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When Tim Burton was still a young animator at the Walt Disney Studios, he had an idea to make a stop-motion terror film. Frankenweenie was to accompany in 1985 and the 1984 re-issue of Pinocchio, but Disney thought it was too dark and scary, and reserved the short for another use.


Victor Frankenstein (played by Barret Oliver) is an 11-year old boy who creates movies starring his dog, Sparky (a bull terrier, whose name is a joke on the use of electricity in the film and voiced by Mel Blanc). After Sparky is hit by a car, Victor learns at school about electrical impulses in muscles, and gets the idea to bring his pet back to life. He creates elaborate machines which bring down a bolt of lightning that revives the dog. While Victor is pleased, his neighbors are terrified by the animal, and when the Frankensteins decide to introduce the revitalized Sparky to them, they become angry and afraid.

Sparky runs away, with Victor in pursuit, and they find themselves at a local miniature golf course, and hide in its flagship windmill. The Frankensteins' neighbors, now an angry mob, arrive on the scene, and while using a cigarette lighter to try to see in, the windmill is accidentally lit on fire. Victor falls and is knocked out, but Sparky rescues him from the flames, in time to be crushed by the windmill. The mob realizes its error and use their cars, along with jumper cables, to "recharge" Sparky. He is revived, and all celebrate. Sparky later falls in love with a Poodle whose fur bears a strong resemblance to the hairdo of the Bride of Frankenstein.


  • Mel Blanc as Sparky (voice)
  • Shelley Duvall as Susan Frankenstein
  • Daniel Stern as Ben Frankenstein
  • Barret Oliver as Victor Frankenstein
  • Joseph Maher as Mr. Chambers
  • Roz Braverman as Mrs. Epstein
  • Paul Bartel as Mr. Walsh
  • Sofia Coppola as Anne Chambers (as Domino)
  • Jason Hervey as Frank Dale
  • Paul C. Scott as Mike Anderson
  • Helen Boll as Mrs. Curtis
  • Tony Jay as the Narrator
    • Mark Dodson as Sparky’s vocal effects
  • Rusty James as Raymond


Burton was hired by Disney after the film was completed; the studio claimed that he had wasted company resources and felt the film was too scary for young audiences. It had been scheduled to debut theatrically in the U.S. before a re-release of Pinocchio on December 21, 1984, but was shelved. It did play U.K. theaters in 1985 in front of Touchstone Pictures' Baby: Secret of the Lost Legend. But after the mainstream success of Burton's features Beetlejuice, Pee-wee's Big Adventure and Batman, the film was given a home video release in 1985 and 1992. It is currently available as an extra, along with Vincent, on The Nightmare Before Christmas DVD, Blu-ray and UMD for PSP, and is also available on Disney+.


Main article: Frankenweenie

Burton produced on a full length stop-motion remake of the film, which was released on October 5, 2012.


This page uses content from the English Wikipedia. The article or pieces of the original article was at Frankenweenie (1984 film). The list of authors can be seen in the page history. As with Disney Wiki, the text of Wikipedia is available under the GNU Free Documentation License.

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