The cover to the original 1939 Madeline children's book.

Madeline is a children's book series written by Ludwig Bemelmans[1], an Austrian[2] author. The books have been adapted into numerous formats, spawning telefilms, television series and a live action feature film. The adaptations are famous for having the closing line, first uttered by actress Ethel Barrymore in a play: "That's all there is; there isn't any more."[3] The first book in the series, Madeline, was published in 1939. It proved to be a success, and Bemelmans wrote many sequels to the original during the 1940s and 1950s. The series continues to this day, written by Bemelmans' grandson John Bemelmans-Marciano.[4]



The story takes place in a Catholic boarding school in Paris. Contrary to popular belief, the girls are not orphans. In the first book in the series, Madeline's "papa" sends her a dollhouse when she is ill. Also, the girls all go to visit their parents in the Christmas book.

The books all start with the line "In an old house in Paris that was covered in vines, lived twelve little girls in two straight lines ...". The story is written entirely in rhyme, and the simple themes of daily life appeal to children.

The original series of Madeline books written by Ludwig Bemelmans has six books:

The new series of Madeline books are written by John Bemelmans-Marciano, they are:

  • Madeline in America - Madeline travels to Texas in America[6]
  • Madeline Loves Animals - Madeline travels to the zoo and meets the animals there [7]
  • Madeline Says Merci - Madeline learns how to be polite[8]
  • Madeline and the Cats of Rome - Madeline and her class travel to Rome in Spring.[9]
  • Madeline at the White House - Madeline and her class visit the White House in Washington, DC


The earliest appearance of Madeline in the cinema was in the 1952 animated short Madeline, produced by United Productions of America (UPA) and directed by Bobe Cannon. The film was nominated for the 1952 Academy Award for Best Short Subject (Cartoons), but lost to Tom and Jerry's 7th and final award winning cartoon Johann Mouse.[citation needed]

In 1959, William L. Snyder's Rembrandt Films produced animated adaptations of Madeline's Rescue, Madeline and the Bad Hat and Madeline and the Gypsies for the educational film market. The latter two were featured, along with other similar adaptations of children's books, in Snyder and Gene Deitch's 1966 theatrical feature Alice of Wonderland in Paris.[10][11][12]

A live-action feature adaptation of Madeline, produced in France by Jaffilms but shot in English, was released in 1998 by Tri-Star Pictures. It starred Hatty Jones as the title character, Frances MacDormand as Miss Clavel and a supporting cast with British actors Ben Daniels and Nigel Hawthorne. Its script encompassed the plots of four of the books. Original music for the film was provided by Michel Legrand and has Carly Simon singing the theme song "In Two Straight Lines". It was directed by Daisy Mayer.[13][14]


In 1960, the Madeline stories were adapted to a one-hour color episode for the NBC anthology series The Shirley Temple Show. Madeline was played by Gina Gillespie, child actor Michel Petit played Pepito, and Imogene Coca portrayed Miss Clavel. It was Madeline's first appearance on television. The episode has been released to DVD.[15]

In 1989, DiC Entertainment adapted the first Madeline book into an animated television special for HBO.[16] The show's teleplay was written by Judy Rothman, who would serve as a writer, lyricist and story editor for nearly all subsequent Madeline animated projects.[17] The special was narrated by Christopher Plummer,[18] and featured original music and songs by Joe Raposo[19] (who died four months before the special aired),[20] with lyrics by Judy Rothman. The special was nominated for an Emmy Award for Best Animated Program (One Hour or Less).[21] In 1989 it was released on video by Hi-Tops Video.

In 1991, Cinar produced animated adaptations of the other five Madeline books for The Family Channel,[16] with Christopher Plummer returning as narrator[18] and Marsha Moreau returning to voice Madeline.[22] Each special featured new songs, with lyrics by Judy Rothman and music by composer Jeffrey Zahn, who replaced the late Joe Raposo. In addition, "I'm Madeline," Madeline's theme song from the original special, was reprised in the new specials. The specials were released on video by Golden Book Video.

In 1993, DIC produced a Madeline cartoon series, which also aired on the Family Channel. A total of twenty episodes were produced for the first series.[16] Christopher Plummer reprised his role as narrator again[18] and "I'm Madeline" was used as the series' theme song. The series was later rerun on the Disney Channel and Toon Disney in the U.S.

In 1995, an additional 13 episodes were produced by DiC for ABC, under the title The New Adventures of Madeline.[16] The new episodes featured a new theme song, "Hats Off to Madeline", composed by Andy Street.[23] ABC cancelled the series after 7 weeks, so 6 episodes did not air in the U.S. until the series was rerun on the Disney Channel beginning in 1997.

In 2000, DIC produced another new batch of 26 episodes for the Disney Channel. The theme song was once again changed, this time to "Oh, Madeline!" (although overseas airings of the episodes still had "Hats Off to Madeline" as the opening theme instead). In addition, Christopher Gaze succeeded Christopher Plummer as narrator of the series. The show won a Daytime Emmy Award for Outstanding Children's Animated Program. The New Adventures of Madeline was shown on KOL's Secret Slumber Party between Fall 2006 and 2007.[16]

DiC also produced two animated telefilms. Madeline: Lost in Paris, which was released in 1999, featured Madeline being drawn into a scam by her supposed "Uncle" Horst and finding out the true meaning to the word "family". Andrea Libman voiced Madeline.[24] The second cartoon film, entitled My Fair Madeline, was released in 2002 and the title character was voiced by Chantal Strand. The plot revolved around Madeline being placed in a London finishing school as punishment for trouble she had supposedly caused while trying to stop two thieves from robbing the Louvre. When she finds out that the thieves are in London, Madeline does everything she can to stop them from stealing the Crown Jewels.[25]

All of the DiC/Cinar Madeline episodes/specials/telefilms are owned by Cookie Jar Entertainment.



  • Madeline: The smallest of the girls and the title character. She is about 7–8 years old, and is the only redhead. She had her appendix removed in the first story. She is known for being the bravest and most outgoing of the girls.
  • Miss Clavel: Madeline's teacher and also a nun. Ms. Clavel is always trying to keep Madeline out of trouble.
  • Pepito: The Spanish ambassador's arrogant son. He lives next door to the girls; used to be extremely naughty, but Madeline influenced him to change his ways. Due to his bratty nature and the distinctive hat that he constantly wore, he was called "the Bad Hat" by the girls. He stopped wearing the hat after he befriended the girls. He might have a crush on Madeline.
  • Lord Cucuface (known in the movie as Lord Covington): Chairman of the school's board of trustees, had a change of heart after receiving one of Genevieve's puppies.
  • Genevieve: The girls' dog. Extremely intelligent, possessing various skills such as juggling, arithmetic, etc. She was a stray until she saved Madeline from drowning.



Long orange hair originally light brown until Madeline and the 40 Thieves, she once broke her arm in an episode.

Peers (live-action film)

  • Aggie: Madeline's best friend in the movie who is always with Madeline and wants to do the same things she does.
  • Vicki: Bossy and snobbish, who is horrible to Madeline, but they become friends in the end.
  • Chantal: The girl with glasses.



Madeline audiobooks have been appearing since the early 1970s in the form of vinyl records. The record typically consists of a mixture of stories and songs.

The first soundtrack for the TV series was Madeline's Favorite Songs, released in 1995. It contains 16 tracks of music composed by Joe Raposo or Jeff Zahn with lyrics by Judy Rothman from the DIC and Cinar specials.[26] The second soundtrack, Hats off to Madeline, was released in 1996. It contained 17 tracks of music from the 1993 and 1995 episodes of the show.[27] In 2002, the latest Madeline soundtrack to date, Sing-A-Long With Madeline, was released, featuring 27 tracks of music from the 2001 episodes.[28]


Madeline CD-ROMs started appearing in the early 1990s, in time with the TV show. The CDs were compatible with both Microsoft Windows and Apple Macintosh based PCs. They were published by Creative Wonders.

Title Publisher Release Date(s)
Madeline Thinking Games[29] Creative Wonders[29] 1998
Madeline Pre-School Deluxe Companion[30] Creative Wonders[30] 1998
Madeline 1st & 2nd Grade[30] Creative Wonders[30] 1998
Madeline 1st & 2nd Grade Reading[30] Creative Wonders[30] 1998
Madeline 1st & 2nd Grade Math[30] Creative Wonders[30] 1998
Madeline Rainy Day Activities[31] Creative Wonders[31] 1996
Madeline European Adventures[32] The Learning Company[32]

Creative Wonders[32]



Madeline toys were initially produced by Eden Toys LLC. After the acquisition of Eden by Learning Curve, Learning Curve now produces Madeline toys. Most popular during the 1990s was a Madeline rag doll, with a signature half-smile and scar from the appendectomy that corresponds with the story from the book.[33]

DVD releases


Title Region 1
release date
Region 2
release date
The Movie
15 December 1998 (1998-12-15)[34] 18 October 1998 (1998-10-18)[35] TriStar Pictures
Madeline -
Lost In Paris
13 April 2010 (2010-04-13)[36] 15 June 2011 (2011-06-15) Shout! Factory
My Fair Madeline
3 February 2009 (2009-02-03)[37] 1 October 2003 (2003-10-01)[38] MGM
Prism Leisure

Television Series

Title Region 1
release date
Episode(s) Distributor(s)
And Her Friends
7 June 2011 (2011-06-07)[39] Madeline And The Soccer Star[39]
Madeline’s Singing Dog[39]
Madeline And The Missing Clown[39]
Madeline And The Talking Parrot[39]
Madeline And The Big Cheese[39]
Madeline’s Rescue[39]
Shout! Factory
On The Town
8 March 2011 (2011-03-08)[40] Madeline And The Wedding[40]
Madeline On Stage[40]
Madeline And The Fashion Show[40]
Madeline And The Ballet[40]
Madeline At The Costume Party[40]
Madeline's Birthday At The Zoo[40]
Shout! Factory
19 October 2010 (2010-10-19)[41] Madeline's Winter Vacation[41]
Madeline and Santa[41]
Madeline at the North Pole[41]
Madeline and the Ice Skates[41]
Madeline's Holiday with Mr. Grump[41]
Shout! Factory
17 August 2010 (2010-08-17)[42] Madeline's Halloween[42]
Madeline and the Mean, Nasty Horrible Hats[42]
Madeline and the Mummy[42]
Madeline and the Haunted Castle[42]
Madeline and the Spider Lady[42]
Shout! Factory
Great Adventures
29 June 2009 (2009-06-29)[43] Madeline And The Magic Carpet[43]
Madeline On Safari[43]
Madeline And The Lost Crown[43]
Madeline And The Gypsies[43]
Madeline And The Pirates[43]
Madeline And The Forty Thieves[43]
Shout! Factory
Dog Stories
3 June 2003 (2003-06-03)[44] Madeline and the Dog Show[44]
Madeline Rescue[44]
Sony Pictures
Madeline Adventures:
Volume 1
3 May 2003 (2003-05-03)[45] Madeline and the Pirates[45]
Madeline and the Gypsies[45]
Sony Pictures
The Star
11 February 2003 (2003-02-11)[46] Madeline in Hollywood[46]
Madeline and the Soccer Star[46]
Sony Pictures
11 February 2003 (2003-02-11)[47] Madeline and the Easter Bonnet[47]
Madeline and the Bad Hat[47]
Sony Pictures
24 September 2002 (2002-09-24)[48] Madeline's Christmas[48]
Madeline and the Toy Factory[48]
Sony Pictures
24 September 2002 (2002-09-24)[49] Madeline's Winter Vacation[49]
Madeline in London[49]
Sony Pictures
Madeline-Best Episodes Ever
Volume 1
28 May 2002 (2002-05-28)[50] Madeline at the Ballet[50]
Madeline in New York[50]
Sony Pictures
Madeline-Best Episodes Ever
Volume 2
28 May 2002 (2002-05-28)[51] Madeline and the 40 Thieves[51]
Madeline and the New House[51]
Sony Pictures


  1. ^ "The Author Ludwig Bemelmans". Barbara Bemelmans. Retrieved 18 July 2010. 
  2. ^
  3. ^ "Ethel Barrymore Is Dead at 79; One of Stage's 'Royal Family'". New York Times. June 19, 1959. Retrieved 18 July 2010. 
  4. ^ "History Of Madeline". Barbara Bemelmans. Retrieved 18 July 2010. 
  5. ^ a b c d e f "Ludwig Bemelmans Bibliography". Retrieved 18 July 2010. 
  6. ^ "Madeline in America and Other Holiday Tales [Hardcover"]. Retrieved 18 July 2010. 
  7. ^ "Madeline Loves Animals [Board book"]. Retrieved 18 July 2010. 
  8. ^ "Madeline Says Merci [Hardcover"]. Retrieved 18 July 2010. 
  9. ^ "Madeline and the Cats of Rome [Hardcover"]. Retrieved 18 July 2010. 
  10. ^ The American Film Institute Catalog of Motion Pictures Produced in the United States. University of California Press. 1997. p. 17. ISBN 0520209702. 
  11. ^ Phil Hall (October 6, 2006). "The Bootleg Files:Alice of Wonderland in Paris". Film Threat. Retrieved 2009-08-30. 
  12. ^ Jerry Beck (2005). The Animated Movie Guide. Chicago Review Press. p. 12. ISBN 1556525915. 
  13. ^ mirror of Madeline movie site
  14. ^ Kristin Hohenadel, January 18, 1998, New York Times, "FILM; 'In an Old House In Paris . . . .' ", accessed November 3, 2007
  15. ^ "Shirley Temple Theatre". Retrieved 18 July 2010. 
  16. ^ a b c d e "ABOUT Madeline". Shout-Factory.Com. Retrieved 18 July 2010. 
  17. ^ "Madeline Song". Distant Melody Online. Retrieved 18 July 2010. 
  18. ^ a b c "Christopher Plummer Biography". Fandango.Com. Retrieved 18 July 2010. 
  19. ^ "Joe Raposo CD". Retrieved 18 July 2010. 
  20. ^ VOWS; Pat Collins, William Sarnoff New York Times, March 20, 1994
  21. ^ "Madeline Information". Ask Define Online. Retrieved 18 July 2010. 
  22. ^ "Marsha Moreau". TV.Com. Retrieved 18 July 2010. 
  23. ^ "Hats Off To Madeline Soundtrack". Retrieved 18 July 2010. 
  24. ^ "Madeline:Lost in Paris [VHS (1998)"]. Retrieved 18 July 2010. 
  25. ^ "My Fair Madeline". Retrieved 18 July 2010. 
  26. ^ "Madelines Favorite Songs". Retrieved 18 July 2010. 
  27. ^ "Hats Off To Madeline: Songs From The Hit TV Series [Soundtrack"]. Retrieved 18 July 2010. 
  28. ^ "Sing-A-Long With Madeline". Retrieved 18 July 2010. 
  29. ^ a b "Madeline Thinking Games". Amazon.Com. Retrieved 18 July 2010. 
  30. ^ a b c d e f g h "Madeline Preschool-Kindergarten". Amazon.Com. Retrieved 18 July 2010. 
  31. ^ a b "Madeline Rainy Day Activities". Moby-Games.Com. Retrieved 18 July 2010. 
  32. ^ a b c "Madeline European Adventures". Amazon.Com. Retrieved 18 July 2010. 
  33. ^ "Madeline Toys". Madeline Online. Retrieved 18 July 2010. 
  34. ^ "Madeline [DVD[1999]"]. Retrieved 19 July 2010. 
  35. ^ "Madeline (1998)". Retrieved 19 July 2010. 
  36. ^ "The Madeline Movie: Lost In Paris". Amazon.Com. Retrieved 19 July 2010. 
  37. ^ "My Fair Madeline". Amazon.Com. Retrieved 19 July 2010. 
  38. ^ "My Fair Madeline". Retrieved 19 July 2010. 
  39. ^ a b c d e f g "Madeline And Her Friends". Retrieved 14 June, 2011. 
  40. ^ a b c d e f g "MadelineOn The Town". Retrieved 9 February, 2011. 
  41. ^ a b c d e f "Madeline's Christmas And Other Wintery Tales". Retrieved 20 July 2010. 
  42. ^ a b c d e f "Madeline's Halloween And Other Spooky Tales". Retrieved 20 July 2010. 
  43. ^ a b c d e f g "Madeline's Great Adventures (2009)". Retrieved 19 July 2010. 
  44. ^ a b c "Madeline's Dog Stories". Retrieved 19 July 2010. 
  45. ^ a b c "Madeline's Adventures". Retrieved 20 July 2010. 
  46. ^ a b c "Madeline: The Star (2003)". Retrieved 20 July 2010. 
  47. ^ a b c "Madeline's Easter (Madeline and the Easter Bonnet/Madeline and the Bad Hat) (1993)". Retrieved 19 July 2010. 
  48. ^ a b c "Madeline's Christmas/Madeline and the Toy Factory (1993)". Retrieved 19 July 2010. 
  49. ^ a b c "Madeline's Winter Vacation/Madeline in London (1993)". Retrieved 20 July 2010. 
  50. ^ a b c "Best of Madeline - Madeline at the Ballet/Madeline in New York (Vol. 1) (1993)". Retrieved 19 July 2010. 
  51. ^ a b c "Madeline - The Best Episodes Ever - Madeline and the 40 Thieves/Madeline and the New House (Vol. 2) (1993)". Retrieved 19 July 2010. 

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