Given the sheer magnitude and success of The Walt Disney Corporation, it is probably inevitable that one or two salacious and damaging rumors have been spread throughout its 92 year history.
Equally, though, Disney has time and again produced work so magical that not even the most creative of us could believe it to be true without seeing it with our own eyes.
Which is why when I came across these Disney urban legends, I genuinely had no idea as to which were true and which were false.
Can you tell fact from fiction? Use the polls below to test your reasoning against these mysterious myths!
1. Lemmings were forced into jumping off a cliff for the Disney nature documentary, White Wilderness.
The claims goes that in 1958 filmmakers staged scenes of lemmings hurling themselves off a cliff for the award-winning Disney nature documentary White Wilderness.
For centuries some people believed the lemmings to commit mass suicide like this for a reason unknown; others believed it to be nothing but a myth perpetuated by storytellers.
So, what actually happened on the set of White Wilderness? Did the filmmakers document a real life phenomenon, or did they just shove a few hapless animals to an early death?
Did the filmmakers force the lemmings off the cliff?
Yes, the filmmakers really did force lemmings to jump to their deaths.
White Wilderness was filmed in the Canadian province of Alberta, which is not a native habitat for lemmings and has no coastline. Apparently, the filmmakers imported lemmings by purchasing them from Inuit children who had caught them in other Canadian provinces.
The crew set up an intricate camera network before herding them off the cliff and into the water.
2. Disney produced an animated film called The Story of Menstruation.
We've all heard the classic Disney tales of princesses, dwarves, and fairies, but what about, 'The Story of Menstruation'?
Back in the 1940s a film was produced to educate young girls on the changes their body was about to go through, and was shown in classrooms all across America.
The rumor goes that, in an apparent break from traditional children's stories, it was actually Disney who produced the movie! What do you think?
Did Disney produce an animated film called 'The Story of Menstruation'?
Yes, Disney did produce this short educational film.
It featured a female narrator who gave girls 'helpful' advice such as: 'don't get tired, emotionally upset, or catch colds—it will throw you off your schedule' and 'keep a personal period calendar.'
It was shown in health classes until the 1960s.
3. Donald Duck was once banned in Finland because the character doesn't wear pants.
Apparently the people of Finland were so offended by the sight of Donald Duck's bare backside, and the fact that he cavorts with an unmarried female duck, that they decided to ban the entire collection of Donald Duck comics from entering the country.
True or false, what do you think?
Was Donald Duck once banned in Finland because the character doesn't wear pants?
No, Finland did not ban Donald Duck.
The true story is that in 1977, the city of Helsinki, Finland was broke. So broke, in fact, that when liberal representative, Mr. Markku Holopainen, suggested canceling expensive comic book imports, the whole room nodded in agreement.
The local press labeled him "the man who banned Donald Duck."
4. Toy Story 3 producers planted this rude silhouette in a scene in Andy's bedroom.
This rather disturbing image was widely circulated following the release of Toy Story 3, purportedly taken straight from a scene in the movie.
All of our favorite characters stare upwards in disbelief at what we can only imagine is Andy engaged in a decidedly adult activity with an unknown other.
Did you notice this rude silhouette during the film?
Did Toy Story 3 producers plant this rude silhouette in a scene in Andy's bedroom?
No, Toy Story 3 producers did not plant this rude silhouette in a scene in Andy's bedroom.
The image was actually a "fan"-made photoshop job, created by adding the suggestive shadow image into a scene which originally featured in the movie.
5. The personalities of the dwarf characters in Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs represent the seven stages of cocaine addiction.
The rumor here is really quite simple. It is believed that each dwarf in Snow White and The Seven Dwarfs represents a different stage along the continuum of cocaine addiction.
That would be Happy, Bashful, Sleepy, Dopey, Grumpy, Sneezy, and Doc.
What d'you reckon?
Do the personalities of the dwarf characters represent the seven stages of cocaine addiction?
No, the personalities of the dwarf characters do not represent the seven stages of cocaine addiction!
Cocaine addiction may well follow certain stages, but there are no concrete physical symptoms for each stage. Many types of drug abuse can produce symptoms such as sleep deprivation, mood swings, alteration of personality, allergies - all of which may lead to a trip to the doctor.