Mushi who later formed his own Tezuka Productions company, held the rights to the "Kimba" characters after Mushi went under), and, to the delight of many fans, finally released all 52 original "Kimba" episodes - digitally remastered, of course - in an "Ultra" DVD collectors' box set in June of that year. See more »
I remember this Japanese import when it was aired in the 1960s. I honestly tried to watch the show, but couldn't because it seemed pretty stupid to me at age 7. It just seemed like it was made for 4 or 5 year-olds and I was "too cool" to keep watching it. The stories and animation just weren't very well made.
Interestingly enough, though, I was totally surprised when I realized that Disney completely stole the story of Kimba for THE LION KING! Why would Disney bother to steal such a crappy cartoon? Well, for whatever reasons, the similarities are too strong for there to be any other conclusion than they stole it. Take a look:
KIMBA-- -a white lion who SHOULD be the king of the jungle but was forced to run when his father was murdered -the name "kimba" rhymes with "simba" -the bad lion's sidekicks are hyenas -the lion has a girlfriend and friends much like Simba's
The similarities go on from there, but I can't remember them all. All I know for sure is that there are unconfirmed stories that Disney later paid the Japanese producers an undisclosed amount of money to make any lawsuits disappear. For more info, try this web page: http://www.kimbawlion.com/rant2.htm
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