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Saludos Amigos

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Original theatrical release poster
Saludos Amigos
Directed by Norman Ferguson
Wilfred Jackson
Jack Kinney
Hamilton Luske
Bill Roberts
Produced by Walt Disney
Written by Homer Brightman
William Cottrell
Dick Huemer
Joe Grant
Harry Reeves
Ted Sears
Webb Smith
Roy Williams
Ralph Wright
Starring Lee Blair
Mary Blair
Pinto Colvig
Walt Disney
Norman Ferguson
Frank Graham
Clarence Nash
José Oliveira
Frank Thomas
Music by Edward H. Plumb
Paul J. Smith
Editing by
Production company(s) Walt Disney Productions
Distributor RKO Radio Pictures
Buena Vista Distribution
Release date(s) August 24, 1942 (Rio de Janeiro)
February 6, 1943 (United States)
Running time 42 minutes
Language English
Gross revenue
Preceded by Bambi
Followed by The Three Caballeros
External links
IMDb page

Saludos Amigos is the sixth full-length animated feature film in the Disney Animated Canon , released in 1942. It is the first of the six Disney "Package films" made during the 1940s, when many members of the production staff were drafted into World War II. Due to this decrease in resources, the company could not afford to make feature-length stories during this time and instead produced films composed of multiple shorter segments. Set in Latin America, it is made up of four different segments; Donald Duck stars in two of them and Goofy stars in one. It also features the first appearance of José Carioca. At a run-time of 42 minutes, Saludos Amigos had beat Dumbo as Disney's shortest-running animated feature.

The film itself was given federal loan guarantees, because the Disney studio had over-expanded just before European markets were closed to them by the war, and because Disney was struggling with labor unrest at the time (including a strike that was underway at the time the goodwill journey began).

Saludos Amigos was popular enough that Walt Disney decided to make a sequel, The Three Caballeros, to be produced two years later. The film was made partially because several Latin American governments had close ties with Nazi Germany, and the US government wanted to counteract those ties. Mickey Mouse and other Disney characters were popular in Latin America, and Walt Disney acted as ambassador.


Saludos Amigos Title Card

The title card to the film.

A group of Disney animators make a goodwill trip to South America (this is documented in live-action). An animated segment details which places they visit.


  • Lake Titicaca: Donald Duck visits the famous real-life lake of Lake Titicaca, located at the border of Peru and Bolivia. He looks around, learns about the lake's traditions and makes a failed attempt at sailing a boat before setting off on a journey through the mountains atop a llama. He panicks when the llama is busy walking across a wooden suspended bridge, eventually resulting in his fall. He lands in a pottery shop, shattering some pots and taking others with him.
  • Pedro: A small anthropomorphic child-airplane, Pedro, lives in Chile with his mother and father, large airplanes who deliver mail. When both his parents are incapacitated due to technical defects, Pedro is forced to embark on his first journey in their place, picking up post from the city of Mendoza. His flight is perilous and dangerous and he is nearly killed in a storm on his way back, but manages to make it to Chile unscathed in the end.
  • El Gaucho Goofy: Goofy, re-imagined here as a Texan cowboy, is put to work as a gaucho in Argentina. He works together with a trickster horse as the narrator explains the life of the gaucho. Life as a gaucho for Goofy is strange, harsh and tiresome - not because of the living conditions, but mainly due to the antics of his horse. He is flown back to Texas in the end, to his gratitude.
  • Aquarela de Brasil: Disney animators begin drawing a beautifully rendered Brazilian jungle, where Donald Duck emerges from a flower at some point. While standing around, Donald sees the animator's pen drawing another figure: José Carioca. Joe takes Donald out of the jungle and into the city of Rio de Janeiro, where Donald accidentally drinks an incredibly spicy drink (thinking it was soda pop) before spending the night going out and dancing to the samba in Rio with Joe.


The film's original score was composed by Edward H. Plumb, Paul J. Smith, and Charles Wolcott. The title song, "Saludos Amigos", was written for the film by Charles Wolcott and Ned Washington. The film also featured the song "Aquarela do Brasil", written by the popular Brazilian songwriter Ary Barroso and performed by Aloysio De Oliveira and an instrumental version of "Tico-Tico no Fubá", written by Zequinha de Abreu. "Aquarela do Brasil" was written and first performed in 1939, but did not achieve much initial success. However after appearing in this film it became an international hit, becoming the first Brazilian song to be played over a million times on American radio.

The film's soundtrack was first released by Decca Records in 1944 as a collection of three 78rpm singles.

Track Listing

  • Side 1: "Saludos Amigos" b/w Side 2: "Inca Suite"
  • Side 3: "Brazil ("Aquarela do Brazil")" b/w Side 4: "Argentine Country Dances"
  • Side 5: "Tico-Tico" b/w Side 6: "Pedro from Chile"


The film was nominated for three Oscars: Best Musical Score, Best Original Song for the theme song "Saludos Amigos", and Best Sound Recording.

The film included live-action documentary sequences featuring footage of modern Latin American cities with skyscrapers and fashionably dressed residents. This surprised many contemporary US viewers, who associated such images only with US and European cities, and contributed to a changing impression of Latin America. Film historian Alfred Charles Richard Jr. has commented that Saludos Amigos "did more to cement a community of interest between peoples of the Americas in a few months than the State Department had in fifty years".

The film also inspired Chilean cartoonist René Ríos Boettiger to create Condorito, one of Latin America's most ubiquitous cartoon characters. Ríos perceived that the character Pedro, a small, incapable airplane, was a slight to Chileans and created a comic that could supposedly rival Disney's comic characters.

Other critics, however, were less kind to the film. James Agee of The Nation, for one, scorned Saludos Amigos as depressing and self-interested, and that "Disney's famous cuteness, however richly it may mirror national infantilism, is hard on my stomach." Along the same lines, John T. MacManus of the newspaper PM accused Saludos Amigos of a "mingled pride and sadness over the growing up of a beloved something we all foolishly hoped could stay young forever."

Review aggregator website Rotten Tomatoes reports that 80% of the critics gave the film a positive review based on 10 reviews.


The scene of Goofy smoking in "El Gaucho Goofy" is edited out when released onto home video in 2000 (Gold Classic Collection) and 2008 (as part of a double bill with The Three Caballeros).

The first home video release to present this film uncensored is as a bonus feature of the Walt & El Grupo DVD.

An uncensored and uncut version is scheduled to be released on Blu-Ray In 2016 In 2-Movie Collection on Tuesday, January 19, 2016.


v - e - d
Disney Saludos Amigos and The Three Caballeros Logos
Saludos Amigos | Video | The Three Caballeros | Video | House of Mouse | Two Happy Amigos | A Present for Donald | South of the Border with Disney

Books and Comics: The Penguin That Hated the Cold | The Magnificent Seven (Minus 4) Caballeros | The Three Caballeros Ride Again | South of the Border with Disney: Walt Disney and the Good Neighbor Program, 1941-1948

Segments: El Gaucho Goofy | Aquarela do Brasil | Pedro | Lake Titicaca | The Cold-Blooded Penguin | The Flying Gauchito | Baía | Los Posadas | Mexico: Pátzcuaro, Veracuz and Acapulco | Donald's Surreal Reverie

Disney Parks
Gran Fiesta Tour Starring The Three Caballeros | Mickey Mouse Revue | Panchito Pistoles and José Carioca Costumes Through the Years
Donald Duck | Goofy | José Carioca | Panchito Pistoles | Pedro | Mama Plane | Papa Plane | Aconcagua | Aracuan Bird | Burrito | Pablo and the Penguins | The Toy Bull | Flying Gauchito | Yaya

Guest Stars: Walt Disney | Frank Thomas | Lee Blair | Mary Blair | Norman Ferguson

The Three Caballeros | You Belong to My Heart | We Are The Three Caballeros | My Name is Panchito | Saludos Amigos
South America | Brazil | Mexico | Argentina | Chile | Peru | Uruguay
Deleted Concepts
The Laughing Gauchito | Caxanga | Cuban Carnival | The Hornero Bird | Blame It on the Samba | Aurora the Parrot | Miguelito Maracas

Disney theatrical animated features
Walt Disney Animation Studios
Disney Golden Age

Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs (1937) · Pinocchio (1940) · Fantasia (1940) · Dumbo (1941) · Bambi (1942) · Saludos Amigos (1942) · The Three Caballeros (1944) · Make Mine Music (1946) · Fun and Fancy Free (1947) · Melody Time (1948) · The Adventures of Ichabod and Mr. Toad (1949) · Cinderella (1950) · Alice in Wonderland (1951) · Peter Pan (1953) · Lady and the Tramp (1955) · Sleeping Beauty (1959) · One Hundred and One Dalmatians (1961) · The Sword in the Stone (1963) · The Jungle Book (1967)

Disney Dark Age

The Aristocats (1970) · Robin Hood (1973) · The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh (1977) · The Rescuers (1977) · The Fox and the Hound (1981) · The Black Cauldron (1985) · The Great Mouse Detective (1986) · Oliver & Company (1988)

Disney Renaissance

The Little Mermaid (1989) · The Rescuers Down Under (1990) · Beauty and the Beast (1991) · Aladdin (1992) · The Lion King (1994) · Pocahontas (1995) · The Hunchback of Notre Dame (1996) · Hercules (1997) · Mulan (1998) · Tarzan (1999)


Fantasia 2000 (1999) · Dinosaur (2000) · The Emperor's New Groove (2000) · Atlantis: The Lost Empire (2001) · Lilo & Stitch (2002) · Treasure Planet (2002) · Brother Bear (2003) · Home on the Range (2004) · Chicken Little (2005) · Meet the Robinsons (2007) · Bolt (2008)

Disney Revival

The Princess and the Frog (2009) · Tangled (2010) · Winnie the Pooh (2011) · Wreck-It Ralph (2012) · Frozen (2013) · Big Hero 6 (2014)


Zootopia (2016) · Moana (2016) · Gigantic (2018) · Frozen 2 (TBA)

Pixar Animation Studios

Toy Story (1995) · A Bug's Life (1998) · Toy Story 2 (1999) · Monsters, Inc. (2001) · Finding Nemo (2003) · The Incredibles (2004) · Cars (2006) · Ratatouille (2007) · WALL-E (2008) · Up (2009) · Toy Story 3 (2010) · Cars 2 (2011) · Brave (2012) · Monsters University (2013) · Inside Out (2015) · The Good Dinosaur (2015)


Finding Dory (2016) · Cars 3 (2017) · Coco (2017) · Toy Story 4 (2018) · The Incredibles 2 (2019)

DisneyToon Studios

DuckTales the Movie: Treasure of the Lost Lamp (1990) · A Goofy Movie (1995) · Doug's 1st Movie (1999) · The Tigger Movie (2000) · Recess: School's Out (2001) · Return to Never Land (2002) · The Jungle Book 2 (2003) · Piglet's Big Movie (2003) · Teacher's Pet (2004) · Pooh's Heffalump Movie (2005) · Bambi II (2006) · Tinker Bell (2008) · Tinker Bell and the Lost Treasure (2009) · Tinker Bell and the Great Fairy Rescue (2010) · Secret of the Wings (2012) · Planes (2013) · The Pirate Fairy (2014) · Planes: Fire & Rescue (2014) · Tinker Bell and the Legend of the NeverBeast (2015)

Lucasfilm Animation Studios

Star Wars: The Clone Wars (2008) · Strange Magic (2015)

Live-Action Films with Non-CG Animation

The Reluctant Dragon (1941) · Victory Through Air Power (1943) · Song of the South (1946) · So Dear to My Heart (1949) · Mary Poppins (1964) · Bedknobs and Broomsticks (1971) · Pete's Dragon (1977) · Who Framed Roger Rabbit (1988) · James and the Giant Peach (1996) · Enchanted (2007)

Animated Films Distributed by Disney

The Brave Little Toaster (1987) · The Nightmare Before Christmas (1993) · Valiant (2005) · The Wild (2006) · A Christmas Carol (2009) · Mars Needs Moms (2011) · Frankenweenie (2012)

Studio Ghibli Films Distributed by Disney

Princess Mononoke (1997) · Spirited Away (2001) · Howl's Moving Castle (2004) · Tales from Earthsea (2006) · Ponyo (2008) · The Secret World of Arietty (2010) · The Wind Rises (2013)

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