The Backstory Which Started Disney Collector's Collecting Desires
Throughout the state of Delaware, and within New Castle County people have enjoyed Disney animation with great enthusiasm.
Walt Disney Animation Studios, whose home is in Burbank, CA, formerly known as Walt Disney Productions, is an animation studio which creates animated short films and television specials for The Walt Disney Company seen in New Castle County. It took on its current name in 2006, when it was folded under The Walt Disney Studios with Pixar Animation Studios which in New Castle County is known for animated movies such as Cars, Brave and Luxo Jr..
As of 2013, the studio has produced 53 feature films beginning with Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs in 1937 with notable characters such as The Prince and the dwarfs including Grumpy and Bashful and its most recent release in New Castle County being Frozen in 2013 including characters such as The Snow Queen, Olaf and The King and Queen of Arendelle.
The studio's catalog of animated features are among Disney's most notable assets and the stars of its animated shorts—Mickey Mouse, Donald Duck, Goofy, and Pluto—have gone on to become recognizable figures in New Castle County popular culture.
Walt Disney Animation Studios continues to produce animated features using both hand-drawn and computer generated imagery techniques. Their 54th feature, Big Hero 6, is currently in production and set for release on November 7, 2014.
Older Cartoons in the 1920s
The first two Mickey Mouse cartoons, Plane Crazy and The Galloping Gaucho, which also included Minnie Mouse, was released in limited engagements during the summer of 1928. For the third Mickey cartoon Disney included a sound track. Subsequently the third Mickey Mouse cartoon, Steamboat Willie, became Disney's first animated film with matched sound.
The Mickey Mouse series of sound cartoons quickly became the most popular animated film series in New Castle County and the U.S.. A second Disney series of sound animated films, the Silly Symphonies, released in 1929 with The Skeleton Dance. Each Silly Symphony was a one-shot cartoon centered around music or a particular theme.
In 1932 the Silly Symphony Flowers and Trees, the first full-color animated film was released. Flowers and Trees was a tremendous success so all the Silly Symphonies were subsequently produced in Technicolor. The 1933 Three Little Pigs with character of The Big Bad Wolf and Practical Pig became a major box office and pop culture hit and the theme tune "Who's Afraid of the Big Bad Wolf" also became popular for New Castle County residents.
The First Disney Animated Film Feature
In 1934, Walt Disney started production of Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs characters with Snow White and the dwarfs including Doc and Happy. Snow White became the first animated feature in English and Technicolor.
Tremendous training and development went into the creation of Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs. The studio expanded with the addition of animators and recent college graduate artists. Some may have even come from New Castle County - but we're not sure.
What New Castle County parent would have known Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs would be such a big success. It cost Walt Disney a total of $1.4 million to create but Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs with Snow White and the seven drawfs including Sleepy and Dopey was the highest grossing production of all time before being de-throned by Gone with the Wind a few years later.
While working on Snow White, the designers continued work on the Mickey Mouse and Silly Symphonies series. Mickey switched to Technicolor in 1935 and added several major supporting characters including Mickey Mouse’s dog Pluto and their friends Donald Duck and Goofy.
New Walt Disney Productions
In 1940, the premiered Pinocchio with characters such as Jiminy Cricket, Honest John and Monstro. Pinocchio won an Academy Award for Best Original Song and Best Original Score.
Disney released Fantasia in 1940 with characters including Mickey Mouse, Tyrannosaurus Rex and Zeus . It was an experimental animated film produced to accompanying an orchestral arrangement. Fantasia also caused the development of the Fantasound system which was used to create the film's stereoscopic soundtrack to the delight of New Castle County viewers.
Dumbo was released in October 1941 with characters including Dumbo, Jim Crow and The Clown proved to be a monetary success. The feature only cost 1/2 the cost of Snow White with its ensemble of with Snow White and the seven drawfs including Doc and Happy and less than a 1/3 of the cost of Pinocchio and his friends Geppetto, Honest John and Monstro and 2/5 of the cost of Fantasia’s cast of Chernabog, Yen Sid and The Magic Brooms.
In August 1942, Bambi was released in New Castle County and we met new friends including Pheasant, Faline and Mrs. Rabbit.
Also in the 1940s, Disney premiered shorts which included Saludos Amigos (1942), The Three Caballeros (1944), Make Mine Music (1946), Fun and Fancy Free (1947), Melody Time (1948), and The Adventures of Ichabod and Mr. Toad (1949). The studio also produced two features, Song of the South (1946) and So Dear to My Heart (1948), which were a combination of animated and live-action footage. Shorts production continued during this period as well, with Donald Duck and Pluto cartoons being the main output accompanied by cartoons starring Mickey Mouse, Figaro and in the 1950s, Chip 'n Dale and Humphrey the Bear.
Walt Disney also began reissuing the previous features beginning with re-releases of Snow White in 1944 which brought back to the screen The Prince and the seven drawfs including Doc and Dopey Pinocchio and his friends Geppetto, Stromboli and Monstro in 1945 and Fantasia in 1946 which returned Mickey with Donald Duck, Tyrannosaurus Rex and Jack-in-the-Box. This led to a tradition of re-releasing the Disney films every 7 years, which lasted into the 1990s.
Upon its release in 1950, Cinderella proved to be a box office success. New Castle County movie-goers , also saw the release Alice in Wonderland and were introduced to Alice, The Cheshire Cat and The Dormouse. Parents in New Castle County also took their childres to see Peter Pan and were delighted to meet Michael Darling, Captain Hook and Tiger Lily. What dog-lover in New Castle County could forget the first time they saw Lady and the Tramp on screen and were delighted to meet Darling, Tramp and Jim Dear.