June 24, 2020
WarnerMedia has quietly returned Oscar-winning Gone With the Wind back to subscription streaming platform HBO Max after a two-week hiatus to address the movie’s alleged racism in the wake of social unrest involving Black Lives Matter and other issues.
WarnerMedia said the return of the 1939 classic to Max includes two sidebar videos explaining the historical context of the original motion picture starring Clark Cable, Vivien Leigh, Hattie McDaniel (the first African-American performer to win an Oscar) and Olivia de Havilland, who is still alive at age 103.
The first video features WarnerMedia’s Turner Classic Movies (TCM) host Jacqueline Stewart outlining the merits of the movie and discussing why it should be preserved and watched in its entirety. The second video includes a panel discussion, “The Complicated Legacy of Gone With the Wind,” moderated by film historian Donald Bogle at the TCM Classic Film Festival in April 2019.
“The film’s treatment of this world through a lens of nostalgia denies the horrors of slavery, as well as its legacies of racial inequality,” Stewart says in the video. “Watching ‘Gone With the Wind’ can be uncomfortable, even painful. Still, it is important that classic Hollywood films are available to us in their original form for viewing and discussion.”