With multiple releases in their Disney range this year, the New Zealand Mint’s Classic Disney range remains the flagship and the most anticipated. We seem to be entering a period where there are many Disney anniversaries coming up and this time around it’s 75 years since the release of the classic movie Dumbo. The fifth coin in the series, following on from Steamboat Willie the 80th anniversary of Donald Duck, Daisy Duck hitting 75 and Scrooge McDuck.
Clean struck like the previous releases, there’s a ¼ oz gold coin and a 1 oz silver, but no sign of the 1oz gold that has appeared previously, usually commissioned by a single seller. but sold by the mint itself last time around. Both are packaged in the quality wooden box the NZ Mint uses for most of its gold output. The gold ¼oz will retail for US$600 and the silver a touch lower than Scrooge at US$80.
Dumbo premiered on October 23, 1941, by RKO Radio Pictures. Dumbo, the fourth animated feature in the Walt Disney Animated Classics series, is based upon the storyline written by Helen Aberson and illustrated by Harold Pearl for the prototype of a novelty toy (“Roll-a-Book”). The main character is Jumbo Jr., a semi-anthropomorphic elephant who is cruelly nicknamed “Dumbo”. He is ridiculed for his big ears, but in fact he is capable of flying by using his ears as wings. Throughout most of the film, his only true friend, aside from his mother, is the mouse, Timothy – a relationship parodying the stereotypical animosity between mice and elephants. Dumbo was made to recoup the financial losses of Fantasia. It was a deliberate pursuit of simplicity and economy for the Disney studio, and at 64 minutes, it is one of Disney’s shortest animated features.