Snow White – Fairy Tale, Disney Film and Christmas Panto

5 min read


5 min read

Snow White is a 19th-century German fairy tale and Disney film which are today known widely across the Western world, for Blackpool it’s been turned into a fabulous Christmas Panto.

The famed Brothers Grimm published it way back in 1812 a first edition of their collection Grimms’ Fairy Tales. Then it was titled in German ‘Sneewittchen’, numbered as Tale 53. They completed a final revision of the story in 1854.


Christmas Panto - Grimm
Deutsch: Doppelporträt der Brüder Jacob und Wilhelm Grimm / Die Brüder Grimm (right: Jacob Grimm; left: Wilhelm Grimm)


The fairy tale features such well-known elements as the magic mirror, the poisoned apple, the glass coffin, and the characters of the ‘Evil Queen’ and the ‘Seven Dwarfs’.

The seven dwarfs were first given individual names in the 1912 Broadway play Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs and then new names were chosen in Walt Disney’s 1937 film of the same name. The Grimm story, which is now commonly referred to as “Snow White”, should not be confused with the story of “Snow-White and Rose-Red”, another fairy tale collected by the Brothers Grimm.


Christmas Panto - Hansel and Gretel
Illustration of Hansel and Gretel, a well-known German folktale from the Brothers Grimm, by Arthur Rackham, 1909.


In the Aarne–Thompson folklore classification, tales of this kind are grouped together as type 709, Snow White. Other tales of this kind include; Bella Venezia, Myrsina, Nourie Hadig, “Gold-Tree and Silver-Tree, The Young Slave, and La petite Toute-Belle.


Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs was famously turned into an American animated musical fantasy film in 1937 produced by Walt Disney Productions, the film is based on the German fairy tale by the Grimm brothers and was the first full-length cel animated feature film and the earliest Disney animated feature film. The story adapted by storyboard artists Dorothy Ann Blank, Richard Creedon, Merrill De Maris, Otto Englander, Earl Hurd, Dick Rickard, Ted Sears and Webb Smith. David Hand was the supervising director, while William Cottrell, Wilfred Jackson, Larry Morey, Perce Pearce, and Ben Sharpsteen directed the film’s individual sequences. A mammoth task!


Disney Snow White - Christmas Panto
Original theatrical poster for Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs Illustrated by Gustaf Tenggren. Artwork © 1938 Walt Disney Productions and RKO Radio Pictures.


The Disney film premiered in Los Angeles, California in December 1937, followed by a nationwide release in early 1938. It was hailed as a critical and commercial success (international earnings of $8 million). The popularity of the film has led to its being re-released many times, its home video release was near 30 years ago, in the 1990s.

FUN FACT: Walt Disney’s first full-length feature film, Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs (USA, 1937; had subsequent re-releases in 1944, 1952, 1958, 1967, 1975, 1983, 1987 and 1993), took $184,925,486 (then £37,404,022) at the US box office, equivalent to $1.2 billion (£890 million) as of May 2018. The film took four years to make at a cost of $1.5 million (then £303,398) equivalent to $13,252,424 (£8,282,765).

Nominated for Best Musical Score at the Academy Awards in 1938, and the next year, producer Walt Disney was awarded an honorary Oscar for the film. This award was unique, consisting of one normal-sized, plus seven miniature Oscar statuettes. They were presented to Disney by Shirley Temple.

In 1989, the United States Library of Congress deemed the film “culturally, historically, or aesthetically significant” and selected it for preservation in the National Film Registry. The AFI (American Film Institute) ranked it among the 100 greatest American films, and also named the film as the greatest American animated film of all time in 2008. Disney’s take on the fairy tale has had a significant cultural impact, resulting in popular theme park attractions, a video game, and a Broadway musical.


Steve Royle Christmas Panto
Steve Royle in Peter Pan (2019/20) at Blackpool Grand Theatre,.


Not only that UK Productions Ltd and Blackpool Grand Theatre will present Snow White as their Christmas Panto for 2020/21.

Blackpool Panto favourite and BBC Radio Lancashire presenter Steve Royle will returns as Muddles, making this his 18th annual appearance. Joining Royle is a full star cast soon to be announced.

See the greatest magical Christmas panto ever told in true pantomime tradition… poor Snow White is doomed to live unhappily ever after with her horrid stepmother the Wicked Queen. In true rags-to-riches style Snow White manages, with the help of her madcap friend Muddles, to meet a handsome Prince, will her dreams come true…

Blackpool pantomime Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs (4 Dec to 3 Jan 2021) is bursting with great songs, dazzling costumes, stunning dance choreography (by Katie Hill, nominated in the UK Great British Pantomime Awards), side-splitting comedy, this truly is a magical treat for all the family!

Iits Heigh-Ho… Heigh-Ho… off to Blackpool Grand Christmas panto we go!


In addition to an the best Blackpool Christmas Panto – take a look at these great family adventures for 2020

Blackpool Grand has a whole host of award-winning productions as well as its Christmas Panto for the family including;

Based on the Oscar-winning DreamWorks Animation film, Shrek The Musical (8 to 11 Apr). Shrek brings all the beloved characters you know from the film to life on stage and proves there’s more to the story than meets the ears.

Retelling the classic fairy-tale with a Northern Ballet twist, Little Red Riding Hood (18 Apr) is the perfect opportunity for your little ones to enjoy live ballet, music and theatre.

Holes (5 to 9 May) by Louis Sachar is the brilliant, inventive and creative new stage show based on the multi-award-winning novel and the Hollywood blockbuster. This hit production is a thrilling and off-beat comedy adventure and is perfect for adults and children aged 8 and up.

Breakin’ Convention (16 May), the world’s ground-breaking festival of hip-hop dance theatre, is back with a fresh new line up!

Expect jaw-dropping and inspiring performances from internationally celebrated poppers, lockers, b-boys and b-girls, including South Korea’s acclaimed Jinjo Crew, France’s Géométrie Variable and the UK’s own Spoken Movement, in a festival that showcases local talent alongside global sensations.

Direct from the West End, the Olivier Award nominated smash hit show, The Tiger Who Came to Tea (19 and 20 May) returns to Blackpool Grand, celebrating over 10 years on stage! A stunning stage adaptation of the classic tale of teatime mayhem… perfect for children aged 3+. expect to be surprised!

Peppa Pig (13 to 14 Jun) returns with a brand-new show! Excited to be going on a special day out with George, Mummy Pig and Daddy Pig – it’s going to be her best day ever!

In the Night Garden (4 and 5 Jul) – Igglepiggle, Upsy Daisy, MakkaPakka and friends are back in Blackpool for a fun-filled live show Igglepiggle’s Busy Day! You’ll see all your favourite characters beautifully brought to life with full-size costumes, magical puppets, and enchanting music. This completely new show lasts just under an hour and your little ones will be amazed when they see a very special visit from The Amazing Flying Pinky Ponk.


Discover of more shows at

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