The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh is a 1977 American animated musical film produced by Walt Disney Productions and distributed by Buena Vista Distribution. It is the 22nd animated feature in the Walt Disney Animated Classics series and first released on March 11, 1977.
Its characters have spawned an industry of sequels, television programs, clothing, books, and toys, and also inspired an attraction of the same name at Disneyland, Walt Disney World, and Hong Kong Disneyland. A much more elaborate attraction, also based on the film, opened in Tokyo Disneyland as "Pooh's Hunny Hunt".
The film is actually composed of material from three previously released animated featurettes based upon the Winnie-the-Pooh books by A. A. Milne: Winnie the Pooh and the Honey Tree (1966), Winnie the Pooh and the Blustery Day (1968), and Winnie the Pooh and Tigger Too (1974). The film differs from the three individual shorts by having newly created linking material, and an ending to give closure to the stories (based on the final chapter from The House at Pooh Corner).
A fourth and final featurette based on the original books, Winnie the Pooh and a Day for Eeyore, was produced in 1983 and sometimes included as a another featurette on home video releases.
The Many Adventure of Winnie the Pooh the last film in the Disney canon in which Walt Disney had personal involvement, since one of the shorts (Winnie the Pooh and the Honey Tree) was released during his lifetime, and he was involved in the production of Blustery Day. It was always Walt Disney's intention to create a feature film, but he decided to make shorts instead — after production had begun — to familiarize US audiences with the characters. All three shorts as well as future feature films boast classic songs by the Sherman Brothers including "Winnie the Pooh" and "The Wonderful Thing About Tiggers".
For the character Piglet, hand gestures and other movements were used by the animators to create expressiveness, since he (and Pooh) had the appearance of dolls or stuffed animals with relatively simple button eyes. The scene where Rabbit deals with Pooh's being part of the "decor of his home" wasn't in the original book, and it still is reportedly contemplated by Disney when he first read the book.
Film critic Leonard Maltin called the original Pooh featurettes "gems"; he also noted that the artwork resembles the book illustrations, and that the particular length of these featurettes meant that the filmmakers didn't have to "compress or protract their script." The film holds a 91% "fresh" rating from critics on Rotten Tomatoes.
Ruth Hill Viguers, however, when writing in A Critical History of Children’s Literature during the 1960s, mentioned Disney’s Winnie the Pooh along with several other Disney adaptations as having “destroyed the integrity of the original books”.
The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh was first released on VHS, Betamax, CED videorecord, and laserdisc in the early 1980s. In 1996, it was re-released on VHS as part of the Masterpiece Collection and included video footage of the making which was shown before the movie starts. It was released on DVD for the first time in 2002 as a 25th Anniversary Edition, with digitally restored picture and sound. The individual shorts had also been released on their own on VHS in the 1990s.
The 25th anniversary edition DVD includes, among other bonus features, "The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh: The Story Behind the Masterpiece", which documents the history of the books and their initial film adaptations. It also features interviews with animators Ollie Johnston, Frank Thomas, and Burny Mattinson, as well as the Sherman brothers, Paul Winchell, and others. Digital Media FX reviewer Shannon Muir stated that the audio and video quality of the film on this DVD was very high.
The "Friendship Edition" DVD was re-released on June 19, 2007. All of the special features from the previous "25th Anniversary Edition" DVD were recycled; the only new addition being an episode of Playhouse Disney's computer-animated series My Friends Tigger & Pooh. The DVD re-release coincides with the 30th anniversary of the release of the film. 
- "Winnie the Pooh"
- "Up, Down and Touch the Ground"
- "Rumbly in My Tumbly"
- "Little Black Rain Cloud"
- "Mind Over Matter"
- "A Rather Blustery Day"
- "The Wonderful Thing About Tiggers"
- "Heffalumps and Woozles"
- "When the Rain Rain Rain Came Down"
- "Hip Hip Pooh-Ray!"
The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh is the third Walt Disney Animation Studios to have a sequel produced by the studio, after The Rescuers Down Under and Fantasia 2000. Winnie the Pooh was released on April 15, 2011 in the United Kingdom, and on July 15, 2011 in the United States by Walt Disney Pictures.
- ↑ Thomas, Frank; Ollie Johnston (1981). Disney Animation: The Illusion of Life. Abbeville Press, 448. ISBN 0-89659-232-4.
- ↑ Davidson, Bill; Kathy Merlock Jackson (2006). Walt Disney: Conversations. University Press of Mississippi, 128. ISBN 1-57806-712-X.
- ↑ Maltin, Leonard (1987). Of Mice and Magic: A History of American Animated Cartoons. New American Library, 76. ISBN 0-452-25993-2.
- ↑ Viguers, Ruth Hill; Cornelia Meigs (ed.) (1969). A Critical History of Children's Literature. Macmillan Publishing co., 412. ISBN 0-02-583900-4.
- ↑ AFI's 10 Top 10 Ballot
- ↑ Muir, Shannon. DVD Review of The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh - 25th Anniversary Edition. Digital Media FX. Retrieved on 2009-06-03.
- ↑ http://www.ultimatedisney.com/comingsoon.html
- ↑ The Tigger Movie insert
- ↑ http://www.dvdizzy.com/forum/viewtopic.php?t=30011
- The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh at the Big Cartoon DataBase
- The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh at the Internet Movie Database
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