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Off Model / Animated Films

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Animated films take effort. A lot of it. An animation studio is filled with over 100 budding cartoonists drawing for hours to make 20 seconds of the movie. On the flip side, 3D animators have to meticulously add details and effects to objects and make sure they move fluently. These people have to do it within their budget, transfer work to other studios if the workload is too much and get it all done on time. Naturally, there's going to be some mistakes during all this.

Incidentally, sometimes animators will draw off-model on purpose with the intent of making animation appear smoother or more natural. Some people call this technique "smear animation" and it works really well. They are still pretty hilarious to discover though.



  • This shot from Aladdin managed to spawn a Tumblr meme around this trope as it applies to Disney films. (Look up "DIDNEY WORL".)
  • Aladdin: The Return of Jafar:
    • When Abu climbs on Aladdin's shoulder as he hides Iago from Jasmine he looks more like a little bear with a long tail.
    • The movie itself is considered by many to be nothing but one big moment of off model. Not helping its case is the abrupt changeover from Disney's Australian studio to their Japanese counterpart halfway through.
    • An intentional example can be seen in the Magic Carpet. In the original film, it has an extremely intricate design that had to be mapped on via CG. This was long before computer animation was inexpensive enough to use outside of big-budget feature films, so for Aladdin: The Series and the two sequel films that serve as its pilot and Grand Finale, the carpet was redesigned to have a pattern that (although still rather detailed) could be described as "kind of like the old one, I guess" to keep the budget reasonable.
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  • The sequels to All Dogs Go to Heaven are inconsistent with the dogs' toe pads. Sometimes they have them, and sometimes they don't.
  • An American Tail, of all films, does this briefly during the scene where Fievel finds himself in a bottle. Right after Fievel sees a partially finished Statue of Liberty and before washing up on shore, he doesn't look much like himself and his fingers are bigger.
  • The Aristocats:
    • During the first time Napoleon and Lafayette chase Edgar, Lafayette mysteriously gains a collar just so he can be yanked upwards by the windmill's blades.
    • Also, at the end of the film, during the scene where the cats stuff Edgar into the very crate he was going to use to ship Duchess and her kittens to Timbuktu with, and later pushing said crate out the door, there is no lock on the crate's lid as it was already removed by Roquefort the mouse, but when the movers finally come to pick it up and take it away, the lock for some reason was already back on the crate's lid!
  • Atlantis: The Lost Empire: At one point in Atlantis, pay very close attention to Kida's bracelet. When she loses it at the very beginning of the film as a result of her mother the Queen pulling it off her wrist so that the Crystal can sacrifice her, the beads are arranged as pink, blue, pink. When she finally retrieves it at the end of the film shortly after saving Atlantis from a lava flow and transforming back from her crystalline form, the beads on her bracelet are now arranged as blue, pink, blue (similar to the feathers attached to the backs of the tiaras worn by the queens). Also, during the finale the patterns on Kida's dress actually shift just right after the stone face representing her late father flies away in the sky, and the sash hanging down from the front of her dress mysteriously vanishes shortly afterward.
  • When the animals escape from the fire in Bambi, a mother raccoon pauses after emerging from the river to lick her baby dry. The baby disappears. However, this was fixed for the DVD releases.
    • Some prints of the movie have said baby raccoon suddenly reappearing in another random spot in the shot, lessening the Fridge Horror, but still looking a little tacky.
    • When Bambi goes to greet Thumper and his sisters while they are eating flowers, his nose is larger than usual.
  • Beauty and the Beast:
    • Belle seems to have two different character models - one for when she's with her father, and another for the rest of the film. This may be a side-effect of a (reportedly) rushed production.
    • Happens to Gaston's face for a few seconds during the song "Gaston". 'Cause no one's off model like Gaston!
    • The Bionicle movies combine this with Special Effects Failure with numerous layering goofs that make characters seem overly large or tiny in the first film, the disfigured Visorak in the third film (which even appears in publicit stills) and the robot body of Mata Nui in the fourth film, which is both lighter in color and smaller compared to its surroundings than in other media featuring it.
    • A peculiar example are the Vahki soldiers from the second movie. Of the six types, only two appear — Rorzakh the black Vahki, and the brown Zadakh Vahki. Yet they are both shown carrying the tools of the Vorzakh, the green Vahki type. In fact, a lot of the movie models made very liberal stylistic changes to the toys (special mention goes to Makuta Teridax), and employed many shortcuts (like using the same few animation models for the background extras), even if other media used some of the toy-designs as plot points, so a handful of the movie designs were eventually declared non-canon.
    • To speed up rendering, the Miramax films often utilized blocky, texture-lacking non-finalized models for crowd scenes and for shots when the characters were far from view, but at times these models were accidentally used for closer shots instead of the fully detailed ones. Examples include the two Ta-Matoran huddling in their hut when the Rahkshi breaks in, members of the Onu-Koro crowd, Turaga Nokama in certain shots during Hahli's speech and numerous Visorak in the final fight of the third movie.
  • The Brave Little Toaster:
    • Some of the cars appearing in the song "Worthless" aren't even moving their mouths as they are singing after the Magnet drops them one by one onto the conveyor belt leading to the Car Crusher.
    • There's plenty of moments where the cords of the characters either shrink or disappear completely.
  • At the end of Cars during the final race, the King's eyes actually change from brown to blue when he is crashed by Chick Hicks. His eyes then turn back to brown just right when he is helped by Lightning McQueen into crossing the finish line.
    • At the start of the race in Japan in the sequel, Lightning mysteriously gains his party wheels at the starting line for a few seconds, but is wearing his racing wheels for the remainder of that race.
  • Cinderella:
    • Cinderella, for some reason, actually doesn't have any toes. However, the third movie gives her feet proper details.
    • Also, at the end of the film, Cinderella's wedding dress is supposed to have long sleeves, but when she and Prince Charming get inside the carriage, her dress has short sleeves like her ballroom gown.
  • Dumbo:
    • Casey Junior for some reason actually gains and loses train cars as it is travelling across the countryside. The only time we actually see the locomotive with the correct number of train cars is when it is crossing the bridge before climbing up the mountain. Also, during the scene where the circus train get loaded up, a circus wagon on one of the train cars changes color, as with one of the crewmen's outfits.
    • Also, during the scene where the Delivery Stork that is carrying Dumbo is looking down at the Southeastern United States, there are no clouds above the map, but when the stork finally descends, clouds inexplicably appear above said map.
    • And at the end of the film, when Mrs. Jumbo is released from captivity and riding inside her and Dumbo's private train car, the ruffles on her hat actually disappear just right when Dumbo flies into said train car and into his mother's trunk.
    • And let's definitely not even get us started on how many elephants were used for the "Pyramid of Pachyderms".
  • Fantasia: In the Pastoral Symphony segment, the baby unicorns and pegasi increase and decrease in number and they change color inconsistently.
  • Off model animation was deliberately pushed to the extreme in the little-known 1979 Hungarian animated film Foam Bath, in which the appearance and the art style of characters and objects varies wildly from shot to shot, often shifting into masses of abstract shapes corresponding to the broad mood swings.
  • In one scene near the beginning of The Fox and the Hound, when Tod is playing with a cow's tail and udders he is unusually chubby and fluffy and his face looks different.
  • Elsa's hair briefly clips through her arm when she lets her hair down during the "Let It Go" sequence in Frozen. However, this was done on purpose by the animators, as the action would have been impossible to pull off otherwise.
  • This early poster for The Good Dinosaur has Arlo and Spot looking VERY off model. (ex. Arlo head shape is different and Spot's hair looking much shorter)
  • Max Fleischer's Gulliver’s Travels is extremely unstable in its animation quality. Some scenes are fairly well drawn and animated (the first scenes with the Kings, Gulliver's meticulously rotoscoped animation) to absolutely abysmal (i.e., the scene where Gabby falls into Gulliver's hand early in the film, some of the crowd shots). This was undoubtedly a result of its rushed deadline, plus the mixed influx of East Coast and West Coast animators working on the film, some of whom were literally hired off the street and given animation cram courses in a matter of hours before getting to work. As such, the film suffers not only from a mix of sloppy and professional animation, but also floaty, mushy inbetweens and sloppy inking. There are even some design-wise off model moments (i.e., Gabby's eyes tend to be drawn differently depending on the artist). There's a reason Walt Disney quipped that "We can make a better film than that with our second-string animators."
  • In Hercules whenever Hercules suffers Clothing Damage, his tunic constantly repairs itself between frames. And during the scene where he is mobbed by fangirls, the ripped part of the tunic switches shoulders constantly between frames. Additionally when Hercules is about to jump into the River Styx - when he first dips his hand in the water, it's as if it's a riverbank. However a few seconds later they're suddenly on a cliff that Hercules must dive off.
  • Toward the end of The Hunchback of Notre Dame, during the scene where Esmeralda pulls Phoebus from underwater, when one of Frollo's henchmen shoots Phoebus off his horse, making him fall into the water, the arrow is in the back, but when Esmeralda pulls him out, the arrow is in the front!
  • During the first appearance of the Elephant Patrol from The Jungle Book (1967), Colonel Hathi accidentally breaks his bamboo cane, but in the next scene, Hathi's cane is inexplicably repaired!
  • In Lilo & Stitch, Jumba's head changes size in some of the scenes, especially near the end. Mainly because the ending had to be changed at the last minute, and they had to rush it through animation to make their deadline.
  • The Lion King:
    • The movie has Nala's eye color switching from green to blue during the same scene.
    • Adult Simba's eyes inconsistently switch between yellow and white throughout the movie. It's most notable during the part with Mufasa's ghost (right before the "Remember who you are" speech) where Simba's eyes flash white for a split second, despite being yellow for the scene. The same happens to Mufasa during the pouncing lesson (when he says "Let an old pro show you how it's done").
  • The Lion King II: Simba's Pride: Right when Zira falls to her death, you can see a smile on her face. This was because she originally let go intentionally but that was considered too dark. The animators, however, didn't remove all traces of that deleted scene.
  • In the Golden Films version of The Little Mermaid when Lena the mermaid comes to the surface at one point her head becomes bigger than the rest of her body.
  • Ralph Bakshi's The Lord of the Rings starts to become inconsistent and more filtered live-action once Boromir dies:
    • Merry and Pippin switch between blonde and brown hair.
    • Humans outside the main cast are poorly animated.
    • Gollum gets really skinny looking at the end of the film.
  • The German animated film The Magic Voyage has very inconsistent animation quality. At times it looks almost Disney-quality and sometimes it looks like a TV cartoon.
  • Mulan: Mulan starts off being drawn with long eyelashes and thin eyebrows, but when she cuts her hair to complete her disguise as a male soldier so that she can join the war against the invading Huns, her eyelashes disappear and her eyebrows grow bigger. When Mulan changes back into more feminine-looking clothes for the final battle against Shan Yu in the Imperial Palace, her eyelashes grow back, but her eyebrows still remain huge and bushy.
    • Thanks to the lower animation quality and possibly the film's Lighter and Softer tone, numerous scenes in the Direct-to-DVD sequel Mulan II have various characters from the first movie falling under this. (Such as Mulan in this frame.) However, Shang's facial expressions as he and Mulan have a falling-out really take the cake.
  • Peter Pan:
    • During the "You Can Fly" number, when Peter Pan and the Darling children fly away from the Big Ben clock tower before finally arriving at Neverland, Wendy Darling's face actually disappears for a split second.
    • Captain Hook with six fingers.
  • One example would be a scene in Pinocchio. When Pinoc sets his finger on fire and Gepetto tries to put it out, if you look closely, his cap disappears and reappears several times throughout the scene!
  • Pocahontas:
    • One scene shows a closeup of John Smith's boots (Meeko the raccoon is standing between them). For some reason, there's an empty void on the heel of Smith's left boot!
    • Flit's wings disappear in one scene.
    • Also when Pocahontas is showing John how her tribe says hello, pay attention to her lower back. Her hair does not appear between her elbow and lower back when it really should. It disappears and reappears between frames.
  • In Quest for Camelot, the main villain Ruber can sometimes have his pupils disappear briefly for one frame. Also in the song On my Father's wings, Kayley's lips don't move in sync with the song in the last verse.
  • Robin Hood:
    • Prince John, the Big Bad, constantly gains and loses rings throughout the entire film. He lampshades it at the archery tournament.
      Prince John: No, no, I lose more jewels that way...
    • Also, Maid Marian for some reason becomes unusually tall for a fox whenever she is dancing, which is due to scenes from Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs being used for the scene.
  • In the Rankin Bass adaptation of Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer, in the very beginning of the Elf Practice, the Head Elf has a very different speaking voice for a few lines. It's easy to miss, but quite obvious once pointed out.
  • The Secret of NIMH 2: Timmy to the Rescue features a scene where Timmy hugs his mother in a way that would only work if Mrs. Brisby's neck had the ability to be stretched back while her head and body stayed in the same place.
  • Aurora from Sleeping Beauty has no less than three different eye colors: brown, purple, and black, even changing multiple times in one scene. It's unusual considering how otherwise the film is beautifully done. Disney Princess merchandise settled on purple eyes as her official color.
  • Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs: Interestingly, it's not quality that suffers in this example - the animators seem to just forget what they're supposed to be drawing. When the forest animals are following Snow White into the Dwarfs' house, a rabbit hops behind another rabbit and comes out as a squirrel. Disney was so embarrassed it had a demo video taken off YouTube.
  • The Spongebob Squarepants Movie does this intentionally, with Spongebob and Patrick spending most of their screentime off model to make humorous expressions.
  • In The Sword in the Stone in the brief scene of the wolf circling Arthur when he's a squirrel dangling from a broken branch he is drawn like the wolf from Make Mine Music! instead of his scrawny, scruffy, scraggly self.
  • The Thief and the Cobbler: The sequences added after the firing of creator/director/writer/animator Richard Williams were done on a much lower budget by several different animation studios around the world. Particularly bad, as the original animation by Williams had extreme effort put in it, making the cheaper scenes look terrible in comparison.
  • Happens in almost every scene in The Transformers: The Movie, despite having a higher budget than the series itself. Most egregious examples include Unicron's overall size in comparison to a planet (I.E he's able to stand on top of Cybertron in one scene while in the previous scene he was bigger than said planet), several mis-colorations (Starscream's chest when mocking the fallen Megatron, Rumble being the same color as Frenzy in one scene) and characters being in a place when they shouldn't be (Swoop's leg at Autobot City, Thundercracker and Skywarp at Starscream's coronation, the Insecticons in several scenes) amongst several others. Unicron's appearance noticeably changes as well, as his first transformation sequence had been completed before his iconic robo-bearded face was finalized.
  • Wonder Woman (2009): Upon Deimos's appearance, Diana immediately dons her tiara. In the next shot, it's gone, only to return in the shot following that.
  • In Yellow Submarine, the submarine's periscopes change position, shape and color between scenes. Even the propellers are missing from time to time.
  • Zootopia makes use of smear animation, and has a few frames where models are distorted to give the impression of more fluid movement. One notable example is when Judy chases Duke Weaseltown in Little Rodentia, where she hops and dives to avoid an incoming projectile... but not before making this face.


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