An American Tail: Fievel Goes West (also known as An American Tail 2: Fievel Goes West or An American Tail II) is a 1991 American animated Western comedy film directed by Phil Nibbelink and Simon Wells (in their feature directorial debuts), with producer Steven Spielberg for Amblin Entertainment and animated by his Amblimation animation studio and released by Universal Pictures. A sequel to 1986’s An American Tail, the film follows the story of the Mousekewitzes, a family of Jewish-Ukrainian mice who emigrate to the Wild West. In it, Fievel is separated from his family as the train approaches the American Old West; the film chronicles him and Sheriff Wylie Burp teaching Tiger how to act like a dog.
Fievel Goes West was the first production for the short-lived Amblimation, a studio Spielberg set up to keep the animators of Who Framed Roger Rabbit (1988) working. It’s also the only Amblimation film to use cel animation, the last in the series to do so, and the last to be released in theaters. While the animation medium was transitioning to computers in the late 1980s and early 1990s, Spielberg wanted almost all of the animation of Fievel Goes West to be hand-drawn, describing animation as “an arts-and-crafts business”. He also wanted the animation to have a “live-action” feel. While the first film was directed by Don Bluth for the sequel. Phillip Glasser, Dom DeLuise, Nehemiah Persoff, and Erica Yohn reprise their roles from the first film for Fievel Goes West. Tanya’s original voice actor, Amy Green, was replaced by Cathy Cavadini, and new characters were voiced by John Cleese, Amy Irving, Jon Lovitz, and James Stewart in his final film role. James Horner returned as a composer and wrote the film’s song “Dreams to Dream”, which garnered a Golden Globe nomination.