The year 1944 is rich in Disney History for many reasons. Not only because it saw a lot of triumphs for Walt Disney but, it happened while the world was going through a war.
Even during World War II many people were still flocking to movie theaters, to try and keep some normalcy in their lives and Hollywood benefited greatly from this.
Even Walt Disney to his surprise had an unexpected thing happen in 1944. At this time Walt’s studio was financially strapped, centering mostly on government work (animation produced for military services) and he was unable to produce much for the movie houses. At the same time, he soon learned that Universal Studios was re-releasing some of his films. So he decided to also re-release Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs. He would personally attended the premiere in Cincinnati. Walt proving his instincts were right, Snow White would become a smashing success again seven years after its first release. This gave Walt the validated that his first animated feature was acclaimed as a Masterpiece again. And this time Snow White had sold more tickets than other new films released currently. His brother, Roy Disney was quoted as saying ”Snow White really seems hot“.
The income from the second release was a welcome relief to the depleted Disney funds. The re-release of Snow White had proven two things: One that Walt’s films were timeless because, there was nothing in Snow White to make it dated. You couldn’t tell if it was 1944 or any other year. Also, when it was released again in 1944 it proved it could make a profit even during wartime. Secondly, it reminded audiences and Hollywood what a great filmmaker Walt was especially before the war started. His fairytale not only reminded audiences but, him too about the appreciation for what he had created the first time around.
Like all Americans, he too longed for peacetime and a return to normalcy and what better way than to go to the movies.
Also in 1944, Walt and his team of filmmakers were innovators trying new and surprising ways to combine the antics of Donald Duck with Live Action. Shooting this footage would combine the zesty culture and music of Brazil and Mexico along with the animated backgrounds, effects and characters. Walt had achieved a beautiful representation of the countries. He incorporated the color and spirit of good neighbor countries to inspire a new dimension in Disney Animation.
Hope you enjoyed this look back into Disney History.....
Thanks and Enjoy! =)