Beauty and the Beast is a 1991 American animated film and the 30th animated feature produced by Walt Disney Feature Animation. The film was originally released in theaters on November 13, 1991 by Walt Disney Pictures. This film, one of the best known of the Disney studio's films, is an adaptation of the well-known fairy tale named "Beauty and the Beast" about a beautiful woman kept in a castle by a horrific monster. It is the first and only animated film to be nominated for the Academy Award for Best Picture. Heightening the level of performance in the era known as the Disney Renaissance (1989-1999, beginning with The Little Mermaid and ending with Tarzan), all animated films following its release have been influenced by its innovative use of 3-D technology.
Beauty and the Beast ranked #22 on the American Film Institute's list of best musicals and #34 on its list of best American romance movies. On the list of the greatest songs from American movies, Beauty and the Beast ranked #62. In 2002, the film was added to the United States National Film Registry as "culturally, historically, or aesthetically significant," joining Steamboat Willie, Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, Pinocchio, Fantasia, and Toy Story as the only Disney films on the registry.
Beauty and the Beast is historically significant from an animation perspective for a number of reasons. First off, it helped change public opinion of animation, reinforcing the idea that animation could be enjoyed by both adults and children. Who Framed Roger Rabbit? (1988), a feature film that combines animation with live-action, is considered the first film to regenerate animation as a medium. Prior to its appearance in theaters, animation was thought of as merely entertainment for kids. However, new animation such as Disney feature films and The Simpsons repopularized the medium. Disney helped bring about this change in Beauty and the Beast by improving the quality of the animation and by creating a plot that would appeal to children and adults alike.
Beauty and the Beast is praised as one of the best-decorated films. Its digitally acclaimed backgrounds, especially in the scene where Belle and the Beast dance, are exquisitely designed. The lighting and detail of the curtains and floor are included to attract and impress the viewer. For the three minute dance is perhaps one of the best CGI segments ever created. Jim Hillen, the CGI Artist of the film, said that "What this means is that the background is literally moving and the animators had to animate to it" .
Voice: Paige O'Hara
Supervising Animator: James Baxter
Florida Supervising Animator: Mark Henn
Voice: Robby Benson
Supervising Animator: Glen Keane
Anthony de Rosa (as Anthony DeRosa)
Voice: Richard White
Supervising Animator: Andreas Deja
Dave Burgess (as David Burgess)
Alex Kupershmidt (as Alexander S. Kupershmidt)
Voice: Jerry Orbach
Supervising Animator: Nik Ranieri