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Bambi in Movies, Books, Songs, Posters, and Toys
Bambi and Thumper Standup Poster from AllPosters.Com
I'm a Bambi Fan From Way Back...
Bambi, the Walt Disney movie, was released in 1942. That's was ten years before I was born. When I saw it in the movie theater the first time I fell in love -- with the movie, with Bambi, and with forests. Now I live in a forest where deer come into my yard and every time I see one I call it Bambi... because that movie is part of me, part of our culture, and a treasure forever.
The story is about a deer, Bambi... born in a thicket. His mother takes great care of him but during winter they have a hard time finding food. Along the way he meets Thumper, the rabbit, and Flower, the skunk - those are his two best friends. They also make friends with an old owl. Bambi meets a female fawn, Faline, who later becomes his girlfriend.
This is a movie that is beautiful, yet at times heart-rending and sad. Despite the sad times, the message is repeated, that springtime always comes again, and that there's great beauty in the world.
Bambi - the Soundtrack!
When I was very young my parents gave me a Bambi record - one of those old black vinyl LPs - and I listened to it until it wore out. I love all the songs, and the narrative that goes with them. The record is now a remastered CD - see the re-issued version at right. Listening to the music is just like watching the movie - all the songs are in order so you get a taste of the entire story as you listen. Highly recommended - I'm getting this for my grandson on his birthday!
The 1942 Bambi Movie Poster
Vintage Bambi Movie Trivia
* Bambi was originally a book written for adults, by Felix Salten. It was named Bambi, A Life in the Woods.
* Film rights to the book, Bambi, A Life in the Woods, were originally purchased by Sidney Franklin of MGM films in 1933. He wanted to make a live action film but decided it would be too difficult so he resold the film rights to Walt Disney in April 1937.
* Disney wanted Bambi to be his second full-length animated film but other projects got in the way, including Fantasia. Production on Bambi didn't start until August 1940 and it was released in theaters two years later on August 13, 1942. It was Disney's fifth animated film.
* Walt Disney wanted realistic forest animals in the Bambi movie. To train animators, he sent them to the Los Angeles Zoo to observe the animals, and also had a pair of fawns shipped from Baxter State Park in Maine to the movie studio so artists could study their movements. A small zoo was built for the movie studio so animators could continue to observe the movements of rabbits, skunks, and owls by having them close at hand.
* In Felix Salten's book, Bambi and Faline were roe deer. After Walt Disney purchased his two white-tailed deer fawns (also named Bambi and Faline) the deer in the movie became white-tails.
* Because Walt Disney insisted on realism in his animation for Bambi, artists produced less than a second of film daily: eight drawings. This delayed production and increased expenses. In the end, Walt Disney had to slash twelve minutes from the movie.
* Hundreds of new colors were developed by the paint laboratory during the production of Bambi.
* The multiplane camera was used extensively to produce Bambi animations. This allowed foreground animations to be developed separately from background animations.
* The movie didn't recover money invested during its first theater release in 1942, but recovered all expenses during the 1947 re-release.
Bambi and Thumper Art Print from AllPosters.Com
Bambi was released in theaters for the first time in 1942, and was re-released in 1947. After that it was re-released periodically in theaters through the 1980s.
It was released on DVD in 1989.
A Platinum Edition DVD was released in 2005 but went into moratorium in 2007. Copies can still be found at Amazon.
The new Diamond Line Blu-Ray DVD combo pack is scheduled to be released on March 1, 2011, and a 2-Disc DVD set will be released on April 19, 2011.
A sequel, Bambi II, was released directly to DVD in 2006 in the USA. In some other countries it was originally released in theaters.
Bambi Book for Children
The original book, Bambi: A Life in the Woods, by Felix Salten was written for adults. It was published in 1923 but isn't in the public domain; the copyright was renewed in 1954 by his daughter. It is a heart-wrenching but well-loved novel that takes readers into the deep woods, to show the lives of various forest animals.
There have been many abridged children's versions of Bambi since Walt Disney made his movie. At this time not much is available; perhaps it is time for something new!