Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Cheshire Cat Character in Walt Disney's Alice in Wonderland

The Cheshire cat is a character created by Lewis Carroll for his book, Alice's Adventures in Wonderland. It has 'to its origins in a well known saying, grin like a Cheshire Cat'. The phrase first appears in print in the second edition of Francis Grose's Dictionary of the Vulgar Tongue, from 1778.

The Cheshire Cat is the cat of the Duchess. Alice meets it when she leaves the Duchess house, and finds it in a tree. It constantly grins and can disappear and reappear whenever it likes. Sometimes it disappears and leaves its grin behind.

The Cheshire Cat is the only character in Wonderland who actually listens to Alice. With his remarks, he teaches Alice the ‘rules’ of Wonderland. He gives her insight in how things work down there.

It is not 100% clear why Carroll named this character 'Cheshire Cat'. "To grin like a Cheshire Cat" was a common phrase in Carroll's day. Its origin is unknown, but it may have originated from a sign painter in Cheshire, who painted grinning lions on the sign-boards of inns in the area.

The unpredictable Cheshire Cat's propensity for appearing and disappearing (often leaving behind only that crescent-shaped smile) makes him one of the most uniquely funny characters in all of Disney animation. In the hands of animator Ward Kimball, the zaniest of Walt Disney's animated “the Cheshire Cat” with indeed weird and wacky but in an understated manner contrasting with the more outlandishly mad Wonderland character. The Cheshire Cat has java animation and an excert from Alice's Adventures in Wonderland.


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