Disney+ places age restrictions on problematic movies like ‘Peter Pan’ and ‘Dumbo’

You can still watch the films with an adult account—just not one created for a child under 7.

Disney+ places age restrictions on problematic movies
The Walt Disney Company

Disney+ has removed access to four classic movies from children's viewing profiles while the company continues to assess its library for racist imagery and undertones.

Profiles belonging to children under seven years old are now unable to access Peter Pan, Dumbo, The Aristocats and The Swiss Family Robinson.

Last fall, The Walt Disney Company placed content warnings at the start of the films. Now, children under seven can no longer navigate to the films at all. Parents, however, can still search for and watch the movies under their profiles.


On the Stories Matter section of their website, Disney explains the decision is part of a larger effort to make sure their film library is inclusive and diverse.

"We can't change the past, but we can acknowledge it, learn from it and move forward together to create a tomorrow that today can only dream of," says the site.

Disney also offered specific reasoning for why the four films were pulled from the library available to the youngest users.

The Aristocats (1970)

"The cat is depicted as a racist caricature of East Asian peoples with exaggerated stereotypical traits such as slanted eyes and buck teeth. He sings in poorly accented English voiced by a white actor and plays the piano with chopsticks. This portrayal reinforces the 'perpetual foreigner' stereotype, while the film also features lyrics that mock the Chinese language and culture such as 'Shanghai, Hong Kong, Egg Foo Young. Fortune cookie always wrong.'"

Dumbo (1941)

"The crows and musical number pay homage to racist minstrel shows, where white performers with blackened faces and tattered clothing imitated and ridiculed enslaved Africans on Southern plantations. The leader of the group in Dumbo is Jim Crow, which shares the name of laws that enforced racial segregation in the Southern United States. In 'The Song of the Roustabouts,' faceless Black workers toil away to offensive lyrics like 'When we get our pay, we throw our money all away.'"

Peter Pan (1953)

"The film portrays Native people in a stereotypical manner that reflects neither the diversity of Native peoples nor their authentic cultural traditions. It shows them speaking in an unintelligible language and repeatedly refers to them as 'redskins,' an offensive term. Peter and the Lost Boys engage in dancing, wearing headdresses and other exaggerated tropes, a form of mockery and appropriation of Native peoples' culture and imagery."

Swiss Family Robinson (1960)

"The pirates who antagonize the Robinson family are portrayed as a stereotypical foreign menace. Many appear in 'yellow face' or 'brown face' and are costumed in an exaggerated and inaccurate manner with top knot hairstyles, queues, robes and overdone facial make-up and jewelry, reinforcing their barbarism and 'otherness.' They speak in an indecipherable language, presenting a singular and racist representation of Asian and Middle Eastern peoples."

If you grew up with these films and want to show them to your children, you still can! All four are still available to adult profiles. The company says their decision is intended to prevent young children from navigating to the films on their own and viewing them without context.

Jamie Orsini is an Emmy Award-winning journalist, military spouse, and a mom to two busy toddlers. In her spare time, Jamie volunteers with the Solar System Ambassador program with NASA/JPL and reads anything she can get her hands on. She’s currently working on her first novel.