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"Butterflies: Good morning, Uncle Remus!
Uncle Remus: Good morning! Good morning, girls!
Butterflies: (giggle before they fly away)
Miss Nellie: (giggles) Hello, Uncle Remus!
Uncle Remus: Good morning, Miss Nellie!
Miss Nellie: (giggles)
"
―Uncle Remus talking with the butterflies, including one named "Miss Nellie"[src]

The Butterflies are characters from the 1946 Disney film, Song of the South. They are a group of animated butterflies featured in the animated sequences throughout the film.

Background[]

The butterflies, as their names imply, are a group of animated butterflies whom Uncle Remus encounters throughout the animated sequences. In spite of appearing in the background, they are even capable of speaking to Uncle Remus showing a friendly personality to him and they happily greet him, despite not having a visible face. The butterflies whom Uncle Remus encounter speak in a female voice, indicating that they are females.

The butterflies (including a singular butterfly named "Miss Nellie") are voiced by the late Ernestine Wade.

Miss Nellie[]

One of the butterflies which Uncle Remus encounters throughout the second animated sequence is named "Miss Nellie", a butterfly with a pattern of orange and pale yellow wings that talks to Uncle Remus. Like the other butterflies that Uncle Remus encounters, Miss Nellie shows a friendly personality to Uncle Remus as she happily greets him upon passing by her just before the musical number "How Do You Do?" begins.

Role in the film[]

The butterflies are introduced during the song "Zip-a-Dee-Doo-Dah" where several fly past Uncle Remus and while singing, he finds Mr. Bluebird on his shoulder as more butterflies continue flying around. They appear again during the second animated sequence where Uncle Remus happily walks across the meadows with more butterflies flying in the background narrating that the friends he encounters will say, "Howdy" when someone encounters them. When he approaches the butterflies, they greet him "Good morning, Uncle Remus!" to which the latter replies, "Good morning, girls!" to which they happily giggle just before they fly away, followed by another butterfly named "Miss Nellie" who happily approaches Uncle Remus who greets her, "Good morning, Miss Nellie!" just before flying away, beginning the musical number "How Do You Do?". During the end of the film, the butterflies can be seen amongst many of the animated characters during the reprise of "Zip-a-Dee-Doo-Dah" following the live-action characters throughout the live-action scene.

Trivia[]

  • The butterflies are the first animated characters to appear onscreen in Song of the South. They are first seen when Uncle Remus sings, "Plenty of sunshine headin' my way", just as several animated butterflies appear in front of him just before Mr. Bluebird appears during the song's first Mr. Bluebird verse.
  • Although Song of the South was never released in any official home video format in the United States, the butterflies are sporadically featured in the front cover of the Disney's Sing-Along Songs: Zip-A-Dee-Doo-Dah volume, along with the Sis Moles, Mr. Bluebird, the Bees, and the Hummingbirds. They have also been shown in the volume's UK VHS cover.
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