Disclaimer: This blog is purely recreational and not for profit. Any material, including images and/or video footage, is property of their respective companies, unless stated otherwise. The author claims no ownership of this material. The opinions expressed therein reflect those of the author and are not to be viewed as factual documentation. All screencaps are from Disneyscreencaps.com.
A warm welcome from England, old bean, and thank you for visiting my new blog! I hope you enjoy your stay (please help yourself to tea and crumpets). This is just going to be a short post to explain my upcoming plans for the site. There will be plenty going on in the first few weeks, so hopefully you’ll find something to tickle your fancy!
When it comes to animation, the Disney studio is the biggest of the big cats, the head honcho… the boss, the king, the shah! (I just can’t resist Aladdin puns). Founded in 1923 – an impressive ninety-four years ago now – it is one of the oldest animation studios in existence, as most of its contemporaries have closed down over the years. The studio was largely responsible for bringing sound and colour to the world of animation in those early years, and they have been innovating ever since, using artistic talent and cutting-edge technology to push the envelope of the medium ever further. Given its importance in the history of animation, I thought a marathon of Disney film reviews would be a fitting way to kick things off. In the eighty years since the release of their first feature film, the studio has produced a staggering fifty-six animated classics, which are collected into what’s known as the “Disney canon.” I’ve seen every single one of them, so I’ll be reviewing them all in chronological order, taking a look at the cast and their characters, the plot, cinematography and soundtrack of each one. I’ll also provide a list of key details for each film and some titbits of trivia which fans may find interesting.
So, what is the Disney canon? Simply put, it is an official list of films which were made by Walt Disney Animation Studios. The reason I underlined that is because there seems to be a lot of confusion amongst fans as to which films should and shouldn’t qualify. You see, the Walt Disney Company is a vast multinational entertainment conglomerate – it’s freaking big, man – with a whole tangled mass of smaller studios sprouting from it. Walt Disney Animation Studios is only one subdivision of the wider Walt Disney Studios (others include Marvel and Pixar), which itself is a subdivision of the Walt Disney Company. Phew! It sounds far more confusing than it really is, I promise.
To qualify as a “Disney classic” and be a part of the canon list, a film simply has to be made by Walt Disney Animation Studios and to be, well, mostly animated. The Pixar films don’t qualify because Pixar is a separate subdivision of Walt Disney Studios; it is its own company, with its own ‘canon.’ Films like A Goofy Movie and DuckTales the Movie: Treasure of the Lost Lamp were made by DisneyToon Studios, another subdivision which was also responsible for most of those horrendous direct-to-video sequels and, more recently, the Disney Fairies franchise. Marvel movies and the many live-action features linked to Disney like Pirates of the Caribbean and Enchanted are all excluded on this basis, too.
The films which do make up the canon, in order, are:
- Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs (1937)
- Pinocchio (1940)
- Fantasia (1940)
- Dumbo (1941)
- Bambi (1942)
- Saludos Amigos (1943)
- The Three Caballeros (1944)
- Make Mine Music (1946)
- Fun and Fancy Free (1947)
- Melody Time (1948)
- The Adventures of Ichabod and Mr. Toad (1949)
- Cinderella (1950)
- Alice in Wonderland (1951)
- Peter Pan (1953)
- Lady and the Tramp (1955)
- Sleeping Beauty (1959)
- One Hundred and One Dalmatians (1961)
- The Sword in the Stone (1963)
- The Jungle Book (1967)
- The Aristocats (1970)
- Robin Hood (1973)
- The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh (1977)
- The Rescuers (1977)
- The Fox and the Hound (1981)
- The Black Cauldron (1985)
- The Great Mouse Detective (1986)
- Oliver & Company (1988)
- The Little Mermaid (1989)
- The Rescuers Down Under (1990)
- Beauty and the Beast (1991)
- Aladdin (1992)
- The Lion King (1994)
- Pocahontas (1995)
- The Hunchback of Notre Dame (1996)
- Hercules (1997)
- Mulan (1998)
- Tarzan (1999)
- Fantasia 2000 (1999)
- Dinosaur (2000)
- The Emperor’s New Groove (2000)
- Atlantis: The Lost Empire (2001)
- Lilo & Stitch (2002)
- Treasure Planet (2002)
- Brother Bear (2003)
- Home on the Range (2004)
- Chicken Little (2005)
- Meet the Robinsons (2007)
- Bolt (2008)
- The Princess and the Frog (2009)
- Tangled (2010)
- Winnie the Pooh (2011)
- Wreck-it Ralph (2012)
- Frozen (2013)
- Big Hero 6 (2014)
- Zootopia/Zootropolis (2016)
- Moana (2016)
A couple of notes:
First of all, you might notice that Zootopia is listed under two different names (or, if you’re American, you might be wondering what in the world “Zootropolis” is). The explanation is that the name “Zootopia” was already copyrighted by a Danish zoo, presently called Givskud Zoo, so Disney decided not to infringe on their use of the name and rebranded their film “Zootropolis” for European audiences (though the company insists they just did it to make it more unique for us – how sweet!)
It’s also worth noting that, here in the UK, the canon list is slightly different. For some strange reason, the films Dinosaur and Winnie the Pooh are omitted, with Dinosaur’s place being taken by the 2006 feature, The Wild. Personally, I find this ridiculous. In the case of Dinosaur, the reasoning is supposedly that the film isn’t “animated” enough, because the backgrounds were shot on location in the real world. Ha! Tell that to Fun and Fancy Free or The Three Caballeros. When it comes to Winnie the Pooh, I couldn’t find any specific reason why that was excluded, but my theory is that perhaps the Disney Company had trouble securing the permissions of the relatives of A.A. Milne, the British author of the original stories. Back in 2010, when Tangled was being marketed as the company’s fiftieth animated feature, the UK list was hastily amended to include The Wild, so we wouldn’t miss out. That film wasn’t even made by the Disney Company! It was only partially produced and distributed by them, with most of the animation being done by a now defunct company called C.O.R.E Digital Pictures. Aside from that, it’s also a terrible film, but that’s beside the point. Dinosaur and Winnie the Pooh deserve their places in the list – and since they’re American films from an American company, I think America should get to decide whether they’re in or not, don’t you?
Now, in case any of you are getting sick of reading the word “Disney,” don’t panic! During the marathon and after it, I’ll be working on plenty of other content. Rankings, listicles, analyses and discussions, book reviews and trivia posts – everything an animation enthusiast could ask for. My focus will be on the major studios such as Pixar, DreamWorks, Studio Ghibli, Nickelodeon and Cartoon Network, but I will occasionally explore the output of other studios as well. If you have any suggestions for posts you’d like to see, please do leave a comment! I’m always open to ideas.
Regular posting should begin around the end of this month, as I’ll be visiting Ukraine this week. I look forward to embarking on the Disney review marathon with you! In the meantime, click the links below to learn more about Feeling Animated and myself. See you soon!
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2 Replies to “Upcoming Content on Feeling Animated”
Thanks for following me and I’m glad to view your blog! Always a pleasure to read and follow fellow animation lovers, especially those going through the Disney Canon!
Looking forward to following you along your journey!
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No problem! It’s going to be a long road to get through all 56, not to mention everything else I want to post about along the way, but it’ll be interesting. Thanks for commenting!
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