The New Adventures of Winnie the Pooh ran from 1988 to 1991 on American TV and during that time presented the toddlers of the late eighties with some of the best Winnie the Pooh cartoons that were ever created. This also marked the first time that Disney had taken the famous bear of little brain and his friends into the world of Saturday morning cartoons.
The Cast of the New Adventures of Winnie the Pooh – Much of the cast of The New Adventures of Winnie the Pooh was the same as had been appearing in the Winnie the Pooh movies. Pooh himself was voiced by Jim Cummings, a very versatile voice actor who took over the role of Pooh when the original Disney voice of Pooh Sterling Holloway retired. He also then began to voice Tigger when his long time voice Paul Winchell retired too (although Winchell did do the first two seasons of the new show before hanging up his tiger stripes). A Disney staple Cummings has also appeared in The Lion King, The Hunchback of Notre Dame, Pocahontas and a number of other Disney shows and movies as well as in newer cartoon like Cat Dog.
Rabbit was voiced by Ken Samson, Piglet by John Field and Eeyore by Peter Cullen, all of whom had played the role in the Winnie the Pooh movies up to that point too.
The New Adventures of Winnie the Pooh marked the first time that Pooh cartoons did not have such a heavy educational message, focusing on adventure instead. Some critics at that the time though that made the show not so suitable for the pre school set and better for the kindergarten set. That did not stop the show from becoming a world wide hit though and even after production stopped in 1991 the show has been re run over and over again on TV channels across the world.
The New Adventures of Winnie the Pooh on Video and DVD – If you still own a VHS then it is easy to get all of The New Adventures of Winnie the Pooh to watch at home. Unfortunately though Disney have yet to release any of the series on DVD but as Disney has a habit of releasing such things slowly then you can only hope that they do so soon. You can find some of the episodes online on video channels like YouTube but they are chopped into several different sections per episode.
In the 21st century Winnie is still around though and the Summer of 2011 sees the release of a brand new Winnie the Pooh movie called simply Winnie the Pooh. Jim Cummings is back as the voices of Pooh and Tigger with talk show host and comedian Craig Ferguson appearing as Owl. John Cleese is also in the movie, playing himself. The new movie rehashes some of the best of the old Pooh stories, like Eeyore’s lost tale, and should introduce yet another new generation of kids to the delights of the Hundred Acre Wood and its inhabitants.