Happily Ever After: Fairy Tales for Every Child

Happily Ever After: Fairy Tales for Every Child
Happily Ever After: Fairy Tales for Every Child
Happily Ever After - Fairy Tales for Every Child.jpg
Genre Animation
Written by Joe Menendez
Daryl G. Nickens
Gordon Lewis
Directed by Bruce W. Smith
Anthony Bell
Edward Bell
Narrated by Robert Guillaume
Composer(s) Stephen James Taylor
Country of origin United States
Language(s) English
No. of seasons 3
No. of episodes 39 (List of episodes)
Running time 30 minutes
Production company(s) Hyperion Pictures
Two Oceans Entertainment Group
Confetti Entertainment Company
Original channel HBO (former)
HBO Family (current)
Original run March 26, 1995 (1995-03-26) – July 18, 2000 (2000-07-18)

Happily Ever After: Fairy Tales for Every Child is an American animated television series that premiered March 26, 1995, on HBO. Narrated by Robert Guillaume, the series aired 39 episodes from 1995 to 2000, and is currently airing on the HBO Family digital cable television channel in the United States since 1999.



Each episode details a classic fairy tale, but in the style of greatly different cultures or with feminist leanings[citation needed] with characters voiced by famous actors, comedians, singers, political activists, and other famous celebrities of varying cultures, backgrounds, and ethnicity.


Season 1 (1995)

# Title Directed by Original air date
1 "Jack and the Beanstalk" Bruce W. Smith March 26, 1995 (1995-03-26) [1]

A retelling of the tale with an African-American twist.

Featuring the voice of Pauletta Washington as Jack's Mother, Harry Belafonte as the Magician and Tone Loc as the Giant. 
2 "Little Red Riding Hood" Bruce W. Smith March 26, 1995 (1995-03-26) [1]

Set in Ancient China, Little Red Happy Coat learns that some wolves can't be trusted.

Featuring the voice of B.D. Wong as the Big Bad Wolf 
3 "Hansel and Gretel" Bruce W. Smith March 26, 1995 (1995-03-26) [1]

The tale is told in a Latin-American setting, in the heart of a rainforest.

Featuring Cheech Marin as the Father and Rosie Perez as the Witch(otherwise known as Suzanna from Havana
4 "The Emperor's New Clothes" Bruce W. Smith April 2, 1995 (1995-04-02) [2]

In ancient Japan, an emperor is fooled into paying two rogues to create him an outfit from the "legenadry Fabric of Dreams".

Featuring George Takei as Bandit #1(the tall one) 
5 "Rumpelstiltskin" Bruce W. Smith April 9, 1995 (1995-04-09)

The tale is set in the West Indies, with an old Caribbean and Jamaican twist.

Featuring the voices of Denzel Washington as King Omar and Robert Townsend as Rumplestiltskin. 
6 "The Frog Prince" Bruce W. Smith April 16, 1995 (1995-04-16)

The classic Brothers Grimm fairy tale is set in the African jungle where a princess named Ebony meets a frog that was once a prince.

Featuring the voice of Sinbad as the Frog Prince, and Danny Glover
7 "Sleeping Beauty" Bruce W. Smith April 23, 1995 (1995-04-23)

The tale is told with a Hispanic flavor, when a Hispanic princess named Rosita is cast into a long sleep by a wicked fairy named Ebelina, and awakened by Prince Luis.

Featuring the voice of Ricardo Montalbán as the king. 
8 "Rapunzel" Bruce W. Smith April 23, 1995 (1995-04-23)

The tale is told with a Cajun flavor in the bayous of French Louisiana.

Featuring the voice of Whoopi Goldberg as a Hoodoo Diva named Zenobia. 
9 "The Valiant Little Tailor" Bruce W. Smith April 23, 1995 (1995-04-23)

The classic Brothers Grimm fairy tale is set in the West African Sahel, where a height-challenged tailor sets out to prove his worth.

Featuring the voice of David Alan Grier as the Taylor and James Earl Jones as the King. 
10 "Cinderella" Bruce W. Smith April 30, 1995 (1995-04-30)

The classic Cinderella tale gets a Mexican twist.

Featuring the voice of Raquel Welch as La Madrastra (Cinderella's stepmother). 
11 "Beauty and the Beast" Bruce W. Smith May 21, 1995 (1995-05-21) [3]
The famous fairy tale is set in Equatorial Africa as Beauty Vanessa Williams falls in love with the Beast Gregory Hines
12 "Snow White" Rufus Diznee May 28, 1995 (1995-05-28)
The classic Brothers Grimm fairy tale gets a Southwestern U.S.(possibly Arizona) setting with Native American characters. 
13 "The Princess and the Pea" Bruce W. Smith June 4, 1995 (1995-06-04)

The classic Hans Christian Anderson fairy tale is set in Ancient Korea, where a prince must choose a bride that will please his demanding mother, only to have her subjected to a test.

Featuring Karen Lew as The Princess and Margaret Cho as The Queen. 

Season 2 (1997)

# Title Directed by Original air date
14 "Pinocchio" Edward Bell April 13, 1997 (1997-04-13) [4]

The classic children's tale gets set in the Barbary Coast, with Pinocchio learning to be a real boy with the help of a termite named Woody, his father Old George, and a jazz-singing fairy.

Featuring the voice of Will Smith as Pinocchio, Chris Rock as Woody, and Della Reese as the Blues Fairy. 
15 "Thumbelina" Edward Bell April 20, 1997 (1997-04-20)

The classic Hans Christian Anderson fairy tale is set in the Amazon Rain Forest in Brazil.

Featuring Harvey Fierstein as Mrs. Frog and Edward James Olmos as the Bat 
16 "Puss in Boots" Edward Bell April 27, 1997 (1997-04-27) [5]

The Perrault fairy tale gets a Polynesian setting, as a smart and mischievous cat from the Far East sets out to improve the fortunes of his new master, Kuhio.

Featuring the voices of David Hyde Pierce as Puss in Boots, Dean Cain as Kuhio, and Pat Morita as King Makahana 
17 "The Pied Piper" Edward Bell May 4, 1997 (1997-05-04)

The Pied Piper teaches a lesson in keeping promises to the town of Hamelin while playing some fun jazz music.

Featuring the voice of Wesley Snipes as the Pied Piper, John Ratzenberger as Hinky, Grant Shaud as Toady, and Samuel L. Jackson as the Mayor 
18 "The Twelve Dancing Princesses" Edward Bell May 11, 1997 (1997-05-11)

Twelve young Cuban princesses sneak out of their beds to dance each night away and a smitten soldier must find out where they go if he hopes to marry one of them (and not lose his head!)

Featuring Daisy Fuentes as Princess Daisy, Hector Elizondo as King El Marty and Jon Secada as Juan Carlos 
19 "The Golden Goose" Edward Bell May 18, 1997 (1997-05-18)

In this African-American version of the fairy tale, lovable Simpleton befriends a wisecracking beggar who leads him to a magical golden goose and a grand adventure.

Featuring the voices of Sinbad as Simpleton, James Avery as Father, Avery Brooks as King Maximus, Loretta Devine as Mother 
20 "The Little Mermaid" Edward Bell May 25, 1997 (1997-05-25)

In this Asian setting, at a secret underwater kingdom, a teenage mermaid princess named Mija is allowed to see the world above the surface and falls in love with a human prince after rescuing him. She makes a deal with a sea witch that may not turn out in her favor if she doesn't win the prince's love in return.

Featuring the voices of Tia Carrere as Mija and Margaret Cho as the Mermaid Queen 
21 "Goldilocks and the Three Bears" Edward Bell June 1, 1997 (1997-06-01)

In this Jamaican version of the classic, Goldilocks (voiced by Raven-Symone) has golden dreadlocks and much to learn about treating people (and bears) right.

Featuring the voices of Tone Loc as Desmond Bear, Alfre Woodard as Winoone Bear, David Alan Grier as Dudley Bear, Ben Vereen as Snake and Lou Rawls as Bat 
22 "The Fisherman and His Wife" Edward Bell June 8, 1997 (1997-06-08)

In this version tale of how greed only begets more greed set to the music of Gypsy guitars and flamenco dancing, a simple fisherman and his wife are happy with their humble life until a magical fish offers them a wish.

Featuring the voices of Edward James Olmos as the Fisherman, and Julia Migenes as the Fisherman's Wife 
23 "Aladdin" Edward Bell June 15, 1997 (1997-06-15)

This tale from the 1001 Arabian Nights takes place in Ancient China, when Aladdin, a poor dreamer who longs for adventure, meets a genie who wishes to be a kung-fu master and uses him to rescue a princess from a jealous sorcerer.

Featuring B.D. Wong as Aladdin and the Genie and George Takei as Chang the Sorcerer 
24 "The Shoemaker and the Elves" Edward Bell June 22, 1997 (1997-06-22)

In the ancient Aztec empire, a humble shoemaker named Tizoc and his wife create shoes for the emperor and his devious captain of the guards. When he must make several shoes overnight or forfeit his life, he falls asleep on the job, but two elves come to the rescue.

Featuring Lou Diamond Philips as Coatl 
25 "King Midas and the Golden Touch" June 29, 1997 (1997-06-29)

The powerful monarch of an African kingdom learns that all that glitters isn't gold when his wish to turn everything he touches into gold is granted.

Featuring the voice of Alfonso Ribeiro as King Midas and Jennifer Holliday as The Dream Diva 
26 "Mother Goose: A Rappin' & Rhymin' Special" Edward Bell October 12, 1997 (1997-10-12)

Feeling unappreciated by the denizens of Nursery Rhyme Land, Mother Goose decides to go into retirement. Now a group of beloved Nursery Rhyme characters must show how much they really care before she flies the coop.

Features the voices of Whoopi Goldberg as Mother Goose, Jimmy Smits as Old King Cole, Regis Philbin and Kathy Lee Gifford as Jack and Jill, Nell Carter as Mary, Denzel Washington as Humpty Dumpty, and TLC as The Three Little Kittens. 

Season 3 (1999-2000)

# Title Directed by Original air date
27 "The Three Little Pigs" Anthony Bell June 22, 1999 (1999-06-22) [6]

This tale is told with country music, when three Girl piglets go to a summer camp called Camp Piggywood and they ward off a wolf.

Featuring the voices of Sinbad as Big Bad Wolfgang, Courteney Cox as Emerald Salt Pork, and Sandra Oh as Breadcrumb, Tyra Banks is also featured. 
28 "Ali Baba and the Forty Thieves" Anthony Bell July 14, 1999 (1999-07-14) [7]

This tale is given a feminist twist as a young Arabian girl named Ali Baba must rescue her selfish older brother Cassim and outsmart the 40 Thieves to save her family.

Featuring the voices of Tommy Davidson, Jurnee Smollett, Marla Gibbs, Will Ferrell, and Bruno Kirby 
29 "The Bremen Town Musicians" Anthony Bell August 12, 1999 (1999-08-12)

The classic Brothers Grimm tale is told with a country/Afro-American twist, as outcast barn animals become singers and go on their way to Bremen.

Featuring the voices of George Clinton as Scratchmo, Gladys Knight as Chocolate, Jenifer Lewis as Hazel, Dionne Warwick as Miss Kitty, Marlon Wayans as Itch, and Shawn Wayans as Bad Bobby. 
30 "The Empress's Nightingale" Anthony Bell September 16, 1999 (1999-09-16)

The classic tale is given a feminine makeover when a greedy empress learns about the true meaning of beauty.

  • Note: This episode is dedicated in memory of Phil Hartman.
Featuring the voice of Pam Grier as the Empress' Nightingale, Phil Hartman as the Game Show Host, and Amy Hill as the Empress 
31 "The Happy Prince" Anthony Bell October 6, 1999 (1999-10-06)

Based on Oscar Wilde's short story, a statue and a pigeon work together to help the poor in New York City.

Featuring Ed Koch as "Happy" Prince (a former mayor who is now a statue) and Cyndi Lauper as the pigeon 
32 "Henny Penny" Anthony Bell November 2, 1999 (1999-11-02) [8]

A news reporter hen named Henny Penny convinces barnyard denizens that the sky is falling.

Featuring the voices of Sharon Stone as Henny Penny, Patricia Welch as the singing voice for Henny Penny, Henry Kissinger as Ducky Daddles, Mary Hart as Lucy Goosey, Jesse Jackson as Cocky Lockey, and Johnnie Cochran as Foxey Loxer. 
33 "The Frog Princess" Anthony Bell January 3, 2000 (2000-01-03)

In this version of a Russian fairy tale, a frog princess proves that love conquers all.

Featuring the voices of Jasmine Guy as Frog Princesss Lylah, Greg Kinnear as Prince Gavin, Wallace Langham as Prince Bobby, Mary Gross as Elise, and Beau Bridges as King Big Daddy 
34 "The Princess and the Pauper" Anthony Bell February 21, 2000 (2000-02-21)
The classic Mark Twain novel is told with an African-American and feminist twist where a princess (voiced by Raven-Symoné) and a poor girl exchange identities. Featuring the voice talents of David Alan Grier, Phylicia Rashad, and John Witherspoon
35 "Rip Van Winkle" Anthony Bell March 21, 2000 (2000-03-21) [9]

In a feminist retelling of the story, young hippie Vanna falls in love with rock star Rip van Winkle and must rediscover her voice after not being respected by her chauvinistic husband. Vanna's fairy godmentor gives Rip some time to sleep on things (20 years to be exact) and he wakes up to a world where Vanna has helped change things for the better.

Featuring the voices of Tom Arnold as Rip, Calista Flockhart as Vanna, Patricia Welch as the singing voice for Vanna, Sandra Bernhard as Bluebird, and Maya Angelou as the Fairy Godmentor. 
36 "The Snow Queen" Anthony Bell April 18, 2000 (2000-04-18)

An Inuit setting as the Snow Queen freezes a boy's heart and takes him to her icy castle. Only his best friend, a girl with a powerful heart, can save him.

Featuring the voices of Eartha Kitt as the Snow Queen, T'Keyah Crystal Keymah as Grandmother, Brandon Hammond as Kai, and Doug E. Doug as the Raven. 
37 "The Steadfast Tin Soldier" Anthony Bell May 16, 2000 (2000-05-16)
In an African-American twist and feminist twist, a set of tin soldiers inspires a girl's imagination and its one-legged leader conquers all obstacles to reach a dancer toy she loves. 
38 "Robinita Hood" Anthony Bell June 19, 2000 (2000-06-19) [10]

A Puerto Rican feminist version of the English Legend Robin Hood. Robinita Hood leads her band of Merry Chicas to stop the greedy Sheriff de Jamon with the help of her love interest Mario.

Featuring the voice of Marc Anthony as Mario, Robinita's love interest 
39 "Aesop's Fables: A Whodunit Musical" Anthony Bell July 18, 2000 (2000-07-18) [11]
In the setting of London, England, a beautiful sleuth tracks down Aesop's purloined book of fables. 


  1. ^ a b c O'Connor, John J. (March 23, 1995). "Critic's Notebook; Setting Higher Sights for Animation". The New York Times: pp. C18. http://www.nytimes.com/1995/03/23/movies/critic-s-notebook-setting-higher-sights-for-animation.html. Retrieved 2009-10-15. 
  2. ^ Moore, Scott (March 26, 1995). "HBO's Colorful, Diverse Fairy Tales". The Washington Post: pp. Y9. 
  3. ^ "Robert Guillaume Narrates 'Happily Ever After: Fairy Tales For Every Child'". Los Angeles Sentinel: pp. B4. May 24, 1995. 
  4. ^ King, Susan (April 10, 1997). "'Grease,' 'Titanic' in the Lineup". Los Angeles Times. http://articles.latimes.com/1997-04-10/entertainment/ca-47417_1_evening-lineup. Retrieved 2009-10-15. 
  5. ^ Littlefield, Kinney (April 20, 1997). "The nether side of Niles // Television: David Hyde Pierce talks 'Frasier,' cats, comedy and more.". The Orange County Register: pp. F8. 
  6. ^ Mifflin, Lawrie (June 22, 1999). "Giving Fairy Tales a Feminist Twist". The New York Times: pp. E8. http://www.nytimes.com/1999/06/22/arts/giving-fairy-tales-a-feminist-twist.html. Retrieved 2009-10-15. 
  7. ^ Gates, Anita (July 14, 1999). "Television Review; Say, 'Open, Sesame,' and Poof! Ali Baba Is Now a Girl". The New York Times: pp. E5. http://www.nytimes.com/1999/07/14/arts/television-review-say-open-sesame-and-poof-ali-baba-is-now-a-girl.html. Retrieved 2009-10-15. 
  8. ^ "In The Know". The Augusta Chronicle: pp. B1. November 2, 1999. 
  9. ^ Bianculli, David (March 21, 2000). "Feminist 'Rip' Gets a Little Tiring". Daily News: pp. 79. 
  10. ^ Berkowitz, Lana (June 19, 2000). "Girls get the goods in animated Latin-flavored 'Robinita Hood'". Houston Chronicle: pp. 6. 
  11. ^ Berkowitz, Lana (July 18, 2000). "HBO whodunit musical a twist on classic morality plays". Houston Chronicle: pp. 6. 

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