The Castle Thunder is a sound effect that consists the sound of a loud thunderclap during a thunderstorm. It was originally recorded for the 1931 Universal film, Frankenstein, and has since been featured in a dozen films, television programs, and commercials, including many animated films produced by Disney. Use of the effect in subsequent years has declined because the quality of the original analog recording does not sufficiently hold up in modern sound mixes.
Films and Shorts
- Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs (1937) - Heard after Snow White is poisoned by the apple.
- Bambi (1942) - Heard before the Little April Shower song.
- Make Mine Music (1946) shorts: Casey at the Bat and Willie the Operatic Whale - Heard during a storm in Mudville and before the harpoon from Tetti-Tatti's boat was loose after Willie the Whale was harpooned.
- 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea (1954) - Heard before the scene when Captain Nemo is playing the organ as well as during the giant squid attack.
- Peter Pan (1953) - Heard right when the bomb explodes.
- The Vanishing Prairie (1954) - Heard as a thunderstorm arrives to quell the wildfires.
- Lady and the Tramp (1955) - Heard as Lady's fantasy sequence cuts to her in a leaky doghouse on a stormy night, and again when we transition to the night Jim Jr. is born, as well as when Aunt Sarah is awakened by Tramp and the rat's fight and Jim Jr.'s crying. A slowed-down version is also heard several times from the beginning of the storm prior to the fight up to the end of it.
- The Littlest Outlaw (1955) - Heard as the train with Pablito and Conquistador on board makes its way to San Miguel during a thunderstorm.
- The Great Locomotive Chase (1956) - Heard as Andrews and his men meet on a hillside after dark to plan their trek to Chattanooga.
- Sleeping Beauty (1959) - Heard multiple times during scenes featuring Maleficent. It is first heard twice when she shows up at Aurora's christening and escapes after she places her curse on her. It is later heard as lightning flashes around her castle on the Forbidden Mountain. It is also heard when she uses lightning to attack her Goons and Prince Phillip.
- Babes in Toyland (1961) - Played when Barnaby's House is first seen.
- One Hundred and One Dalmatians (1961) - Heard during the night Pongo and Perdita's puppies are born.
- In Search of the Castaways (1962) - Played three times before the mangrove tree is set on fire by a lightning strike.
- The Sword in the Stone (1963) - Heard when Merlin casts a blizzard over Sir Ector.
- The Incredible Journey (1963) - Heard when Tao has to take shelter in a hollow log from the storm.
- Mary Poppins (1964) - Heard after the Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious song.
- The Jungle Book (1967) - Heard during the vulture scenes and during the final battle against Shere Khan.
- The Aristocats (1970) - Heard after Duchess and her kittens end up lost in the country.
- Robin Hood (1973) - The slowed-down version is heard a few times during the thunderstorm when many of Nottingham's residents are in jail and when Friar Tuck is arrested by the Sheriff of Nottingham.
- The Apple Dumpling Gang (1975) - Heard as Russell Donovan struggles to send Bobby, Clovis, and Celia Bradley to bed.
- Star Wars: A New Hope (1977) - It's featured in the first Star Wars film, courtesy of Ben Burtt, and can be heard during the trench run sequence on the Death Star.
- The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh (1977) - Heard during the thunderstorm in the Hundred Acre Wood.
- The Rescuers (1977) - Heard during the film's opening.
- Unidentified Flying Oddball (1979) - Heard during the rocket launch.
- Herbie Goes Bananas (1980) - Heard during the stormy jungle sequence when Prindle, Quinn, and Shepard find the gold, and as Herbie drives through the jungle looking for Paco.
- Popeye (1980) - Heard during the opening credits before transitioning to the musical number "Sweethaven".
- The Fox and the Hound (1981) - Heard after Tod is left in the game preserve by Widow Tweed.
- The Great Mouse Detective (1986) - Heard while Basil tells Dawson and Olivia about Ratigan and during the Big Ben climax.
- The Brave Little Toaster (1987) - Heard after Toaster's nightmare ends when Blanky is blown away by the wind.
- The Little Mermaid (1989) - Heard a few times during the storm sequence and once briefly during the final battle against Ursula.
- DuckTales the Movie: Treasure of the Lost Lamp (1990) - Heard while Scrooge is in jail, looking out to his money bin which is now owned by Dijon.
- Wild Hearts Can't Be Broken (1991) - Heard before Sonora spends some quiet time with Lightning after Al tells her that training to dive again is impossible now that she's blind
- Chicken Little (1943) - Heard when the fox fakes a thunderstorm on the title character, waving a small piece of metal to simulate thunder.
- The Plastics Inventor (1944) - Heard when Donald Duck approaches a storm while flying in his plastic airplane.
- Chips Ahoy (1956) - Donald makes thunder sounds by banging a metal fuel container with his foot while playing tricks on Chip and Dale.
- Frankenweenie (1984) - A lightning bolt strikes the rod to bring Sparky back to life.
- DuckTales (1987) - Used more than once.
- TaleSpin (1990) - Used more than once.
- Sofia the First - Heard once in episodes "The Amulet and the Anthem" and "The Elf Situation".
- Elena and the Secret of Avalor - Heard when the dark clouds surround over the Avalor castle.
- Toy Story of Terror! - Heard during the horror film sequence.
- Wander Over Yonder - Heard whenever Lord Hater uses his lightning.
- Chibi Tiny Tales - Heard at the beginning of The Owl House short "The Bake Off!", when Eda and Lilith argue over what to bake.
- The Haunted Mansion (Disneyland) - Heard right when the Ghost Host says, "Of course, there's always my way," and then during the panting hall tour.
- Timon and Pumbaa's Virtual Safari - Heard during the following:
- 1.0 - After a big clap of thunder crashes before Timon jumps out of the boat.
- 1.5 - During the Haunted Mansion tour