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The Big Bad Wolf

A Silly Symphony

Release Date : April 13, 1934

Running Time : 9:19

Synopsis

The bad guy from "Three Little Pigs" does double duty here; he's back for revenge on his old adversaries from the first film, but also stands in for his famous cousin out of "Little Red Riding Hood."

Characters

Three Little Pigs
Big Bad Wolf
Little Red Riding Hood
Grandma

Credits

Director
Bert Gillett
Animation
Les Clark
Dick Lundy
Hamilton Luske
Norm Ferguson
Gerry "Clyde" Geronomi
Bill Roberts
Fred Moore
Story
Ted Sears
Music
Frank Churchill
Voices
Mary Moder
Dorothy Compton
Pinto Colvig
Billy Bletcher

Video

United States
Favorite Stories : The Three Little Pigs
Cartoon Classics : First Series : Volume 12 : Disney's Tall Tales
Germany
Donald und Company
Die Drei Kleinen Schweinchen und der Böse Wolf
France
Disney Parade 4
Donald et Company
Italy
Paperino e Soci a Caccia di Guai

Laserdiscs

United States
Paul Bunyan / The Three Little Pigs
Japan
Disney Cartoon Festival Volume 4
Donald and Company

DVD

United States
Walt Disney Animation Collection : Volume 2 : The Three Little Pigs
Disney Treasures : Silly Symphonies
Germany
Disney Treasures : Silly Symphonies
France
Disney Treasures : Silly Symphonies
Italy
Disney Treasures : Silly Symphonies
Sweden
Disney Treasures : Silly Symphonies
United Kingdom
Disney Treasures : Silly Symphonies

Television

The Ink and Paint Club: Episode 49: More Storybook Silly Symphonies
The Ink and Paint Club: Episode 19: The Big Bad Wolves
The Mickey Mouse Club : October 25, 1956

Technical Specification

Color Type: Technicolor
Animation Type: Standard animation
Sound Mix: Mono
Aspect Ratio: 1.37 : 1
Negative Format: 35mm
Print Format: 35mm
Cinematographic Process: Spherical
Original Language: English

Released by United Artists Pictures

Comments

From Ryan Kilpatrick at The Disney Film Project : Today’s short puts to rest a long running myth among Disney fan communities. We’ve always heard from grumpy Disney fans that “Walt didn’t like sequels,” or that “Disney didn’t used to do sequels.” I’ve long believed and stated that this was untrue. Sure enough, today we get The Big Bad Wolf, a sequel to The Three Little Pigs. And guess what? It’s fantastic.

Call it the Godfather Two of shorts, or the Toy Story 2 of animated shorts. But The Big Bad Wolf lives up to its predecessor in every way. The storytelling is superb, the animation is fluid, crisp and dynamic and the music returns from the original to provide a great overall package.

In this one, the wolf is playing a dual role – he is out for revenge on the pigs, but he’s also playing the role of the Big Bad Wolf in the Little Red Riding Hood story. The main focus of the story is the re-telling of Little Red Riding Hood. There are some notable changes, however.

Red runs into the pigs early on, and the pig with the brick house warns her not to take the shortcut through the woods to Grandma’s house. Despite their earlier experiences, the other two pigs laugh at the possibility of the Big Bad Wolf getting Red, and agree to go with her on the shortcut. When will they ever learn?

Of course, the wolf shows up, and chases them off. There’s a funny bit where he pretends to be a fairy, but is soon revealed, leading the pigs to run back to the brick house while Red tries to make it to Grandma’s.

We all know the story, of course. The wolf makes it to Grandma’s first and dresses up as the old woman, to surprise Red. The pigs, though, make it back to the brick house before damage can be done. Taking the role of the woodsman from the original story, the brick house pig grabs his toolkit for exterminating wolves and heads for Grandma’s house.

The best gag in the whole short to me is how the wolf gets defeated. We get set up with ghastly expectations, seeing the array of weapons the pig has to beat the wolf. There are knives, cleavers and more. Instead of using those, the pig dumps unpopped popcorn in the wolf’s pants, then tosses in some hot coals. The result is a wolf running off into the sunset with popcorn flying out of his backside.

This short does not let up. Although it’s not as gag packed as some of the Mickeys, the action continues at a rapid pace from the opening sequence. There is some disconnect at the two pigs ignoring the danger of the wolf, but it’s quickly forgotten. Just like before, the wolf design is spectacular.

Contrast this short with yesterday’s subject, Funny Little Bunnies, and it’s almost a night and day comparison. Funny Little Bunnies was much more full of caricature and cuteness, whereas The Big Bad Wolf is a study in dynamic characters and action. It all depends on your tastes, but my preference is for The Big Bad Wolf.


From Mac : A definite change of tone from Funny Little Bunnies and other Story Land shorts. This one maintains some of the silly details from the first Pigs cartoon (e.g funny portraits of relatives and silly items made from bricks - also notice Practical is now building an extension to accommodate his brothers!). However, this fairy tale cross-over really ups the level of tongue-in-cheek. It doesn't quite reach Shrek levels of mickey-taking, but Riding Hood's ridiculous cuteness is played for laughs (esp. the "What big eyes you have" scene), the Wolf talks to the audience (and references a contemporary comedian) plus he wears his most ridiculous disguise yet (Goldilocks the Fairy Queen? Brother!)

All this silliness is great fun and quite refreshing, especially with a character as strong as the Big Bad Wolf.

One thing I noticed about this is that the titles are considerably longer than usual. When I was a kid I used to tape Disney cartoons from TV and this one once aired unannounced. Luckily, the titles were so long I had enough time to find my video, stick it in the machine and start recording without missing any action! I bet the titles were made so long as a king of build-up for cinema goers excited to see a sequel to the most popular cartoon of that time. Disney may have expected a lot of excited chatter in theaters when The Big Bad Wolf title came up on screen.


From Jerry Edwards : The Three Little Pigs team up with Red Riding Hood and her Grandmother in defeating the Big Bad Wolf. In spite of the Practical Pig's warning about the wolf, Fiddler Pig and Fifer Pig convince Red Riding Hood to take the shortcut to Grandma's house. They barely escape the Big Bad Wolf. The wolf runs ahead to Grandma's house, but is unable to capture Grandma, who hides in a wardrobe closet. The Practical Pig is able to defeat the wolf by shoving coals and popcorn down the wolf's pants. Although it doesn't have the appeal or success of the original Three Little Pigs cartoon, I liked including the pigs in the Red Riding Hood story. I noticed a couple of interesting animation goofs. Fiddler and Fifer Pig and Red Riding Hood disappear while they are skipping down the shortcut path. Also the appearance of the wardrobe closet door changes from not having a latch to later having a latch.
From Atsuko : I find this to be the weakest of the Three Little Pigs cartoons. The Red Riding Hood story is alright, but it's been done. Practical's method of dispatching with the wolf (putting hot coals and popcorn in his pants) is worth a few laughs but I don't think it has the imagination of the Wolf Pacifier in the next cartoon, Three Little Wolves.
From Sarah : One of the best Disney shorts. Although I wasn't born then, but I have Disney treasures, and it's really neat. It is a great way, to put the classic tale of the three little pigs and the big bad wolf, into a funny, Disney short.

The pigs make me laugh, and the wolf is so sneaky, he is just waiting to get hit by them apples!

One of the Disney classics, which no body, should miss out on. I'm saying!


From Ryan : This is the second cartoon in the series of "Three Little Pigs" shorts. It's a fairy tale crossover, inserting Little Red Riding Hood into the story. While not one of my favorite cartoons, I do enjoy the animation and the background art.
From Gijs Grob : Disney's first sequel. Undoubtly made to satisfy the masses who, after the huge success of Three Little Pigs, demanded for 'more pigs'. As one can expect It's not as great as Three Little Pigs, but it's fun to watch. The title card shows the main characters as if they were playing their parts. The cartoon, however, is named after the wolf, and deservedly so, because he's clearly the greatest actor. He not only impersonates grandma, but also "Goldilocks the fairyqueen" in a ridiculous and aimless costume, and even Jimmy Durante! Furthermore, he alone shows to be aware of the audience: he often looks into the camera, and even addresses the audience with a "how am I doing?".

The Big Bad Wolf might be the first "fairy -tales mixed up" cartoon. It may very well have inspired Tex Avery to make similar, yet more hilarious cartoons like 'The Bear's Tale' (1940) and 'Swing Shift Cinderella' (1945), both starring Little Red Riding Hood.


From Ajisai : It's easy to see why they named this short after the Wolf- he totally steals the show! We also get him cross-dressing, which is hilarious and somewhat disturbing when you consider that he does it a lot in later cartoons. Good short all around.
From Baruch Weiss : This is a great cartoon, the music was superb and I enjoyed the scene where the wolf imitates Jimmy Durante. I Wonder who did the voices for Red and her Grandma? I also noticed that one of the pigs was was dressed like Donald Duck and the other was dressed like a sailor!

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