Disney unleashes the hounds!!
“101 Dalmatians” may be the most unfairly slighted of Walt Disney’s ‘classic’ animated films, as this dog-napping adventure literally saved the studio, introduced the ultimate Disney villainess, Cruella De Vil, and ushered in a visually graphic ‘style’ that would set the industry standard for a decade. Oh, and it’s great FUN, too!
Based on Dodie Smith’s 1956 novel (inspired by her own Dalmatian pets), Disney knew it would be a ‘natural’ for the screen, at a time when he desperately needed a blockbuster. Despite the huge success of “Cinderella”, in 1950, the decade, with the studio’s resources stretched between both live and animated features and shorts, television, and the opening of Disneyland, had been a costly one, and the skyrocketing cost of producing animation, after a string of less successful cartoons (culminating in the failure of “Sleeping Beauty”), threatened to curtail any future animated films. It was a desperate time (most of the major studios were shutting down their animation departments, and the ‘limited animation’ of Hanna-Barbera, which Disney detested, appeared to be the ‘future’ of cartoons), and he turned to production manager Ken Anderson to find a way to make the film cost-effective while maintaining the ‘Disney’ look.
Preorder the 101 Dalmatians: Diamond Edition now