Dumbo is a live-action film distributed by Walt Disney Pictures and a live-action retelling of the 1941 animated movie of the same name, which in turn was based on the book by Helen Aberson and Harold Pearl. Written by Ehren Kruger and produced by Justin Springer, it was directed by Tim Burton.


In 1919, equestrian performer and World War I veteran Holt Farrier returns after the war to the Medici Brothers' Circus, run by Max Medici. However, the circus has run into financial troubles and Medici has been forced to sell their horses, so he reassigns Holt as the caretaker for their pregnant elephant, Jumbo. She gives birth to a calf with abnormally large ears and Medici orders Holt to hide them before he'll allow the public to see the calf. However, the calf accidentally reveals them in his debut performance. The crowd mockingly names him Dumbo and pelts him with peanuts and other objects. Jumbo is distressed by his treatment and rampages into the ring causing extensive damage and accidentally killing an abusive handler. Afterwards, Medici sells her in order to prevent a public relations disaster. Holt's children, Milly and Joe, comfort Dumbo and realize he can fly by flapping his ears. They also discover that feathers are the key to his willingness to fly.

In another performance, Dumbo plays the role of a firefighter to put out a fire with water sprayed from his trunk. However, the performance goes wrong and he is trapped on a high platform surrounded by flames. Milly risks her life to deliver a feather to him, giving him the confidence to fly. The audience is astounded when he begins to fly, and word of him begins to spread.

V.A. Vandevere, the owner of Dreamland Amusement Park, approaches Medici and proposes a collaboration. Medici would become Vandevere's partner and the Medici Brothers' Circus' troupe would be employed to perform at Dreamland. Later, Vandevere demands that Dumbo should fly with trapeze artist Colette Marchant on his back. However, their debut performance at Dreamland goes wrong with him nearly falling off a high platform leading to him trumpeting in alarm. He hears Jumbo's call in response and realizes that she is an exhibit elsewhere in Dreamland. He flies out of the circus ring and reunites with her.

Fearing that Jumbo may become a distraction to Dumbo, Vandevere orders her to be taken away and killed. He also fires all of the Medici troupe. When Holt and the rest of the Medici troupe learn Vandevere intends to kill Jumbo, they resolve to set both her and Dumbo free. The Medici troupe utilize their various talents to break Jumbo out of her enclosure while Holt and Colette guide Dumbo to fly out of the circus. Vandevere attempts to stop them, but accidentally starts a fire triggered by mismanagement of the electricity system which spreads and destroys Dreamland.

Holt, Colette, Milly, Joe, and the Medici troupe bring the elephants to a port where Dumbo and Jumbo board a ship back to their native home. Implying that Vandevere was convicted of arson through misconduct, the Medici Brothers' Circus is reestablished as the Medici Family Circus, which flourishes while Dumbo and Jumbo reunite with a herd of elephants in the jungle.




The film was announced on July 8, 2014, along with announcements of other live-action remakes of Aladdin, The Jungle Book, Cinderella, The Lion King, and Beauty and the Beast. Ehren Kruger was announced as the screenwriter, while Justin Springer was confirmed as the producer. Tim Burton was announced as the director in March 2015.[3][4]

In March 2017, it was reported that Eva Green was in talks to play a trapeze artist.[5] Shortly after this report, Danny DeVito was cast as a ringmaster named Medici.[6] A few weeks later, Colin Farrell had entered negotiations to play the role of Holt, a father of two children who befriend Dumbo.[7] Will Smith was originally offered for the role, but turned it down due to "scheduling conflicts" on other projects and would later sign on for the live-action remake of Aladdin, taking the role of Genie instead. Chris Pine and Casey Affleck were also considered for it.[8][9] On April 4, 2017, Michael Keaton entered talks to star as the villain.[10] On June 26, 2017, he officially confirmed his involvement with the film.[11] Before he was cast as V.A. Vandevere, Tom Hanks was originally considered for the role.[8]

Principal filming of Dumbo began in July 2017 in the United Kingdom and ended in November 2017.[12][13][14]


The film received an approval rating of 47% on Rotten Tomatoes, based on 311 reviews, with an average rating of 5.53/10. Its consensus reads, "Dumbo is held partly aloft by Tim Burton's visual flair, but a crowded canvas and overstretched story leave this live-action remake more workmanlike than wondrous."

Differences from the 1941 film

  • There are no talking animals in the remake.
  • In the original film, Casey Junior had eyes and a mouth and is able to speak. In the remake, Casey appears as a non-anthropomorphic train and does not speak.
  • In the original film, Dumbo is delivered by a stork to Mrs. Jumbo. In the remake, Mrs. Jumbo is pregnant and actually gives birth to Dumbo.
    • Storks can be seen right before Mrs. Jumbo gives birth to Dumbo, which is a reference to the original film.
  • In the original film, Dumbo is helped by a mouse called Timothy Q. Mouse. In the remake, he is instead helped by two children named Milly and Joe Farrier, while Timothy briefly appears as a mouse owned by Milly and Joe.
  • In the original version, Mrs. Jumbo goes on a rampage after her son is mocked by some mean kids. In the remake, she goes on a rampage after Dumbo is mocked by the circus' public.
    • Additionally, Mrs. Jumbo's rampage is more destructve in the remake, destroying the circus' ring and accidentally killing her abusive handler.
  • In the original film, Timothy and Dumbo realize the latter's ability to fly after ending up in a tree after accidentally getting drunk. In the remake, Dumbo's ability to fly is dscovered when Dumbo sneezes after accidentally sucking a feather into his trunk.
  • Jim Crow and his brothers aren't featured in the remake, with Dumbo instead seemingly assuming he needs feathers to fly due to the afore mentioned incident.
    • However, Dumbo uses a black feather during the climax, which could be a possible nod to the characters.
  • The original film ends with Dumbo flying at the circus, while the remake showcases the aftermath of it, with Dumbo and the circus being adquired by cruel buisnessman V.A. Vandevere, and ends with Dumbo and his mother being released into an Indian jungle.
  • Dumbo dosen't get drunk in the remake, with the Pink Elephants instead being featured as bubble sculptures during a performace in Dreamland, which Dumbo actually enjoys.
  • The original film is set in 1941, the same year it released. The remake is set in 1919, exactely a hundred years before its release. Since the original is not set as soon after World War I, Holt Farrier and his story arc of adapting back into life are new to the remake.



The Disney Wiki has a collection of images and media related to Dumbo (2019 film).


  • This is the sixth of many live-action adaptations of classic Disney animated films released in the 21st century, following MaleficentCinderellaThe Jungle BookBeauty and the Beast, and Christopher Robin (Pete's Dragon doesn't count as it is considered an adaptation of a live-action movie).
  • There are no talking animals in this adaptation as in the 1941 animated film; instead the story is revised to include more human characters, focusing more so on their perspective, thus one of the three white mice that Milly and Joe bring to Dumbo is dressed similar to Timothy Q. Mouse.
  • This is officially the first time since 1992's Batman Returns that Michael Keaton, Danny DeVito, and Tim Burton work together on the same film.
  • This is also Burton's fourth film with Keaton following Beetlejuice, Batman, and Batman Returns; and with DeVito following Batman Returns, Mars Attacks!, and Big Fish; his third film with Eva Green following Dark Shadows and Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children; and his second film with Alan Arkin following Edward Scissorhands.
    • This is the second Tim Burton film to star Danny DeVito playing the role of a ringmaster, after 2003's Big Fish.
      • Coincidentally, in Big Fish, DeVito's character had the ability to transform into a werewolf on a full moon whereas in Dumbo, a supposed "werewolf" was seen on display at the Nightmare Island attraction in Dreamland.
  • This is the fourth time that Michael Keaton does a role for a Disney film, after playing Ray Peyton, Sr. in Herbie: Fully Loaded, Chick Hicks in Cars, and Ken in Toy Story 3.
  • This is Danny DeVito's first role for a Disney film since he voiced Phil in Hercules.
  • This is the second time that Colin Farrell does a role for a Disney film, after playing Travers Robert Goff in Saving Mr. Banks.
  • Dumbo is the third live-action remake to be released in March, after 2015's Cinderella and 2017's Beauty and the Beast, followed by 2020's Mulan.
    • Thus, this is also the second film directed by Burton to have a release in March after 2010's Alice in Wonderland.
  • The film acts as a follow up expansion to the original one, picking up following the climax of it while in addition of also serving as a live-action adaptation of the original one.[15]


  1. Ford, Rebecca (March 10, 2015). "Tim Burton to Direct Live-Action 'Dumbo' for Disney", The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved on April 14, 2017. 
  2. "Danny Elfman to Score Tim Burton’s ‘Dumbo’" (October 4, 2017). Retrieved on October 4, 2017. 
  3. Ford, Rebecca (March 10, 2015). "Tim Burton to Direct Live-Action 'Dumbo' for Disney", The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved on March 23, 2015. 
  4. Kits, Borys (July 8, 2014). "Live-Action 'Dumbo' in the Works From 'Transformers' Writer", The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved on March 23, 2014. 
  5. Kit, Borys (March 7, 2017). "Eva Green in Talks to Star in Tim Burton's Live-Action 'Dumbo'". Hollywood Reporter
  6. Busch, Anita (March 9, 2017). "Danny DeVito Negotiating To Join Tim Burton’s ‘Dumbo’ At Disney". Deadline
  7. "Colin Farrell In Negotiations For ‘Dumbo’ At Disney". Deadline (April 14, 2017)
  8. 8.0 8.1 Kroll, Justin (January 11, 2017). "Will Smith Circling Tim Burton’s Live-Action ‘Dumbo’ Adaptation", Variety. Retrieved on June 17, 2017. 
  9. Fleming Jr, Mike (February 10, 2017). "'Dumbo’ A No-Go For Will Smith", Deadline. Retrieved on June 17, 2017. 
  10. "Michael Keaton in Talks to Play Villain in Tim Burton’s ‘Dumbo’ (EXCLUSIVE)". Variety. Retrieved on 14 April 2017.
  11. "Michael Keaton confirmed as the villain for Disney’s live-action remake, “Dumbo”". Inside the Magic. Retrieved on 26 June 2017.
  12. "Will 'Avengers,' 'Frozen 2' and 'Star Wars' Dazzle at D23?", The Hollywood Reporter (July 13, 2017). Retrieved on July 13, 2017. 
  13. Gatt, Joesph (November 4, 2017). "And that’s a picture wrap for #NeilsSkellig in @DisneyStudios #Dumbo ! It’s been an amazing adventure w/incredible people! #teamskellig". Twitter Retrieved on April 2, 2018.
  14. Oparei, DeObia (November 10, 2017). "That’s a wrap on #DUMBO homeward bound after a fabulous summer shooting for #Disney in #London with #timburton". Twitter Retrieved on April 2, 2018.

External links

v - e - d
Dumbo Logo
Films and Television: DumboMickey Mouse ClubDumbo's CircusHouse of MouseDumbo (2019)Video

Video Games: Disney's Villains' RevengeDisney Emoji Blitz
Books: Big Golden BookClassic StorybookDisney's Wonderful World of ReadingDisney Read-AlongGolden Sound StoryLittle Golden BookDumbo's Circus

Disney Parks
Casey Jr. Circus TrainCasey Jr. Splash 'n' Soak StationDisney Animation BuildingDumbo the Flying ElephantGames of the Boardwalk

Entertainment: AnimagiqueFantasmic!Once Upon a Mouse
Restaurants: Timothy's Treats
Shops: Casey Jr. Trinket Train
Parades: Disney's Dreams On Parade: Moving OnFlights of Fantasy ParadeFestival of Fantasy ParadeHappiness is Here ParadeJubilation!Main Street Electrical ParadeMickey's Storybook ExpressThe Wonderful World of Disney Parade (The Float)
Fireworks: Celebrate the MagicDisneyland ForeverHappily Ever AfterMagicalOnce Upon a TimeRemember... Dreams Come TrueWonderful World of Animation
Halloween: Happy Hallowishes

Original: DumboTimothy MouseMrs. JumboCircus ElephantsRingmasterMr. StorkCasey JuniorPink ElephantsThe CrowsCircus AnimalsClowns

Dumbo's Circus: LionelFair DinkumQ.T.BarnabyLilliSebastianFlip & Flap
Deleted: PennyGodfryDotClaude and Lolly
Remake: Holt FarrierV.A. VandevereColette MarchantMilly FarrierMax MediciJoe FarrierMiss AtlantisNeils Skellig

Look Out for Mr. StorkCasey, Jr.RoustaboutsBaby MineHit the Big BossPink Elephants on ParadeWhen I See an Elephant Fly
The Magic Feather

Start a Discussion Discussions about Dumbo (2019 film)

  • The Originals Vs The Remakes

    41 messages
    • maleficent is not a remake. there is a remake of a scene from the cartoon but the rest is Maleficents backstory. Prople need to stop saying th...
    • Let's see the '''real''' problem about all that:
  • Question about Dumbo

    • if it's not produced by tim burton, then why does it say that in previews and trailers?