Trivia / Pokémon: The First Movie

  • Bad Export for You:
    • When the triple-film DVD came out in 2009, many expected all three movies, including this one, to be widescreen unlike the previous VHS and DVD release. dice. This was later remedied with the triple feature Blu-ray release in 2016, though the releases add problems of their own, as detailed in the note in the Keep Circulating the Tapes entry below.
    • No Western DVD release has included the Japanese version. This is par for the course for Pokémon, but the Japanese version of this movie is in greater demand than the other movies due to its differences from the English version.
  • Cowboy BeBop at His Computer: Mew was, at least for a short period, mistakenly referred to as Mewtwo's mother rather than it's clone counterpart. This also ignores the franchise's (mostly) strict adherence to gendering Pokémon.
  • Keep Circulating the Tapes:
    • This film as well as the latter two movies took years to get a Blu-ray disc release thanks to years of disputes between Warner Bros. (the licensees of the movies for all territories except Japan), The Pokemon Company, Nintendo and Toho. By The New '10s, fans were getting irritated over having to deal with the 4:3 aspect ratio of the DVD and VHS releases and pushed for the disputes to end so they could get the films remastered for high definition. The disputes were finally resolved in December 2015, and a Blu-ray disc release of all three movies in a triple-feature Steelbook pack was announced for release in February 2016, in time for the Pokémon franchise's twentieth anniversary!note 
    • The 1998 theatrical version of the film has remained under this status since the release of the kanzenban version a year later. The latter version re-does a large number of shots in the film to add in CGI (be it replacing entire effects such as whirling clouds or simple choreographic retouches); this is the version that would be used for the film's English dub and all following home video releases. The theatrical version, meanwhile, has never seen a single re-release since its initial VHS & LaserDisc pressings in the first half of 1999, and only continues to survive thanks to the likes of eBay, Amazon, and a small number of video-sharing sites in the most obscure corners of the internet.
  • Retroactive Recognition: Billie Piper (credited simply as Billie) sings one of the end credits songs, "I'm Makin' My Way (Any Way That I Can)."
  • Throw It In!: The commentary remarked that Misty's "please, no" reaction to Ash's "death" was originally, jokingly ad-libbed by Rachael Lillis as "My bike!" when trying to find a workable two-syllable reaction to said event.
  • Urban Legend of Zelda:
    • There's a rumor circling that Mew in the Japanese version said that the clones were inferior and should perish. According to Meowth (Nyarth in this version) its dialogue was:
    The real one is real. If they fight only using bodies without skills, the true ones will not be beaten by their copies.
  • Unintentional Period Piece: The English dub's soundtrack is a nice little time capsule of late 90s bubblegum pop.
  • What Could Have Been:
    • This film was originally going to serve as the finale to the series, but then the series was renewed and the whole film was rewritten. The Japanese teaser trailer shows clips from the original planned film.
    • One of Takeshi Shudo's blogs revealed that there would have been an animé episode prior to the movie where Ash and Mewtwo crossed paths, but the four-month hiatus brought on by the "Electric Soldier Porygon" incident put an end to that.
    • Mew could originally speak like Mewtwo could, but director Kunihiko Yuyama figured Mew flying around wordlessly would be more impactful than it "droning to Mewtwo about the meaning of life", thus all its dialogue was replaced with, "Mew".
    • The scene of Ash saving Pikachu from the cloning machine wasn't originally present, but was added by Yuyama, who believed the film didn't have enough action scenes.
    • According to Rachael Lillis, Warner Bros briefly considered replacing the entire voice cast with celebs, and even made an offer to Leonardo DiCaprio to voice Ash.