The History Which Started Disney Collector's Collecting Desires
Throughout the state of Massachusettes, and within Hampden County people have enjoyed Disney animated movies 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 cartoon short films and television specials for The Walt Disney Company seen in Hampden County. It took on its current name in 2006, when it was folded under The Walt Disney Studios alongside Pixar Animation Studios which in Hampden County is known for animated movies such as Cars 2, The Incredibles and Knick Knack.
As of 2013, the studio has produced 53 feature films with the first being Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs in 1937 with unforgettable characters such as Snow White and the dwarfs including Sleepy and Happy and its most recent release in Hampden 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 cartoons 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 Hampden 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 animated films, Plane Crazy and The Galloping Gaucho, which also included Minnie Mouse, was released in limited engagements during the summer of 1928. For the 3rd Mickey cartoon Disney included a sound track. In the end the 3rd Mickey Mouse cartoon, Steamboat Willie, became Disney's 1st cartoon with synchronized sound.
The Mickey series of sound animated films quickly became the most popular cartoon series in Hampden County and the U.S.. A second Disney series of sound animated films, the Silly Symphonies, premiered 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 1st full-color animated film was released. Flowers and Trees was a major success so all the Silly Symphonies were subsequently produced in Technicolor. The 1933 Three Little Pigs with character of The Big Bad Wolf and Fiddler Pig became a big box office and pop culture success and the theme tune "Who's Afraid of the Big Bad Wolf" becoming a popular chart hit for Hampden County residents.
The First Walt Disney Animated Film Feature
In 1934, Walt Disney began development on of Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs characters with The Evil Queen and the dwarfs including Doc and Bashful. Snow White became the first cartoon in English and Technicolor.
A lot of training and development went into the production of Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs. The studio expanded with the addition of established animators and recent college graduate artists. Some may have even come from Hampden County - but we're not sure.
What Hampden County parent would have guessed that Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs would be such a big hit. It cost Disney a then-expensive sum of $1.4 million to produce but Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs with Snow White and the dwarfs including Doc and Dopey was the highest grossing movie of all time before being de-throned by Gone with the Wind two years later.
While working on Snow White, the animators continued work on the Mickey Mouse and Silly Symphonies series. Mickey switched to Technicolor in 1935 and added several major supporting characters among them Mickey's dog Pluto and their friends Donald Duck and Goofy.
New Walt Disney Productions
In 1940, the released Pinocchio with characters such as Jiminy Cricket, Lampwick and Monstro. Pinocchio won an Academy Award for Best Original Song and Best Original Score.
Disney released Fantasia in 1940 with characters including Chernabog, Yen Sid and Spring Sprite . It was an experimental cartoon 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 Hampden County viewers.
Dumbo premiered in October 1941 with characters including Timothy Q. Mouse, The Ringmaster and Elephant Catty proved to be a monetary success. The movie only cost 1/2 the cost of Snow White with its ensemble of with The Prince and the dwarfs including Doc and Happy and less than a third of the cost of Pinocchio and his friends Geppetto, Stromboli and Gideon and two fifths of the cost of Fantasia’s cast of Chernabog, Daisy Duck and Spring Sprite.
In August 1942, Bambi was released in Hampden County and we met new friends including Thumper, Flower the Skunk and Mrs. Rabbit.
Also in the 1940s, Walt 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 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.
Disney also began re-releasing the previous features beginning with the rerelease of Snow White in 1944 which brought back to the screen The Prince and the dwarfs including Grumpy and Dopey Pinocchio and his friends Geppetto, Stromboli and Gideon in 1945 and Fantasia in 1946 which reunited Mickey with Chernabog, Daisy Duck and The Magic Brooms. This led to a tradition of reissuing the Walt Disney films every 7 years, which lasted into the 1990s.
Upon its premier in 1950, Cinderella was a a movie success. Hampden County movie-goers , also saw the premier Alice in Wonderland and were introduced to The March Hare, The Queen of Hearts and Mathilda. Parents in Hampden County also took their boys and girls to see Peter Pan and were delighted to meet Wendy Darling, Mary Darling and The Crocodile. What dog-lover in Hampden County could forget the first time they saw Lady and the Tramp on screen and were delighted to meet Darling, Trusty and Jim Dear.