Accidentally Correct Writing: Prince John has no mane, most likely due to him originally being a tiger and the animators not bothering with a new design. However, a lion who lacks testosterone does lose its mane and strength, a fitting imagery for the weak Prince John.
I drew with great excitement, thinking how good it was to work on a Disney feature. When Robin Hood was completed I decided it did not look the greatest of films. The heart wasnt in it. It had technique, the characters were well drawn, the Xerox process retained the fine lines so I could see all of the self indulgence of the animators, each one saying, Look how great I am, but the story itself had no soul.
Floyd Norman once said that he was grateful to have gotten fired from animating on it.
Creator's Pest: Animator Floyd Norman personally disliked Skippy due to how "annoying" and "bratty" he is.
Uncredited Role: The film only listed the actors playing the main character and key supporting characters; other actors like J. Pat O'Malley (Otto), John Fiedler (Sexton), Barbara Luddy (Sexton's wife), and all the child actors went uncredited.
If anything, the film would have been a take on the tale of Reynard the Fox, but instead went to the Robin Hood mythos during production, which would be an interesting case of a Dolled-Up Installment, as the Reynard elements have been retained.
At one point, the animators considering playing with the Animal Stereotypes and make the Sheriff a goat; but, indicative of Disney's Dork Age in The Dark Age of Animation, director Wolfgang Reitherman rejected it because a wolf was more imposing. Furthermore, Robin Hood was going to have a full cast of Merry Men for the story, but Reitherman shot that down too, because he was too enamoured of the idea of doing a funny animal medieval emulation of Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid and had just Robin and Little John.
At some point during early development, one of the proposed settings was in the Old West, with actors Pat Buttram (The Gene Autry Show), Andy Devine (Jingles from The Adventures of Wild Bill Hickok), Ken Curtis (Festus from Gunsmoke), and George Lindsey (Gunsmoke, The Rifleman, and The Real McCoys before playing Goober), all of whom had notable experience acting in Westerns. Writer Ken Anderson was interested in setting the film in the Deep South to evoke Song of the South, but concerned executives shot that down; Reitherman thus decided to simply keep the setting in England.
Friar Tuck was originally conceived as a pig, but the filmmakers feared that the Catholic Church would be insulted. (The Church didn't seem to care the last time this was done, though this could be forgiven as Porky is an established character.)
In one version of the ending, the Sheriff was in attendance at Robin Hood and Maid Marian's wedding, indicating that he may have reformed or been pardoned.
The special edition DVD shows off a reconstruction of an unused ending for the movie, in which Robin briefly becomes a Dude in Distress following an injury sustained from his fall during the climax: he would be left with Maid Marian at the church while Little John went off to find help. Prince John comes in while Robin is still knocked out, and is prepared to stab Marian to get to Robin, while she is prepared to stand in front of him to defend him. Of course, both are saved by the timely arrival of good King Richard.
Another alternate storyline involved Prince John setting another trap for Robin by sending fake love letters to him and Maid Marian so they will meet in Sherwood Forest where his guards will capture them. The letters would have been sent by carrier pigeon, but the pigeon was so fat it had to be catapulted into the air; this later evolved into the character of Orville the albatross in The Rescuers.
Prince John was originally going to be a tiger, but King Richard "The Lion Hearted" obviously had to be portrayed as a lion, so the tiger idea was dropped. Interestingly, it seems that when they decided to drop this idea, they just removed the stripes from the model sheets of the character, without making further changes. This could explain why he has no mane.
According to the book Mouse Under Glass, a dark ride based on the film was developed for the Disney Theme Parks, but it didn't work out. According to Tony Baxter, this is because of the film's lack of atmosphere:
"Whether it's a good movie or not is beside the point. It's a movie that's characters, there's no atmosphere in it. I call it 'sticks and stones and rocks and leaves'. First you have the stone walls outside the castle, then the stone walls inside the castle, then the leaves in the forest, that's it. There are no exotic environments, you just have all these scenes with Robin meeting Friar Tuck, then Robin meeting Little John, then Robin meeting Maid Marian. That's when I figured it out: rides are about exotic places, not characters. The best attractions are where you suddenly find yourself in a jewel minenote As in Snow White's Scary Adventures or flying over Londonnote As in Peter Pan's Flight."
Accidentally Correct Writing: The somewhat infamous Black Vikings type Politically Correct History that viewers often mocked, while no doubt done just for the sake of avoiding Monochrome Casting, is actually a fairly accurate look of how Medieval England would have looked. Africa was commonly known and immigration between Africa and Europe wasn't uncommon, particularly for those who were associated with the Catholic Church (such as a monk like Tuck). The utter lack of comment on this too, though again likely done because Color Blind Casting is in play, is reflective of the fact there wasn't a concept of "race" yet, but rather nationality and religion were the big cultural dividers.
A minor example, but 18-year-old Will Scarlett was played by 22-year-old Harry Lloyd.
Thirty-year-old Joanne Froggatt plays Kate, whose age is never specified, but who is clearly meant to be a young teenager judging by the way she behaves and is treated by other characters.
Averted with Archer, played by Clive Standen; both the actor and the character were twenty years old.
Deleted Scene: According to the DVD Commentary, the Season Two finale included a scene in which Djaq gives Allan the pigeon carrier that he is seen carrying in the final shot of the episode. This scene would have presumably given closure to the Will/Djaq/Allan Love Triangle, but as it stands, the audience doesn't even get to see these three characters say goodbye to each other.
Killed by Request: Joe Armstrong asked for Allan to be killed off, as he grew frustrated by his character's reduced role.
Separated-at-Birth Casting: Lara Pulver was an incredible physical match for Richard Armitage's sister, with the same dark hair and Icy Blue Eyes. Oddly enough, she was widely promoted as Guy's Long Lost Sibling in the lead-up to Series 3, even though the episode in which she first appeared held back on the familial relationship and turned it into A Reveal. Either way, plenty of viewers guessed her connection to Guy based on their physical resemblance.
Uncredited Role: "Tattoo? What Tattoo?" does not have a credited writer, with the line producer's name going where the writing credit would normally go in the opening credits. The episode was written by Julian Mitchell, and he was credited in pre-publicity and listings magazines, but (for unknown reasons) isn't on the episode itself.
Keith Allen has stated that he was offered the part of the Sheriff four days before filming started, without any audition or interview, indicating that another actor pulled out at the last minute.
There was obviously an attempt to set up the show for a fourth season, what with the introduction of Archer as Robin's half-brother who was tasked with taking up his mantle and leading the remaining outlaws. According to BBC writer/producer Mark Wright, Sally Wainwright had been brought on as showrunner, the entire production was set to move to Scotland, and some scripts had even been written before news of the show's cancellation. Given that the final scene depicted the outlaws preparing to raise King Richard's ransom money, and since it's a given that Isabella survived the castle explosion (the actress was signed on for multiple seasons), the proposed fourth season would have likely focused on finding funds for Richard and the unique set-up of the new Robin and the Sheriff of Nottingham being half-siblings.
Written-In Infirmity: Keith Allen lost a tooth during the filming of the final episode of the first series, which was written into the script. Accordingly, the Sheriff now has a series of different false teeth, some leather or jewelled, which he plucks (there's more than one of them) from the skulls he has in his chamber.
You Look Familiar: Several guest actors appeared multiple times for small parts due to the show being shot in Hungary; the actor playing Henry of Lewes also played a Locksley villager in "Too Hot to Handle" and turned up as a castle guard on half a dozen other occasions.
The actress playing Forrest's wife in the second episode of the series had a twin sister who played Beatrice in the second season.