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The VHS tape is 187 mm wide and 103 mm deep. It is an analog recording videocassette that can only be played on a VCR (which stands for video cassette recorder). It was the most popular video format ever used worldwide.

Most films (and all television programs) are presented in an aspect ratio of 4:3 on VHS, while a few that were originally presented in widescreen format are letterboxed. In such cases, the film is pan and scanned when seen on VHS. The audio for anything on VHS is either in Mono or Hi-Fi Stereo (whether Dolby Surround encoded or not). In North America, tapes can also be closed-captioned in the Line 21 format, designed especially for people who are deaf or have impaired hearing. Depending on what country you live in, a tape can be in NTSC, PAL, or SECAM. This is the only issue you will have if you have a VCR that does not match with your videotape's signal standards. Of course, SECAM tapes are playable on PAL VCRs.

A VHS tape can carry up to 60, 90, 120, or even 180 minutes of video. Television specials that are less than an hour long are recorded in T-60 tapes, and many motion pictures are stored in T-90, T-120, or T-180 tapes. Movies and programs can also be recorded in Standard Play or Long Play mode, depending on the VCR.

In the early 2000s, the VHS format gradually became less popular, and was discontinued altogether in 2006.

Films released on VHS

1980 The Wizard of Oz VHS
The Wizard of Oz
(October 25, 1980)
1982 Star Wars VHS
Star Wars Episode IV: A New Hope
(September 1, 1982)
1984 The Empire Strikes Back VHS
Star Wars Episode V: The Empire Strikes Back
(November 13, 1984)
1985 Ghostbusters VHS
Ghostbusters
(October 31, 1985)
Starwars3 vhs
Star Wars Episode VI: Return of the Jedi
(February 25, 1986)
Goonies 1986vhs
The Goonies
(March 4, 1986)
Mylittlepony 1986vhs
My Little Pony: The Movie
(October 28, 1986)
Ghostbusters2 vhs
Ghostbusters II
(November 23, 1989)
Homealone vhs
Home Alone
(August 23, 1991)
Hook vhs
Hook
(July 24, 1992)
Homealone2 vhs
Home Alone 2: Lost in New York
(July 27, 1993)
Mask vhs1
The Mask
(January 19, 1995)
Lionking vhs
The Lion King
(March 3, 1995)
Pocahontas
Pocahontas
(February 28, 1996)
Toystory vhs
Toy Story
(October 29, 1996)
Matilda vhs
Matilda
(December 17, 1996)
Hunchbackofnotredame
The Hunchback of Notre Dame
(March 4, 1997)
Lionkingii
The Lion King II: Simba's Pride
(October 27, 1998)

The following were released concurrently on DVD:

There were also re-prints for most older films:

Walt Disney Animation Studios films in order of when they were released on VHS:

  1. The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh (June 26, 1981; re-released on March 27, 1996)
  2. Dumbo (June 26, 1981; re-printed from 1983 through 1999)
  3. Alice in Wonderland (October 15, 1981; re-printed from 1983 through 1999)
  4. The Three Caballeros (November 1982; re-printed from 1983 through 1996)
  5. Fun and Fancy Free (November 1982; re-printed from 1983 through July 15, 1997)
  6. Robin Hood (December 6, 1984; re-printed from 1986 through July 13, 1999)
  7. Pinocchio (July 16, 1985; re-printed on March 26, 1993)
  8. The Sword in the Stone (March 24, 1986; re-printed from 1989 through 1999)
  9. Sleeping Beauty (October 14, 1986; re-released on September 16, 1997)
  10. Lady and the Tramp (October 6, 1987; re-released on September 15, 1998)
  11. Cinderella (October 4, 1988; re-released on October 4, 1995)
  12. Bambi (September 28, 1989; re-released on February 4, 1997)
  13. The Little Mermaid (May 18, 1990; re-released on March 31, 1998)
  14. Peter Pan (September 21, 1990; re-released on March 3, 1998)
  15. The Jungle Book (May 3, 1991; re-released on October 14, 1997)
  16. The Rescuers Down Under (September 20, 1991)
  17. Fantasia (November 1, 1991)
  18. 101 Dalmatians (April 10, 1992; re-released on March 9, 1999)
  19. The Great Mouse Detective (July 17, 1992; re-released on August 31, 1999)
  20. The Rescuers (September 18, 1992; re-released on January 5, 1999)
  21. Beauty and the Beast (October 30, 1992)
  22. Aladdin (October 1, 1993)
  23. The Fox and the Hound (March 4, 1994)
  24. Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs (October 28, 1994)
  25. The Lion King (March 3, 1995)
  26. Pocahontas (February 28, 1996)
  27. The Aristocats (April 24, 1996)
  28. Oliver & Company (September 24, 1996)
  29. The Hunchback of Notre Dame (March 4, 1997)
  30. Hercules (February 3, 1998)
  31. Melody Time (June 2, 1998)
  32. The Black Cauldron (August 4, 1998)
  33. Mulan (February 2, 1999)
  34. The Adventures of Ichabod and Mr. Toad (May 25, 1999)
  35. Tarzan (February 1, 2000)
  36. Saludos Amigos (May 2, 2000)
  37. Make Mine Music (June 6, 2000)
  38. Fantasia 2000 (November 14, 2000) - Since then, all films were released on both VHS and DVD until the former format phased out.

Global use

Japan

From the early 1990s to the end of the VHS era, many children's films were available in three different language versions in separate VHS cassettes.

  • 日本語吹き替え版 (Japanese Dubbed Version) - The film is presented with all original dialogue replaced by those exclusively from Japanese voice actors.
  • 日本語字幕スーパー版 (Japanese Subtitled Version) - The film is presented in its original format with Japanese subtitles translating all spoken dialogue throughout.
  • 英語版 (English Version) - Presented exclusively in English. Usually only applies to kid-oriented videos such as Disney's Sing-Along Songs.

South Korea

In South Korea, the versions were similar to how it was done in Japan:

  • 우리말녹음 (Korean Recording) - The film is presented with all original dialogue replaced by those exclusively from Korean voice actors.
  • 한글자막 (Korean Subtitles) - The film is presented in its original format with Korean subtitles translating all spoken dialogue throughout.
  • 영어자막 (English Subtitles) - The film is presented in its original format with English subtitles transcribing all spoken dialogue throughout.
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