Check the Category Labels in the side-bar on the right! There you can find animator drafts for sixteen complete Disney features and eighty-five shorts,
as well as Action Analysis Classes and many other vintage animation documents!

Wednesday, May 31, 2006

Anybody? Pretty Please?

Does anyone have a floorplan of KEM Weber's original (1939) Disney animation building in Burbank? I'd be very grateful for a copy!

Here is the so-called Wing of the Gods (Floor 1, Wing D), 7/25/1946. Frank Thomas has just returned from his war effort and is in another wing on the second floor - in 2B-8. Walt's office isn't in 3H-1 either.

Room   Who was in it...
1D-1      C. Coor-Pender, Nat Figarotta, Jack Moffet, Bill Southwood
1D-2      Jack Bailey, Don Hall, Henry Tanous
1D-3      Marc Davis
1D-4      Milt Kahl
1D-5      Grace Hurt
1D-6      Eric Larson
1D-7      Clarke Mallery
1D-8      Bob McCrea
1D-9      Ollie Johnston
1D-10    Al Stetter, Robert Vogel
1D-11    Tom Barnes, Gus Jekel
1D-12    Fred Moore
1D-13    Ward Kimball
1D-14    M. Schuster, Ken Walker
1D-15    Larry Kilty, Don Lusk
1D-16    Don McCormick, Clair Weeks

Don't hold back, folks! Message me in a comment!
(NB:I will not publish it if you don't want me to!)

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Ollie Johnston - a sweet man...

During their stay in 1984 (see below), Ollie gave me some nice roughs from Rescuers.
My Dutch pal Rob Stevenhagen and I drove Ollie, Marie, Frank and Jeanette around Holland and showed them the sights. And where Frank generally chit-chatted about impressionist art, the Dutch landscape and the weather, Ollie wanted to speak of animation, knowing this interested us. A very sweet man indeed...
Pennie Submerged< Click on it!

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Tuesday, May 30, 2006

Prod. RM14 - Brave Little Tailor

Much of this, we know. But here is the whole thing...

Another classic short with animation by Frank and Ollie, this one also by Don Patterson (Patt.), Milt Schaffer, Les Clark, Riley Thomson, Jack Campbell, Freddie Moore, Bill Tytla and Don Williams. With effects by John Noel Tucker, Andy Engman, Frank Follmer, Cornett Wood, Art Palmer, George Rowley, Archie Robin and John McDermott.
Directed by Burt Gillett, this draft dated 4/28/1938.
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Remember to have a peek at the intro to our showreel, below!

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Monday, May 29, 2006

A memory of Frank Thomas

Frank's work has always had a huge influence on me. With it he has touched most people on this earth. It was a wonderful privilege to count him among my friends. When Frank and Ollie gave their lecture in Holland in 1984, they - with Jeanette and Marie - lived in my parents' house some days. When he knocked on my bedroom door in his night shirt to ask a question, it dawned on me that this giant was just a man. And I respected him even more.

One of those days, he gave me an envelope with a stack of his roughs from Rescuers. This is one of the drawings...
Chairman Mouse< Click on it!
This pompous character is voiced by Bernard Fox, known as the equally pompous Dr. Bombay on "Bewitched."

Oh, and Bo, thanks for your kind words. Won't you believe it, I actually pulled this image three hours before I found your blog!

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Sunday, May 28, 2006

Prod. 2041 - Casey at the Bat

Jack Kinney once wrote in a letter to my old mentor Børge Ring that John Sibley was his favorite animator, and much underrated. I look forward to reading Pete Docter's article on Sibley in the upcoming Animation Blast #9 (which I pre-ordered in February). I though the following bit would be nice to "get out in the open".

Part of Prod. 2025 Make Mine Music, this is a Sibley-rama, with Cliff Nordberg, Hugh Fraser, Ollie Johnston, Les Clark, with single scenes by Ward Kimball, Bill Justice and Murray McClellan, effects by George Rowley.

Directed by Gerry Geronimi, Asst. Dir. Rusty Jones
Layout by Hugh Hennesy. Final draft of 7/19/1944 by Dolores Koch.
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I am glad to know that Animation Blast #9 is being printed as I write this. Last time I pre-ordered a magazine it folded after I had just paid for 12 issues. I really liked Funnyworld...

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Saturday, May 27, 2006

Prod. 2069 - Alice in Wonderland (sq 05.0)

The Walrus and the Carpenter - with great animation by Fergie, Fred and Ward. Alas, the little oysters are doomed (oops - spoiler...)

Directed by Gerry Geronimi, Asst. Dir. Ted Sebern
Layout by Tom Codrick and Don Griffith.
This Final draft dated 2/12/1951 - by Marie Desnoit.
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Say - did you have a look at our new showreel intro below?

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Friday, May 26, 2006

Prod. 2227 - The Pointer

My "favorite grandfathers", Ollie Johnston and Frank Thomas animated on this one, as have Preston Blair, Lynn Karp, Lester Novros, John Lounsbery, Norm Ferguson, with Claude Smith, Art Palmer, Shamus Culhane and Josh Meador credited on the last few scenes. Released 07/21/1939.
Directed by Clyde "Gerry" Geronimi, this draft is dated 12/12/1938.
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Thursday, May 25, 2006

Here's a plug: our new showreel...

Talking of editing to music (below in "Albert Malotte on Music"), here is the intro to A. Film's 2006 Showreel, my latest endeavour.
It's a hodge-podge of nearly 18 years of work - 6 own features, 26 sub-contracted features, over 500 commercials, 190 half-hour tv-shows, specials, shorts etc. in less than 3 minutes. Please give it time to load before you play it, and afterwards, visit our homepage.



Music by the great Danish composer Søren Hyldgaard from the score of A. Film's feature "Help! I'm a Fish" (2000), used with permission.

In Annecy we will have PAL and NTSC versions of our showreel with us - with nearly an hour of browsable materials we produced.

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Albert Malotte on Music

Albert Hay Malotte (1895-1964) was composer at Walt Disney's Hyperion Avenue studios from 1935 to 1939. He wrote the music for Alpine Climbers, Little Hiawatha, Ferdinand the Bull and The Ugly Duckling, yet he is best known as the composer of the most popular musical setting of The Lord's Prayer in the English language, 1935.

These are his lecture notes on "The Relation of Music to Animation" from 1937 (a copy that once belonged to animator Bob Youngquist).
Though this usage of music today is considered old-fashioned, to me that is more out of ignorance than anything else.
In my experience, the best directors have musical backgrounds, or at least can read music and have a sense of rhythm. Personally, I had never more fun than directing and editing musical stuff.
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(Note that Al(bert) Malotte obviously is NOT Al(fred) Milotte, the True-Life Adventures cameraman...)

[Added later: If this kind of thing interests you, check out these Category Labels: Barsheets (about barsheets) and Beatronome (a little PC aid to animation timing that I wrote in 2006). At the first label you will find a comprehensive description on how to read the original bar sheets (with several original examples), as well as four complete classic Disney short films with their original barsheets deployed as visual and audible aids for better understanding.

That said, above document from Al Malotte was to my knowledge the first correct description of the musical timing, as originally invented by the Disney studio for Steamboat Willie, to be found on the web. Carl Stalling took the method with him to Harman-Ising when he left Disney in January 1930, but they made the mistake of pre-recording the music track before animation was done, thus locking themselves to the pre-established beat. At Disney, the barsheets could be changed if the animation called for it. Then, when all animation was done, the musician would finalize his score.]

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Wednesday, May 24, 2006

Prod. UM41 - Through the Looking Glass

Or, as we know it better, Thru the Mirror.

Directed by Dave Hand, this Final draft dated 3/6/1936.
Animated by Bob Wickersham, Johnnie Cannon, Dick Lundy,
Leonard Sebring, Hardie Gramatky, Ugo D'Orsi.
See the bottom of Alberto's Page for more info on the animators!
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