It's not all about Pixar, as these 10 Disney features prove.
Sometimes it seems as if Disney has taken a back seat in the animation world to Pixar. Disney might be Pixar’s owners, but it doesn't stop the two studios competing to make the best animation around. Whilst Pixar has had some massive hits since 2000, such as 'The Incredibles', 'Toy Story 3' and 'Up', Disney hasn't done too bad either. Here's ten films that show why after nearly 80 years of making movies the studio is still going strong.
Disney's 2002 Movie Lilo and Stitch
1. ’Lilo and Stitch’ (2002)
The story of Stitch the loveable extraterrestrial fugitive and his new found friend Lilo became Disney’s first new franchise of the millennium. Both critics and audiences warmed to the poignant and often sad story of this unusual friendship and the film took over $270 million worldwide at the box office. The movie's soundtrack featured many classic Elvis Presley hits, and the franchise would go on to spawn two sequels as well as a television series.
Studio Ghibli's 'Spirited Away' Was Distributed by Disney Internationally
2. Spirited Away (2001)
Ok so Hayao Miyazaki's anime classic Sprited Away isn't a Disney movie, though the Studio Ghibli project was distributed by Disney internationally and the studio took care of an English dubbed version. Considered one of the greatest animated movies of all time, Spirited Away tells the story of a sullen 10-year-old girl who moves to a new neighbourhood and enters the spirit world.
3. Meet the Robinsons (2007)
The story of a young orphan who is taken into the future found a home with audiences and was generally well received by critics. The film was only Disney's second 3-D release, the first being the less entertaining 'Chicken Little'. Critics praised the 3-D visuals as well as admiring the story's deapth and humour.
Mae Whitman Provided The Voice of 'Tinkerbell'
4. Tinkerbell (2008)
Everybody’s favourite fairy had been long overdue her own movie when she finally got it in 2008. 'Arrested Development’s' Mae Whitman provided the voice for the much loved character, who had never spoken onscreen before. There were also plenty of big name supporting players such as Angelica Houston and Raven Symoné. The movie was parsed for its sweet simplicity, which perfectly catered for the young Disney audience.
John Travolta and Miley Cyrus Teamed Up For 'Bolt'
5. 'Bolt' (2008)
John Travolta and Miley Cyrus made an unlikely combination in this 2008 feature about a dog, Bolt, who thinks he has super powers. Travolta’s star power mixed with some great pop songs by Miley should have worked perfectly on audiences but it suffered slightly from being released on the same weekend as ‘Twilight’ The movie was praised for its animation as well as being funny and not overdoing the Disney sentimentality too much.
6. Princess and the Frog (2009)
Disney’s first ever African American Princess was ‘The Princess and the Frog’s’ Tina who featured in this reowrking of the classic tale 'The Frog Prince'. The 2009 film failed to do ignite the box office but it was critically well received. ‘Dreamgirls’ Anika Noni Rose provided the voice for the Princess and the impressive supporting voice cast included Oprah Winfrey and Terrence Howard.
Disney's 'The Princess and the Frog'
7. Tangled (2010)
Disney’s last ‘Princess’ movie was 2010’s ‘Tangled’ a retelling of the Rapunzel story. Intial controversy over the film’s title change from ‘Rapunzel’ to ‘Tangled’ soon subsided when critics viewed the film. The film earned $591 million at the box office which is lucky considering it reportedly cost over $260 million to make. The film was notable for its use of CGI to create an ‘oil painting’ like animation, showing how modern animation techniques could successfully blend with the more traditional. The visually stunning film also successfully mixed the elements we all expect from a classic Disney movie romance, comedy and action.
Disney's 2011 Big Screen Adventure, Winnie the Pooh
8. Winnie the Pooh (2011)
Winnie the Pooh got another big screen adventure in 2011, which managed to perfectly capture the warmth and charm that had made the character so memorable. Once again it didn't prove to be a box office smash which was understandable considering it was released at the same weekend as ‘Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows – Part 2’.
Tim Burton's Stunning 'Frankenweenie'
9. Frankenweenie (2012)
Tim Burton collaborated with Disney again in 2012 to produce the feature length version of his 1984 short film ‘Frankenweenie’. Part homage and part parody of Frankenstein, the black and white film blends Burton’s favoured stop motion animation with Disney 3-D. The impressive voice cast included prevoisu Burton collaborators, Winnona Ryder and Martin Landau. Critics enjoyed Burton getting back to his origins and long time Burton fans weren't disappointed with his return to stop motion.
'Frozen' Is A Modern Animated Classic
10. Frozen (2013)
Loosely based on Hans Christian Anderson’s ‘The Snow Queen’, 2013’s ‘Frozen’ was both a box office and critical success, earning an Oscar nomination for ‘Best Animated Feature’ and winning a BAFTA. Featuring the voices of Kristen Bell and Idina Menzel and with a screenplay by ‘Wreck it Ralph’s’ Jennifer Lee, 'Frozen' has become an instant Disney classic. Much like in 'Tangled' traditional animation was blended with CGI, with much attention being paid to creating the film’s beautiful wintery landscape. Writer Jennifer Lee also co-directed the film making history as the first woman to direct a Disney animated feature.