The History Which Started Disney Collector's Collecting Desires
Throughout the state of Vermont, and within Windsor County people have enjoyed Disney animated movies with great enthusiasm.
Walt Disney Animation Studios, headquartered in Burbank, CA, formerly known as Walt Disney Productions, is an animation studio which creates cartoon feature films and television specials for The Walt Disney Company seen in Windsor County. It took on its current name in 2006, when it was folded under The Walt Disney Studios alongside Pixar Animation Studios which in Windsor County is known for cartoons such as Toy Story 2, WALL-E and A Bug's Life.
As of 2013, the studio has released 53 feature films with the first being Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs in 1937 with classic characters such as Snow White and the dwarfs including Doc and Dopey and its most recent release in Windsor County being Frozen in 2013 including characters such as The Snow Queen, Kristoff 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 Windsor 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 20s
The first two Mickey Mouse animated films, Plane Crazy and The Galloping Gaucho, which also included Minnie Mouse, was released in select theatres during the summer of 1928. For the 3rd Mickey cartoon Disney produced a sound track. In the end the 3rd Mickey Mouse cartoon, Steamboat Willie, became Disney's first cartoon with synchronized sound.
The Mickey Mouse series of sound animated films quickly became the most popular animated film series in Windsor 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 first full-color cartoon was released. Flowers and Trees was a huge 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 major box office and pop culture success and the theme song "Who's Afraid of the Big Bad Wolf" becoming a popular chart hit for Windsor County residents.
The First Walt Disney Cartoon Feature
In 1934, Walt Disney started development on of Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs characters with The Prince and the dwarfs including Sleepy and Bashful. Snow White became the 1st cartoon in English and Technicolor.
Considerable 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 Windsor County - but we're not sure.
What Windsor County parent would have imagined that Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs would be such a huge success. It cost Disney a then-expensive sum of $1.4 million to complete but Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs with Snow White and the seven drawfs including Doc and Dopey was the highest grossing film of all time before being de-throned by Gone with the Wind two years later.
During the production of Snow White, the artists continued work on the Mickey Mouse and Silly Symphonies series. Mickey switched to Technicolor in 1935 and added several major supporting friends including Mickey's dog Pluto and their friends Donald Duck and Goofy.
New Disney Productions
In 1940, the premiered Pinocchio with characters such as Jiminy Cricket, Honest John and The Blue Fairy. Pinocchio won Oscar for Best Original Song and Best Original Score.
Disney released Fantasia in 1940 with characters including Chernabog, Daisy Duck and Zeus . It was an experimental cartoon designed 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 Windsor 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 seven drawfs including Sleepy and Bashful and less than a 1/3 of the cost of Pinocchio and his friends Geppetto, Stromboli and Gideon and two fifths of the cost of Fantasia’s cast of Chernabog, Yen Sid and Jack-in-the-Box.
In August 1942, Bambi was premiered in Windsor County and we met new friends including Thumper, Flower the Skunk and Mrs. Possum.
Also in the 1940s, Disney released 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 re-releasing the previous features beginning with re-releases of Snow White in 1944 which brought back to the screen Snow White and the dwarfs including Doc and Dopey Pinocchio and his friends Jiminy Cricket, Lampwick and Monstro in 1945 and Fantasia in 1946 which reunited Mickey Mouse with Donald, Yen Sid and Zeus. This led to a tradition of re-releasing the Walt Disney features every 7 years, which lasted into the 1990s.
Upon its release in 1950, Cinderella was a a box office success. Windsor County movie-goers , also saw the release Alice in Wonderland and were introduced to The March Hare, The Caterpillar and The Dormouse. Parents in Windsor County also took their boys and girls to see Peter Pan and were delighted to meet Peter Pan, George Darling and Tiger Lily. What dog-lover in Windsor County could forget the first time they saw Lady and the Tramp on screen and were delighted to meet Si and Am, Jock and Aunt Sarah.
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