Meghan Moran


The themes and family structures of Disney’s live-action and animated films have significantly changed over time. This study addressed the following research questions: 1) What are the thematic differences between live-action and animated Disney films? 2) What are the differences in family structure comparing live-action and animated Disney films? and 3) What are the differences between theme and family structure in relation to the film’s release date? A random sample of live-action and animated Disney films was content analyzed by theme and family structure. The results indicate that the majority of the films analyzed demonstrated the theme of growth and journey. Married parents were also the most dominant type of family structure seen in these films. The most significant finding was the impact of the film’s release date in relation to the theme and family structure.

Library of Congress Subject Headings

Walt Disney Productions; Disney characters; Families in motion pictures

Publication Date


Document Type


Student Type


Degree Name

Communication and Media Technologies (MS)

Department, Program, or Center

School of Communication (CLA)


Andrea Hickerson

Advisor/Committee Member

Grant Cos

Advisor/Committee Member

Rudy Pugliese


Physical copy available from RIT's Wallace Library at NC1755.U52 D52 2016


RIT – Main Campus

Plan Codes