The Nostalgia Chick (2008– )
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Dreamworks Vs. Disney: Rise of the Eyebrow 



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Release Date:

18 December 2010 (USA)  »

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Nostalgia Chick: Let's look at 'The Princess and the Frog': It has this gorgeous poster that I think quite accurately portrays the feel and content of the film. Now, that said, while 'The Princess and the Frog' didn't tank, per se, it didn't make as much money as Disney wanted it to. Some point to the film's marketing. Now, I think there are a lot of reasons why it wasn't the cash cow Disney was hoping for, some having zero to do with the marketing.
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Nostalgia Chick: But it ...
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Extremely factually incorrect
12 August 2016 | by See all my reviews

I'd like to offer these rebuttals to NC's "Dreamworks vs. Disney"

• Disney's marketing for Tangled did take a page from DreamWorks - that's the only thing NC's right about in her video.

• WB's production values for their cartoon shorts were more or less equal to Disney's, monetarily and artistically.

• Disney's shorts feature as much slapstick as WB cartoons, including "cartoon animals hurting each other". Goofy cartoons are famous for slapstick. Donald Duck cartoons are famous for Donald's physical and emotional pain and suffering.

• Disney's shorts feature as much, if not more, pop culture references as WB cartoons. The most famous example: Mickey's Polo Team. Other examples are The Autograph Hound, Mother Goose Goes Hollywood, and Mickey's Gala Premier. The pop-culture references are not limited to these shorts. Disney pulled these pop culture references as often, if not more often, than WB cartoons.

• WB never "eclipsed" Disney, and Disney never "eclipsed" WB. Disney is known for its full length animated features, WB is known for its animated theatrical shorts.

• Disney's shorts are as "low brow" as WB shorts, perhaps lower. Disney's shorts have a knack for getting their characters prodded and poked in the butt, to a much higher extent than WB cartoons. WB cartoons also feature some high-concept works, like What's Opera Doc, an achievement that no Disney short can lay claim to.

• "Disney was too high and mighty to do (slapstick humor and pop culture references)": this claim is untrue in light of the above.

• "(Disney and Warner Brothers) battled for supremacy until finally Disney vanquished its foe" - this couldn't be father from the truth. Both studios wound down their animated shorts departments at around the same time, when shorts could no longer be bundled with feature films when sold to theaters. There was no "vanquishing" involved.

• "(Warner Bros) didn't have the foresight (to go into feature films)" - I'm going to accept that WB didn't have "foresight" in the sense that their cartoon department was completely directionless. WB executives were almost completely in the dark about their animation department, closing it, re-opening it, never really embracing it until the Golden Age was long gone. However, this is not related to any inherent "low-brow" versus "high ground" stance, it's simply a result of a disconnect between WB's higher ups and the animation department.

• The Disney-DreamWorks animosity - I'm not even going to touch that one, because it's all speculation.

• ...and finally NC gets to the only valid point in the video, that Disney's marketing for Tangled posed its characters in the sly, devilish grin, cocked-eyebrow, cock-sure attitude. You do not need a ten-minute video filled with factually-incorrect claims to make that observation.

NC sets up an elaborate "Disney vs X" theory that doesn't exist. Disney never took any "high ground" with its shorts. Disney didn't shy away from pop culture references. Disney didn't shy away from slapstick and "cartoon animals beating each other". Disney's short division didn't vanquish WB's short division in any measurable way.

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