HBO Max has added a disclaimer in front of Mel Brooks' Blazing Saddles. The new disclaimer is similar to the one that the streaming platform put in front of Gone With the Wind, which was briefly pulled. It's unclear when HBO Max decided to throw the new introduction on to the comedy classic, though it must have been recently since the movie just started streaming in July. "The intro was added to ensure that the film was put into the proper social context," a spokesperson for HBO Max said.
TCM host Jacqueline Stewart puts Blazing Saddles in context in the new disclaimer. Stewart spends three minutes talking about the movie and even talks about Richard Pryor being up for the leading role. She says, "as the storyline implies the issue of race is front and center in Blazing Saddles. And racist language and attitudes pervade the film. But those attitudes are espoused by characters who are portrayed here as explicitly small-minded, ignorant bigots." She concludes by noting, "The real, and much more enlightened perspective, is provided by the main characters played by Cleveland Little and Gene Wilder."
Blazing Saddles is a satirical Western comedy directed by Mel Brooks. The story takes aim at American racism and how Hollywood covered it up by mythologizing the Wild West. The movie hit theaters in 1974 and stars Cleavon Little and Gene Wilder. The movie was written by Brooks, Andrew Bergman, Richard Pryor, Norman Steinberg, and Alan Uger, and was based on Bergman's story and draft. Blazing Saddles was generally well-received by critics when it came out, though it is now considered to be a cult classic. It was nominated for three Academy Awards and is ranked number 6 on the American Film Institute's 100 Years... 100 Laughs list.
Now, Blazing Saddles is getting a CG animated remake featuring dogs and cats. The new story will center on a dog who wants to be a samurai. He is later tricked by a cat into becoming sheriff of a town under his control, which is mostly populated with cats. The title is Blazing Samurai and it features the voice talents of Michael Cera, Samuel L. Jackson, Ricky Gervais, Djimon Hounsou, and Mel Brooks. The new take on the story was written by Ed Stone and Nate Hopper.
Blazing Saddles is a comedy classic and is often praised as one of Mel Brooks' best movies. In 2017, Brooks announced that he wanted to bring the story to the stage, though we haven't heard too much more on the project since then. In 2006, Blazing Saddles was deemed "culturally, historically, or aesthetically significant" by the Library of Congress and was selected for preservation in the National Film Registry, which solidifies its place in history. You can now stream the movie on HBO Max with an additional three-minute introduction. The Hollywood Reporter was the first to reveal the new introduction on HBO Max.