The Fox and the Hound is a 1981 American animated musical buddy drama film produced by Walt Disney Productions and loosely based on the 1967 novel of the same name by Daniel P. Mannix. The 24th Disney animated feature film, the film tells the story of two unlikely friends, a red fox named Tod and a hound dog named Copper, who struggle to preserve their friendship despite their emerging instincts and the surrounding social pressures demanding them to be adversaries. The film was directed by Ted Berman, Richard Rich, and Art Stevens, and features the voices of Mickey Rooney, Kurt Russell, Pearl Bailey, Jack Albertson (in his final film role), Sandy Duncan, Jeanette Nolan, Pat Buttram, Dick Bakalyan, and Paul Winchell.
Production on The Fox and the Hound started in 1977, and the film marked the last involvement of the remaining members of Disney's Nine Old Men, as development was handed over to a new generation of animators following the retirement of the old animators. However, the film's release was delayed by over six months following the abrupt departure of Don Bluth and his team of animators. Further concerns were raised over the handling of the scene in which Chief is hit by a train, which was controversially changed from his death into a non-fatal injury in which he merely suffered a broken leg.