Oliver & Company

Oliver & Company is a 1988 American animatit muisical comedy-drama film produced bi Walt Disney Featur Animation an lowsed on 18 November 1988 bi Walt Disney Pictures. The 27t Disney animatit featur film, the film is inspired bi the classic Charles Dickens novelle Oliver Twist, which haes been adaptit mony ither times for the screen. In the film, Oliver is a hameless kitten that jyns a gang o dugs tae survive in the streets. Amang ither chynges, the settin o the film wis relocatit frae 19t century Lunnon tae late 1980s New York Ceety, Fagin's gang is made up o dugs (ane o that is Dodger), an Sykes is a loan shark.

Oliver & Company
Directit biGeorge Scribner
Screenplay bi
Story bi
Based onOliver Twist
bi Charles Dickens
Muisic biJ.A.C. Redford
Distributit biBuena Vista Pictures Distribution
Release date
  • 18 November 1988 (1988-11-18)
Rinnin time
73 meenits
KintraUnitit States
Budget$31 million[1]
Box office$74.2 million[2]

Oliver & Company began production aroond 1987 as Oliver and the Dodger. The film wis re-lowsed in the Unitit States, Canadae, an the UK on 29 Mairch 1996. It wis then lowsed tae video later that same year, an again in 2002 an 2009 on DVD. The film wis pit oot on Blu-ray Disc in 2013, commemoratin its 25t Anniversary.

Plot eedit

On Fifth Avenue, an orphaned kitten named Oliver is left abandoned efter his fellae orphaned kittens are adoptit bi passersby. Wandering the streets bi himsel in sairch o someone tae adopt him, Oliver meets a laid-back dug named Dodger that assists the kitten in stealin fuid frae a het dug vendor named Louie. Dodger then flees the scene wioot sharin his bounty wi Oliver. Oliver follaes Dodger aw throughout the streets until he eventually arrives at the barge o his awner, a pickpocket named Fagin, alang wi his meal, tae gie tae his friends: Tito the chihuahua, Einstein the Great Dane, Rita the Afghan Hound, an Francis the bulldug. Oliver sneaks inside, locatit ablo the docks, an is discovered bi the dugs. Efter a moment o confusion, he is then received wi a warm welcome. Fagin comes in an explains that he is running oot o time tae repay the money he borraed frae Bill Sykes, a nefarious shipyard agent an loan shark. Sykes tells Fagin it maun be peyed in three day, or else. Sykes' dobermans, Roscoe an DeSoto, atteck Oliver but the cat is fendit bi Fagin's dugs. Immediately thereefter, a depresst Fagin returns tae the barge, lamenting that he anly haes three day tae find the money. Efter the dugs cheer him up, Fagin is introduced tae Oliver, an, considering that thay aw need help, accepts him intae the gang.

The next day, Fagin an his pets, nou includin Oliver, hit the streets tae sell some shoddy goods an aiblins steal money. Oliver an Tito attempt tae sabotage a limousine but the plan backfires whan Oliver accidentally stairts the car, electrocuting Tito, an Oliver is caught an taken home bi the limousine's passenger, Jenny Foxworth. Her parents are awa on a trip an she adopts Oliver oot o loneliness. Georgette, the Foxworth faimily's pompous an pampered poodle, is enraged an jealous o Oliver's presence an wants him remuived frae the hoosehauld. Dodger an the ithers manage tae steal Oliver frae the Foxworth faimily an bring him back tae the barge, but he explains that he wis treatit kindly an didnae want tae leave, maun tae the shock o Dodger that feels that Oliver is bein ungrateful, an allous him the opportunity tae leave. Houiver, Fagin arrives an concocts a plan tae ransom Oliver, then sends Jenny a ransom note. Jenny discovers the note an sets oot tae get him back. Meanwhile, Fagin tells Sykes o his plan, that says he is proud o him for "starting to think big".

Later, Jenny meets up wi Fagin, that is shocked that the "very rich cat owner person" is anly a little girl. Fashed bi his conscience efter seein Jenny distraught ower losin Oliver, Fagin gies Oliver back freely. Juist then, Sykes comes oot o the shadows an kidnaps Jenny, intendin tae ransom her an declaring Fagin's debt peyed.

Dodger rallies Oliver an the ither dugs tae rescue Jenny frae Sykes, but the ainimals are confrontit bi Sykes an his Dobermans efter thay free her. Fagin arrives an saves the group wi his scooter an a chase ensues throu the streets an intae the subway tunnels. Jenny is pushed ontae the huid o Sykes's car efter it bumped onto the scooter, whaur she hauds ontae the huid ornament, an Oliver an Dodger attempt a rescue. Roscoe an DeSoto faw aff the car in the struggle an land on the subway's third rail, electrocuting them. Tito taks control o Fagin's scooter as Fagin manages tae retrieve Jenny, an Tito drives the scooter up the side o the Brooklyn Bridge as Sykes' car drives stracht intae the path o an oncomin train, killin him an throwing him an his car intae the East River. Dodger an Oliver manage tae jouk the collision an are reunited wi Jenny an the ithers. Later, Jenny celebrates her birthday wi the ainimals, Fagin, an Winston. That same day, Winston receives a phone caw frae Jenny's parents in Roum saying that thay will be back the morn. Oliver opts tae stay wi her but he promises tae remain in contact wi Dodger an the gang.

Cast an chairacters eedit

  • Joey Lawrence as Oliver, an orange orphaned kitten that is leukin for a home. He jyns Fagin's gang o dugs afore bein taken in bi Jenny. He saves her life frae the ruthless loan-shark, Sykes, anaa.
  • Billy Joel as Dodger, a carefree, charismatic mongrel wi a mix o terrier in him. He claims tae hae considerable "street savoir-faire". He is the heid o Fagin's gang o dugs, an is Oliver's first acquaintance, as well as his eventual best friend an bodyguard. He is the object o Rita's affection.
  • Cheech Marin as Tito, a tiny yet passionate Chihuahua in Fagin's gang. He haes a fiery temper for his size, an rapidly develops a crush on Georgette (awtho she is initially repulsed bi him). His full name is Ignacio Alonso Julio Federico de Tito.
  • Richard Mulligan as Einstein, a gray Great Dane an a member o Fagin's gang. He is named ironically as he is nae parteecularly bricht, representin the stereotype that Great Danes are friendly but dull-witted.
  • Roscoe Lee Browne as Francis, a bulldug wi a Breetish accent in Fagin's gang. He appreciates airt an theatre, parteecularly Shakespeare. He an aa detests anyone abbreviating his name as "Frank" or "Frankie" (which Tito frequently daes).
  • Sheryl Lee Ralph (Ruth Pointer, singin) as Rita, an Afghan Hound[3] an the anly female dug in Fagin's gang. She is street-wise an takes Oliver unner her wing.
  • Dom DeLuise as Fagin, a lowly thief who lifes on a barge wi his dugs. He desperately needs money tae repay his debt wi Sykes. Because o his economic situation, he is forced tae perform criminal acts sic as pick-pocketing an petty theft, but in truth he is good-natured an polite maist o the time.
  • Taurean Blacque an Carl Weintraub as Roscoe an DeSoto respectively, Sykes's vicious Doberman Pinschers who hae a hostile history wi Dodger an his friends. Roscoe is the apparent leader, while his brither DeSoto seems tae be the mair savage o the twa. Baith o them are killed in the climax killed in the climax efter fallin onto the electric rail tracks while fechtin wi Dodger an Oliver. Roscoe wears a reid collar an DeSoto wears ane that is blue.
  • Robert Loggia as Sykes, a cauld-hearted, immoral loan-shark an shipyard agent who lent a considerable sum o money to Fagin an expects it peyed back. He is ultimately defeatit at the film's climax when he indirectly drives his car intae a train an gets killed in the process.
  • Natalie Gregory (Myhanh Tran, singin) as Jennifer "Jenny" Foxworth, a kynd-hearted, rich girl who adopts Oliver.
  • William Glover as Winston, the Foxworth faimily's bumbling but loyal butler.
  • Bette Midler as Georgette, the Foxworth faimily's shaw-winnin poodle. Vain an spoilt, she becomes jealous o Oliver but eventually accepts him an Fagin's gang. Whan Tito displays his attraction tae her, she initially responds wi revulsion. At the end, houiver, she displays considerable attraction tae Tito, sae maun, in fact that she sends him runnin for his life whan she tries tae bathe, dress an gruim him.
  • Frank Welker as Old Louie, an aggressive, bad-tempered het dug vendor that appears early in the film whan Oliver an Dodger steal his hot dugs. He is descrieved bi Dodger as "a well-known enemy of the four-legged world", meanin that he hates baith cats an dugs.

Production eedit

Efter the release o The Black Cauldron in 1985, Michael Eisner and Jeffrey Katzenberg invited the animators to pitch potential ideas for upcoming animatit features, infamously cried the "Gong Show". Efter Ron Clements and John Musker suggestit The Little Mermaid and Treasure Island in Space, animator Pete Young suggestit, "Oliver Twist with dogs". Oreeginally intending to produce a live-action adaptation o the muisical Oliver! at Paramount Pictures, Katzenberg approved the pitch.[4] Unner the wirkin title o Oliver and the Dodger,[5][6] the film wis oreeginally much darker and grittier wi the film openin wi Sykes's twa Dobermans murdering Oliver's parents, setting the story to focus on Oliver exacting his revenge as detailed in a draft dated on Mairch 30, 1987.[7] George Scribner and Richard Rich war annoonced as the directors o the project, while Pete Young wis appyntit as story supervisor,[8] tho Rich left aboot sax month intae production, leaving Scribner as the sole director.[9] In this adaptation, Scribner turned Oliver intae a naïve kitten, Dodger and the gang intae dugs, an Fagin intae a human, an encouraged the film tae be mair street smart.[7] Furthermore, Scribner borrowed a technique frae Lady and the Tramp bi blocking oot the scenes on real streets, an then photographing them wi cameras mounted eighteen inches off the grund. In this wey, the animators wad uise the photos as templates to provide a real dug's-ee view o the action.[10] As work continued on Oliver, Roy E. Disney came up wi an idea that Fagin wad attempt to steal a rare panda frae the ceety zoo. Houiver, the writers wad hae problems wi the idea,[5] and the panda sub-plot wis eventually dropped when Scribner suggestit to hae Fagin haud Oliver for ransom acause he wis a valuable, rare Asian cat.[11][12]

For the film, Disney invested $15 million intae a lang-term computer system cried Computer Animation Production System, itherwise kent as CAPS. Unlik The Black Cauldron an The Great Mouse Detective that uised computer imagery for special sequences, eleeven minutes o Oliver & Company wis computer-generated sic as the skyscrapers, the taxi cabs, trains, Fagin's scooter-cart, an the climactic subway chase.[13] Meanwhile, the traditional animation wis handled bi the next generation o Disney animators, includin supervising animators Glen Keane, Ruben A. Aquino, Mike Gabriel, Hendel Butoy, an Mark Henn as the "Nine Old Men" haed retired in the early 1980s.[13] Throughout twa and a hauf years o production, sax supervising animators and a team o ower 300 artists and technicians worked on the film.[14] Skidmore, Owings & Merrill wis the database for the New York City skyline.

Casting eedit

Acause personalities are considered the greatest strength o Disney animatit films, the filmmakers socht believable vyces tae match the movement o the animation.[13] For this film, the filmmakers cast fellae New York natives includin Bette Midler for Georgette, Sheryl Lee Ralph for Rita, an Roscoe Lee Browne for Francis.[13] Comedian Cheech Marin wis cast as the chihuahua Tito. Acause energy proved tae be the key tae Tito's personality, Marin claimed "I was encouraged to ad-lib, but I'd say I just gave about 75% of the lines as they were written. The natural energy of a Chihuahua played right into that feeling. George [Scribner] was very encouraging as a director: He kept the energy level high at the recording sessions."[15] Pop sangster Billy Joel wis recommended for the vyce o Dodger bi Scribner acause o his "New York street-smart, savoir-faire attitude", an auditioned for the role bi telephone efter bein gien dialogue. Additionally, Joel confirmed he did the role acause it wis a Disney movie, an admitted that "I had just had a little girl. It's a great way to do something that my little girl could see that she could relate to right away."[16]

Music eedit

Oliver & Company
Soondtrack album by Various artists
GenrePop rock, blues rock
LabelWalt Disney

The soundtrack o Oliver & Company contains an instrumental score bi J. A. C. Redford unner the supervision o Carole Childs, while Jeffrey Katzenberg haed the idea to bring in big-name sangster/songwriters, each o whom wad contribute a song intae the film includin Billy Joel, Barry Manilow, and Huey Lewis. At his suggestion o his friend David Geffen, Katzenberg brocht in lyricist Howard Ashman, who componed the song "Once Upon a Time in New York City".[17] Muisical composer J.A.C. Redford wis brocht to compone the score who haed a wirkin relationship wi Disney muisic executive Chris Montan on the series St. Elsewhere.[18] Ashman, who, wi Alan Menken, wad write the sangs for the next three Disney films. Billy Joel, in addition to voicing Dodger, performed the character's song in the film.

The track leet ablo represents the 1996 re-release o the Oliver & Company soundtrack. The oreeginal 1988 release featurt the same sangs, but wi the instrumental cues placed in atween the sangs in the order in which thay appeared in the film. Uisin the numbering system in the leet ablo, the order the tracks on the 1988 release wad be: 1, 2, 6, 7, 3, 4, 5, 8, 9, 10, an 11. The reprise o "Why Should I Worry?", performed bi the entire cast, remains unreleased on CD.

Track listing
  1. "Once Upon a Time in New York City" - Huey Lewis; written bi Barry Mann and Howard Ashman
  2. "Why Should I Worry?" - Billy Joel; written bi Dan Hartman and Charlie Midnight
  3. "Streets of Gold" - Ruth Pointer ; written bi Dean Pitchford and Tom Snow
  4. "Perfect Isn't Easy" - Bette Midler ; written bi Barry Manilow, Jack Feldman, an Bruce Sussman
  5. "Good Company" - Myhanh Tran ; written bi Ron Rocha and Robert Minkoff
  6. "Sykes" (score)
  7. "Bedtime Story" (score)
  8. "The Rescue" (score)
  9. "Pursuit Through the Subway" (score)
  10. "Buscando Guayaba" - Rubén Blades
  11. "End Title" (instrumental)

Release eedit

Marketing eedit

Oliver & Company wis the first Disney animatit film to include real warld advertised products. Mair nor 30 company logos and brand names war shawn in the film, includin Kodak, Dr. Scholls, Sony, Diet Coke, Tab, McDonald's, Yamaha, Ryder, and USA Today.[19] Houiver, the filmmakers commented on ABC's The Wonderful World of Disney that this wis for realism, wis nae peyed product placement, an that it wad nae be New York City wioot advertising.[20] Instead, Katzenberg urged the marketing campaign to focus on the classic Dickens novel and the pop score,[17] and promotional tie-ins included Sears, which produced and manufactured products wi themes inspired frae the film, an McDonald's which sauld Christmas muisical ornaments based on Oliver and Dodger, an smaw finger puppets based on the characters in a Happy Meal.[20][21] For its theatrical re-release in 1996, the film wis accompanied wi a promotional campaign bi Burger King.[22]

In the United Kinrick, Oliver & Company wis nae distributed bi Buena Vista International, but bi Warner Bros.[23] Buena Vista International did houiver release the film on home video.

Home media eedit

Despite its financial success at the box office, Oliver & Company wis nae released on home video despite bein ane o the maist requested Disney films.[24] Efter its theatrical re-release, Oliver & Company wis released on VHS on September 25, 1996 for a leemitit time.[25] It wis later released on DVD on Mey 14, 2002. A 20t Anniversary Edition DVD wis released on Februar 3, 2009, an a 25t Anniversary Edition Blu-ray wis released on August 6, 2013.[26]

Reception eedit

Box office eedit

Openin on the same weekend as Don Bluth's The Land Before Time, which debuted at nummer-ane grossing $7.5 million, beatin oot Oliver & Company which opened at fowert, grossing $4 million.[27] Housomeiver, Oliver & Company oot-grossed The Land Before Time wi domestic gross estimates o $53 million compared to $46 million o the latter.[28] Its success prompted Disney's senior vice-preses o animation, Peter Schneider, to annoonce the company's plans to release animatit features annually.[5] On Mairch 29, 1996, Disney re-released the film in direct competeetion wi All Dogs Go to Heaven 2,[29] grossing $4.5 million in its openin weekend.[30] In its tot box office lifetime, Oliver & Company made a tot domestic gross o $74 million at the U.S. box office.[31]

Critical reception eedit

Despite its success at the box office, Oliver & Company wis met wi mixed reviews frae critics. Rotten Tomatoes reportit that 44% o critics gae the film positive reviews based on 36 reviews wi an average rating o 5.4/10. Its consensus states that "Oliver & Company is a decidedly lesser effort in the Disney canon, with lackluster songs, stiff animation, and a thoroughly predictable plot."[32]

On the telly program, Siskel & Ebert, Gene Siskel gae the film a thumbs doun. Siskel stated: "When you measure this film to the company's legacy of classics, it doesn't match up" as he complained "the story is too fragmented…because Oliver’s story gets too sidetracked from the story in the film that gets convoluted, too calculated for the Bette Midler, Billy Joel crowd as well as little kids." Roger Ebert gae the film a "marginal thumbs up" as he describit the film as "harmless, inoffensive".[33] Animation historian Charles Solomon wrote a favorable reviewing concluding that the film "offers virtually ideal family holiday fare. The cartoon action will delight young children, while older ones, who usually reject animation as "kid stuff," will enjoy the rock sangs and hip characters, especially the brash Tito."[34] Writing for People, Peter Travers opined in his review, "Too slight to rank with such Disney groundbreakers as Pinocchio and Fantasia, the film is more on the good-fun level of The Lady and the Tramp and 101 Dalmatians. But why kick? With its captivating characters, sprightly songs and zap-happy animation, Oliver & Company adds up to a tip-top frolic."[35] Desson Howe o The Washington Post noted that the film "retrieves some of the old Disney charm with tail-wagging energy and five catchy songs". Likwise, fellae Washington Post film critic Rita Kempley praised the sangs and animation, an cried it "happy adaptation of the Victorian classic."[36]

Barry Walters, reviewing for The San Francisco Examiner, panned the film "as a rather shabby transitional work, one that lacks the sophistication of today's 'toons and doesn't hold up to the Disney classics of yesteryear."[37] The staff o Halliwell's Film Guide cried Oliver & Company "episodic" and "short on charm". "Only now and then", thay added, "it provides glimpses of stylish animation".[23] The Ren & Stimpy Show creautor John Kricfalusi suggestit that the film wis derivative o Ralph Bakshi's works, an jokingly suggestit its uise as a form o punishment.[38] Likwise, even some o the Disney animators viewed the film unfavorably considering it "another talking dog-and-cat movie".[39]

Accolades eedit

References eedit

  1. "Oliver & Company (1988)". The Wrap. Archived frae the original on 2016-12-20. Retrieved Dizember 14, 2016. Check date values in: |accessdate= (help)
  2. "Oliver & Company". Box Office Mojo. Retrieved 5 Januar 2012.
  3. "Oliver & Company - Washington Post". Washington Post. 18 November 1988. Retrieved 31 Januar 2016.
  4. Stewart 2005, pp. 93–94.
  5. a b c Beck 2005, pp. 182-83.
  6. Willistein, Paul (22 November 1987). "Disney Gearing Up For More Animation". The Morning Call. Archived frae the original on 11 Julie 2015. Retrieved 10 Julie 2015.
  7. a b Koeing 2001, p. 192.
  8. Hulett 2014, p. 90.
  9. George Scribner (3 Februar 2009). "Once Upon A Time In New York City: Oliver & Company's Director George Scribner!" (Interview). Interviewed bi Jérémie Noyer. Animated Views. Retrieved 10 Julie 2015.
  10. Strickler, Jeff (21 Apryle 1996). "`Oliver' gets a dog's eye view, in a Twist on the classic story". Star Tribune. Archived frae the original (Fee required) on 24 September 2015. Retrieved 10 Julie 2015 – via HighBeam Research.
  11. Koeing 2001, p. 193.
  12. Hulett 2014, p. 96.
  13. a b c d Culhane, John (13 November 1988). "'Oliver & Company' Gives Dickens A Disney Twist urban scene from an appropriate rooftop". The New York Times. Retrieved 8 Julie 2015.
  14. "Disney Archives – Oliver and Company". Disney.go.com. Archived frae the original on 27 Julie 2008. Retrieved 10 Julie 2015.
  15. Solomon, Charles (27 December 1988). "Cheech Marin as Animated Tito: Check It Out". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 8 Julie 2015.
  16. Willistein, Paul (19 November 1988). "A New York State Of Voice In Animated Film Billy Joel Speaks For Dodger The Dog". TheMorning Call. Archived frae the original on 11 Julie 2015. Retrieved 8 Julie 2015.
  17. a b Stewart 2005, pp. 182–83.
  18. J.A.C Redford (2 Februar 2009). "Once Upon A Time In New York City: Oliver & Company's Composer J.A.C. Redford!" (Interview). Interviewed bi Jérémie Noyer. Animated Views. Retrieved 10 Julie 2015.
  19. Solomon, Charles (18 November 1988). "Can You Imagine Mickey Mouse Turning 60?". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 10 Julie 2015.
  20. a b "The Making of Oliver & Company". The Wonderful World of Disney. ABC.
  21. Fabrikant, Geraldine (28 November 1988). "Advertising; Marketing Movies for Children". The New York Times. Retrieved 10 Julie 2015.
  22. Elliot, Samuel (22 November 1995). "Coca-Cola, Pepsico and Burger King sign on with Disney for a happy ending with 'Toy Story' tie-ins". Retrieved 10 Julie 2015.
  23. a b Gritten, David, ed. (2007). "Oliver and Company (*)". Halliwell's Film Guide 2008. Hammersmith, London: HarperCollins Publishers. p. 871. ISBN 0-00-726080-6. |access-date= requires |url= (help)
  24. Hicks, Chris (29 Mairch 1996). "'Oliver' just as delightful 2nd time around". Deseret News. p. W4. Retrieved 17 Januar 2012.
  25. Snow, Shauna (24 Apryle 1996). "Arts and entertainment reports from The Times, national and international news services and the nation's press". Retrieved 10 Julie 2015.
  26. Garbarini, Todd. "REVIEW: DISNEY'S "OLIVER AND COMPANY". Cinema Retro.
  27. Easton, Nina (22 November 1988). "Kitten Takes On Baby Brontosaurus". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 10 Julie 2015.
  28. Solomon, Charles (19 August 1990). "The New Toon Boom". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 10 Julie 2015.
  29. Bates, James; Apodaca, Patrice (20 Juin 1996). "Stalking the King of Animation". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 10 Julie 2015.
  30. Dutka, Elaine (2 Apryle 1996). "The Cash Registers Are Ringing". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 10 Julie 2015.
  31. "Re-releases of Oliver & Company". Box Office Mojo. Retrieved 25 October 2008.
  32. "Oliver & Company - Rotten Tomatoes". Rotten Tomatoes. Flixster. Retrieved 10 Julie 2015. Italic or bold markup not allowed in: |publisher= (help)
  33. "The Land Before Time, Oliver and Company, Child's Play (1988)". siskelandebert.org. Archived frae the original on 4 Mairch 2016. Retrieved 10 Julie 2015.
  34. Solomon, Charles (18 November 1988). "Dogs, Dinosaurs from Disney, Bluth : 'Oliver & Company'". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 10 Julie 2015.
  35. Travers, Peter (21 November 1988). "Picks and Pans Review: Oliver & Company". People. Archived frae the original on 4 Mairch 2016. Retrieved 10 Julie 2015.
  36. Howe, Desson; Kempley, Rita (18 November 1988). "Oliver & Company". The Washington Post. Retrieved 10 Julie 2015. Italic or bold markup not allowed in: |newspaper= (help)
  37. Walters, Barry (30 Mairch 1996). "Bones to pick with dog movies, old and new". San Francisco Examiner. San Francisco Chronicle. Retrieved 10 Julie 2015.
  38. Kricfalusi, John (1994). "Mike Judge Interview". Wild Cartoon Kingdom (3). Retrieved 20 Mairch 2009.
  39. Thomas, Bob (7 Mairch 1997). Disney's Art of Animation: From Mickey Mouse To Hercules. Disney Editions. p. 117. ISBN 978-0786862412.

Bibliography eedit

Freemit airtins eedit