While it's nice to believe that scenes cut from animated movies are usually too silly or irreverent to be included, the truth is that some scenes are removed because they're deeply disturbing. While many Disney movies are already pretty creepy, these deleted scenes from cartoons take the horror to a whole new level. Sometimes, the cut scene is so bizarre that it's logical to conclude that the creators either lost sight of their audience, or just wanted to scare the crap out of them.
It's bad enough that Lilo's parents are dead, killing her favorite fish would be too painful to even imagine. It's also probably not a good idea to have Shan Yu murder somebody in Mulan, just after feeding a sweet little bird to a hawk. How some of these dark deleted scenes from animated movies were ever conceived is head-scratching, but yet here they all are.
The Black Cauldron does not feel like a Disney movie; its tone is uniformly dark. Even so, it could have been a lot worse. When the evil Horned King raises his undead army, a group of onlookers are swarmed, then killed offscreen. However, the original scene chose to showcase their slow demise.
In the uncut version, the poor souls are doomed to death the instant they come into contact with the undead soldiers, as a single touch causes their flesh to boil and melt away. Why creators even considered such a horrific sequence in a children's movie is a little inexplicable.
#72 on The Best Movies of 1985
Shan Yu is a bad dude; the story of Mulan makes that pretty clear. In case the part where he digs himself out of an avalanche didn't convince you of this, the creators made one particularly horrific scene to get their point across.
In the now-deleted scene, Shan Yu and his men raid a village, and the tyrant orders them to kill every living resident, regardless of species. When one of his soldiers tries to hide a little canary in his coat, Shan Yu catches him, feeds the canary to his hawk, and then stabs the man to death.
This nightmarish slaughter occurs entirely onscreen, and the final product would have been excessively violent, not to mention disturbing.
#16 on The Best Animated Films Ever
#21 on The Best Movies of 1998
Tarzan became an orphan after his parents were killed by Sabor the jaguar. While fortunately, this traumatic event happens offscreen, that almost wasn't the case. In a truly horrific deleted scene, Tarzan's father struggles against Sabor in their tree house as the room strobes menacingly with each flash of lightning.
Ultimately, we see Papa Tarzan's bloody corpse dragged away by the victorious leopard while baby Tarzan cries in his bassinet. Tarzan's life is sad enough, no one actually needs to witness the moment he became an orphan.
#33 on The Best Animated Films Ever
#33 on The Best Movies of 1999
In the opening sequence of Lilo & Stitch, we see Lilo swimming in the ocean with a fish, who we later learn is named Pudge. Well, Pudge was originally destined for a dark, watery grave.
One deleted scene depicts Lilo taking Stitch to meet Pudge, but as she plucks him out of the water, seagulls descend upon them and kill the fish. A grieving Lilo then takes the little fish corpse to her parents' tombstone, so that he can be buried beside them.
We already know that Lilo's parents are deceased, and the scene in which she longingly looks at their picture is devastating. We really don't need to see this sweet little girl lose anymore loved ones. Apparently, the creators realized this, as they eventually removed the horrific scene.
#27 on The Best Animated Films Ever