The Incredible Journey (1963)

80 mins | Adventure | 6 November 1963

Director:

Fletcher Markle

Writer:

James Algar

Cinematographer:

Kenneth Peach

Production Designers:

Carroll Clark, John Mansbridge

Production Companies:

Walt Disney Productions , Cangary, Ltd.
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HISTORY

The 9 Jun 1961 DV announced the $50,000 purchase by the Walt Disney Company of film rights for Sheila Burnford’s 1961 novel.
       An article in the 23 Oct 1963 LAT identified the animal actors as Rink, a Labrador retriever; Muffey, a bull terrier; and Syn, a Siamese cat. During production, the well-trained animals took any discussion of a scene by director Fletcher Markle as a command, and positioned themselves accordingly. Markle remedied the problem by spelling out the animals’ names and any words that could be misinterpreted as an order. The 26 May 1963 LAT noted that Muffey was trained by Halleck Driscoll, and the dog’s owner, William R. Koehler.
       The 19 Mar 1963 DV announced that voice actor Rex Allen arrived in Burbank, CA, to provide narration. He was due at a rodeo in Edmonton, Canada, six days later.
       The Incredible Journey opened 6 Nov 1963 in Los Angeles, CA. Critical notices were generally positive, although the 21 Nov 1963 NYT advised that the picture was best suited for young children. The picture received the “Movie of the Month Award” from Parents magazine, and was named best children’s film by the Thomas Alva Edison Foundation.
       An obituary in the 17 Sep 1963 DV stated that composer Oliver Wallace died two days earlier, shortly after completing the film’s score. ... More Less

The 9 Jun 1961 DV announced the $50,000 purchase by the Walt Disney Company of film rights for Sheila Burnford’s 1961 novel.
       An article in the 23 Oct 1963 LAT identified the animal actors as Rink, a Labrador retriever; Muffey, a bull terrier; and Syn, a Siamese cat. During production, the well-trained animals took any discussion of a scene by director Fletcher Markle as a command, and positioned themselves accordingly. Markle remedied the problem by spelling out the animals’ names and any words that could be misinterpreted as an order. The 26 May 1963 LAT noted that Muffey was trained by Halleck Driscoll, and the dog’s owner, William R. Koehler.
       The 19 Mar 1963 DV announced that voice actor Rex Allen arrived in Burbank, CA, to provide narration. He was due at a rodeo in Edmonton, Canada, six days later.
       The Incredible Journey opened 6 Nov 1963 in Los Angeles, CA. Critical notices were generally positive, although the 21 Nov 1963 NYT advised that the picture was best suited for young children. The picture received the “Movie of the Month Award” from Parents magazine, and was named best children’s film by the Thomas Alva Edison Foundation.
       An obituary in the 17 Sep 1963 DV stated that composer Oliver Wallace died two days earlier, shortly after completing the film’s score.
More Less

GEOGRAPHIC LOCATIONS
BIBLIOGRAPHIC SOURCES
SOURCE
DATE
PAGE
Daily Variety
9 Jun 1961
p. 1.
Daily Variety
19 Mar 1963
p. 12.
Daily Variety
17 Sep 1963
p. 11.
Daily Variety
25 Oct 1963
p. 9.
Daily Variety
12 Nov 1963
p. 3.
Los Angeles Times
26 May 1963
Section A, p. 69.
Los Angeles Times
23 Oct 1963
Section F, p. 13.
Los Angeles Times
24 Oct 1963
Section A, p. 8.
Los Angeles Times
9 Nov 1963
Section A, p. 8.
New York Times
23 Apr 1961
p. 434.
New York Times
21 Nov 1963
p. 43.
New York Times
6 May 1964
p. 42.
Variety
16 Oct 1963
p. 6.
CAST
PRODUCTION CREDITS
NAME
PARENT COMPANY
PRODUCTION TEXT
A Walt Disney Production
DISTRIBUTION COMPANY
NAME
CREDITED AS
CREDIT
DIRECTORS
Asst dir
PRODUCERS
Field prod for Cangary, Ltd.
Co-prod
WRITER
PHOTOGRAPHY
Dir of photog
Photog for Cangary, Ltd.
Photog for Cangary, Ltd.
ART DIRECTORS
Art dir
FILM EDITOR
SET DECORATORS
Set dec
COSTUMES
MUSIC
SOUND
Music ed
MAKEUP
Makeup
PRODUCTION MISC
Prod mgr
Animal supv
Animal supv
Animal supv
SOURCES
LITERARY
Based on the novel The Incredible Journey by Sheila Burnford (Boston, 1961).
DETAILS
Release Date:
6 November 1963
Premiere Information:
Los Angeles opening: 6 November 1963
New York opening: 20 November 1963
Copyright Claimant:
Walt Disney Productions
Copyright Date:
20 August 1963
Copyright Number:
LP26979
Physical Properties:
Sound
RCA
Color
Technicolor
Duration(in mins):
80
Country:
United States
Language:
English
SYNOPSIS

When the Hunter family depart from their Canadian town for a summer in England, they leave their pets--Bodger (an elderly bull terrier), Luath (a yellow Labrador retriever), and Tao (a Siamese cat)--with their friend John Longridge, who lives in Ontario 250 miles away. Toward the end of the summer, John goes off on a hunting trip, and the three homesick animals set out to find their way back to the Hunter house. During their journey across some of Canada's wildest terrain, the three participate in numerous adventures. There are an encounter with a lynx, a battle with a vicious farm dog, and a scuffle with a bear. Tao, a natural hunter, brings Bodger food after he collapses from weakness. The dogs become separated from Tao when he falls into a river and nearly drowns, but they are reunited after the cat has been rescued and nursed back to health by a little Finnish girl. Luath has a painful encounter with a porcupine, but his wounds are treated by a kindly farmer. Along the way an old hermit entertains the trio as his guests. Upon returning from England, the Hunters are informed of the disappearance of their pets. A short time later a somewhat unhappy birthday party in the Hunter garden is turned into a homecoming celebration as the three pets emerge from the woods behind the house and rush to join the family for a happy ... +


When the Hunter family depart from their Canadian town for a summer in England, they leave their pets--Bodger (an elderly bull terrier), Luath (a yellow Labrador retriever), and Tao (a Siamese cat)--with their friend John Longridge, who lives in Ontario 250 miles away. Toward the end of the summer, John goes off on a hunting trip, and the three homesick animals set out to find their way back to the Hunter house. During their journey across some of Canada's wildest terrain, the three participate in numerous adventures. There are an encounter with a lynx, a battle with a vicious farm dog, and a scuffle with a bear. Tao, a natural hunter, brings Bodger food after he collapses from weakness. The dogs become separated from Tao when he falls into a river and nearly drowns, but they are reunited after the cat has been rescued and nursed back to health by a little Finnish girl. Luath has a painful encounter with a porcupine, but his wounds are treated by a kindly farmer. Along the way an old hermit entertains the trio as his guests. Upon returning from England, the Hunters are informed of the disappearance of their pets. A short time later a somewhat unhappy birthday party in the Hunter garden is turned into a homecoming celebration as the three pets emerge from the woods behind the house and rush to join the family for a happy reunion. +

Legend
Viewed by AFI
Partially Viewed
Offscreen Credit
Name Occurs Before Title
AFI Life Achievement Award

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