Disney has made many animated films over the years (currently 61note ), so sit back, relax, and revel in the magic as we briefly go over the plots (and some other notes) of each and every one of them.
The films are listed in chronological order of release. Note that this list is divided into "eras", which revolve around various aspects — usually the critical and commercial successes of these films of the time, but some also revolve around specific themes. One's personal opinions of the quality of these films do not play a role in these "eras". Also, asterisks (*) in this list mean that these films consist of several short films released as one feature.
Disneytoon Studios also made a number of (mostly) Direct to Video films, which act as sequels, prequels, or interquels to these movies; while Disney Television Animation also made several Sequel Series and other Spin-Off TV shows based on these films. Walt Disney Pictures is the source of Disney's live-action filmography, including those with animated segments such as Song of the South and Mary Poppins. Notably, said studio would later produce a series of live-action remakes of their animated movies. Projects with Pixar are listed on the latter's page. Check out all those pages for further information.
List of films
Note that some people use the term "Golden Age" or "Golden Era" to refer to all the films produced while Walt Disney was alive, incorporating all the films of this age, the Package Age, and the Silver Age.
- Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs (December 21, 1937) — The one that started it all: A cheerful young maiden proclaimed to be the Fairest of Them All finds herself targeted by an envious queen, and seeks refuge from a clan of diminutive miners. Holds the honor of being the first full-length animated feature film in the English-speaking world. Also became the highest-grossing film of all time for a few years.
- Pinocchio (February 7, 1940) — Italy's famous Fairy Tale, with a helping of Adaptational Heroism, becomes one of Disney's most definitive films. A wooden puppet is brought to life by a fairy dressed in blue. With the help of a cricket, he must learn how to Become a Real Boy. This is one of the only films in the canon to have a perfect 100% on Rotten Tomatoes.
- Fantasia (November 13, 1940)* — An Animated Anthology film where various pieces of classical music are told through animated stories or conceptual pieces. The one where Mickey Mouse brings a broom to life. The longest film in the canon at 124 minutes.
- Dumbo (October 23, 1941) — A bullied circus elephant with a large pair of ears learns to use them to fly with the help of a mouse and a Magic Feather supplied by some Clever Crows. Made on the cheap to support the next film, it was the shortest single-story film in the canon for a long time at 64 minutes.
- Bambi (August 13, 1942) — Based on the same-named Felix Salten novel is this Coming of Age Story about a young deer in a forest who loses his mother to a hunter and grows up to become the great prince.
- Saludos Amigos (August 24, 1942, in Brazil/February 19, 1943, in the U.S.)* — Disney makes four shorts about South America as part of the Good Neighbor policy. The debut of Brazilian parrot José Carioca. The shortest film in the canon at only 42 minutes, just long enough to count as a feature film.
- The Three Caballeros (December 21, 1944, in Mexico City/February 3, 1945, in the U.S.)* — The follow-up to Saludos Amigos, continuing Disney's focus on Latin America. Donald Duck and José Carioca return from Saludos and meet Mexican rooster Panchito Pistoles. ♪We're three Caballeros, three gay Caballeros, they say we are birds of a feather!♫
- Make Mine Music (April 20, 1946)* — Many of Disney's animators were drafted into the war, so they had to keep going with package films. As the name implies, it has a musical focus. Among its ten shorts include an all-star baseball player striking out and an opera-singing whale.
- Fun and Fancy Free (September 27, 1947)* — Two shorts, one feature-length film. In one short, a circus bear escapes into the forest. The other short is basically "Jack and the Beanstalk" with Mickey Mouse, Donald Duck, and Goofy as the stars of the story. The last time Walt Disney voiced Mickey.
- Melody Time (May 27, 1948)* — Another package film with a musical focus. Among its seven shorts include an adaptation of the legend of Johnny Appleseed, a story of the Aracuan bird (from The Three Caballeros) pepping up Donald Duck and José Carioca with samba, and an adaptation of the legendary cowboy Pecos Bill.
- The Adventures of Ichabod and Mr. Toad (October 5, 1949)* — The title's two shorts (shown in the reverse order) are adaptations of The Wind in the Willows and The Legend of Sleepy Hollow. Features Basil Rathbone and Bing Crosby as narrators.
- Cinderella (February 15, 1950) — Based on the classic Fairy Tale of the same name. A beautiful young woman who is abused by her Wicked Stepmother and stepsisters meets a Fairy Godmother who helps her attend a royal ball and meet a charming prince. Oh, and there's this Glass Slipper...
- Alice in Wonderland (July 28, 1951) — Trippy as hell adaptation of Lewis Carroll's Alice's Adventures in Wonderland. A young girl follows a white rabbit Down the Rabbit Hole and ends up in a curious world filled with nonsense.
- Peter Pan (February 5, 1953) — Based on James M. Barrie's famous stage play (and its 1911 book adaptation), three kids meet a boy who never grows up and, with the help of a fairy's pixie dust, fly off to a land filled with pirates, lost boys, mermaids, Indians, and a ticking crocodile. The last film to have all nine of Disney's Nine Old Men working together and the last entry to be distributed by RKO Radio Pictures.
- Lady and the Tramp (June 22, 1955) — A dog who is pampered by humans meets a street-loving stray and falls in love with him. They have a Spaghetti Kiss at one point. The first feature-length animation created in widescreen, and the first entry in the canon to be distributed by Buena Vista.
- Sleeping Beauty (January 29, 1959) — Based loosely on the Charles Perrault version of the classic fairy tale (and borrowing story and music elements from Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky's The Sleeping Beauty ballet) three good fairies try to protect a princess put under a curse by an evil fairy. When they fail, they help a prince defeat the evil fairy and break the curse with a True Love's Kiss.
- 101 Dalmatians (January 25, 1961) — Based on a children's novel by Dodie Smith, two dalmatians (and their humans) meet, fall in love, and have fifteen puppies. A socialite wants to skin the puppies for their soft spotted fur and has them kidnapped. The dalmatian couple not only needs to save their pups but 84 other dalmatian puppies as well. Noteworthy for being the first film animated via xerography, a cost-cutting animation method that would prove useful in keeping the studio afloat through the upcoming Dark Age.
- The Sword in the Stone (December 25, 1963) — Disney's take on Arthurian Legend where a young orphan boy meets the wizard Merlin who would end up helping him become King of England. Lots of shapeshifting ensue. The final animated film released before Walt died in 1966.
- The Jungle Book (October 18, 1967) — Rudyard Kipling's collection of stories gets warped by Disney so much that it displaces it big time. A "Man-Cub" Raised by Wolves must leave the jungle and find a village to avoid the wrath of a tiger. Along the way, he meets an easygoing sloth bear who tells him about "The Bare Necessities". The final animated film produced before Walt died in 1966.
Some critics dispute the term "Dark Age" to refer to this era, arguing that some of Disney's best films are within this era, hence the more neutral-sounding term "Bronze Age" is often used instead. Likewise, the art book series They Drew as They Pleased uses the term "The Early Renaissance" to refer to this era since it would lead to the company's first animated comeback at the end of The '80s. Still, others say this is actually two eras, with the first four films here being the Bronze Age and the last four being the Dark Age.
- The Aristocats (December 24, 1970) — A wealthy retired opera singer plans to leave her entire fortune to her cats, but her greedy butler drugs them and leaves them in the French countryside. The cats decide to head back home with the help of a streetwise, jazz-loving alley cat. The final film Walt personally green-lit, as well as the final film released during the life of Walt's brother Roy O. Disney, co-founder and first CEO of the company.
- Robin Hood (November 8, 1973) — The classic myth about a rogue who steals from the rich to give to the poor, told with funny animals and a lot of recycled animation. The final animated film released while all of Disney's Nine Old Men were alive, and the first to be made completely independent of Walt.
- The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh (March 11, 1977)* — A. A. Milne's famous children's tales about his son's stuffed animals were actually adapted by Disney before as three separate shorts released from 1966 to 1974. Those shorts were compiled into this film, with new animation to tie everything together. The final film in the canon to have any direct involvement from Walt.
- The Rescuers (June 22, 1977) — Based on Margery Sharp's series of children's novels, two mice travel to a swamp to "R-E-S-C-U-E" an orphan girl who was kidnapped by an evil woman who wants the world's largest diamond. The most successful film of the Bronze Age, it received a sequel in 1990 (see the next section below). Also the final canon film to have any involvement at all from Walt, as he was involved in The Rescuers' concept stages way back in the early 1960s.
- The Fox and the Hound (July 10, 1981) — Very loosely based on Daniel P. Mannix's book of the same name, a fox raised by an elderly human woman befriends a hound dog who is raised by a hunter, despite being natural enemies. Their friendship would be tested as adults when the fox has to be released to the wild, and when the hound is trained to hunt. The last film that any of Disney's Nine Old Men worked on as animators, and the last entry to carry the Buena Vista Vanity Plate.
- The Black Cauldron (July 24, 1985) — Based on The Chronicles of Prydain novel series by Lloyd Alexander, a young boy wants to be a great warrior. He defends an oracle pig from a Sorcerous Overlord who wants to use her to find a legendary cauldron, with which he can raise an undead army to Take Over the World. One of Disney's darkest animated features, it's the first animated Disney film to carry a PG rating due to violence and nightmarish imagery, the first with a standard credit crawl, and the first to open (and end) with a Vanity Plate for Walt Disney Pictures instead of the studio's distributor.note
- The Great Mouse Detective (July 2, 1986) — Eve Titus's Basil of Baker Street gets adapted into this film where a Mouse Sherlock Holmes helps find a young girl's mechanical genius father, who was kidnapped by the minions of "the world's greatest criminal mind", a rat Vincent Price. The last film to have one of Disney's Nine Old Men directly credited; Animation Consultant Eric Larson retired that year and died soon after.
- Oliver & Company (November 18, 1988) — Oliver Twist in 1980s New York City with talking animals. An unwanted ginger kitten gets taken in by a petty thief and his gang of street-wise dogs, including a dog Billy Joel. They deal with a loan shark and his two Doberman Pinschers, and a Lonely Rich Kid would later adopt the kitten.
- The Little Mermaid (November 17, 1989) — Hans Christian Andersen's classic fairy tale is turned into an animated musical. A young mermaid with a Beautiful Singing Voice and insatiable-yet-prohibited fascination with the surface world falls in love with a human prince, who she saves from drowning. She bargains her voice with a sea witch to become human, but if she doesn't receive True Love's Kiss from the prince in three days, she will become the witch's slave. This was the last movie in the canon to use the xerox process introduced by 101 Dalmatians.
- The Rescuers Down Under (November 16, 1990) — Disney's first direct animated sequel, the two mice from The Rescuers head down under to the Australian Outback to rescue a young boy from a sinister poacher who is looking for a giant eagle. The first completely digital film ever produced, although this movie underperformed in comparison to the other films of this era.
- Beauty and the Beast (November 22, 1991) — The most beautiful love story ever told gets adapted into this incredible animated musical, where a beautiful and intelligent French woman finds her inventor father trapped in a hidden palace by a hulking monster, who is really a cursed human prince. Offering herself as a prisoner in her father's place, the woman and the monster see that True Beauty Is on the Inside and fall in love with each other. So far, this is the only movie of the canon, and the only traditionally animated film ever, to be nominated for the Academy Award for Best Picture.
- Aladdin (November 25, 1992) — Based on the Arabian Nights tale, a Street Urchin falls in love with a Rebellious Princess. Thanks to the evil Grand Vizier Jafar using him, the urchin gets a sentient Magic Carpet and a magic lamp with a Robin Williams-voiced genie who grants him three wishes that the urchin hopes to use to win the princess over. The first animated film to gross $200 million.
- The Lion King (June 24, 1994) — Hamlet in Africa. A lion cub who is the heir to the African savannah is tricked by his jealous uncle into believing that he killed his father. The cub leaves in shame, but after he grows up, he learns of his uncle's tyranny and decides to face him in order to reclaim his rightful place as king. The most successful traditionally animated film of all time, the third-highest-grossing movie worldwide, and the highest-grossing domestically in the canon.
- Pocahontas (June 23, 1995) — An adaptation of the supposedly true story about a Native American girl from what is today Virginia who supposedly saved the life of an Englishman (after supposedly falling in love with each other) and prevented her tribe and the English settlers from starting a war. Supposedly. The only film in this era to be given a "Rotten" rating by Rotten Tomatoes, with a Tomatometer score of 56%.
- The Hunchback of Notre Dame (June 21, 1996) — Victor Hugo's famous novel gets animated here. In medieval Paris, a sinister judge kills a Romani woman and is forced to raise her deformed child as his own. The child (who has grown to become the bell ringer of Notre Dame cathedral) longs for freedom, and during a festival, he becomes friends with a Romani dancer, who the judge develops a disturbing lust for, and the hunchback and the dancer must team up with a knight to save Paris from the judge's wrath.
- Hercules (June 27, 1997) — A Lighter and Softer take on the Greek god Heracles/Hercules, the ruler of the underworld tries to turn the king of the Gods' incredibly strong son mortal and kill him but fails to do the latter. The son of Gods learns of his heritage when he grows up, and he must prove himself to be A True Hero in order return to the Gods' home.
- Mulan (June 19, 1998) — Inspired by the Ancient Chinese legend of Hua Mulan, the daughter of an aging war veteran disguises herself as a man to take his place in an impending war, but would soon find herself to be the savior of China. Was also the last musical in the canon for several years.
- Tarzan (June 18, 1999) — The first time Edgar Rice Burroughs's jungle hero appears in feature-length animationnote , a young boy's parents get killed by a leopard in Darkest Africa and he is raised by gorillas. When he grows up, he finds himself meeting strangers like himself when a British expedition team arrives. Phil Collins provided the soundtrack (for which he won the Academy Award for Best Song), and features BRIAN BLESSED as an Egomaniac Hunter who faces off against the jungle hero (he also provides the hero's famous yell).
All good things must come to an end as audiences tire of Disney's animated musicals by The Millennium Age of Animation, and Disney finds some new stiff competition ahead. As All-CGI Cartoon films started to become the norm (thanks to said competition and an increasingly-celebrated studio Disney initially partnered up with and would later buy outright), Disney tried to get more creative with their storytelling, both by writing stories from scratch as opposed to adapting previously-existing works and shifting to CGI as traditionally animated films begin to lose relevance. Unfortunately, with little major critical and commercial success and a few major flops in the first half of the decade — which even led to some calling this period Disney's Second Dark Age — film animation at Disney was almost killed off... until Walt's nephew and Roy Oliver Disney's son Roy Edward Disney managed to get CEO Michael Eisner ousted and former ABC head Bob Iger brought in to lead the company.
- Fantasia 2000 (December 16, 1999, in limited release/January 1, 2000, in wide release)* — The follow-up to Fantasia, this return to the Animated Anthology format features seven new segments set to classical music, along with the return of Mickey's famous broom-enchanting moment from the original. It's also the first animated film initially released in IMAX theaters.
- Dinosaur (May 19, 2000) — A live-action-CGI hybrid about an Iguanodon who was found and adopted by lemurs. Their island home gets destroyed by meteors and they join a herd of other displaced animals to make their way to literally greener pastures. It's not considered part of the Canon in Europe, where The Wild (2006) takes its place.
- The Emperor's New Groove (December 15, 2000) — A spoiled Incan emperor gets turned into a llama by his elderly-beyond-belief advisor and gets dumped in the jungle. He and a hefty, but kind peasant must make their way through the South American jungle in the most humorous ways possible so the emperor can become human, reclaim his throne, and hopefully gain some humility along the way. This movie's Troubled Production was well documented.
- Atlantis: The Lost Empire (June 15, 2001) — A young linguist goes on a journey with a Ragtag Bunch of Misfits to find the lost civilization of Atlantis. As he helps the dying and underdeveloped society rediscover their written language, he finds that his compatriots in the expedition team have other plans.
- Lilo & Stitch (June 21, 2002) — Chris Sanders and Dean DeBlois tell an original tale about an eccentric orphaned Hawaiian girl who adopts a mischievous artificial alien criminal (that Sanders voices) mistaking him to be a "dog". The alien uses her for protection at first, but then he learns to care about her thanks to her beliefs in ʻohana, the Hawaiian concept of extended family. The first entry to be nominated for Best Animated Feature, and the Experimental Era's biggest combined critical and commercial success.
- Treasure Planet (November 27, 2002) — An adaption of Treasure Island that reimagines the story IN SPACE! and Jim Hawkins as a troubled but good-hearted teen with a Disappeared Dad. It was a personal pet project for Renaissance-era directors John Musker and Ron Clements, who spent 16 years trying to get it made. While a box office failure, it manages to maintain a devoted cult following.
- Brother Bear (November 1, 2003) — An Inuit man kills a bear to avenge the death of his eldest brother. Displeased spirits, including that of his brother's, transform him into a bear as The Punishment. As he heads towards a certain mountain so he can change back into a human, he encounters and later bonds with a young orphaned cub along the way, gaining a new perspective on life. Like with Tarzan, Phil Collins provided the soundtrack.
- Home on the Range (April 2, 2004) — Three cows save their tiny farm from being bought out by a yodeling cowboy with a bounty on his head. It was the last traditionally-animated film until 2009, and also one of at least six bombs in 2004 that derailed CEO Michael Eisner's Disney career.
- Chicken Little (November 4, 2005) — The story of a chicken who mistakenly claimed once that the sky was falling goes Off the Rails when (among other things) he later finds the sky to be actually falling, except that it turns out to be the start of an alien invasion. Disney's first true CGI movie done without Pixar's involvement and the last movie with a variation of the original Walt Disney Pictures logo.
- Meet the Robinsons (March 30, 2007) — Loosely based on a William Joyce picture book, a young orphan inventor heads thirty years into the future where he meets a Quirky Household. Meanwhile, a crazed Manchild and his robotic bowler hat chase him down in hopes of taking credit for his inventions. The last entry to be distributed by Buena Vista, and the first to include a Vanity Plate for Walt Disney Animation Studios alongside the opening and closing Disney logos.
- Bolt (November 21, 2008) — A dog who is a superhero on television — and believes he is one in reality — ends up separated by his owner in the world outside the stage where he doesn't have powers. He travels cross-country with an alley cat and a super-fan hamster in hopes of reuniting with them. The first entry distributed by Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures after Buena Vista was reorganized into that label. It has been debated whether this film is either the end of the Experimental Era or the beginning of the Disney Revival, but this 2016 issue of Disney twenty-three (the magazine of Disney's official fan club D23) deems it to be the latter case, so it goes here.
- The Princess and the Frog (December 11, 2009) — Inspired by E. D. Baker's The Frog Princess (itself inspired by "The Frog Prince"), a hard-working woman in 1920s New Orleans hopes to buy her own restaurant, but she then meets a jazz-loving prince turned into a frog by a shadow man. She gets affected by the curse as well, and the two Bewitched Amphibians journey through the Louisiana bayou in hopes of lifting their spell. This was the first traditionally-animated film after 2004 and is usually considered the beginning of the Disney Revival. This is also the final film released during the life of Walt's nephew Roy E. Disney, who served in various positions for the company over the years, finally becoming a Director Emeritus from 2005-2009.
- Tangled (November 24, 2010) — The tale of Rapunzel gets the long-awaited Disney treatment, albeit with a more modern twist that would come to characterize the forthcoming Revival-Era movies. A girl with incredibly long hair stuck in a tower meets a (supposedly) Loveable Rogue who brings her to the outside world, where she learns that she's the long-missing princess of a kingdom. Disney released a rather nifty video to celebrate its milestone as the fifty mark.
- Winnie the Pooh (July 15, 2011) — Pooh Bear and his friends misunderstand a letter sent by their good friend Christopher Robin and go out to save him from a monster. Disney's last traditionally-animated film to date, the canon's shortest single-story film at 63 minutes, and not part of the canon in the United Kingdom, of all places.
- Wreck-It Ralph (November 2, 2012) — A video game Punch-Clock Villain tires of his lot in life and goes across various other games in his arcade to become a good guy. A nice aversion to Video Game Movies Suck notable for having guest appearances by characters from various video game companies (such as Pac-Man and Sonic the Hedgehog).
- Frozen (November 27, 2013) — A tale Inspired by… Hans Christian Andersen's The Snow Queen where a young queen with uncontrollable ice powers runs off when her powers are revealed to her people, unintentionally starting an Endless Winter on her kingdom. Her younger sister goes out to find her in hopes of thawing the kingdom and reuniting with her. The first canon film to win an Academy Award for Best Animated Feature and was the most financially successful animated film of all time until 2019, becoming the first film in the canon to gross a billion dollars worldwide.
- Big Hero 6 (November 7, 2014) — Based on Man of Action's Marvel Comics series, a young prodigy boy who lives In a World… 20 Minutes into the Future where East and West culture is blended together loses his older brother to a fire. When a city is under the threat of a mysterious mask-wearing criminal, the prodigy forms a Super Team consisting of himself, a medical robot his brother was working on, and the late older brother's four best friends to save their city. The second canon film to have won the Academy Award for Best Animated Feature.
- Zootopia (March 4, 2016) — In a World of Funny Animals, a rabbit moves to the big city to become a police officer. When her over-ambitions almost get her fired, she and a con artist fox solve a missing persons case that unveils a conspiracy, one that also shows just how much Fantastic Racism there is among the city's citizens, including the bunny cop herself. The third canon film to win the Academy Award for Best Animated Feature, the third-highest grossing film in the canon thus far, and the second (and so far, only non-Frozen-related DAC film) to gross a billion dollars worldwide.
- Moana (November 23, 2016) — A Polynesian chief's daughter ventures out into the great ocean to save her island from an impending darkness that threatens her tribe's livelihood, getting the help of a demigod of Pacific Mythology in order to do so. The last film to be released while Lasseter was CCO of Walt Disney Animation Studios.
- Ralph Breaks the Internet (November 21, 2018) — Vanellope's game is in jeopardy after her arcade cabinet breaks, so she and Ralph must explore the vast world of the Internet in hopes of finding the part needed to repair it. The first sequel within the animated canon since Winnie the Pooh, and the longest single-story film at 112 minutes. Released after the end of Lasseter's tenure as CCO and less than two months before fully leaving The Walt Disney Company, while this is Frozen director Jennifer Lee's first film released as CCO of WDAS.
- Frozen IInote (November 22, 2019) — Anna, Elsa, Kristoff, Olaf, and Sven leave Arendelle to travel to an ancient, autumn-bound forest of an enchanted land, where they set out to find the origin of Elsa's powers in order to save their kingdom. Lasseter's final film for The Walt Disney Company, as he was an executive producer prior to his departure; he is uncredited in the final cut. The third film of the canon to gross over a billion dollars worldwide, and the most successful film (both sequel and overall) in the canon so far, and the second-highest-grossing animated film of all time.note
- Raya and the Last Dragon (March 5, 2021) — Devastated by rampaging monsters and without the guiding influence of the dragons of old, the ancient land of Kumandra has become a dystopian wasteland broken into several factions. The princess Raya of the Heart tribe, who blames herself for the devastation, searches for Sisu, the last dragon, to help restore their world. The first film of the series to be simultaneously released in theaters and on home platforms, having been made available as a Premier Access title on Disney+ due to low theater attendance during the COVID-19 Pandemic. Due to the aforementioned pandemic, much of the film was made in a work-from-home environment.
- Encanto (November 24, 2021) — In the mountains of Colombia, a family known as the Madrigals live in a house that grants them magical powers. When the Madrigals' magic suddenly begins to fade, it's up to Mirabel, the only member of the family that doesn't have powers, to save both her house and her family. Similar to Tangled, Disney released a short video celebrating its milestone as Disney's 60th animated feature. The fourth film in the canon to win the Academy Award for Best Animated Feature.
- Strange World (November 23, 2022) — Searcher Clade, the son of renowned explorer Jaeger Clade, lives peacefully in the land of Avalonia after discovering a revolutionary power source called Pando. However, after the Pando's power begins to wane, Searcher and his family are recruited to explore a mysterious subterranean world in order to save their home.
- Wish — Disney's 100th anniversary film.
??. Zootopia 2 (TBA)
Shared with non-Disney adaptations
- Snow White (established in 1937) — This page covers all adaptations of the fairy tale, but only two of them are actually Disney-related.
- Pinocchio (est. 1940) — This page covers all works relating to the living puppet, but only two of them are actually Disney-related.
- Cinderella (est. 1950) — Includes the Disney animated film, both of its direct-to-video sequels, its live-action remake, along with numerous non-Disney adaptations.
- Alice in Wonderland (est. 1951) — Includes the Disney animated and live-action films, along with numerous non-Disney adaptations.
- Peter Pan (est. 1953) — Includes the Disney film and its related spin-offs, along with numerous non-Disney adaptations.
- Sleeping Beauty (est. 1959) — Includes the Disney animated feature, a short film, and two live-action spin-offs.
- Winnie the Pooh (est. 1966)note — Disney's franchise is actually only licensed to the company by A. A. Milne's estate (Disney still has to credit his estate whenever they use the characters), making this a very rare exception among Disney's cash cows. Still, the section for their franchise is much larger than the section for all the other non-Disney works.
- The Jungle Book (est. 1967) — Includes the Disney animated film and all of its related works, along with numerous non-Disney adaptations.
- Beauty and the Beast (est. 1991) — Includes the Disney animated film, both of its direct-to-video follow-ups, its live-action remake, along with numerous non-Disney adaptations.
- The Hunchback of Notre Dame (est. 1996) — Includes the Disney film, its direct-to-video sequel, its theatre adaptation, and a five-game computer game, along with numerous non-Disney adaptations.
- Mulan (est. 1998) — Includes the Disney animated film, its interactive storybook, its direct-to-video sequel, its live-action remake, and also some non-Disney adaptations.
- Tarzan (est. 1999) — Tarzan's trademarks are still held by Edgar Rice Burroughs's estate, and this page covers all works relating to the titular jungle hero. Only two works in the licensed-to-Disney franchise have TV Tropes pages.
Fully established by DisneyThis includes franchises based on films adapted from or inspired by classic stories but doesn't actually index the originals and any possible non-Disney adaptions (instead using floatboxes to list those), and franchises that are fully original to Disney.
- Lady and the Tramp (est. 1955) — Includes the original Disney film, direct-to-video sequel, live-action remake, and a comic strip. The original short story it's based on is also listed, but it doesn't have a page, so it stays here for now.
- 101 Dalmatians (est. 1961) — To be honest, this didn't really become a franchise until The '90s (see the live-action remakes page for why).
- The Little Mermaid (est. 1989) — As the film that begun the Disney Renaissance, it naturally turned into a big franchise.
- Aladdin (est. 1992) — As the film made more $200 million at the domestic box office, it too would naturally lead to a big franchise, and a rather highly-rated one at that.
- The Lion King (est. 1994) — Also naturally, the most successful traditionally-animated film of all time would lead to a popular franchise, which includes the most successful Broadway musical of all time.
- Hercules (est. 1997) — Despite the 1997 film underperforming compared to much of the other Disney Renaissance films, it did get enough tie-ins and crossover representation to get a franchise page here.
- Disney Princess (est. 2000) — A Spin-Off focusing on the royal ladies of Disney animation (and in one particular instance, Pixar).
- The Emperor's New Groove (est. 2000) — The film was just successful enough for Disney to make a direct-to-video sequel and a TV series, albeit both a few years after the original film's release.
- Kingdom Hearts (est. 2002) — An eclectic Action RPG series spun off of the buttocks-bitingly popular Final Fantasy Eastern RPG series in which a heroic young boy, joined by Donald and Goofy, adventures through the worlds of various Disney films, eventually getting embroiled in a highly complex plot involving light, darkness, and the Anatomy of the Soul. And yes, this is all official.
- Lilo & Stitchnote (est. 2002) — Disney animation's one great success in the Experimental Era (what a coincidence with that era's name!) led to the rapid development of this franchise, which has continued to stay active through some various spin-offs and the continued popularity of the latter title character.
- Disney Fairies (est. 2005) — A Spin-Off of Disney's Peter Pan that focuses on Tinker Bell. It was primarily handled by Disneytoon Studios, who used to do Direct to Video sequels to DAC films until John Lasseter forbade them. Since Disneytoon's 2018 closure and the announcement of Lasseter's departure that same year, however, the fate of this franchise is currently uncertain.
- Tangled (est. 2010) — Being the first truly big film of the Disney Revival, Disney let down this franchise's hair not long after.
- Frozen (est. 2013) — After Frozen proved to be a Sleeper Hit, particularly in terms of toys, it quickly grew into multiple media.
- The Wizard of Oz (the studio did some conceptual art for it shortly after Snow White but it was canceled in pre-production after MGM released their own version, which was greenlit after Snow White's success. Incidentally, Disney would much later release an "unofficial" sequel and prequel to the MGM version.)
- Chanticleer (eventually retooled into Robin Hood (1973); some elements of the story migrated into Don Bluth's Rock-A-Doodle)
- The Gremlins (Based on Roald Dahl's book. Questions of whether plane sabotaging creatures could be made sympathetic and development running late into the war leading to cancellation due to possibly becoming dated. Some Gremlins would later appear in the 2010 video game Epic Mickey.)
- Don Quixote (just like another attempt to adapt that story into a movie has been canceled.)
- Fraidy Cat (a homage to the work of Alfred Hitchcock focused around house pets, was supposed to be Ron Clement's and John Musker's next film after Treasure Planet)
- Wild Life (a Pygmalion-type story about a nightclub recruiting a singing zoo elephant to hype into the next big thing to discredit a critic, canceled due to concerns about more mature content)
- My Peoples, later retitled A Few Good Ghosts (Loose Appalachian-set adaptation of The Canterville Ghost, canceled due to the closure of the Florida studio, which was the only one making the movie; the film would have used a combination of traditionally-animated and computer-animated characters)
- Fantasia 2006 (due to shifting management; several shorts were completed and released separately)
- Mort (Negotiations with Terry Pratchett broke down almost immediately - apparently it was the only time one Disney lawyer remembered getting screamed at)
- The Search For Mickey Mouse (Was going to be Disney's second crossover of all their characters after House of Mouse, centering around Mickey getting kidnapped and Minnie recruiting a group to find him. It was also going to be their 50th animated film until new management restructured everything.)
- Sequels were planned for films such as The Jungle Book (1967)note and Bambinote during earlier phases, though didn't get past early production stages (allegedly due to Walt not being a fan of sequels). Actual follow-ups were made much later on, though are not made part of Disney canon. A Tangled sequel was also considered at one point. To date, the only Disney animated films that have received theatrically-released sequels are The Many Adventures of Winnie-the-Pooh, The Rescuers, Wreck-It Ralph, and Frozen (Peter Pan and The Jungle Book also received theatrically-released sequels, but these were made by Disneytoon Studios, and thus are not considered part of the canon).
- In their line of Direct to Video sequels, Disney had plans to make Dumbo 2, Treasure Planet 2, The Jungle Book 3, The Aristocats 2, Chicken Little 2: Mission to Marsnote , and Meet the Robinsons 2. Dumbo 2 was in on-and-off development for a while (even though it was promoted on the 2001 DVD of Dumbo) before being canceled altogether, while The Jungle Book 3 was canceled after the under-performance of The Jungle Book 2. The remaining three projects were canceled under the order of John Lasseter after Walt Disney Animation Studios was given control over Disneytoon Studios (the division making the sequels) in 2007. Direct-to-video sequels ceased after the release of The Little Mermaid III: Ariel's Beginning in 2008.
- Kingdom of the Sun, an Inca-era prince and the pauper type Animated Musical, which was later retooled into The Emperor's New Groove, and the subject of the documentary The Sweatbox.
- King of the Elves, based on the book by Phillip K. Dick. Chris Williams was to direct this film. Was announced in 2008 and was scheduled for a 2012 release, then got pushed to 2013, and then finally ended up getting shelved.
- Gigantic, a film that would have adapted Jack and the Beanstalk and have it set during the Age of Discovery in Spain. It was delayed by two years, from 2018 to 2020, before being permanently shelved. Despite this, it was referenced in Zootopia before its cancellation.