Flowers and Trees Debuts

On July 30th, 1932, the Silly Symphonies cartoon Flowers and Tress debuted. The cartoon debuted at Grauman’s Chinese Theater in Hollywood. Disney’s short preceeds the MGM feature film Strange Interlude. The cartoon was produced by Walt Disney, directed by Burt Gillett and released to theatres by United Artists.  You may wonder why of all the cartoons that Disney has, why did I mention this one?  The reason, this was the first commercially released film to be produced in the full-color three strip Technicolor.

Flowers and Trees Poster

Seeing the potential in full-color Technicolor, Walt Disney negotiated an exclusive contract for the use of the process, continuing to September 1935 (when other studios could start producing cartoons in the process, but were barred from releasing them until 1936). This of course gave Walt an edge in the industry. Competitors such as the Fleischer Studios and the Ub Iwerks studio were shut out – they had to settle for either the two-color Technicolor systems or use a competing process such as Cinecolor.

Flowers and Trees was already in production as a black-and-white cartoon before Disney saw Herbert Kalmus, the co-founder and President of the Technicolor Motion Picture Corporation,’ three-strip Technicolor tests. Deciding that Flowers and Trees would make a perfect test for the process, he had the black-and-white footage scrapped and the short redone in color.  The color Flowers and Trees was a commercial and critical success.  With Walt going the way of the three-strip Technicolor process, he would win the first Academy Award for Animated Short Subjects.

The cartoon was about how flowers, mushrooms and trees get ready for spring but exercising. Of course there is a love story where 2 different male trees are fighting for the attention of female tree.

For those you haven’t seen the short, I found it on Youtube, from thelostdisney

Leave a Reply

The Main Street Mouse