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«The Little Mermaid» (1989)

Animated film «The Little Mermaid» (1989)

Animated film «The Little Mermaid» (1989)

Genre: fantasy, musical,

Directed by: Ron Clements, John Musker

Produced by: Howard Ashman, John Musker, Maureen Donley

Written by: Hans Christian Andersen (fairy tale), Roger Allers (story), Howard Ashman (musical), Ron Clements, John Musker

Music by: Alan Menken (music), Howard Ashman (lyrics)

Studio: Walt Disney Animation Studios

Prequels: The Little Mermaid: Ariel's Beginning (2008), The Little Mermaid (TV series) (1992-1993)

Sequel: The Little Mermaid II: Return to the Sea (2000)

Release Date: November 14, 1989

Running time: 83 minutes

Budget: $40 million

Gross Revenue: $211,343,479

«The Little Mermaid» is the 28th animated feature in the List of Disney theatrical animated features. The film is based upon the Hans Christian Andersen fairy tale "The Little Mermaid."

A musical stage adaptation of the film with some differences opened on Broadway in 2007 or more early 2008, and closed on August 30, 2009. The musical had a try-out in Denver in September, then in November moved to Broadway. The musical officially opened on January 10, 2008. The musical will have had 685 performances and 50 previews.

Plot

The mysterious depths of the sea keep a lot of secrets and the inhabitants of the ocean can tell a lot of amazing stories. And the most incredible of them has always been the story about the little mermaid Ariel, the daughter of a powerful king of the underwater world. One day she falls in love with a beautiful and courageous prince. But can a human and a mermaid be together? However, the true feelings overcome any obstacles. For her love Ariel is ready to do everything. Even to leave home forever and become an earth girl...

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Background Information

  1. Glen Keane, the supervising animator for Ariel, jokingly stated on the 100 Greatest Cartoons DVD that Ariel looks exactly like his wife "without the fins." The character's body shape and personality were based upon that of Alyssa Milano, then starring on TV's Who's the Boss? and the effect of her hair underwater was based on footage of Sally Ride, when she was in space.
  2. Over a million bubbles were drawn for this film, in addition to the use of other processes such as airbrushing, backlighting, superimposition, and some flat-shaded computer animation.
  3. Early concept ideas for the movie featured Ursula as King Triton’s evil sister. So Ursula is actually Ariel's aunt.
  4. Ariel is the 4th Disney Princess and the only to not be born a human. And she was the first character who was drawn almost naked when she got out of water.
  5. In Ursula's spell to turn Ariel human, various references to the throat and voice are made, as well as references to fish.
  6. Ariel is one of seven sisters: Her sisters names are: Aquata, Andrina, Arista, Attina, Adella, and Alana. And Ariel is the one of all sisters that hasn’t any jewelry in her hair.
  7. When Scuttle is providing "vocal romantic stimulation" while Eric and Ariel are out at the lagoon, he is actually squawking his own version of Tchaikovsky's "Romeo and Juliet".
  8. Jodi Benson sang 'Part of Your World' in the dark to get that 'under the sea' feeling.
  9. A number of backgrounds used during the "Kiss the Girl" number were recycled from Disney's earlier film The Rescuers.
  10. The Little Mermaid ranks as #51 of the 100 Greatest Cartoons as voted in Great Britain.
  11. Near the start of the film when King Triton is seen riding a dolphin-pulled chariot over an audience of mermaids and mermen, Mickey Mouse, Donald Duck, and Goofy can be seen in the audience. Also, one of the audience members in this scene resembles Kermit the Frog.
  12. In the contract Ursula has Ariel sign, there is a crude drawing of Mickey Mouse's head amongst a jumble of letters.
  13. During Scuttle's disruption of the wedding between Eric and Vanessa, The Grand Duke and King from Cinderella can be seen standing together in the background.
  14. In the scene after Ursula is destroyed, Ariel's pose as she looks longingly at Eric bears resemblance to the famous statue of Andersen's little Mermaid in Copenhagen (sculpted by Edward Eriksen).
  15. According to the DVD commentary, the shark that chases Ariel and Flounder at the beginning is named Glut, and he was planned to return for a rematch with Flounder later on.
  16. When Flounder talks about Scuttle, after the failed concert, for a second his face becomes like Scuttle’s.
  17. The color that Disney Imagineers created for Ariel's tail was, in fact, created just for the movie and was aptly called "Ariel".
  18. Originally, Sebastian had to speak with a British accent, but the film producer Howard Ashman suggested to make him from the island Jamaica.
  19. On the main menu (disc 1) of Finding Nemo, one of the things Dory says is: "I'm so excited! I've always wanted to see The Little Mermaid!"
  20. The original design for Ariel was showing her being completely covered in seaweed.
  21. This was the last Disney animated feature to be painted by hand. At least 1,000 different colors were used on 1,100 backgrounds. Over one million drawings were done in total.
  22. The two minute storm took 10 special effects artists over a year to finish.
  23. The Tiny Toon Adventure script writer Sheri Stoner was used as the model for Ariel.
  24. Sebastian's full name is Horatio Felonious Ignacious Crustaceous Sebastian.
  25. In “The Little Mermaid,” during “Part of your World,” Ariel looks at a painting when she says “What’s a fire and why does it, what’s the word, burn?” The painting either is or bears a strong resembalence to "Magdalene with The Smoking Flame" by 17th century artist Georges de La Tour
  26. The city, where Ariel and Eric are walking, has the same architecture as the city in “Beauty and the Beast”.
  27. Cartoon set an absolute record for "platinum" editions sales.
  28. The song "Unfortunate souls" took 5th place in the "Top of 11 villain songs".
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Errors 

  1. When King Triton arrives at the concert a chandelier lits. Moments later Triton lights it again.
  2. The fork, which Ariel had found on the wreck ship, changes the number of teeth.
  3. Ariel’s bag that is hanging on her arm sometimes disappears and then appears again.
  4. In the scene where Skuttle talks about smoking pipe, the shell covering Ariel’s right breast, gets the fifth segment. The artist mistakenly painted Ariel’s chest.
  5. After Ariel sings "Part of Your World" in her grotto, Sebastian falls from one of the shelves and is covered in all sorts of trinkets from Ariel's "Collection." He then scolds Ariel and rambles on about the Human World and what her father would do if he found out that she had this "collection." While Sebastian is talking, the camera angle switches from behind Sebastian's back, to in front of him, then behind, then in front, and so on. When the camera is in front of Sebastian, he clearly has a thimble on his foot. But when it shows his backside, the thimble is gone. On the 2006 DVD commentary, the artists clearly state that they were aware of this and many other mistakes throughout the movie, but they couldn't alter the scenes due to their low budget.
  6. After the dog licks Ariel's cheek, she turns around and wipes off the wrong cheek.
  7. When you watch the part where King Triton zaps all of the statue, the face is broken into pieces. But after the whole incident when Fletsom & Jetsom come back to convince her to go to Ursula, they kick the piece of Eric’s WHOLE face to Ariel.
  8. Ariel's clothes that she had found on the beach always changes it’s form (at first it gets a pocket, than it becomes a shirt).
  9. During lunch Ariel’s nails are dyed, but in some parts they are not.
  10. In the scene where Ariel is going to sleep during her first day as a human, she sits on the bed and then lies down; after Sebastian extinguishes the candle in the room, Ariel is under the sheets, when a few moments later, she falls asleep without covering herself.
  11. When Grimsby first meets Vanessa, her hair is brown. But when Vanessa is in her room getting ready, her hair is black. Then, at the wedding scene, her hair is brown yet again, though this may be due the fact in the room she is not near the sun, and in the former said she is in the sun both times.
  12. When Scuttle breaks Ursula's necklace near Ariel's feet and releases Ariel's voice, Ariel is barefoot, but the next time Ariel is shown, full body, she is wearing shoes.
  13. King Triton's crown gets several extra spikes when it slipped from his head.
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Awards

Academy Awards

  • Two Wins

Best Original Score

Best Original Song - "Under the Sea"

  • One Nomination

Best Original Song - "Kiss the Girl"

 

Golden Globe Award

  • Two Wins

Best Original Score - Motion Picture

Best Original Song - Motion Picture - "Under the Sea"

  • Two Nominations

Best Motion Picture - Comedy/Musical

Best Original Song - Motion Picture

Grammy Award

  • One Win

Best Song Written Specifically for a Motion Picture or for Television - "Under the Sea"

  • Two Nominations

Best Instrumental Composition Written for a Motion Picture or for Television

Best Song Written Specifically for a Motion Picture or for Television

Other Awards

  • BMI Film & TV Awards

One Win: BMI Film Music Award

  • Los Angeles Film Critics Association

One Win: Best Animation

  • Golden Screen Awards

One Win: Golden Screen Award

  • Golden Reel Awards

One Win: Best Sound Editing - Animated Feature

  • Young Artist Award

One Win: Best Family Motion Picture - Adventure or Cartoon

"The Little Mermaid" Trailer