HBO Max to re-release 'Gone With The Wind' with new introduction

Clark Gable (1901 - 1960) as Rhett Butler and Vivien Leigh (1913 - 1967) as Scarlett O'Hara in the romantic epic 'Gone With The Wind', directed by Victor Fleming, 1939. (Photo by Silver Screen Collection/Hulton Archive/Getty Images)
Clark Gable as Rhett Butler and Vivien Leigh as Scarlett O'Hara in Gone With The Wind, 1939. (Credit: Silver Screen Collection/Hulton Archive/Getty Images)

After temporarily removing iconic movie Gone With The Wind from its streaming platform last week, HBO has revealed how it will reintroduce the title to its catalogue.

The Oscar-winning film, the highest-grossing movie of all time, will be back with an introduction from US historian and TV host Jacqueline Stewart, providing 'multiple historical contexts'.

Read more: Gone With The Wind removed from HBO Max

The movie was taken off the streaming service last week, following an op-ed piece in The Los Angeles Times by screenwriter John Ridley, who penned 12 Years A Slave.

It has long been criticised for its romanticised view of slavery era America, despite actress Hattie McDaniel being the first African American actress to win an Oscar for her performance in the film.

1939:  British actor Vivien Leigh (1913 - 1967) holds on to a pillar as American actor Hattie McDaniel (1895 - 1952) tightens her corset in a still from the film, 'Gone with the Wind,' directed by Victor Fleming.  (Photo by MGM Studios/Getty Images)
Vivien Leigh and Hattie McDaniel in Gone with the Wind (Credit: MGM Studios/Getty Images)

In an interview on Sirius XM, Bob Greenblatt, the chairman of WarnerMedia, which owns HBO, said: “We failed to put the disclaimer in there which basically sets up the issues that this movie really brings up.

“We took it off and we're going to bring it back with the proper context. It's what we should have done. I don’t regret taking it down for a second. I only wish we had put it up in the first place with the disclaimer. And, you know, we just didn’t do that.”

Stewart added in a piece penned for CNN: “For me, this is an opportunity to think about what classic films can teach us.

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“Right now, people are turning to movies for racial re-education, and the top-selling books on Amazon are about anti-racism and racial inequality. If people are really doing their homework, we may be poised to have our most informed, honest, and productive national conversations yet about Black lives on screen and off.”

After it took the movie off its platform, HBO said that 'racist depictions were wrong then and are wrong today, and we felt that to keep this title up without an explanation and a denouncement of those depictions would be irresponsible'.

The streaming service, which launched in the US at the end of May, is yet to confirm when the movie will return.