10 Things You Might Have Missed in Animated Feature Films

One thing that big studios like Disney and Pixar like to do when creating their films is leave hidden messages. These messages are often in reference to past films the studio created or sometimes reference an upcoming film. We bet you'll want to watch these movies again after we fill you in on these secrets. Here are some things you might have missed when watching some of your favorite Disney and Pixar Movies.


Have you ever noticed that when the Sultan is stacking his toys there's a plush animal toy that's of The Beast from Beauty and The Beast?

Princess and the Frog

Look closely at the rug this woman is holding in the scene from The Princess and The Frog.. Yep, you guessed it, that's the rug Magic Carpet from Aladdin.


You might catch a familiar face sitting up above Flynn Rider in Tangled. It's one of our favorite characters who can never tell the truth, Pinocchio! 

Lilo and Stitch

There are two different references to Disney's Mulan in Lilo and Stitch. One of the restaurants on the street is named Mulan Wok and the poster in Nani's bedroom is from the movie!

The Little Mermaid

You may see some familiar faces as King Triton addresses his fellow merpeople. Even these Disney classics feature references to other characters. Can you spot Donald Duck, Goofy, and Mickey in the crowd? 


The animals in the jungle have collected all kinds of trinkets, and you might recognize a couple from Beauty and the Beast. In this scene you can see Mrs.Potts and and her son, Chip!


When Ana and Elsa open up the gates to the castle, everyone attends! This includes Flynn Rider and Rapunzel!


This mostly-silent film features one of our favorite toys from the Pixar classic, Toy Story. Can you spot Rex?

Toy Story 2

Speaking of Toy Story, as Mr.Potato Head reads this book to the other toys, you can spot characters from A Bugs Life!

Pizza Planet Truck

This truck just keeps on popping up! Pixar has featured the Pizza Planet truck in almost every movie! What other movies have you spotted it in?


Animation Throughout The Years

Technological advances have allowed us to make the quality full-length films and shorts you see on the big screen today. But have you ever wondered how animation first started and how it changed over the years? Today we’re going to provide you with a brief overview on animation and how it first started.

The Phenakistoscope and Zoetrope devices

The first animation devices were invented in the early 1830s. These animation devices involved a spinning drum with drawings that slightly differed from one another. When spun, it would appear as though the images were moving (Kehr, 2016).

Early Stop-Motion

In 1908, Emile Cohl created what is considered to be the first fully animated film, Fantasmagorie. This film lasts for around 1 minute and 16 seconds. From the early 1900s to the 1930s, many illustrators tried their hands at stop-motion animation using various techniques (Popova, 2011). 

Adding the element of sound

It wasn’t until Disney’s Steamboat Willie that animation was able to come alive by combining the stop-motion with sound. Disney later started to add in depth with his camera which made the stories and characters really come to life for an audience. Disney’s 1937 Snow White and The Seven Dwarfs was what really impressed audiences (Kehr, 2016). Although this film wasn’t the first animated film, it was definitely the first full-length animated film of such a high quality.

The 1980s changed animation forever

Computer animation technology was created in the 1980s, which allowed animators to create dynamic, interesting characters and give animated films a completely different look. The world went crazy over the first film that was completely computer-animated, Toy Story (Kehr, 2016).

Animation continues to Improve

Animation thrives today due to many of the technological advances we’ve had. Animation software has become more accessible and stop-motion has become relevant on social media as apps have been created for making stop-motion videos on your phone. Animation is still an incredibly powerful way of communicating and storytelling and can resonate with audiences of different ages and backgrounds. We’re looking forward to see where technology takes animation in the future.

Works Cited:
Kehr, Dave. "Animation." Encyclopedia Britannica. Encyclopedia Britannica, Inc., 2016. Web.

Popova, Maria. "Before Walt Disney: 5 Pioneers of Early Animation." The Atlantic. The Atlantic Monthly Group, 2011. Web.