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Charlotte's Web (1973)

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A gentle and wise grey spider with a flair for promotion pledges to save a young pig from slaughter for dinner food.

Directors:

Charles A. Nichols (as Charles Nichols), Iwao Takamoto

Writers:

E.B. White (book), Earl Hamner Jr. (story)
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1 win. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Debbie Reynolds ... Charlotte (voice)
Paul Lynde ... Templeton (voice)
Henry Gibson ... Wilbur (voice)
Rex Allen ... Narrator (voice)
Martha Scott ... Mrs. Arable (voice)
Dave Madden ... Ram (voice)
Danny Bonaduce ... Avery Arable (voice)
Don Messick ... Jeffrey (voice)
Herb Vigran ... Lurvy (voice)
Agnes Moorehead ... The Goose (voice)
Pamelyn Ferdin ... Fern Arable (voice) (as Pam Ferdin)
Joan Gerber Joan Gerber ... Edith Zuckerman / Mrs. Fussy (voice)
Bob Holt ... Homer Zuckerman (voice) (as Robert Holt)
John Stephenson ... Mr. Arable / Parking Officer (voice)
William B. White William B. White ... Henry Fussy (voice)
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Storyline

Based on the beloved children's novel by E.B. White, this is the story of a little pig named Wilbur who was born a runt. Mr. Arable decides to kill him for dinner food but his daughter Fern begs him to let him live. On greater maturity, Wilbut is sold to Fern's uncle, Homer L. Zuckerman, in whose barnyard he's left yearning for friendship, but is snubbed by other barn animals. Wilbur is scared of the end of the season, because he knows that come that time, he will end up on the dinner table. He hatches a plan with Charlotte, a gentle and wise grey spider that lives in his pen, to ensure that this will never happen. Written by Murray Chapman <muzzle@cs.uq.oz.au>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

The all-time best selling novel is now a captivating motion picture. See more »


Certificate:

G | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

1 March 1973 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

E.B. White's Charlotte's Web See more »

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Box Office

Gross USA:

$5,232,000
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (RCA Sound Recording)| Mono (1939 re-release)| Mono (1935 re-release)| Mono (MovieTone)| Mono | Mono (Mono)

Color:

Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Joseph Barbera gave away framed cells to several of his animators as a memento. See more »

Goofs

In the beginning there are ten piglets suckling from John Arable's sow then when the runt appears there are nine. It happens again when John picks up the runt, planning to kill it, until Fern comes outside to rescue it. See more »

Quotes

Narrator: [we hear a rooster crow and a cow moo]
[first lines]
Narrator: This old world is filled with wonders, but to me there is no place more wonderful than a farm in springtime, when the sun is just lifting from the sky line. The air is so sweet and everywhere you look, little miracles are happening. Buds swell into blossoms, eggs hatch, young are born.
[shows duck and ducklings swimming in puddle]
Narrator: Everything's off to a fresh start, and life is good and busy and brand new.
[hen and chicks pass by]
Narrator: Around the ...
[...]
See more »

Alternate Versions

Before the 2000s, international VHS releases outside of the USA show a deleted scene right after Avery and Lurvy spot Jeffery trying to get in Wilbur's crate. Here, it also shows Jeffery trying and failing to catch up with the truck before it heads to the fair. His mother then proceeds to lead her disappointed gosling to the pond for a swimming lesson. It is unknown if this scene was shown during the film's original theatrical release, but for some reason, this scene was removed from subsequent VHS and DVD releases. However, the scene was known to appear on occasional TV airings. See more »

Connections

Referenced in I Love the '70s (2003) See more »

Soundtracks

I Can Talk
Music and Lyrics by Richard M. Sherman and Robert B. Sherman
Performed by Henry Gibson
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Some Great Songs
10 September 2000 | by Greg-200See all my reviews

I was surprised to find that other reviewers here, especially an admirer of other Sherman & Sherman songs such as those in Mary Poppins, would find the songs in Charlotte's Web to be "inane", "not well written", "worst songs ever penned for a movie", etc.

Perhaps it's largely because the first song, "You and Me" (6:37) really is unpleasantly syrupy sweet and in the worst early 1970's sort of way, and one of the last ones, "Some Pig" (1:19:40), is a somewhat annoying marching band song that only a small child could really enjoy.

Some of the others aren't great either -- "Charlotte's Web" (38:15) and "Mother Earth and Father Time" (54:27, and reprised at 1:25:35) are both on the cloying side and unrewarding, and for adults require either patience or the fast-forward button.

But good musicals are measured by their best songs, not their worst. Bearing in mind that this is a children's movie, "Chin Up" (22:36) is absolutely magnificent and easily ranks with Sherman & Sherman's best work. "I Can Talk" (15:12) and "Lots in Common" (30:50) are both excellent and timeless. "Veritable Smorgasbord" (58:50, and reprised at 1:11:36) is a lot of fun, though its fun depends a lot on the story, animation, and Lynde's hysterical singing; it wouldn't stand on its own quite as well as the others.

Some of them are compromised to varying degrees by the goofy farmyard animal voices singing the songs, but only the most brain-dead Philistine would let that get in the way of enjoying a great children's song.

For those reviewers who disliked the songs, it would be interesting to watch their faces while listening to "Chin Up" a couple times in a room full of children (after all, this is a children's movie), and then listen to them read their own words. I don't know how they could keep a straight face.


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