The United States’ Library of Congress has named the 1950 Walt Disney classic Cinderella to the National Film Registry.
“It would take the enchanted magic of Walt Disney and his extraordinary team to revitalize a story as old as Cinderella,” began the description of the film, as noted on the official LOC site. “Yet, in 1950, Disney and his animators did just that with this version of the classic tale. Sparkling songs, high-production value and bright voice performances have made this film a classic from its premiere.
“Though often told and repeated across all types of media, Disney’s lovely take has become the definitive version of this classic story about a girl, a prince and a single glass slipper. Breathtaking animation fills every scene, including what was reportedly Walt Disney’s favorite of all Disney animation sequences: the fairy godmother transforming Cinderella’s “rags” into an exquisite gown and glass slippers.”
Disney’s animated classic Cinderella has a new fairytale ending that embodies “ever after” in the most literal sense. The beloved feature is one of 25 films that have been added to the National Film Registry, a prestigious list of films that are determined to be “culturally, historically, or aesthetically significant” and recommended for preservation. Cinderella joins such iconic Walt Disney Animation Studios films as Steamboat Willie, Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, Pinocchio, and Fantasia, to name just a few, in receiving this honor that has now been given to only 750 film titles.
Since its 1950 release, the film—inspired by the fairy tale by Charles Perrault—has become part of our collective vernacular, allowing underdog sports teams to live out their own “Cinderella story” as they achieve unexpected success, and—on the other side of the coin—often giving stepmothers an unjustified bad rap. But for many of the artists working today at Disney Animation, the film is a touchstone that played an important role in both the Studio’s history and their own.
Beyond the more highbrow reasonings for the film’s preservation, I nominate “Gus Gus,” the mouse.
Perhaps it’s just because he’s the Disney character that I most resemble, but I think Gus Gus embodies the kind of “plussing” done by Disney, which brought new life to very old tales; additions that make Cinderella and the other Disney animated classics viable for generations.
Whatever the reasons for the film’s high honor, I’m glad the movie will be preserved indefinitely.
Do you agree? Where does Cinderella fall in your personal pantheon of Disney classics?
Let us know in the comments below…