Synopsis by Hal Erickson
Produced for the British Children's ITV network by Harlech Productions, the weekly, half-hour anthology Storybook International was per its title a collection of folk tales and fairy stories harvested from all over the world. Each episode was introduced by a troubadour who looked like a fox to some viewers and sounded like an old witch to others, and who would set the stage with a ballad. Filmed in such locales as Russia, Ireland and Scandinavia, the series' live-action playlets were based on stories which originated in England, Czechoslovakia, France, Romania, Turkey, Wales, Israel, Norway, China, Africa, India and elsewhere. A few of the stories were derived from the campfire legends perpetuated by such "original settlers" as the Native Americans of New England and the Maori tribe of New Zealand. Debuting in 1982, the series yielded 65 episodes, doled out in three separate "serials". Although its distribution was originally confined to Britain and Europe, Storybook International would enjoy extensive cable play in the US, Scandinavia and the Middle East in subsequent decades. Fitfully released on VHS throughout the 1980s and 1990, the full series was finally made available on DVD in 2006.