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The Cookie Carnival

A Silly Symphony

Release Date : May 25, 1935

Running Time : 8:00

Synopsis

A confectionery Cinderella story in which a sad girl cookie is turned into the Queen of the Carnival by a wandering hobo cookie.

Characters

Girl Cookie
Hobo Cookie
Judges
Miss Peppermint
Miss Cocoanut
Miss Banana Cake
Miss Licorice
Miss Pineapple
Miss Strawberry Blonde
Dandy Candy Kids
Old Fashioned Cookies
Angel Food Cakes
Devils Food Cakes
Upisde Down Cakes
Rum Cookies
Miss Jello

Credits

Director
Ben Sharpsteen
Animation
Don Towsley
Johnny Cannon
John McManus
Ferdinand Horvath
Nick George
Jack Kinney
Bill Tytla
Grim Natwick
Fred Spencer
Milt Schaffer
Eddie Strickland
Leonard Sebring
Paul Allen
Frank Thomas
Backgrounds
Ferdinand Horvath
Story
Pinto Colvig
Music
Leigh Harline
Character Design
Albert Hurter
Ferdinand Horvath
Grim Natwick
Voices
Pinto Colvig

Cut Scenes

A scene featuring rum cookies was cut out at one time.

Video

United States
Great and Minor Animation Vol. 4
Cartoon Classics : Limited Gold Editions I : Silly Symphonies
Germany
Weihnachtpass mit Micky und Donald
France
Silly Symphonies Volume 2
Italy
Silly Symphonies
Cartoon Classics : Limited Gold Editions I : Silly Symphonies

CED

United States
Limited Gold Editions - Silly Symphonies

Laserdiscs

Japan
Silly Symphonies : Limited Gold Editions

DVD

United States
Disney Treasures : Silly Symphonies
Germany
Weihnachtspass mit Micky and Donald
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 18: A Bunch of Silly Symphonies
Mickey's Mouse Tracks: Episode 15
The Mickey Mouse Club : October 26, 1955
The Mickey Mouse Club : February 6, 1957

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 Patrick Malone : A parade is being held in Cookietown! A parade to elect the newest Cookie Queen.The contestants are all ready and being paraded by on their floats like a confectionery Macy's parade. There is Miss Peppermint, Miss Coconut (looking for all the world like an eskimo), Miss Banana Cake, Miss Strawberry Blonde, and Miss Licorice.

But the scene is not all happiness. A wandering hobo comes wandering down the train tracks (which are also made of peppermint sticks) and comes across a pretty miss cookie crying to herself because she doesn't have anything to wear to the carnival The hobo decides to become Fairy Godmother to our Cinderella cookie; a cupcake sleeve becomes a petticoat, cream from a few eclairs becomes a beautiful gown, and a few properly thrown candy hearts complete the wardrobe.

Making a quick switch with the tail end of the parade, the hobo just manages to get our beauty into the parade. The judges go nuts when they see her and know that they've found their queen, destroying their dais in the process of getting down to meet her But a king! The queen, they decide, must have a king. So, where before the female population of Cookietown was on parade, now it's time for the males to show their stuff.

We're introduced to a variety of sweet-stuffs: The Dandy Candy Kids, The Old-Fashioned Cookies ("like Mom used to make"), the Angel-Food Cakes (maybe a little too sweet), The Devil's Food Cakes, the Upside Down Cakes, and finally The Rum Cookies (who were cut out at one time because they were "always stewed!")

The three judges, in a serious show of bias, announce that no suitable king could be found, so one of them will have to take the crown. All during this pageant, however, the hobo has been trying to elude the guards who are trying to evict him from the show. He finally takes cover underneath the queens carpet, coming up on the other side to land at her feet. The queen, of course, recognizes her as her savior and announces that he shall be the king.

The short concludes with a spectacular light show courtesy of a impressively bright one-candlepower and an assortment of multicolored lollipop gels. The hobo, as a reward for what he has brought about, receives a kiss from his queen, but not before hiding behind a lollipop which, in a libidinous heat, melts with their passion.

The Cookie Carnival was not considered a great success by many of the animators that worked on it. The old bugaboo of character had struck again, and some didn't feel that the cookies came over as very convincing. The parade itself, some thought, took up too much of the short giving the main characters not enough screen time to establish themselves. Bob Wickersham thought that "the cookies just didn't have what it takes in themselves." Wilfred Jackson wrote "The parade and general whys and wherefore of the Cookie Carnival were confusing to the audience." Mique Nelson summed it up writing "The general effect on the observer of a parade of unestablished character is somewhat meaningless because of the fact that the observer's mind has never been allowed to stop for at least an instant and become acquainted with a definite personality or a single thought."

But the short did have one benefit to the Disney organization. This was the first short which Myron "Grim" Natwick worked on for Disney. Natwick got his start working for the Fleischer Brothers and was instrumental in developing Betty Boop. And in a reverse of the usual process, he had been stolen away from Ub Iwerks new studio where he had been working on Flip the Frog. It was discovered that he had a great skill in animating female forms, and many thought that in The Cookie Carnival he had achieved Disney's first fully feminine character. As a result, Natwick was given almost solely feminine characters to animate, culminating in his work animating the heroine in Disney's first feature film "Snow White and the Seven Dwarves."


From Ryan Kilpatrick at The Disney Film Project : After the disappointment of Water Babies, the Silly Symphonies return to form with The Cookie Carnival. Where Water Babies was missing a story and relatable characters, The Cookie Carnival features both, and manages to give viewers a fun hook.

The basic idea is that we are back in a land of cookies, similar to the cookie men from Hot Chocolate Soldiers. Back then we debated whether they were pastries or not, so I’ll just say that it’s a land full of cookie people. A parade is ongoing, featuring the candidates for Queen. There are various entrants, including Miss Candy Cane, Miss Licorice and Miss Banana Cake.

Off behind the parade, though, one young woman is crying, because she cannot enter the contest. She has nothing to wear and no float to pull her. A hobo cookie man shows up and plays Fairy Godmother, though, in a small twist on the Cinderella story. This is a really fun part of the short, as the hobo uses icing, sprinkles, and éclairs to make the young cookie girl into a real princess.

Of course, she wins the contest, completing the fairy tale. But what is interesting about this short is that this moment comes only halfway through the short. The rest of the short focuses on the selection of a king for the queen. It’s this part that is most interesting to me.

The elders of the cookie town wheel up a carousel, and as the carousel rotates, a curtain opens, revealing the king candidates inside. We get old fashioned cookies, angel food cakes, devil’s food cakes and even rum cakes. What’s interesting to me is the whole carousel idea. It brings to mind two later Disney innovations.

As Walt was getting ready to build Disneylandia, a traveling show of miniatures, he used a stage similar to the framing of this carousel to reveal his dancing figure. Later, this rotating carousel idea would be used in the Carousel of Progress. It’s so interesting to see the same thing here, decades earlier.

Finally, of course, the hobo gets chosen as the king, and there’s some cute bits around the two trying to sneak a kiss. That’s what makes this short, though, is the interaction between the hobo (voiced by Pinto Colvig) and his queen. They are loveable characters who you want to see succeed. That’s the heart of any good story, but especially a Disney story.


From Mac : As I've been preparing for Christmas, I've fallen behind with following your blog again, but luckily this cartoon makes fine Christmas Eve viewing!

There's a great atmosphere and song opening this short which really showcases how far the Disney artists and animators have come. There's some really sophisticated designs, drawing and movements in this cartoon, with far less of those slightly awkward not-quite-right moments of animation we've seen before. I have heard that Walt wasn't wasn't 100% satisfied with this cartoon (don't have the time right now to look up where), if so then it shows once again the kind of quality he was aiming for because this is a very enjoyable short to me.


From Kirby Bartlett-Sloan : Don't forget that this short has the (to me) rather startling use of Pinto Colvig's (Goofy) voice as the hobo cookie. It just never sounds right.
From Jerry Edwards : Yes, this short has several faults as mentioned in other comments. But I find it to be a nice pleasing cartoon. A black stereotype is also censored.
From Jennifer : This is my all time favorite Disney animated short... actually it is the best cartoon I've ever seen! I just love it! I remember seeing it for the first time about 10 years ago and although I haven't seen it since, it's still my favorite cartoon.
From Erin : I grew up with this one, and when I was little it always reminded me of Cinderella. Here was this ragged little waif, and with a little candy magic, she turns into the Cookie Queen! Yay! It has been and always will be one of my favorites.
From Jeremy Fassler : A pretty good short. Great animation on the leads and catchy tunes. Who here thinks that the angel food cakes are gay stereotypes? Because I think so.
From Sara Okuma : I remember this cartoon from when I was a kid. It has always been one of my favorites, and I would love to get my hands on a copy of it.
From Mark M. : I'm so glad I bought the video of this back in the mid-80's. The animation is superb and lit the way for Snow White two years later. The gags are very inventive and I appreciate the fact that the first tier of background characters are animated in a cycle rather than simply painted on a static background. Also appreciated is the way the woman cookie becomes more rounded and "real" as the hobo cookie shows her some love and attention. Her two-dimensional sides slowly disappear as they get ready for her appearance in the parade. While the cartoon might have some stereotypes typical of the era in which it was produced, there's not a mean-spirited moment in this delightful fantasy.
From Alecia : I grew up watching The Cookie Carnival and have loved it from the time that I was a young girl. My mother also remembers watching when she was growing up. I just found my copy of this number and I am so excited for my children to have the opportunity to get to watch it more than once. I have a four year old and a two year old and they both love to watch all of they silly symphonies that are on the tape with The Cookie Carnival. I'm so glad Disney produced The Cookie Carnival and I'll keep watching it until the day I die.
From Melanie : I absolutely LOVE this short, I've been watching it as long as I can remember. It is a sweet story...in more ways than one. It's been a long time since I've seen it, just seeing the pictures on this page brought back the whole short. Love it!
From yael latner : This movie was my favorite as a child. I have been searching for it on DVD. It was definately one of the best shorts Disney ever created. Delicious and entertaining. I give it the best review and hope that children everywhere will appreciate it as much as I did.
From Amanda J : The Cookie Carnival was probably my favorite Disney animated short. I always had a thing for cartoon food.
From Imaginarylady : I loved this short very much. So cute, romantic, and sweet. All the gingerbread people in the short looked so adorable and well-designed. I especially loved their singing voices. And the new dress on the Cookie Girl looked so beautiful on her. The Hobo Cookie was naturally handsome and considerate to the Girl. How much I wish I could see the short more and more.
From Baruch Weiss : A very tasty cartoon! In fact, this cartoon looks similar to a Little Audrey cartoon titled "Trats and Flowers!"
From DaVon : This is among the Silly Symphonies I like most. And the things I like most about it are the backgrounds and how everything is just so colorful. Great gags, for example with the angel's and devil's food cakes. I kind of thought it was odd too at first, how the lady cookie suddenly became real and no longer made of cookie courtesy of that magical candy. But I can see why and how that would figure in there, so now I get it. I like her and the hobo cookie as an item. I agree, its one of the top Silly Symphonies and this is another SS short that I'd consider to be included in my top ten. Enchanting to get an outlook of cookie-land, cookie-world or cookie-town.
From Mike : Although in some way this cartoon for me always seemed a little far-fetched. The cookie girl was always a very likeable character.

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