Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs is the first full-length cel animated movie produced by Walt Disney Productions. It was released on December 21, 1937, and is based on the German fairy tale by the Brothers Grimm.
The Brothers Grimm version of the fairy tale was published in 1812 by brothers Jacob and Wilhelm Grimm. There are many of the same elements in both the short story and the Disney movie. However, after reading the short story by the Brothers Grimm, I have a greater respect for the man who was Walt Disney. He took a very short story and turned it into a classic that is loved by old and young alike.
The movie and the story both follow a similar plot line. A beautiful young girl with dark hair, fair skin and ruby lips lives with her evil stepmother. The stepmother is The Queen and has a magic mirror that she gazes upon and asks, “Who is the fairest of them all?”, to which the mirror replies, “You, my Queen, are the fairest of them all”. Finally, one day, the mirror replies that Snow White is the fairest. The Queen’s envy grows until she decides to do away with Snow White. She calls the huntsman and orders him to take the girl out to the forest and kill her. The huntsman cannot kill Snow White and orders her to run. He kills an animal and returns to the castle. Snow White runs through the forest and finds a cottage inhabited by “little people”. She cleans the house and when the Dwarfs return they find her sleeping. They agree to let her stay in their house and in exchange, she takes care of them by cooking and cleaning. The Evil Queen finds out Snow White is still alive and makes a poison apple to kill her. While the Dwarfs are away, the Queen disguised as a peddler woman comes and gives Snow White a poison apple. She takes a bite and is dead. The Dwarfs cannot find it in their hearts to bury her and instead make a glass coffin and keep her on the mountaintop. One day, Prince Charming shows up and Snow White is awakened. Snow White and The Prince live happily ever after.
There are some differences between the movie and the story. Some of the obvious differences are as follows:
In the Brothers Grimm story, Snow White is a very young girl (7 years old); the Queen orders the huntsman to bring Snow White’s liver and lungs back and she eats them; the peasant woman appears 3 times to Snow White at the Seven Dwarfs cottage 1) with a lace bodice that she pulls too tight and Snow White stops breathing, 2) with a poisoned comb that she uses in Snow White’s hair, and 3) with a half-poisoned apple that she shares with Snow White; the Prince asks the Dwarfs for Snow White’s coffin and he has his servants carry it away; while carrying the coffin, the apple that was lodged in Snow White’s throat comes out and she begins breathing; the Queen attends Snow White’s wedding; and when the Queen is recognized, she is ordered to dance with iron shoes that have been put into burning coals and while dancing falls down dead.
In the Disney movie: Snow White is a little older; the huntsman is ordered to bring back her heart which the Queen keeps in a box; the peasant woman only appears to Snow White one time with a poisoned apple; the Dwarfs chase the peasant woman up a mountain and she falls off to her death; and the Prince comes and kisses Snow White and they ride off into the sunset.
This movie may be scary for some children. The Queen orders the huntsman to kill Snow White; while Snow White is running through the forest, the trees grab her, there is scary music, and Snow White is obviously afraid; the evil Queen turns herself into a scary peasant woman; when the Queen pulls the apple out of the poison brew, there is a skull on the apple; skeleton of a person on a sidewalk; in the scenes with the ugly peasant woman, there is sinister music; Queen has a black crow; vultures in the forest; and the peasant woman falls off the edge of a cliff and vultures are seen circling.
Disney Rides inspired by the movie: Snow White’s Scary Adventures in Disneyland, CA. A similar ride closed in Walt Disney World in 2012.
Seven Dwarfs Mine Train opened in Walt Disney World in 2014.
Character Meet and Greets: Snow White is found in several venues in both the Walt Disney World Resort and Disneyland, CA. She also makes appearances at Cinderella’s Royal Table in Disney World, in Germany at Epcot, and at Akershus Royal Banquet Hall in Norway.
The Seven Dwarfs make appearances at Mickey’s Not So Scary Halloween Party and Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party which are both held at Magic Kingdom at Walt Disney World.
The Queen can occasionally be found at Hollywood Studios, FL, and at Disneyland, CA.
Germany: The setting is believed to be a German forest.
The Queen’s Castle may have been based on Segovia Castle in Spain.
The cottage of the seven dwarfs is said to be inspired by a group of cottages in Los Feliz near Los Angeles. The architectural style of the cottage is Tudor and French Normandy.
Locate major diamond mines and discuss locations and mining conditions.
Science: Learn about rocks and gems and the differences. The dwarfs are mining for diamonds, but they have to remove other rocks to mine the diamonds.
Music: Whistling (Whistle While You Work), yodeling, and the Dwarfs play musical instruments which include clarinet, organ, drum, lute, concertina (similar to an accordion), and double bass. Great opportunity to teach about the orchestra and different instruments.
Health: strangers and not taking food from strangers. Food/candy may look good, but still can be bad.
Snow White makes the Dwarfs wash up before they eat (Good Hygiene).
English: Define fairy tale. Write a fairy tale. Study Brothers Grimm and their fairy tales. Compare and contrast movie versus story.
Snack: Make mini pies like Snow White makes for the Dwarfs.
Thanks for visiting – Patty @ A Mother’s Random Thoughts
Sources: Disney.wikia.com Snow White.