Is Hand-Drawn Animation Finally Returning to Walt Disney Animation?

As a part of the Disney 100 Years of Wonder celebration, Walt Disney Animation Studios brought back a familiar face after a whopping 95 years.

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Oswald the Lucky Rabbit’s comeback is made even more exciting by the fact that the animated short is entirely hand-drawn. Walt Disney Animation Studios hasn’t released a full-length animated film utilizing hand-drawn animation since the days of Winnie the Pooh (2011) and The Princess and the Frog (2009).

Despite the popularity that accompanied the shift from 2D to 3D animation, many Disney fans have never stopped mourning the death of hand-drawn animation.

Tiana's Palace

Credit: Disney

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Although 3D animation can bring Disney stories to life in a unique way, the nostalgia and the charm that comes with hand-drawn animation will never be replaced.

Fans of traditional 2D animation will be pleased to hear that there have been rumors surrounding a comeback for hand-drawn animation over at Walt Disney Studios. Particularly surrounding the French folk tale Bluebeard.

While the speculation surrounding a hand-drawn Bluebeard film is just hearsay, there is truth in this statement: in 2021, Walt Disney Animation Studios launched a 2D animation training program.

Lion King Mufasa

Credit: Disney

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The program lasts an entire year and covers everything from animating characters to the cleanup process. It’s headed by legendary animators such as Eric Goldberg, who supervised the animation of Genie in Aladdin (1992), Mark Henn, who supervised the animation of Young Simba in The Lion King (1994), and Tiana in The Princess and the Frog, and many more animators.


Credit: Disney

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According to a report by MovieWeb, Eric Goldberg has even implied that he believes hand-drawn animation will play a more significant role at Walt Disney Animation Studios in time.

While we’re simply speculating here, it’s certainly exciting to imagine what may come in the future!

About Isabella Reimer

Isabella Reimer grew up visiting Walt Disney World and relocated to Central Florida to be even closer to The Most Magical Place on Earth. She earned her Bachelor’s from Florida State University, where she studied Creative Writing and Women’s Studies. Her biggest hobby is bonding with the ikran at Avatar Flight of Passage, and her retirement plan includes becoming the 1,000 Happy Haunt of the Haunted Mansion.