The Secret of NIMH was the first feature length film to be tackled by the newly formed Don Bluth Productions. The studio moved from Bluth’s house to a 5,500 square foot facility in Studio City. The story is based on Robert C. O'Brien's Newberry Award winning book, Mrs. Frisby and the Rats of NIMH in 1972. Extraordinary circumstances cause Mrs. Brisby, a shy widowed mouse mother, to become an unlikely heroine. Her home is threatened by early plowing and her youngest son, Timmy, is gravely ill. She must move to avoid the plow, but cannot risk moving the sick child. Pushed by her friend, Auntie Shrew, she seeks help from Jeremy the Crow, the Great Owl, and eventually she discovers the Rats of NIMH, a secret society of highly-intelligent rats. She finds that she has deeper ties to the rats than she suspected when she learns her deceased husband, Jonathan, helped the rats escape from a nearby science lab. With the rats’ help, she is able to save her family’s home and her son, Timmy.