Everyone loves a teddy bear, but what about Disney bears? Disney is filled with adorable characters, and you will be surprised at just how many of these cuddly cartoons are bears. Time for beets, bears, Battlestar Galactica… Just kidding. Just bears.
Winnie the Pooh
The first Disney Winnie the Pooh movie debuted in 1977 and we can never get enough of this chubby crop top wearing cuddle bear and his gang of friends in the Hundred Acre Wood. He has felt a rumbly in his tumbly for the last 50 years using his adorable dopey self to bring us six different movies through the years. For three generations now, Winnie the Pooh has been Disney’s most famous bear.
Baloo is the easy-going bear friend in the Jungle Book. He has taught us all about the bear necessities of life! Keep scrolling to see how you can see our pal Baloo in another movie to play a different bear… Okay similar, not same, but pretty darn close!
He’s the bear we love to hate, Lotso, is the villain from Toy Story 4 that tries to put our pals into the incinerator… Yeah, that’s pretty dark, Pixar. Don’t worry, they keep it light by making him strawberry scented.
Fun Kids Activity: DIY Your Own Toy Story Slime
Speaking of dark… Pixar brought us Mordu in the movie Brave in 2012. Mordu is the Prince of the ancient clan that used a spell to meet his own selfish needs and it caused him to turn into a rabid bear. Oh, and he ate the leg of Princess Merida’s father. Yeah, this guy is no cuddle bear. You would have more fun snuggling a wood chipper.
Poor Queen Elinor just wanted to raise her daughter to be a princess, but she didn’t consider Merida’s independence. Well, she got turned into a bear. For a little while, she was so stinking adorable, complete with her tiara! Until she, too, went rabid…
In 1973, the world received Robin Hood in a whole new way! Who knew that animals would make the best version of this movie. Little John is just a lovable cuddly guy to our beloved Robin Hood. But wait… he looks a little familiar… Hmmmmmmmm, maybe you should watch Robin Hood and The Jungle Book back to back.
Okay, we’ll just tell you! After Walt died in 1966, there was so much uncertainty about the company and the directions it would go, so to speed up the production of the movies immediately following his death, the animators recycled animation cells from other movies. Yup, Little John and Baloo are the same bear! It doesn’t end there… It’s also the same actor who voices both characters! Tricky, tricky, tricky.
I know what you’re thinking, but Disney bought the rights to the Muppets in 2014 making Fozzie Bear a Disney bear! Woka, woka. Let’s face it, he is the coolest of all of the Muppets, after Super Grover, of course. All of the focus is always on Kermit and Miss Piggy, but let’s be real, they are just tabloid drama that we can’t get enough of. Fozzie Bear is really where it’s at!
Country Bear Jamboree
Tucked away in the Frontierland buildings is the show that everyone forgot existed, the Country Bear Jamboree. Honestly, who still goes to this show? This is a hokey-hick country schtick kind of show with a lot of banjo picking. If we’re being honest with ourselves, it’s a totally skippable show, but if you’re ever looking to name an old coon hound, here’s a good place to start. Brace yourself, there are a lot of bears to list here: Henry, Liver Lips McGrowl, Wendell, Teddi Berra, Ernest, Terrence, Trixie, Big Al, The Sun Bonnet Trio, Gomer, Zeke, Zeb, Ted, Fred, Tennessee, and Baby Oscar. Can we be honest for a second? Disney, why do all of these bears just look drunk?
Disney brought us Humphrey the bear in 1950 and he is like the Disney version of Yogi. He is slapstick funny and made us roll in his original shorts back in the day. They tried to give him his big break, but the world has just never really been ready for Humphrey. He had a couple of cameos in recent years, but sadly, he is mostly unknown. Humphrey, we love you!
This guy is a Disney conundrum. He is technically a bad guy, being Br’er Fox’s right-hand man, but at the same time, his slapstick antics just make us love him regardless! These characters are part of the story featured in Splash Mountain. Better catch them now before the big Princess and the Frog refurbishment.
Bear (Bear in the Big Blue House)
Any 90’s baby has to remember these Disney Bears, they are from the preschool puppet show Bear in the Big Blue House. The characters had the most clever names – kidding, the character names were just the animal names, ex. Bear. Yeah, the clever guy must have been out sick that day… I can still see the front of the blue house opening up to see what problem we were going to solve that day!
Koda and Kenai
In 2003 we were introduced to Koda and Kenai in Brother Bear, a movie about an Inuit hunter that transforms into a bear. Hmm, this is similar-ish to Brave…? Okay, the movies bear no other resemblances, but it is pretty funny that Disney would have two movies that reference bear transformation.
Who the heck is Prince Adam? He’s the Beast! The hideous, monstrous beast! When the animators were working on Beauty and the Beast they combined a buffalo, lion, boar, wolf, gorilla, and you guessed it, a bear. It may be loosely considered a bear, but he has enough qualifications to make our list!
I know what you’re thinking, Mei Mei in the newest Pixar movie Turning Red is not some magical bear, she’s a red panda! Which, technically speaking, is a type of raccoon. We’re including it for two reasons: First, so often people group them as little bears anyway and the red panda in the movie looks more red bear than a red panda, and second because we just love this new movie so much we want to talk about it! Mei Mei, we love you, girl! 4-Townies 4-Eva! Catch this newest Pixar movie on Disney+ and let us know your thoughts!
Duffy the Disney Bear
Duffy the Disney Bear is Mickey Mouse’s very own teddy bear. Born from an original Walt Disney Imagineering story for the Japan Parks, Duffy became popular around the world. You can find him and his friends at Aulani and Polynesian Resort even! His back story is pretty adorable:
This particular story goes…when Mickey Mouse the sailor, based in Cape Cod, was leaving on a long sea voyage, Minnie Mouse made Duffy to keep Mickey company during his travels. Minnie presented her hand-sewn bear to Mickey in a duffel bag, which is how Mickey came up with the name Duffy.Disney Imagineering
Who are your favorite Disney bears? Let us know your thoughts in the comments!
I am a mother of three that has refused to grow up. Adulting is for the birds, so I go to Disney World every chance I get for that magical escape from reality. I believe that Haunted Mansion is the best ride in all of the Disney Parks, and I am fervently in team Happily Ever After for fireworks spectaculars, (sorry, not sorry, Enchanted). Finally, I hope I never grow tired of skipping down Main Street, USA, and my dream come true would be “friends with” the Fairy Godmother in my old age.