Dumbo is a 1941 American animated fantasy film produced by Walt Disney Productions and released by RKO Radio Pictures. The fourth Disney animated feature film, it is based upon the storyline written by Helen Aberson and Harold Pearl, and illustrated by Helen Durney for the prototype of a novelty toy ("Roll-a-Book"). The main character is Jumbo Jr., an elephant who is cruelly nicknamed "Dumbo", as in "dumb". He is ridiculed for his big ears, but in fact he is capable of flying by using his ears as wings. Throughout most of the film, his only true friend, aside from his mother, is the mouse, Timothy – a relationship parodying the stereotypical animosity between mice and elephants.
|Directed by||Supervising Director|
|Based on||Dumbo, the Flying Elephant|
by Helen Aberson
|Produced by||Walt Disney|
|Narrated by||John McLeish|
|Music by||Frank Churchill|
|Distributed by||RKO Radio Pictures|
|Box office||>$1.3 million (est. United States/Canada rentals, 1941)|
Made to recoup the financial losses of both Pinocchio and Fantasia, Dumbo was a deliberate pursuit of simplicity and economy for the Disney studios. At 64 minutes, it is one of Disney's shortest animated features. Sound was recorded conventionally using the RCA System. One voice was synthesized using the Sonovox system, but it, too, was recorded using the RCA System.
Dumbo was released on October 23, 1941, where it was met with generally favorable reviews. It has since been considered to be among the greatest animated films of all time. In 2017, the film was selected for preservation in the United States National Film Registry by the Library of Congress as being "culturally, historically and aesthetically significant".