Aladdin: Open Sesame

Aladdin is a famous modern Disney franchise about a young man living on the streets in the fictional Arabian city of Agrabah. He finds his wishes granted after freeing a genie from a mysterious old lamp.

In the 1992 film, Aladdin, our hero meets beautiful and free-spirited Princess Jasmine - a dreamer who loves her pet tiger. To Jasmine’s dismay, her father, the Sultan, is trying to arrange her marriage to a suitable rich suitor.

Romance blossoms

Aladdin meets Jasmine when she takes an unaccompanied walk away from the palace, in a dangerous area of the city, the marketplace. A disgruntled princess is accused of being a thief by an angry, sword-waving trader when she gives an apple to a street boy, so Aladdin sweeps in and saves her from being punished.

Initially, Aladdin has no idea that the young lady he has rescued is a princess, and romance blossoms when they ride on Aladdin's magic carpet together, thanks to the genie.

Can Aladdin and Jasmine's love triumph against all the odds? Will he be able to save the princess when the evil Jafar, the Sultan's prime minister, plots to marry Jasmine himself, using the lamp's magic?

The original film was a huge box office hit. Produced on a budget of $28 million, it grossed $504.1 million at the box office worldwide and spawned a wide range of merchandise, including figures and video games.

Movie sequel

The sequel followed in 1996. Aladdin and the King of Thieves was the final chapter of the story inspired by the Arabian Nights tales - the compilation of Arabic folklore stories from The Book of One Thousand and One Nights.

As a gang of criminals led by the King of Thieves, the legendary Forty Thieves sneak into Agrabah with dastardly plans to raid a royal wedding. As they try to steal the wedding gifts, along with jewels and valuables from the guests, Aladdin bravely fights them off.

However, in doing so, he discovers a mysterious oracle that is able to see into the past and the future. Aladdin is in a quandary over whether he should try and find out more about his long-lost father, or whether this will do more harm than good.

Open Sesame!

The most famous scene that everyone associates with Aladdin is undoubtedly when our hero gains entry into the Forty Thieves' cave, where all their ill-gotten gains are stashed.

The phrase, "Open Sesame!" originated in Ali Baba and the Forty Thieves, from the Arabian Nights tales. The character of Aladdin is based on the character, Ali Baba, who is an impoverished merchant's son, who is tempted to steal a bag of gold from the thieves' cave to provide for his family.

The concept of a door opening with the words, "Open Sesame!" has made it into popular culture countless times. Even if people don't know the story of Ali Baba, or haven’t seen the Aladdin films, they are still likely to have heard the phrase.


Although Aladdin is a great animated adventure and "Open Sesame!" is one of the most well-known phrases in popular culture, in the real world, having a door that opened simply by speaking a certain phrase wouldn't be such a wonderful idea.

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