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'Lilo And Stitch' Looked Very Different Before 9/11

'Lilo And Stitch' Looked Very Different Before 9/11

Many movies have had to be changed out of sensitivity to the victims of the worst terror attack in world history

Nathan Standley

Nathan Standley

The terrorist attacks on 11 September 2001 rocked America - and the world - to its core.

It was a devastating attack in New York City on the World Trade Center and changed the course of history.

Given that the events of 17 years ago led to wars, huge loss of life and altered the world as we know it, smaller changes - such as edits to films and TV series - seem meaningless. However, that doesn't stop clips appearing on YouTube.

Lilo & Stitch, Disney's animated classic released in 2002, was one such film which had to be edited as a result of the 9/11 attacks. Compare this clip of the original alongside the edit.

Remember the scene where they fly Jumba's red spaceship through the mountains at the end of the movie?

Well, that used to look a lot different. In the original version, Stitch and Jumba hijack a commercial plane to try and save Lilo from the evil Gantu.


In the now-chilling version of the scene, they take the passenger-filled Boeing 747 on a heart-stopping ride of twists and turns that almost exactly replicate the movements of the spaceship in the final cut. Except the mountains in the final version are actually skyscrapers in a dense city, which the plane dodges in and out of, doing some damage to the cityscape in the process.

Only a few cuts of the scene were fully reanimated. Although a few sections were scrapped completely, most of the editing was done by replacing the CGI model of the plane with the spaceship.

And Lilo & Stitch was not the only film that had to be changed because of 9/11.

Tobey Maguire's first outing as Spider-Man in 2002 also had to be edited after production because of the dramatic change to the New York City skyline.

In one scene which was heavily circulated in trailers for the movie, Spider-Man traps a helicopter containing a group of escaping bank robbers in a giant web between the twin towers.


That scene had to be completely scrapped and the trailer was removed from circulation.

And the entire ending of Men In Black II also had to be revisited as the original involved Will Smith and Tommy Lee Jones fighting aliens on top of the World Trade Centre.

Director Barry Sonnenfeld and his producers rightly agreed that this was not appropriate and had to put together an emergency ending.

Elsewhere, whole movie ideas had to be abandoned. James Cameron scrapped his plans for a sequel to his Schwarzenegger-starring action comedy hit True Lies after the 9/11 attacks because - in his own words - "terrorism wasn't funny anymore".

Not sure it ever was, but there you go.

The victims of the worst terrorist attack in world history will be remembered on its 17th anniversary on Tuesday 11 September.

Featured Image Credit: YouTube/Vox

Topics: TV and Film, New York, New York City