Maia Kam

Maia Kam

Modified & Updated: 25 Jan 2024


Released in 1941, Dumbo is a classic Disney animated film that has captured the hearts of audiences for generations. This heartwarming tale follows the journey of a lovable baby elephant named Dumbo, who is born with unusually large ears. Despite his physical differences, Dumbo discovers that his oversized ears give him the ability to fly, making him a sensation in the circus. With its timeless story of friendship, self-acceptance, and triumph over adversity, Dumbo has become a beloved movie that continues to resonate with viewers of all ages. In this article, we will delve into 34 fascinating facts about the making of this beloved film, revealing behind-the-scenes details that even the most dedicated Dumbo fans may not be aware of.

Table of Contents

Dumbo was released in 1941.

Dumbo, a beloved Disney classic, hit the big screen in 1941, captivating audiences of all ages.

It was the fourth feature film released by Walt Disney Animation Studios.

Dumbo followed the success of Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, Pinocchio, and Fantasia, solidifying Disney’s reputation as a powerhouse in the animation industry.

The movie was inspired by a children’s book.

The story of Dumbo was adapted from a book written by Helen Aberson and Harold Pearl, which was published in 1939.

Dumbo has a running time of approximately 64 minutes.

Despite its shorter length compared to other Disney films, Dumbo managed to tell a heartwarming and memorable story.

The character of Dumbo is an elephant.

Dumbo, the main protagonist, is a small and adorable circus elephant with oversized ears.

Dumbo’s original name was Jumbo Jr.

Initially, the filmmakers intended to name the character Jumbo Jr. due to his mother, Mrs. Jumbo, being named after the famous elephant Jumbo. However, he became commonly known as Dumbo throughout the movie.

The iconic song “Baby Mine” was featured in the movie.

The emotional ballad “Baby Mine” became a standout musical moment in Dumbo, resonating with audiences and tugging at their heartstrings.

Dumbo was the first Disney movie to be released on home video.

In 1981, Dumbo was the first animated Disney film to be released on VHS, allowing fans to enjoy the movie in the comfort of their own homes.

The film was initially a financial success.

Upon its release, Dumbo was well-received by audiences and critics alike, bringing in a significant box office revenue.

Dumbo won an Academy Award for Best Original Score.

The film’s enchanting music, composed by Frank Churchill and Oliver Wallace, earned them an Oscar for Best Original Score.

It is one of the shortest Disney animated feature films.

With a runtime of just over an hour, Dumbo remains one of the shortest films in the Disney animated canon.

Dumbo underwent a live-action adaptation in 2019.

In 2019, a live-action adaptation of Dumbo was released, directed by Tim Burton and starring Colin Farrell, Michael Keaton, and Danny DeVito.

The film explores themes of acceptance and self-belief.

Dumbo’s journey serves as a powerful allegory for embracing our differences and finding the strength within ourselves.

The character of Timothy Q. Mouse acts as Dumbo’s mentor and friend.

Timothy Q. Mouse becomes a guiding presence in Dumbo’s life, encouraging him to believe in his own abilities.

Dumbo received a restoration in 2017 for its 75th anniversary.

In 2017, Dumbo was remastered and restored for its 75th anniversary, ensuring that the film’s magic can be enjoyed by future generations.

The movie experienced controversy due to racist depictions.

It’s important to note that Dumbo, like many older Disney films, contains racial stereotypes that have since been criticized and addressed.

Dumbo features a memorable sequence known as the “Pink Elephants on Parade.”

This trippy and surreal musical number showcases Dumbo’s hallucination of pink elephants dancing and morphing into various shapes.

The character Johnny Dooit makes a cameo appearance.

Johnny Dooit, a character from an unfinished Disney film called “The Gremlins,” makes a brief appearance in Dumbo.

Dumbo went on to become a cultural icon.

The adorable and inspirational character of Dumbo has become a symbol of hope, resilience, and triumph in the face of adversity.

The famous line “The very things that hold you down are going to lift you up” is from Dumbo.

This quote, spoken by Timothy Q. Mouse, has become a popular inspirational mantra associated with the film.

Dumbo was inducted into the National Film Registry in 2017.

In recognition of its cultural, historical, and aesthetic significance, Dumbo was added to the National Film Registry by the Library of Congress.

The character of Dumbo has made appearances in various Disney theme parks.

Dumbo has become a beloved character in the Disney parks, with attractions such as the Dumbo the Flying Elephant ride.

Dumbo’s success inspired a sequel and spin-offs.

The success of Dumbo led to a direct-to-video sequel titled “Dumbo II” and various merchandise and spin-off projects.

The film features a touching reunion scene between Dumbo and his mother.

One of the most heartwarming moments in Dumbo is when the young elephant is reunited with his mother, Mrs. Jumbo.

Dumbo showcases the power of friendship.

The bonds formed between characters in Dumbo highlight the importance of loyalty, compassion, and support.

The film explores the dark side of the circus industry.

Dumbo sheds light on the harsh realities faced by circus animals and raises awareness about animal welfare.

The character of the Ringmaster is named Max Medici.

Max Medici, portrayed by Danny DeVito in the live-action adaptation, is the circus owner and Dumbo’s initial caretaker.

Dumbo teaches valuable life lessons.

Through its story and characters, Dumbo imparts lessons about the importance of self-acceptance, resilience, and embracing our unique qualities.

The film’s animation style was simpler compared to other Disney films.

Dumbo’s animation style deviated from the elaborate and intricate designs seen in films like Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs and Cinderella.

Dumbo features memorable supporting characters.

From the crows to the circus animals, Dumbo is populated with colorful and memorable side characters that add depth to the story.

The film’s release was affected by World War II.

Dumbo faced challenges in international distribution due to the outbreak of World War II, limiting its global reach.

The character of Mrs. Jumbo is voiced by Verna Felton.

Verna Felton lends her voice to the caring and protective mother figure, Mrs. Jumbo.

The movie showcases the importance of perseverance.

Dumbo’s journey from an outcast to a hero highlights the power of perseverance and determination in overcoming adversity.

Dumbo has become a timeless classic.

Decades after its release, Dumbo continues to captivate audiences with its endearing characters, memorable songs, and timeless themes of love and acceptance.


In conclusion, Dumbo is a beloved movie that has captured the hearts of audiences for decades. With its heartwarming story, memorable characters, and stunning animation, it continues to be a classic in the world of cinema. Whether you watch it for the nostalgia or introduce it to a new generation, Dumbo is a must-see film that showcases the incredible storytelling and creative vision of Disney. So grab some popcorn, sit back, and let Dumbo take you on a magical journey filled with hope, courage, and the power of believing in oneself.


Q: Who directed the movie Dumbo?

A: Dumbo was directed by the renowned duo of Ben Sharpsteen and Bill Roberts, along with a team of talented animators and artists.

Q: When was Dumbo released?

A: Dumbo was initially released on October 23, 1941.

Q: What is the premise of Dumbo?

A: Dumbo tells the story of a young circus elephant who is ridiculed for his oversized ears but discovers that they are the key to his unique talent of flying.

Q: Are there any memorable songs in the movie?

A: Yes, Dumbo features several memorable songs, including the iconic “Baby Mine” and the lively “Pink Elephants on Parade.

Q: Did Dumbo win any awards?

A: Yes, Dumbo won the Academy Award for Best Original Score and the Cannes Film Festival Award for Best Animation Design.

Q: Is Dumbo suitable for all ages?

A: Yes, Dumbo is a family-friendly movie that can be enjoyed by audiences of all ages.

Q: Are there any sequels or remakes of Dumbo?

A: In 2019, a live-action remake of Dumbo was released, directed by Tim Burton and starring Colin Farrell, Danny DeVito, and Eva Green.

Q: What is the runtime of Dumbo?

A: The original animated version of Dumbo has a runtime of approximately 64 minutes.

Q: Is Dumbo considered a Disney classic?

A: Absolutely! Dumbo is widely regarded as a Disney classic and holds a special place in the hearts of many Disney fans worldwide.