Rainbow Parade

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Rainbow Parade was a series of 27 animated shorts produced by Van Beuren Studios and distributed to theaters by RKO between 1934 and 1936. This was the all-color series and final series produced by Van Beuren.

Many of the Rainbow Parade cartoons were one-shot stories with no recurring characters, but several of the films featured Parrotville Parrots, Molly Moo-Cow, Toonerville Folks, and Felix the Cat. This series was purchased by Commonwealth Pictures in 1941 and was later syndicated for television. The 1935 short The Merry Kittens was used in an episode of The Wubbcast. Thunderbean Animation released a collection of the early Rainbow Parade cartoons on DVD in 2009. The second half of the series is available from the original negatives released by Image DVD/Blackhawk Films/Film Preservation Associates.

Filmography[edit]

All cartoons released in 1934 were produced in Cinecolor. All shorts from 1935 were produced in two-strip Technicolor. All shorts from 1936 were produced in three-strip Technicolor.

Title Characters Original release date Director Notes
Pastry Town Wedding Bride, Groom, Pastry Chefs July 27, 1934 Burt Gillett
Ted Eshbaugh
  • First Rainbow Parade cartoon.
  • Later reissued as a promotional film for a bakery by the name of Cushman's Sons, Inc. This reissue adds an extra animated scene advertising the bakery, along with special title cards.
The Parrotville Fire Department The Flasher, Firefighters September 14, 1934 Burt Gillett
Steve Muffatti
  • The first of three "Parrotville" cartoons.
The Sunshine Makers Gnomes, Goblins January 11, 1935 Ted Eshbaugh
  • Originally released as a promotional film for Borden's Milk, thus the "Borden" script on the title card.
Parrotville Old Folks Matron Birdkins, Captain, Friend, Old Folks January 25, 1935 Burt Gillett
Tom Palmer
  • The second of three "Parrotville" cartoons.
Japanese Lanterns Japanese Children, Father, Stork March 8, 1935 Burt Gillett
Ted Eshbaugh
  • aka Chinese Lanterns
Spinning Mice Wizard/Rabbit, Lizards/Doves, Toad/Squirrel, Mice/Devils, Girl, Boy, Mice April 5, 1935 Burt Gillett
Tom Palmer
  • Contains a live-action prologue and epilogue.
A Picnic Panic
(a.k.a. The Stupid Teapot)
Molly Moo-Cow, Teapots May 3, 1935 Burt Gillett
Tom Palmer
  • First appearance of Molly Moo-Cow.
  • Contains a live-action prologue and epilogue with animated wraparounds.
The Merry Kittens Three Kittens, Terrier May 31, 1935 Burt Gillett
Shamus Culhane
Parrotville Post-Office The Captain, Black Parrot, Mrs. Perkins, Mr. Perkins' Children June 28, 1935 Burt Gillett
Tom Palmer
  • The last of three "Parrotville" cartoons.
Rag Dog Three Kittens, Two Terriers July 19, 1935 Burt Gillett
The Hunting Season Molly Moo-Cow, Ducks, Hunters August 19, 1935 Burt Gillett
Tom Palmer
Scotty Finds a Home Scotty, Family, Bully August 23, 1935 Burt Gillett
Bird Scouts Birds, Cat September 20, 1935 Burt Gillett
Tom Palmer
Molly Moo-Cow and the Butterflies Molly Moo-Cow, Collector, Butterflies November 15, 1935 Burt Gillett
Tom Palmer
Molly Moo-Cow and the Indians Molly Moo-Cow, Indian Squaw, Papoose, Indian Brave, Two Ducks November 15, 1935 Burt Gillett
Tom Palmer
Molly Moo-Cow and Rip Van Winkle Molly Moo-Cow, Rip Van Winkle, Little Men December 17, 1935

Burt Gillett
Tom Palmer

Toonerville Trolley Toonerville Trolley, Skipper, Katrinka, Molly Moo-Cow (cameo), Bull January 17, 1936 Burt Gillett
Tom Palmer
  • The first of three Van Beuren cartoons based on the Toonerville Trolley comic strip.
  • Cameo by Molly Moo-Cow
The Goose That Laid the Golden Egg Felix the Cat, Goldie, Captain Kidd, Pirates February 7, 1936 Burt Gillett
Tom Palmer
Molly Moo-Cow and Robinson Crusoe Molly Moo-Cow, Robinson Crusoe, Cannibals February 28, 1936 Burt Gillett
Tom Palmer
  • Molly Moo-Cow's final appearance.
Neptune Nonsense Felix the Cat, King Neptune, Annabelle, Octopus, Electric Eel, Mermaid March 20, 1936 Burt Gillett
Tom Palmer
  • Second appearance of Felix the Cat.
Bold King Cole Felix the Cat, Old King Cole, Ghosts May 29, 1936 Burt Gillett
  • Final Felix the Cat cartoon.
A Waif's Welcome Orphan, Mother, Father, Son June 19, 1936 Tom Palmer
Trolley Ahoy Toonerville Trolley, Skipper, Mr. Bang, Katrinka July 3, 1936 Burt Gillett
  • The second of three Van Beuren cartoons based on the Toonerville Trolley comic strip.
Cupid Gets His Man Dan Cupid, Edna May Oliver, W.C. Fields July 24, 1936 Tom Palmer
  • One source suggests that the spinster actually is a dead ringer for Margaret Hamilton (who later would gain fame as the Wicked Witch in The Wizard of Oz").
It's a Greek Life Centaur, Mercury, Two Ducks August 2, 1936 Dan Gordon
Toonerville Picnic Toonerville Trolley, Skipper, Mr. Bang, Katrinka, Dog, Octopus October 2, 1936 Burt Gillett
  • Final Rainbow Parade cartoon
  • The last of three Van Beuren cartoons based on the Toonerville Trolley comic strip.

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