History of Children’s Movies

The genre of the week is children’s.  The movie I will be watching might actually scare children but I think it’s a good time.  I like kids movies because they’re short and amusing usually.  I watched Disney movies all the time when I was a kid.  My favorites were The Aristocats, Pocahontas, and Mulan.  They are designed for kids 12 and younger but all ages can get enjoyment from them.  They usually have a deeper meaning to help kids understand sometimes difficult topics like a dog dying or how it’s ok to be different.  There are so many movies out there geared towards children.  They have always been around kind of.  Many of the westerns were geared towards a younger audience and some older movies that are rated PG aren’t always appropriate for children like in Who Framed Roger Rabbit from 1988 sex is a recurring theme and someone hires a hitman.  If a movie is rated G it means that nothing that would offend parents for viewing by kids and PG is when it contains some things that parents might not like. Jim Henson, the creator muppets and helped establish Sesame Street, is well known for his movies like The Dark Crystal, Labyrinth, and The Muppet Movie.  Roald Dahl was an author and many of his books inspired children’s movies like James and the Giant Peach, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, and Chitty-Chitty Bang Bang.  Many children’s movies have animal actors as in an animal plays a major role and dogs have been the most popular.  Toto from The Wizard of Oz, Lassie from Lassie, and Old Yeller from Old Yeller.  The first “animated” movie was The Enchanted Drawing in 1900 then in 1906 there was Humorous Phases of Funny Faces and it was a very rough animation made by projecting line drawings onto a blackboard at a rate of 20 frames per second.  Disney is what I always think of right away when I hear about a children’s movie.  They were started in 1923 in Los Angeles, California.  Their first full length animated feature was Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs released in 1937.  It was such a success that they had to move to Burbank, California to expand their production staff and in the 1940s and 1950s many prominent animated features were produced there.  Including Fantasia, Bambi, Cinderella, Alice in Wonderland, and Peter Pan.  Then in the late 40s they worked on live action films and shows.  They kept expanding and adding in sound stages and lots for filming the live action scenes.  In one of the lots Walt Disney wanted to build a small Disneyland called Mickey Mouse Park and there were going to be lifelike statues of Mickey and Donald so guests could take pictures with their favorite characters and enjoy a train ride. Walt’s ideas continued to grow and he realized that more space was needed. So he acquired more than 200 acres of orange groves in Anaheim, California and that is now Disneyland.  


Pages That I Referenced


Ethos Magazine

Disney History

Film Ratings


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