The Fox and the Hound (film)

The Fox and the Hound (film)

name = The Fox and the Hound
director = Ted Berman
Richard Rich
producer = Ron Miller
Art Stevens
Wolfgang Reitherman
writer = Ted Berman
Larry Clemmons
starring = Mickey Rooney
Kurt Russell
distributor = Buena Vista Distribution
released = July 10, 1981 (U.S.)
runtime = 83 minutes
language = English
budget = $12 million ["The Official Disney Trivia Book": Paperjacks, date 1988, pages 63-64 , ISBN 07701-1002-9 info on cost and book source story info']
gross = $39,900,000 [cite web | title=The Fox and the Hound (1981) | publisher=Box Office Mojo |url= | accessdate=2008-09-20]
music = Buddy Baker

imdb_id = 0082406
followed_by = "The Fox and the Hound 2" (2006)

"The Fox and the Hound" is a 1981 animated feature produced by Walt Disney Productions, first released to movie theatres in the U.S. on July 10, 1981. The twenty-fourth animated feature in the Disney animated features canon, the film is loosely based on the Daniel P. Mannix novel "The Fox and the Hound". The film centers around the story of two unlikely friends, a hound dog and a fox, who struggle to preserve their friendship despite their emerging instincts. At the time of release, it was the most expensive animated film produced, costing $12 million. ["The Official Disney Trivia Book": Paperjacks, date 1988, pages 63-64 , ISBN 07701-1002-9 info on cost and book source story info'] A direct-to-video midquel, "The Fox and the Hound 2", was released on December 12, 2006.


After a young red fox is orphaned, an owl named Big Mama arranges for him to be adopted by the Widow Tweed. Tweed names him Tod, since he reminds her of a toddler. Meanwhile, Tweed's neighbor, a hunter named Amos Slade, brings home a young hound puppy named Copper and introduces him to his hunting dog Chief. Tod and Copper become playmates, and vow to remain "friends forever." Slade grows frustrated at Copper for constantly wandering off to play, and places him on a leash. While playing with Copper at his home, Tod awakens Chief. Slade and Chief chase him until they are stopped by Tweed. After an argument, Slade says that he intends to kill Tod at his first opportunity. Hunting season comes and Slade takes his dogs into the wilderness for the interim. Meanwhile, Big Mama explains to Tod that his friendship with Copper cannot continue, as they are natural enemies, but Tod refuses to believe her.

Months pass, and Tod and Copper reach adulthood. On the night of Copper's return, Tod sneaks over to meet him. Copper explains that he is a hunting dog now and things are different between them. Chief awakens and alerts Slade, a chase ensues and Copper catches Tod. Copper lets Tod go then diverts Chief and Slade. Chief maintains his pursuit onto a railroad track where he is struck by a train and wounded. Copper and Slade blame Tod for the accident and swear vengeance. Tweed realizes that her pet is no longer safe with her and leaves him at a game preserve. Big Mama introduces him to a female fox named Vixey, then Slade and Copper tresspass into the preserve and hunt the two foxes. The chase climaxes when Slade and Copper inadvertently provoke an attack from a bear. Slade trips and is caught in his own trap and drops his gun just out of reach. Copper fights the bear but is no match for it. Tod battles the bear until they both fall down a waterfall. Copper approaches Tod as he lies in the lake below when Slade appears, ready to fire at the fox. Copper interposes his body in front of Tod, and refuses to move away. Slade lowers his gun and leaves with Copper, but not before the two former adversaries share one last smile before parting. At home, Tweed nurses Slade back to health while the dogs rest. Copper, before resting, smiles as he remembers the day when he became friends with Tod. On a hill Vixey joins Tod as he looks down on the homes of Copper and Tweed.


*Mickey Rooney as Tod
*Kurt Russell as Copper
*Sandy Duncan as Vixey
*Pearl Bailey as Big Mama
*Richard Bakalyan as Dinky
*Paul Winchell as Boomer
*Pat Buttram as Chief
*Jeanette Nolan as Widow Tweed
*Jack Albertson as Amos Slade
*Keith Coogan as Young Tod
*Corey Feldman as Young Copper
*John Fiedler as The Porcupine
*John McIntire as The Badger


The film represented a changing of the guard of the animators creating the film from Walt Disney's "nine old men" to the more recently trained Disney animators who had moved through the in-house animation training program begun in 1976. [ [] "Variety information on Disney Animation school and new animators starting with this film"] [ [] Reference from Animation World Magazine, reference for this section]

The story was loosely based on Daniel Mannix's 1967 novel of the same name. The book had a more realistic story, it dealt with the quest of a hunter and his dog Copper to shoot Tod after he killed the hunter's old dog Chief. The novel was mainly about Tod's life in the woods. While he was raised by humans he was not childhood friends with Copper and none of the animals spoke. The story was changed to make it more suitable for a family film; instead of a story about the life and death of a fox, it became a parable about how society determines our roles despite our better impulses. [ [] "Roger Ebert's review of the film"]

The film marked the last work of the remaining original animators. Don Bluth worked as an animator on this film, but left Disney early in the production, taking 11 Disney animators (which comprised 17% of the production staff) with him to start his own rival studio, Don Bluth Productions. As a result of Bluth's defection, production on "The Fox and the Hound" was delayed by nearly six months. Bluth animated Widow Tweed and her cow, Abigail, and his team worked on the rest of the sequence.

The co-directors for the film were Ted Berman, Richard Rich, and Art Stevens.

It was also the final Disney film to have all the credits in the title sequence and have the words, "The End. A Walt Disney Production." at the end of the film.

Originally, the writers of the film intended for Chief to die when he got hit by the train, so that Copper's revenge against Tod is more extreme. This would have marked the first on-screen death of a major character in a Disney film, but the idea was eventually dropped. Story veteran Vance Gerry argued for the department; "But he gets hit in the kisser with a freight train!!" To which Ron Miller and co-director Art Stevens countered: "Geez, we never killed a main character in a Disney film and we're not starting now!"

Release history

*July 10, 1981 (Original theatrical)
*March 25, 1988 (Theatrical re-release)
*March 4, 1994 (VHS), the last video of the "Walt Disney Classics" collection.
*May 2, 2000 (DVD), released on the "Walt Disney Gold Classic Collection".
*October 10, 2006, 25th anniversary Special Edition DVD

International release dates

* Brazil: July 16, 1981
* Argentina: July 23, 1981
*West Germany: November 13, 1981
*U.K.: November 17, 1981
*Italy: November 19, 1981
*Manitoba: November 23, 1981
*Mexico: November 24, 1981
*France: November 25, 1981
*Spain: November 27, 1981
*Sweden: December 5, 1981
*Finland: December 11, 1981
*Australia: December 17, 1981
*Netherlands: December 24, 1981
*Hong Kong: January 14, 1982
*Belgium: January 15, 1982
*Greece: January 15, 1982
*Peru: January 27, 1982
*Portugal: February 18, 1982
*Norway: April 22, 1982
*Nepal: October 31, 1982 (Kathmandu)
*India: December 24, 1982 (Bombay)
*India: December 24, 1982 (Calcutta)
*Japan: March 12, 1983
*Lebanon: October 11, 1984
*China: October 31, 1989

Critical reaction

Although the film was a financial success, the general reaction by film critics to the film was mixed. Manywho were disappointed that the predominantly young creative staff, many of whom had only recently joined the company, had produced a film that seemed very conservative in both concept and execution. Other critics, like Richard Corliss of "Time Magazine", praised the film for an intelligent story about prejudice. He argued the film shows that prejudiced attitudes can poison even the deepest relationships, and the film's bittersweet ending delivers a powerful and important moral message to audiences. [ [,9171,954873,00.html] "Time magazine review."] Roger Ebert of the Chicago Times also praised the film. He wrote that "for all of its familiar qualities, this movie marks something of a departure for the Disney studio, and its movement is in an interesting direction. "The Fox and the Hound" is one of those relatively rare Disney animated features that contains a useful lesson for its younger audiences. It's not just cute animals and frightening adventures and a happy ending; it's also a rather thoughtful meditation on how society determines our behavior." [ [] "Roger Ebert's review of the film"]

The film gained a considerable following and it was awarded a Golden Screen Award at the Goldene Leinwand Awards in 1982. It was also nominated for a Young Artist Award and the Saturn Award for Best Fantasy Film. It has a "fresh" 73% rating on based on 15 reviews(with a 6.8 score), and an even better score of 87% among users of RottenTomatoes with a 7.2 score.

oundtrack Listing

*"Best of Friends" – Music by Richard Johnston, Lyrics by Stan Fidel, Performed by Pearl Bailey
*"Lack of Education" – Music and Lyrics by Jim Stafford, Performed by Pearl Bailey
*"A Huntin' Man" – Music and Lyrics by Jim Stafford, Performed by Jack Albertson
*"Appreciate the Lady" – Music and Lyrics by Jim Stafford, Performed by Pearl Bailey
*"Goodbye May Seem Forever" – Music by Richard Rich, Lyrics by Jeffrey Patch, Performed by Jeanette Nolan


External links

* [ The Fox and the Hound] at Rotten Tomatoes
* [ "The Fox and the Hound"] at the Big Cartoon DataBase
*imdb title|id=0082406|title=The Fox and the Hound

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