How to Find the Value of Original Disney Movies

By Linda Stamberger

Original Disney Movies are movies that were first-edition releases on VHS. Value depends on rarity, and the rarity depends on varying factors; whether they are black and white; whether the Disney characters are in their earliest forms, the way they were first drawn by Disney cartoonists; whether the movie has double cartoon features; or whether the tape contains newsreel footage from the time period of the cartoon as a bonus feature.

Regular VHS Disney movies were mass-produced, and value may range from as little as $3, $5 or $7. The "gold label" VHS movies on original Disney movies may fetch upwards of $30 depending on availability and rarity.

Original Disney movies in VHS cassettes must be in good condition and have original cover art casing. These are called “clam shell” cases, and are hard plastic, usually the original case that came with the VHS film, with original Disney art. The value will be more if the case was never opened and the original plastic shrink wrap is unbroken.

The best place to find these and other types of original Disney movies (and to check current market value) is Ebay. A fixed-price auction from a professional movie retailer on Ebay is a good indicator of current value on originals.

There are a multitude of listings for original Disney movies on Ebay, and it is easy to see the rarity of an original Disney movie by how long the video stays listed, or how much people are willing to bid if the video is listed in auction style format, not a fixed price.

Some auction prices for original Disney movies surpass actual value if the movie is rare, meaning a limited release amount. Sometimes original Disney movies were in black in white, before the colorization process, and these original Disney movies are popular among collectors who like the pre-"Snow White" era of colorization. (Disney films became colorized beginning in the late 1930s with "Snow White.")

Another place to look for values of original Disney movies would be current Disney collectible price guides and through collector clubs for Disney collectibles. Often these clubs have newsletters with updated information on market trends, and good networking groups for fellow collectors of old Disney movies.

About the Author

Linda Stamberger began writing professionally in 1994, as an entertainment reporter for "Good Times Magazine." She has written online copy for The Volusia Community website and is the author of "Antiquing in Florida." Stamberger studied creative writing at Southampton College, where she won a partial writing scholarship.