The Riveter
Studio: Disney Release Date : March 15, 1940 Series: Donald Duck

Cumulative rating:
(2 ratings submitted)


Donald lands a job working high steel as a riveter for construction foreman Pete.


(Voice: Billy Bletcher)
Donald Duck
(Voice: Clarence "Ducky" Nash)


Note: "Unverified" credits may not be correct and should be taken with a grain of salt.


Dick Lundy (unverified)


John Elliotte (unverified)
Edward "Ed" Love (unverified)
Alfred "Al" Eugster (unverified)
Jack Campbell (unverified)


Oliver Wallace (unverified)


Walter Elias "Walt" Disney

Music Sources

Morey, Larry and Frank Churchill : "Heigh-Ho "

Clips Used In:

Donald's Silver Anniversary


Mickey Mouse Tracks (Season 1, Episode 63)


United States



Donald Geht in die Luft



CED Disc

United States


Laserdisc (CAV)


Donald Duck : A Star is Born


United States

The Chronological Donald: Volume 1: 1934-1941


Disney Treasures : Wave 3 : The Chronological Donald Volume 1


Disney Treasures : Wave 3 : The Chronological Donald Volume 1

United Kingdom

Disney Treasures : Wave 3 : The Chronological Donald Volume 1


Disney Treasures : Wave 3 : The Chronological Donald Volume 1

Netherlands / Belgium

The Chronological Donald: Volume Eén: 1934-1941

Technical Specifications

Running Time: 7:33
Production No.: 4001
MPAA No.: 4384
Animation Type: Standard (Hand-drawn-Cel) Animation
Aspect Ratio: 1.37 : 1
Cinematographic Format: Spherical
Color Type: Technicolor
Negative Type: 35mm
Original Country: United States
Original Language: English
Print Type: 35mm
Sound Type: Mono: RCA Sound Recording

Reviews and Comments

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From Jerry Edwards :

I consider this similar to the 1933 Building a Building in several ways. Then it was Mickey and Minnie dealing with Pete, now it's Donald. The short starts by showing how tough Pete is when he throws a large worker through a construction fence as Pete fires him. When Donald applies for the job, you know he's going to be in real trouble. Donald has trouble with heights, the riveting gun, and Pete. Pete chases him throughout the construction site, causing the building to collapse. Donald runs away while Pete is trapped in cement, holding a water hose like a statue. One of the best Donald/Pete conflicts for me. A lot of action and gags. A short that still makes me laugh - a rarity for me in the 40s/50s Disney shorts.

From Ryan :

This is definitely one of my favorite Donald Duck shorts. In fact, I watch it quite often. After Pete throws a construction worker through the fence, Donald walks by singing "Heigh Ho." It was quite funny seeing Donald as a construction worker. I personally don't think that he would make a very good one. He's afraid of heights (like so many of us, including myself, so he's not alone) and he gets nervous by the sounds of a drill. This causes him to tear up Pete's cigar while he is lighting it. I really liked the part at the end where after Pete chases Donald, he falls into a vat of plaster, which makes him look like a fountain of a famous Greek/Roman emperor (possibly Julius Caesar.)

From Christian :

I noticed the picture you have with Pete looking angrily at Donald contains a blooper. Pete's nose isn't colored in. It's counted as part of his mouth!

From Baruch Weiss :

Just by looking at the title card of this short we can tell that Donald's working at a construction site and wants to quit. In fact, unlike his other cartoons (Bellboy Donald and Old Sequoia) he wasn't fired; he just decided on his own that he would rather quit the job, but I'm sure Pete would have fired him if it weren't for the fact that he fell in the drying plaster. Anyway funny short, I laughed at the part where Donald was trying to figure out how to work the "screwy contraption" and then ruins Pete's map, nails down on a dog as he's painting causing him to look like he shrunk or something and then on a fat pig (literally speaking, but wasn't he shown at the beginning being fired? Perhaps it was his twin brother or something). I also laughed at the part where Pete yells at Donald, in a New York accent, to "Give him some service", after which Donald tries to give him some "Steaming hot Coffee", but due to all of the noise the coffee spills all over Pete. Once in high school I accidentally spilled coffee on my teacher's shirt and boy was he upset!

From Ryan Kilpatrick at The Disney Film Project :

The Riveter is a very close relative of Building a Building, which in itself was a remake of the Oswald short Sky Scrappers. In those shorts, the hero (Mickey/Oswald) contended with Pete over a woman (Minnie/Sadie), while in this one, Donald is on his own. Still, the crux of the story is Donald, our hero, contending with Pete.

When Donald floats by and sees the job opening for a riveter, he enthusiastically takes the job, but doesn’t know what it means. Remember, this is just as the United States was coming out of the Great Depression, so Donald’s actions probably felt very familiar to a lot of the people watching this short.

As you might imagine, Donald’s ignorance causes some immediate problems. Pete shows him to the top of the sky scraper that they are building, and Donald gets disoriented, tries to start the rivet gun, then ends up on a rampage through the building while blasting rivets everywhere. The rivet sequence is really well done, and very funny.

The best gag in the whole short, however, is how Donald ends up becoming unnerved by the sound of the rivet gun. After his sojourn through the building, every time he hears the other workers using their guns, he starts shaking uncontrollably. It’s perfect for Donald, as he is so easily shaken, and when you combine that with Pete wanting Donald to serve him lunch, you get comedic gold.

It’s very neat to see Pete back as a foil to the Disney stars, because he is so good at it. The animators manage to make this a manliness contest between Pete and Donald, with both of them repeatedly using the patented cartoon move of picking up their belly, throwing it into their chest and then letting it bounce back down. Watching them try to “man up” to each other makes this one funny.

This is also my favorite era of Disney animation just from the visual standpoint. The line work and colors are bright and crisp in this short, as they have been in most of the Donald shorts. We’ll see much the same in the Goofy and Pluto shorts. There was more spontaneity and imagination in the earlier shorts, however. The way Disney shorts work in this era is much like a sitcom, whereas before they were fantasies. It’s an interesting difference, but both have their own merits.