Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Please Don't Touch the Old Women

Us Limeys never like to miss an opportunity to have a pop at the Americans. Personally speaking, all the Americans I've ever met have been charming and courteous and we'd do better to look to our own behaviour. The way the British behave abroad and their contempt for foreigners is a subject of constant embarrassment. As a body politic, the Americans are sometimes a little worrying but as individuals I have never had any reason to complain.

One of our favourite illustrations of American naivety concerns the film The Madness of King George III. It is frequently said that this was renamed for the American market as simply The Madness of King George lest those silly Americans would think it was a sequel and not worth seeing as they had missed out on part I and II. This is of course an urban myth but illustrates the level of our humour sometimes.

Renaming of films is an interesting subject and I recently came across a list of film titles which were renamed for (generally speaking) non native English speaking countries.

Here's a list of a few of them with the country in which the new title was used which I got from this month's edition of the fantastic Word magazine. See how many you can guess and then scroll down to see how you get on. I'll start you off with a few easy ones...

  • The Teeth of the Sea (France)
  • Is There a Pilot on the Plane? (France)
  • Night in the Cramped Forest (Taiwan)
  • Two Crazy Guys and a Lot of Curves (Spain)
  • The Sparrow Becomes the Empress (China)
  • Six Naked Pigs (China)
  • Shooting Towards Tomorrow (Japan)
  • Please Don't Touch the Old Women (Italy)
  • The Eighth Passenger (various countries)
  • Breaking the Ice (Spain)
  • Mummy, I Missed the Plane (France)
  • The Hitman is not as Cold as he Thought (China)

I bet you cheated. Here are the original titles....assuming they weren't renamed for the British market of course...

  • Jaws
  • Airplane
  • The Blair Witch Project
  • The Dukes of Hazzard
  • Pretty Woman
  • The Full Monty
  • Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid
  • The Producers
  • Alien
  • Happy Feet
  • Home Alone
  • Leon


Anonymous said...

I only got Jaws, Alien and Home Alone

Terra Shield said...

I'd have never guessed. At least we got the original titles here, or so I think...

sabrina said...

OMG i got all of them wrong!!!

Oh and 'Limeys'?

King of Scurf said...

nursemyra: I think I got about three of them. We're average I guess.

Terra: Strange isn't it because large corporations are usually so obsessed with global branding.

Saby: Limeys is a slang term that Americans use for the English. I think it refers to our sailors who were always sucking on limes to counteract scurvy.