How Disney can be seen as an influence
In the following essay I will explain how Disney has had a huge influential impact on animation and how they have also given a large influence on other animation companies such as Pixar and Warner Brosthers.
Walt and Roy Disney created Disney on October 16th 1923. Disney are considered the pioneers of cartoon animation. As you can imagine, back in the 1920s there wasn’t a large variety of technology around to create these cartoons. All they had was a pencil and a sheet of paper to created these characters. Disney were also the first animators to make a full length animation movie called Snow White and the seven dwarves back in 1937. Still to this day it is watched by many people and is known all around the world. By making this movie Snow White it had a massive effect on the way people looked on animation and influenced other companies like Pixar to start making animation movies as successful as Snow White. Disney has opened eyes to children all around the world to step into a “Magical World”
Snow White and the seven dwarves was the first full-length movie that contained speech through sound that was placed into the production without having to use speech bubbles in the picture. Seeing as there was a lack of technology to do this sort of movie back in the 1930s it amazed people who viewed it as they had never seen anything like this done before. Before Snow White, Disney had made the first animated short to synchronize sound along with the action in the short. “Steamboat Willie” amazed audiences all over the world. This didn’t have any synchronized speech within it but it did have animated sounds an example of one of these was when the character Mickey Mouse when having a tug of war with a goat, you can hear the sound of something stretching. Snow white was created by using a series of ‘cells’ these were simply drawn images on large amounts of paper. To create
motion the animators would draw an image of someone moving over each time on each sheet of paper. To save making huge amounts of backgrounds for each scene. They would only make the cells move to create the idea of motion throughout each scene as if it were changing. This is an earlier traditional way of animation, whereas in the current day, most animation is done using computers to generate characters, scenes etc. Snow white was also the very first full-length animation to have Technicolor throughout it. Back in the 1930s this would have been a huge breakthrough in animation technology and the viewers would have seen Disney as ‘magical’
After Snow White, many others seemed influenced to make animated films seeing as how successful Disney was with Snow White and other shorts like Steamboat Willie. Warner Brothers must have found influence from the Disney company, they started to make cartoon shorts in the 1930s known as Looney tunes and Merrie Melodies. Warner Bros first Looney tunes cartoon was shown in 1930 (not shortly after Steamboat Willie in 1928) This cartoon called Congo Jazz seemed heavily influenced by the Steamboat Willie cartoon. Both were created using drawn animation. It also contained the same sorts of animated sounds for example when one character starts to play an instrument, a little tune starts to play, with musical notes coming out of the instrument. Something else we see from this cartoon that seems influenced from Disney’s shorts is that they also have the typical style of story where two main characters chasing each other around with extra background character’s within the story.
As you can see from the points I have explained above, Warner Bros definitely found inspiration from the cartoon shorts of Disney’s Mickey Mouse. Big companies still to this day find inspiration from these animated Disney shorts. A good example of this is from Pixar’s Toy Story (released by Disney) Disney approached Pixar to make a full length computer animated film, seeing as how successful their earlier short Tin Toy (1988) was seeing as it won the first Oscar to an animated short. You can also see from this Tin Toy production winning an Oscar, Pixar were the first company to win an Oscar for an animated short. So quite possibly, influence from Disney being the first to make a full-length animation film, Pixar wanted to be the first to make a production good enough to win an Oscar. Toy Story was Pixar’s first time making a full-length animation film. By Disney approaching them to make a full-length production, they may have looked towards Disney for inspiration and ideas of how the generate their ideas for story’s and what it was like for Disney to make their first animation film (Snow White) so you could definitely say that Disney inspirited Pixar to make their first animated film (Which was a huge success) Pixar have now been making full length animation films since Toy Story and have quite similar in terms of success with them.
In Conclusion I think that Disney has influenced animation to get better and better also they have forced more and more companies like Pixar and Warner Bros to raise the bar for themselves each time they make an animation film. Disney has made a huge impact on the animation world of films and shorts especially being known as the first company of animators to make the first full-length animation movie. Disney can easily be seen as an iconic image around the world as it set the standards for any other animation company in the industry by being the first to create a full-length animation film. Without Disney doing this, I doubt many other companies would be able to find much inspiration from others for their movies. Disney has pushed the boundaries of how amazing animations can be to this day. As I have said before most animation movies will now be done electronically using a computer to model each character and scene. However without Disney making these shorts and films they have it wouldn’t give much influence on computer software designers to make a program whereby you could make an animation film without as much stress or effort and also makes animation.