Disney: 5 breathtaking intro scenes

From “Lion King” to “Hunchback of Notre-Dame” via “Tarzan”, here are 5 animation classics from Disney studios that open with a breathtaking sequence.

Walt Disney Animation Studios


As a red sun rises gently over the African savannah, the animals that inhabit the Land of Lions wake up one by one, to the call of a powerful and percussive voice. From its first shot, and from the first note of its soundtrack, the 43rd animated feature film from Disney studios (which has long remained the company’s greatest success) sets the tone, and immediately captures the viewer’s attention. .

Like the elephants, rhinos, giraffes or cheetahs, who feel irreparably pushed in the direction of the Lion Rock to witness the birth of young Simba, the public almost instantly understands that he is about to experience a real event. After 4 breathtaking minutes, when the title of the film triumphantly falls, the decor is now set. And the show can begin.


Walt Disney Animation Studios

How not to get carried away from the very first second of Beauty and the Beast? A real animated picture, where the silhouette of an immense castle gradually emerges, in the middle of a mysterious forest, this introductory shot has something to leave any spectator speechless.

Simple and sophisticated at the same time, it immediately announces the color: what follows will be grandiose, masterful, unforgettable. While the tragic fate of the main character is beautifully told to us through a superb set of stained glass, Alan Menken’s score, which will carry the film from start to finish, settles in very slowly. And after only a few minutes, like the inhabitants of the castle of the Beast, the spectators find themselves struck by an enchantment.


Walt Disney Animation Studios

18 minutes! This is how long we will have to wait before finally seeing the two mice protagonists of Bernard and Bianca in the land of kangaroos. Knowing that the film lasts 1h17 in total, we can speak here of a daringly long introduction … and absolutely breathtaking.

That we evoke the impressive dolly through the Australian bush (one of the first shots of Disney in computer graphics), the masterful aerial ride of Cody and Marahute (which is among the most beautiful scenes in history from the studio), the terrifying appearance of McLeesh or the dizzying cry for help launched across the globe by SOS Société, the show is simply sensational.

Enough to make us (almost) forget our friends Bernard and Bianca!


Walt Disney Animation Studios

As the Disney studios castle takes shape, the bells of the most famous cathedral in the world begin to ring, soon replaced by the majestic score of a Alan menken in a state of grace. While the two belfries of Notre-Dame pierce the clouds, the camera plunges into the small alleys of medieval Paris. And then begins the story of Quasimodo.

Cradled by the sometimes suave, sometimes imperious voice of the narrator Clopin, the introduction of the 34th animation classic from the Disney studios instantly calms distracted viewers who might have considered thinking of something else. Like everything that follows, the first minutes of the Hunchback of Notre-Dame ring out with the power of a church drone, and make the audience vibrate with their glorious brass echo.


Walt Disney Animation Studios

Without the slightest line of dialogue, without voiceover, without a crutch, by only making the image and the music speak, Tarzan gives us a nice little hook of the right from its introduction. What is indeed more powerful or effective than pure animation – devoid of words, and only punctuated by sound – when it comes to telling a story?

A shipwreck in the middle of the night, a wild jungle, two torn families, the birth of a hero … All led by the voice of Phil Collins and the excellent score by Mark Mancina. It’s hard to start a Disney in a more impactful way. And impossible to remain insensitive when this irresistible call to adventure begins to resonate.

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