Lelia Tierney

Written by Lelia Tierney

Modified & Updated: 19 May 2024

Sherman Smith

Reviewed by Sherman Smith

Source: Metacritic.com

Are you a fan of classic movies? If so, then you’re in for a treat! In this article, we will dive deep into the fascinating world of the movie “Song of the South.” Released in 1946, this iconic film has left a lasting impact on cinema and popular culture. Despite its undeniable charm and cultural significance, “Song of the South” has also faced criticism and controversy over the years. But don’t worry, we’re here to provide you with 48 intriguing facts about the movie, shedding light on its production, characters, music, and reception. So, grab your popcorn and get ready to explore the enchanting world of “Song of the South” in a way you’ve never seen before!

Key Takeaways:

  • “Song of the South” is a 1946 Disney film based on Uncle Remus stories, blending live-action and animation. It faced controversy but remains a cultural touchstone, inspiring rides and discussions about racial representation.
  • Despite controversy, “Song of the South” has a dedicated fan base and cultural impact. It highlights friendship, features beloved characters, and continues to spark discussions about race and culture in film.
Table of Contents

Song of the South was released in 1946

Song of the South, a live-action/animated musical film, was released in 1946 by Walt Disney Productions.

It is based on the Uncle Remus stories

The movie is based on the Uncle Remus stories written by Joel Chandler Harris. These stories are set in the post-Civil War era in the Southern United States.

It features the character Uncle Remus

Uncle Remus, a wise and kind African American man, serves as the narrator and central character of the movie.

The film combines live-action and animation

Song of the South seamlessly blends live-action footage with animated segments featuring characters like Br’er Rabbit, Br’er Bear, and Br’er Fox.

It features the iconic song “Zip-a-Dee-Doo-Dah”

The movie introduced the popular song “Zip-a-Dee-Doo-Dah,” which won the Academy Award for Best Original Song in 1947.

Uncle Remus tells stories to a young boy named Johnny

The main storyline revolves around Uncle Remus telling enchanting stories to a young boy named Johnny. These stories teach valuable life lessons.

The movie faced controversy due to its portrayal of racial stereotypes

Song of the South has faced criticism for its handling of racial themes and its portrayal of African American characters. As a result, it has been subject to controversy over the years.

It was not widely released on home video

Due to the controversy surrounding the movie, Song of the South has not received an official home video release in the United States. This has helped contribute to its mystique and curiosity among film enthusiasts.

The film was a box office success

Song of the South was a commercial success, grossing over $65 million worldwide at the box office.

The movie inspired the Splash Mountain ride at Disney theme parks

The success of Song of the South led to the creation of the Splash Mountain log flume ride at Disney theme parks, which features characters and songs from the film.

Uncle Remus is played by James Baskett

James Baskett portrayed the beloved character of Uncle Remus in Song of the South. He received an honorary Academy Award for his performance, becoming the first African American male actor to win an Oscar.

The film received mixed critical reviews

Song of the South received mixed reviews from critics at the time of its release. While some praised the music and animation, others criticized its portrayal of African American characters.

It was re-released multiple times in theaters

Song of the South was re-released in theaters in 1956, 1972, and 1986, demonstrating its enduring popularity and cultural impact.

The movie has a dedicated fan base

Despite the controversy, Song of the South has garnered a dedicated fan base that appreciates its music, animation, and nostalgic charm.

It became a source of inspiration for other Disney films

Song of the South’s unique blend of live-action and animation influenced other Disney films, such as Mary Poppins and Who Framed Roger Rabbit.

Br’er Rabbit is a central character in the film

Br’er Rabbit, a mischievous and clever character from the Uncle Remus stories, takes center stage in the animated segments of Song of the South.

The movie showcases traditional African American folktales

Song of the South celebrates and showcases traditional African American folktales, preserving an important part of America’s cultural heritage.

The film’s release was accompanied by a merchandise line

Disney released a range of merchandise tied to the movie, including storybooks, toys, and clothing items featuring characters from Song of the South.

The movie was nominated for two Academy Awards

Aside from winning Best Original Song, Song of the South was also nominated for Best Original Score at the 1947 Academy Awards.

It highlights the importance of friendship and cooperation

One of the key messages of Song of the South is the importance of friendship, cooperation, and the power of storytelling to teach valuable life lessons.

The animation was groundbreaking for its time

The animation in Song of the South was considered groundbreaking for its time, seamlessly integrating animated characters into the live-action footage.

The movie features memorable and lovable characters

Song of the South introduced audiences to memorable characters like Br’er Rabbit, Br’er Bear, and Br’er Fox, who have become beloved icons in Disney’s repertoire.

It showcases Southern culture and landscapes

Song of the South captures the beauty of the Southern United States, its landscapes, and the rich cultural heritage of the region.

The movie is a family-friendly musical

Song of the South is a family-friendly film that combines elements of music, humor, and heartwarming storytelling.

The film’s songs are well-known and loved

In addition to “Zip-a-Dee-Doo-Dah,” Song of the South features other memorable songs like “How Do You Do?” and “Everybody Has a Laughing Place.

The movie inspired a popular Disneyland attraction

The success of Song of the South led to the creation of the Critter Country area at Disneyland, which features attractions and experiences related to the film.

It addresses themes of resilience and overcoming adversity

Through its characters and storytelling, Song of the South explores themes of resilience, perseverance, and overcoming adversity.

The film has a distinctive visual style

Song of the South showcases a unique visual style that combines live-action cinematography with vibrant and charming animated sequences.

It was one of the last films overseen by Walt Disney

Song of the South was one of the last films personally overseen by Walt Disney before his passing in 1966, marking it as a significant part of his legacy.

The movie was well-received in some countries

Song of the South was well-received in countries like France and Japan, where it gained a devoted following and remained popular long after its initial release.

It features talented child actors

Song of the South showcases the talents of child actors Bobby Driscoll and Luana Patten, who play key roles in the live-action segments of the film.

The film’s legacy is debated among film scholars

Song of the South’s legacy has been the subject of ongoing debate among film scholars and critics, with varying interpretations of its themes, cultural implications, and significance.

It has had limited theatrical screenings in recent years

Though Song of the South is not widely available for home viewing, it has occasionally been screened in select theaters as part of special events or retrospective screenings.

The movie portrays a sense of nostalgia

Song of the South captures a sense of nostalgia for a bygone era and represents a snapshot of American pop culture from the mid-20th century.

It features memorable live-action performances

Aside from the animated segments, Song of the South boasts memorable performances by the live-action cast, adding depth and charm to the overall film.

The film received accolades for its technical achievements

Song of the South was recognized for its technical achievements, including the blending of live-action and animation, by receiving honorary Academy Awards for Special Effects and Sound Recording.

It promotes the preservation of storytelling traditions

Song of the South emphasizes the importance of preserving and passing down storytelling traditions, particularly within African American culture.

The movie contributed to discussions about racial representation in media

Song of the South sparked conversations and debates about racial representation in media, leading to more nuanced discussions and changes in the industry over time.

It showcases the talent of Disney’s animation team

The animation in Song of the South highlights the exceptional talent of Disney’s animation team and their ability to bring beloved characters to life on the screen.

The film’s release coincided with a changing social landscape

Song of the South’s release occurred during a period of significant social change in the United States, which influenced discussions and perceptions of the movie.

It has influenced other forms of media

Song of the South’s impact reaches beyond its initial release, influencing various forms of media such as literature, music, and even modern-day Disney adaptations.

The movie sparked renewed interest in the Uncle Remus stories

Song of the South introduced a new generation of viewers to the Uncle Remus stories, encouraging a renewed interest in these classic folktales.

It presents a balanced portrayal of friendship and conflict

Song of the South explores both the joys of friendship and the challenges and conflicts that arise, showcasing a nuanced and balanced portrayal of relationships.

The film’s sets and costumes are visually stunning

Song of the South’s elaborate sets, costumes, and production design contribute to its visual appeal and transport viewers into the enchanting world of Uncle Remus and his stories.

It includes themes of optimism and hope

Song of the South is known for its optimistic tone and its emphasis on finding hope and joy even in difficult circumstances.

The movie has international cultural significance

While controversial in certain countries, Song of the South holds cultural significance in various parts of the world, particularly within the context of Disney’s global impact.

It boasts memorable and quotable lines

Song of the South includes memorable and quotable lines that have become part of popular culture and are often referenced in discussions about Disney films.

The film remains a topic of discussion and analysis

Song of the South continues to be analyzed, discussed, and debated by scholars and film enthusiasts, ensuring its place in the ongoing conversation about the representation of race and culture in film.


In conclusion, Song of the South is a controversial movie that has left a lasting impact on the film industry. While it is known for its catchy tunes and charming characters, the film’s portrayal of race and stereotypes has generated significant debate. Despite its nostalgic appeal, the movie has been largely unavailable for public consumption due to its racially insensitive content.

However, it is important to acknowledge that Song of the South is a product of its time and reflects the cultural landscape of the era in which it was made. It serves as a reminder of the progress that has been made in addressing racial representation in media.

Although the film continues to be criticized, it remains a subject of interest and discussion among film enthusiasts and historians. The controversy surrounding Song of the South raises important questions about representation, accountability, and the power of storytelling.


1. Is Song of the South available for public viewing?

No, Song of the South has been largely unavailable for public viewing due to its controversial content. Disney has refrained from releasing the movie on home video or streaming platforms.

2. Why is Song of the South considered controversial?

Song of the South is considered controversial due to its stereotypical portrayal of African-American characters and its romanticized depiction of the antebellum South. The movie has been criticized for perpetuating harmful racial stereotypes.

3. Can Song of the South be seen as a piece of classic cinema?

While Song of the South is regarded as a classic Disney film, it is important to view it within its historical context. The movie’s problematic themes and portrayals make it difficult to separate the film from its controversy.

4. Are there any positive aspects to Song of the South?

Song of the South is often praised for its memorable songs, such as “Zip-a-Dee-Doo-Dah,” which won an Academy Award for Best Original Song. The film also introduced characters like Br’er Rabbit and Br’er Fox, who have become part of Disney folklore.

5. Has Disney addressed the controversy surrounding Song of the South?

Disney has acknowledged the controversy surrounding Song of the South and has taken steps to distance itself from the film’s problematic elements. The company has made efforts to ensure that its modern content promotes inclusivity and diversity.

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