ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

'Bambi' Stars Meet For The First Time After 69 Years

Updated on March 4, 2011
Dunagan and Behn, stars of "Bambi"
Dunagan and Behn, stars of "Bambi"

March 4, 2011 - Sixty-nine years after Walt Disney originally released the animated classic, Bambi , the voices of Bambi and Thumper met for the first time. The View hosts Whoopi Goldberg, Joy Behar, Elisabeth Hasselbeck, and Sherri Shepherd hosted the reunion between the Bambi voices on their ABC daytime show. The character of the fawn, “Bambi”, was voiced by Donnie Dunagan and the voice of rabbit, "Thumper", by Peter Behn.

Both Dunagan and Behn were eight-years-old when Bambi was released in 1942. Dunagan told The View co-hosts he was a child actor and Bambi was his last film role. Disney was looking for a child model for whom they could base the face of Bambi. Dunagan was the lucky boy chosen for the task. His excited mother regularly took him to his acting and modeling appointments for the Disney artists, whom he called “The Drawing Men.”

Dunagan described the moment of when Bambi’s mother is killed in the film to the ladies of The View . He just could not get the facial expression the film-makers desired for Bambi. Dunagan was to cry out, “Mother! Mother!” in the iconic scene. After trial and error, one of the men in the sound booth fibbed and told the boy that his mother was in trouble somewhere in the studio, and that they were going to put Dunagan on the speaker so he could call for her. A frantic Dunagan cried out for his mother. It worked. The man later consoled Dunagan and assured him his mother was alright. Film magic was created in a scene that still brings tears to an audience’s eyes nearly seventy years later.

There was another moment in the movie Dunagan gave insight on. He described a scene in Bambi in which Bambi is kissed (licked) and he scrunches up his nose because he doesn’t like it. Because Dunagan could not deliver the facial expression the artists desired, they asked him to remember a time recently when something bad had happened to him. Dunagan recalled his mother had given him castrol oil two weeks prior. So, the young Dunagan said, “Castrol oil,” and made a disgusted face. The artists said, “Hold it!” and made the boy keep his face scrunched up so they could draw it for Bambi.

Dunagan had a rough childhood and came from a broken home, resulting in his impoverished family kicking him out of their home. He was sent to an orphanage. He soon ran away from the orphanage, and by the age of 12, he was no longer filming movies. At 13, Dunagan was living in a boarding house. He stayed there until he enlisted in the United States Marines. He was in the military for another twenty-five years, eventually retiring as a Major. Dunagan currently tutors children and delivers meals for schools in need.

Behn, who had learned how to read at the age of three, has never acted in a film since Bambi . He stated he “grew up as an ordinary kid,” earning no special attention from family and friends for his role as Thumper. He attended Yale and served for two years in the United States Army. He currently is retired and lives in Utah.

Neither Dunagan nor Behn had told their wife they had been in the iconic Bambi until after they had been married. They agreed that their grandchildren get a kick out of them having been in the film. Plans for a future reunion were not mentioned.

Bambi is available on both Blu-ray and DVD.

 

Comments

    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    • Rosefall profile imageAUTHOR

      Rosefall 

      7 years ago from Ohio!

      Aw, thanks!

    • Sunshyne1975 profile image

      SUNSHYNE 

      7 years ago from California, US

      Awesome!! Love your hubs so far! Can't wait to read more!

    working

    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, hubpages.com uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at: https://hubpages.com/privacy-policy#gdpr

    Show Details
    Necessary
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the googleapis.com or gstatic.com domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Features
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Marketing
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Statistics
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)