|Donald Duck series|
Theatrical release poster
|Directed by||Jack King|
|Produced by||Walt Disney|
|Story by||Ralph Wright|
|Voices by||Clarence Nash
|Music by||Edward H. Plumb|
|Animation by||Paul Allen
|Layouts by||Ernie Nordli|
|Backgrounds by||Merle Cox|
|Studio||Walt Disney Productions|
|Distributed by||RKO Radio Pictures|
|Release date(s)||29 June 1945|
|Running time||8 min|
|Preceded by||The Eyes Have It|
|Followed by||Duck Pimples|
Donald's Crime is a 1945 animated short film produced by Walt Disney Productions and released by RKO Radio Pictures. The cartoon, which parodies film noir crime dramas of the time, follows Donald Duck as he struggles with guilt after stealing $1.25 from his nephews. The film was directed by Jack King and features original music by Edward H. Plumb. The voice cast includes Clarence Nash as Donald, Huey, Dewey, and Louie, Gloria Blondell as Daisy Duck, and an uncredited and unsure actor as the off-stage voice of Donald's conscience. This was Blondell's first performance as Daisy and marks the debut of the character's "normal" voice. Previously in Mr. Duck Steps Out, Daisy had been voiced by Nash using a voice similar to Donald's.
Donald's Crime was nominated for an Academy Award for Best Animated Short Film at the 18th Academy Awards in 1946, but lost to Quiet Please!, an MGM Tom and Jerry film. It was the fourth such nomination for the Donald Duck film series.
One evening while eagerly awaiting a date with Daisy, Donald realizes he doesn't have any money. When he sees Huey, Duey, and Louie's piggy bank, and following a brief battle with his conscience, he takes it. After sending the nephews to bed, Donald breaks open the piggy bank, takes the money (totaling $1.25), and goes on to have a fun time with Daisy at a local dance club.
Later that evening, Donald drops Daisy off at her house. She kisses him and calls him a "big shot." Donald at first feels prideful as he starts to walk home, but soon he begins to feel guilty. His conscience calls him a gangster and reminds him that bank robbery is a federal crime. Donald starts to imagine that federal agents are chasing him and he starts to run. As the film continues, his visions become more nightmarish and desperate. At last Donald corners himself in a dark alley and believes he is in jail. He frantically grabs the bars of a door window and shakes it. A sign falls off and hits him in the head. It's a 'help wanted' sign, and Donald discovers the door is the service entrance of an all night cafe.
Donald works through the night and earns enough money to pay back his nephews, except when he returns the money to the piggy bank, he accidentally returns $1.30 of the original $1.25. When the nephews wake up, they see Donald trying to take a nickel from the piggy bank and begin to complain. Donald's conscience reminds him, "You see, chum? Crime doesn't pay."
- 1945 – Original theatrical release
- 1961 – Walt Disney's Wonderful World of Color, episode #8.6: "Inside Donald Duck" (TV)
- c. 1983 – Good Morning, Mickey!, episode #63
- 1984 – "Cartoon Classics: More of Disney's Best: 1932-1946" (VHS)
- c. 1992 – Mickey's Mouse Tracks, episode #28 (TV)
- c. 1992 – Donald's Quack Attack, episode #11 (TV)
- 1998 – The Ink and Paint Club, episode #1.34: "Donald's Nephews" (TV)
- 2002 – Bonus on DVD of The Great Mouse Detective (DVD)
- 2005 – The Chronological Donald, Volume Two (DVD)
- 2006 – Classic Cartoon Favorites: Best Pals: Donald and Daisy (DVD)
- 2010 – iTunes download