10 Things You Probably Didn't Know About Disney's 'Dumbo'

Disney classic Dumbo is set to become the latest animated feature to get the live action remake treatment, according to The Hollywood Reporter. The 1941 film, about a big eared baby elephant who can fly, is one of Disney’s most loved creations. So in anticipation of just what a new Dumbo movie could be like, we’ve dug up 10 facts about the original. Here’s 10 things you probably didn't know about Dumbo.

DumboDumbo was first released in 1941

1. Dumbo was Walt Disney’s 4th animated feature.The character was based on a 1939 story written by Helen Aberson and illustrated by Harold Pearl, the tale was originally written for a pro type toy.

2. The movie was the least expensive of Disney’s animated features. It was made on tight budget and was produced in order to try and recoup the costs of commercial failures Pinocchio and Fantasia.

3. Due to the film’s small budget it is one of the few Disney films which uses watercolours to create its backgrounds. Watercolours were used simply because they cost less.

4. Dumbo is the only lead character in a Disney movie to never speak! His mother also only ever speaks once, when she says Dumbo’s original name.

More: Disney planning live action Dumbo movie

5. The movie was also the first, and still one of the few, Disney animations to be set in America.

6. Dumbo’s mother was originally named Mother Ella, but her name was changed to Mrs Jumbo by writers Joe Grant and Dick Huemer in order to honour the famous Barnum & Bailey circus pachyderm.

7. Disney’s first home video release was Dumbo. Originally it was released in 1981 for rental only, but it was put on sale a year later. The movie has since moved to DVD and never gone out of print, with its most recent repackaging released in 2011, to celebrate its 70th anniversary.

8. Like all Disney movies, Dumbo contains a hidden Mickey. When Dumbo takes a bath, Mickey’s face shape is made by some of the bubbles.

More: Top 10 Movie Easter Eggs: Featuring Indiana Jones, The Departed, Tron

9. But the movie contains another different kind of ‘hidden Mickey’. In the scene where Timothy drunkenly slides down the staircase bubble, his laugh is actually Mickeys. Later when Timothy coughs on Jim Crow’s, the cough is also Mickey’s.

10. In the early 2000s, a direct to DVD sequel entitled Dumbo 2 was announced. The story was set to follow on from the original with Dumbo and a group of young circus animals trying to find their way back to the WDP circus after getting separated. Unfortunately the idea never got past the storyboard stage and was eventually cancelled.


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