Recycled Dreams: Cancelled Projects Could Resurrect Disney Animation

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Fraidy Cat, Gigantic, and Mort

Credit: Edited by Inside the Magic

Walt Disney Animation Studio is responsible for a legion of iconic animated feature films, but not every script is a masterpiece. That doesn’t mean there aren’t second chances.

Searcher Clade (Jake Gyllenhaal) with dog Legend. Credit: Disney
Credit: Disney

Recent projects from Disney Animation, like Strange World (2022) and even the much-anticipated Wish (2023), have been met with heavy criticism. However, as fans and critics are divided on the subject, it might be time for the prolific studio to revisit some projects from the cutting room floor.

Related: Cancelled Disney Film Regains Interest

With the canceled film Fraidy Cat. Surfacing on Collider, interest is building in Disney’s canceled projects. While not perfect, the unreleased comedic thriller had some interesting elements, and it’s not the only Disney project to fit that description.

A Second Chance for Disney Animation

Nervous Mickey Mouse holding his hands over his mouth.
Credit: Disney

It’s been a rough season for the Walt Disney Company, and it might be time for the studio to slow down and take a breather to reconfigure its direction. Disney has tried to keep up with the wants and desires of a modern audience instead of playing to its usual strengths, and the results have been mixed at best and disastrous at worst.

Related: Disney Animation Enters Oscar Race After Multiple Flops

That said, it might be a sign for the studio to look at some discarded ideas for a second look. With the audience’s appetites and interests looking for more original stories from studios like Disney, Dreamworks, and so on, it might be time to figure out what didn’t work before.

The TMNT ready to fight in the 'Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Mutant Mayhem' trailer
Credit: Nickelodeon Movies / Paramount Pictures

According to Rotten Tomatoes, Trolls: Band Together (2023), Leo (2023), and Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Mutant Mayhem (2023) are just some of the highest animated features available. Notice how there’s not a Disney feature in that list?

Related: Mickey Mouse To Celebrate His Final Birthday

Although Trolls: Band Together and Mutant Mayhem are both part of existing franchises, they bring something different to the table in terms of visuals, storytelling, or even just comedic elements. Although it’s always exciting whenever Disney does something new, they still need to recognize what works.

Logo for Walt Disney Animation
Credit: Walt Disney Animation Studios

Disney built its animated empire on the foundation of storytelling, resulting in some of the most successful animated features. The studio even brought lesser-known stories like The Snow Queen and the story of Hua Mulan were brought center stage thanks to their Disney adaptation.

Related: Disney Displays New Immersive Experiences

Disney has several original ideas that are likely still floating around the Walt Disney Archives. Adaptations of Terry Pratchett’s MortPhilip K. Dick’s King of the Elvesand even an alternative Jack and the Beanstalk in the form of Gigantic could still have merit if given a second chance and the right direction.

Should Disney revisit some scrapped ideas? Tell Inside the Magic what you think in the comments below!

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