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November 19

November 19, 1941 – The Wartime Educational Film The Thrifty Pig is Delivered

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“You ought not to sing and dance while there’s danger all about. You should get your houses wolf-proof: bricks like these will keep him out.”

On November 19, 1941, the wartime educational film The Thrifty Pig was delivered to the National Film Board of Canada. It was the first of a series of films created by Disney for this particular project, with the goal of persuading Canadians to invest in war bonds. The short is similar to the Silly Symphony The Three Little Pigs, which was a huge success for the studio upon its release and deemed the perfect story to make the war bond case; this was also the first case of “cartoon recycling” for the studio in order to keep costs down.

Practical Pig is working on his house while his brothers tease him. He warns them that they should make their houses “wolf-proof”, which he is doing with war bonds. His brothers sing that they aren’t afraid of the wolf, and while they do, the wolf – now in Nazi regalia – shows up to try and capture them. He blows down Fifer Pig’s house first, then goes after Fiddler Pig’s house. Fifer and Fiddler Pig escape to Practical Pig’s house, with the wolf hot on their trail. When he tries to blow down Practical Pig’s house, all he does is blow away the top layer to reveal multiple Canadian savings bonds; Practical Pig then uses some extra bond bricks to chase the wolf away. In the end, the pigs all sing about protecting themselves from the wolf by lending their savings. An animated plea for Canadians to do their part to stop the Axis is then presented at the end of the short.

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