Alice In Wonderland: Reject All Inferior Imitations! This is the Real Deal!
|Alice in Wonderland (1951).|
Walt, a promising young graphics artist, was struggling. His animation business in Kansas City just wasn't making it. He tried everything he could think of with short cartoons, but the public just didn't like them. Times were tough, but he wasn't choosy - live-action or animation, it didn't matter, he just needed to eat.
Disney gave it one last try, using an unknown local child who had been useful on some of his earlier shoots, Virginia Davis. The last-ditch project would be a combination of live-action and animation based on English author Lewis Carroll's "Alice in Wonderland." He filmed it and was pleased: excellent work if he did say so himself.
|Alice has the standard look of beauty for the time.|
|The White Rabbit. Jefferson Airplane must have loved this film.|
Walt banged on doors, he begged, he pleaded: just hire me. I will direct anything.
|We're twice the fun!|
|Alice talking to Cheshire Cat.|
|You may have noticed, I'm not all there!|
|Alice at the tea party.|
|Queen of Hearts playing croquet.|
|Aren't those the bluest eyes?|
It was practically his baby: he knew it inside and out, knew just how to film it, and had the people in place with the experience to do it. it was a sure thing, like drawing to an inside straight. But he was being tugged every which way by what was going on in Hollywood at the time.
|Bread and butterflies.|
|Hmmm, I don't know about that...|
|Walt was frustrated at the fact that he had to follow the original story so closely.|
|Being lost is never fun.|
|Times are tough. One lump, or two?|
|No, Alice! Don't go through there!|
|Ed Wynn is prominently credited on the original poster - above everyone else.|
|Alice, eat the mushroom!|
|Original posters are collector's items - "The all-cartoon Musical Wonderfilm!"|
“That was the trouble with ‘Alice in Wonderland’. There we had a classic we couldn’t tamper with. The picture was filled with weird characters you couldn’t get with. Even Alice wasn’t very sympathetic. I wanted to make the White Knight a romantic figure and have him always popping up through the story saying ‘What Ho!’ Alice could have tried to help him out. But I was talked out of it.”
Everyone thinks of Walt Disney as this staid, conservative character - which he was in many ways. Very straight-laced, which was completely at odds with many of his employees. However, in his animation, Walt Disney was as wild and creative as anyone. He was kind of like the quarterback who goes to church and reads the Bible each week, but on the field is a daring, inventive scrambler. If he had his way, "Alice in Wonderland" would have been even wackier - and likely better. But it was the 1950s, and his advisers were correct: it just wasn't the right time to get all freaky with Alice.
|The caterpillar. Whooooooo are you?|
|Wonderland is a very odd world, full of strange creatures and sights.|
|Some parts of "Alice in Wonderland" just defy description.|
|The 1950s version of Beavis and Butt-head.|
|Such a good girl!|
|Quite a court! Notice the cards are all Hearts. Alice on Trial.|
|This illustrated book/record release emphasized the psychedelic aspects of "Alice in Wonderland."|
|Now, this is kind of crazy...|
|You can see why the '60s college kids thought this was trippy. Applaud the Queen!|
|"Don't worry, Peter, your turn is coming next!"|
|The 60th Anniversary DVD release|