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1981

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1981 was the year of Mario's debut in Japan.



Movies released in theaters this year

North America

  • Raiders of the Lost Ark (June 12, 1981)
  • Dragonslayer (June 26, 1981)
  • The Fox and the Hound (July 10, 1981)

Latin America

  • Raiders of the Lost Ark (July 16, 1981)
  • The Fox and the Hound (July 23, 1981)

Japan

  • Popeye (June 13, 1981)
  • Raiders of the Lost Ark (December 5, 1981)
  • The Rescuers (December 19, 1981)
  • Herbie Goes Bananas (December 26, 1981)

UK

  • Herbie Goes Bananas (July 23, 1981)
  • Raiders of the Lost Ark (July 30, 1981)
  • The Fox and the Hound (October 22, 1981)

France

  • Herbie Goes Bananas (January 26, 1981)
  • Raiders of the Lost Ark (September 16, 1981)
  • Xanadu (November 11, 1981)
  • The Fox and the Hound (November 25, 1981)

Australia

  • Raiders of the Lost Ark (August 14, 1981)
  • The Fox and the Hound (December 26, 1981)

Brazil

  • Raiders of the Lost Ark (August 21, 1981)
  • The Fox and the Hound (September 18, 1981)

Movies re-issued in theaters this year

North America

  • Alice in Wonderland (April 3, 1981)
  • Star Wars IV: A New Hope (April 10, 1981)
  • Herbie Goes to Monte Carlo (June 12, 1981)
  • Herbie Goes Bananas (June 12, 1981)
  • Herbie Rides Again (June 19, 1981)
  • Swiss Family Robinson (June 19, 1981)
  • Star Wars V: The Empire Strikes Back (July 31, 1981)
  • Cinderella (December 18, 1981)

Japan

France

  • Close Encounters of the Third Kind (March 4, 1981)

Australia

  • Close Encounters of the Third Kind (January 22, 1981)
  • 2001: A Space Odyssey (September 10, 1981)

Movies aired on television this year

CBS

  • A Disney Halloween (October 24, 1981)
  • Herbie Rides Again (October 10 and 17, 1981)*
  • The Love Bug (September 26 and October 3, 1981)*
  • Mary Poppins (November 22, 1981)
  • The Wizard of Oz (February 27, 1981)

NBC

  • The Rescuers

(*) These films were re-edited for viewing in two parts.

Programs debuted on television this year

CBS

  • Walt Disney (1981-1983)

NBC

  • The Smurfs (September 12, 1981)
  • A Chipmunk Christmas (December 14, 1981)

Programs airing new seasons this year

ABC

  • Family Feud (1976-1985)

CBS

  • M*A*S*H (Season 10) (October 26, 1981–April 12, 1982)
  • The Price is Right (Season 10)

PBS

  • Mr. Rogers' Neighborhood
  • Sesame Street (Season 13) (November 23, 1981–May 21, 1982)

Programs broadcasted in reruns this year

PBS

  • 3-2-1 Contact
  • The Electric Company (1975-1977)
  • Mr. Rogers' Neighborhood (1969-1975)

Programs ended this year

NBC

  • Card Sharks (1978-1981) (last episode aired on October 23, 1981)
  • Disney's Wonderful World (last episode aired on September 13, 1981)

VHS releases this year

  • 2001: A Space Odyssey
  • The Absent-Minded Professor (June 23, 1981)
  • Alice in Wonderland (October 13, 1981)
  • The Apple Dumpling Gang Rides Again (June 23, 1981)
  • Close Encounters of the Third Kind
  • Darby O'Gill and the Little People (October 13, 1981)
  • Davy Crockett and the River Pirates (June 23, 1981)
  • A Dream Called Walt Disney World (October 13, 1981)
  • Dumbo (June 23, 1981)
  • Herbie Rides Again (October 13, 1981)
  • The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh (June 23, 1981)
  • Old Yeller (October 13, 1981)
  • Pollyanna (October 13, 1981)
  • The Shaggy Dog (October 13, 1981)
  • Snow White Live at Radio City Music Hall (June 23, 1981)
  • Treasure Island (October 13, 1981)

Comics

USA

  • Batman (March 1, 1981)
  • Doraemon (September 18, 1981)

UK

  • Archie Comics (November 22, 1981)

Japan

  • Garfield (July 31, 1981)

Australia

  • Peanuts (August 2, 1981)

Toys:

USA:

  • Care Bears (May 2, 1981)

UK:

  • Strawberry Shortcake (June 19, 1981)

Japan:

  • Mr. Potato Head (July 10, 1981)
  • Lots-A-Bear (November 1, 1981)

Logos introduced this year

  • 20th Century Fox - "The Searchlights" (August 28, 1981)
  • 20th Television Fox - "The Searchlights"
  • Columbia Pictures - "80s Torch Lady" (June 5, 1981)
  • MGM/CBS Home Video - "The Metallic Logo" (June 1981)
  • Walt Disney Home Video - "Walt Disney" (Europe only) (Q4 1981)

Logos updated this year

  • Warner Home Video - "The Big \\" (formerly WCI Home Video)

Logos ended this year

  • Buena Vista Distribution (1966) (July 10, 1981)
  • Columbia Pictures - "70s Torch Lady" (May 15, 1981)
  • MGM/CBS Home Video - "The Green Lines" (March 1981)

Albums released this year

  • The Fox and the Hound (Disney Picture Disc) (LP)

Software released this year

  • 86-DOS 1.1 (July 1981)
  • MS-DOS 1.0 (August 12, 1981)

Vehicles introduced this year

  • 1982 Buick Century (2-door coupe and 4-door sedan only)
  • 1982 Cadillac Cimarron (May 21, 1981)
  • 1982 Chevrolet Cavalier
  • 1982 Chevrolet Celebrity
  • 1981 Chevrolet Monte Carlo
  • 1981 Dodge Aries
  • 1981 Ford Escort
  • 1981 Isuzu Impulse
  • 1982 Oldsmobile Cutlass Ciera (September 28, 1981)
  • 1982 Pontiac Sunbird

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