Eight Below is the new Disney movie that hit theatres today. Watch the trailer here. And vomit here.
Now, if you were brave enough to watch that trailer or have had the misfortune to see it, then you probably noticed that Eight Below claims it's inspired by a true story. That's a stretch.
From The Wall Street Journal today:
But the gap between film and facts can be big indeed. Take "Eight Below," the PG-rated yarn about an attempt to rescue eight sled dogs. It is based on a 1983 Japanese movie, "Nankyoku monogatari," that in turn was based on a doomed 1957 expedition by Japanese scientists to Antarctica. "Inspired by a true story" is used loosely: The Disney film changed the characters, their nationalities, the time period, the number of dogs and the fate of most of the canines.
Filmmakers sometimes face criticism for distorting the facts -- even if they concede they left some things out. In 2001, "A Beautiful Mind," which starred Russell Crowe as the troubled mathematician John Nash, was blasted for ignoring Mr. Nash's anti-Semitism, his arrest for public lewdness, and for divorcing and then remarrying his wife. (The movie, though, went on to win an Oscar.)
The makers of many of this season's reality-based movies say they've taken liberties. "Eight Below" is "total fiction," says director Frank Marshall. When he first read the script, he says, he wasn't even aware of its sources in a real Japanese expedition. Disney had bought the remake rights to the Japanese film, and hired Mr. Marshall, a veteran producer of such movies as "Seabiscuit," to direct it. The script made the scientists American and set the story in 1993. While only two of the original 16 dogs survived their ordeal in the Japanese film, the U.S. version cuts the number of original dogs to eight and has, well, a slightly more Disneyesque ending.
Here's the link to that Journal article. It's free for today, which is up in a couple of hours.