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!

Monday, November 20, 2017

Valhalla 1986

The reason I moved to Denmark in 1984 was the film Valhalla. My mentor Børge Ring had already worked on the film for some time when he asked me to take the trip with him from Holland to Copenhagen, to make sure he didn't fall asleep behind the wheel after a long night of playing his bass at a famous Jazz Cafe. I had heard so much about Denmark that I leapt at the chance, and two days later I was asked to start as supervising animator on the project. The time following that was some of the most exciting, challenging and rewarding of my life, and that's why I am so happy to finally see some artwork for sale on this project: at FLAD.DK!

Though it is all in Danish, it is pretty straight-forward.
Shipping and handling costs are only indicated within Denmark...

If you understand Danish, you might like the latest "StegelCast," which is a podcast by TV personality, all-round great guy (and first producer on Valhalla, who asked me to work on the film) Jakob Stegelmann. In this, he and I talk about Disney's Ugly Duckling!
In an earlier StegelCast we talked about the earliest beginnings of the Disney studios.


Saturday, March 25, 2017

Prod. RM16, Mickey's Parrot.

Directed by Bill Roberts, assisted by Mike Holoboff, with layouts by Hal Doughty. Released 9/9/38, this FINAL draft dated 6/15/38.
Animation by Fred Spencer, Art Palmer, Dick Lundy, Les Clark, Bob Wickersham and Shamus/Jimmie Culhane, with effects by Cornett Wood and Josh Meador.

Found on the Treasures DVD Mickey Mouse in Living Color, Vol. 1 Disk 2 or on YouTube, though unofficially, of course, and not in the best quality here.

This short film is one of the few short film directed by Bill Roberts not part of a feature film, the others are The Brave Little Tailor and Society Dog Show. For having been made well after Snow White had begun its conquest of the world, this film has surprisingly varied animation and drawing quality. Lundy's work seems to harken back to earlier days, while Culhane scenes show solid drawing of Pluto's body, but rather awkward expressions.

A bit about myself: I have been busying myself with my regular work, currently editing another feature film, "The Incredible Story of the Giant Pear" based on a successful Danish children's book.
After hours I am, with help from the Walt Disney Archives and Photo Library, reworking my walk-through of Walt Disney's Hyperion Ave. Studio 1926-1940, which I look forward to present (again) at the D23 Expo in Anaheim in July. A new version of (ca. June) 1929 shows an even smaller studio than we for years had taken for granted, and (April-May) 1939 also sees a few corrections based on new revelations. All this has eaten most of my time these past months, which resulted in my not having been able to keep up my blog at regular intervals. I aim to improve that situation, at least a little...

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Friday, June 17, 2016

Collecting Disney

On the eve of one of the most spectacular Disney auctions of the later years, I want to make sure that you all are aware of it!

There are items of all eras of Disney's past, and the range of material is vast! Drawings, records, merchandize, you name it, it's there to bid on. Here are a few of my favorites: (click the images!)
Stalling Score
Original parts for the Minnie's Yoo Hoo trailer by Carl Stalling!

Stalling ScoreLayouts1
Original layouts for Mickey's Nightmare (1932)! Scenes animated by Hardie Gramatky (of Little Toot fame) and Harry Reeves under supervision by Ben Sharpsteen.

Stalling ScoreLayouts2
Original layouts for Mickey's Mellerdrammer (1933)! Animated, again under Sharpsteen's supervision, by Jack Kinney (later director) and George Drake (later supervisor of the trainees).

One of the most spectacular lots is this:
A set of original KEM Weber furniture from the Burbank studio, designed around 1938-39!

The auction starts tomorrow, Saturday June 18, 2016 at 11 am!
You can see the info and browse the amazing catalog here!

At last a moment to do something I wanted to do! Not that I did not enjoy the Disney cruise over the Atlantic, I REALLY did very much! But I would rather not have needed the emergency eye operation in London. All is well now, but it took a few weeks to recover. I am back at work, editing our next feature film! I hope to get more time to update my blog: there are a few promises I need to make good on!

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Wednesday, September 30, 2015

Snow White Master Score

Snow White Master Score
Probably the best way of seeing the "voicing" of a picture is by looking at its mixing score, and this is now possible, for the first time, specifically for the film Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs. You find this in the Snow White Master Score book that was recently issued, for which I wrote the bulk of the technical introduction, together with my friends Russell Schroeder and Alex Rannie. Let it be known that I am ready, willing and able to work on the intro to the Pinocchio Master Score book, telling of the new techniques that were put to use, first and foremost the infamous Iron Pencil!

What can we learn from this book? Well, if nothing else, how few sound effects really are needed when the music tells the story! Through my many years in the business I have worked with dozens of sound effects guys who wanted to heap everything they could think of into those tracks. Luckily on some projects (like my I was able to control the final mix and had a lot ox extraneous effects removed or at least "pulled down a lot." Miffy the Movie had a full score, 63 minutes of music for a 70 minute film, so a lot of effects bit the dust there. If only to see how this can be done properly so it works, the book is well worth the $300 it costs! But just following along with this score, together with the film - it gives you a whole new understanding of storytelling, and music written to beats. Plus - it is just a great book. Get it now!

(My thanks to Jonathan Heely, Geena Downey, Lisa Janacua, Karen Smith, and of course Russell Schroeder and Alex Rannie!)

Tuesday, September 29, 2015

An additional thought to an old posting...

Prodded by a question in the comments, I added a few thoughts on the famous Multiplane shot in the beginning of Seq. 2 of Pinocchio, giving my opinion on why this 67 foot scene was split up in scenes 1.01 to 1.06. Please check down in the comments section!


Thursday, August 27, 2015

The Walt Disney Biography CD-Rom (1998)

Author (and editor of the legendary Funnyworld magazine) Michael Barrier wrote on his blog a posting called Incompatibility, about not being able to run the 1998 "Walt Disney: An Intimate History of the Man and His Magic" CD-Rom, as it was made for use under Windows 95 or 98. I figured out a fix years ago, and some days ago I made Mike aware of a free way of being able to run the CD-Rom under newer Windows. I reiterate it here for those of you who are interested in running the CD-Rom also:

First, there are emulators available (like VMware Workstation) which act as an “empty PC” in which you can install Windows 95 or 98.
VMware is not free, however, but: I found a free way of running the CD-Rom in case you have Windows 7 Professional, Ultimate or Enterprise (not Home or Starter editions, however).

Here is a little guide—it is relatively simple, and easier than having to install Windows 98 in VMware (with usage notes here):
1) install Windows XP Mode
2) install Windows Virtual PC (and reboot)

Start Virtual PC first. Not much happens, but then start Windows XP Mode (in the Applications menu under Virtual PC ).
After running this for the first time, you can run Windows XP Mode. Looks like XP.

In this XP mode—in other words, in this Windows XP window—run setup from the CD-Rom. Install all sub-programs: the Motion Pixel Viewer and QuickTime 2.12. These are only installed on the virtual PC’s “hard drive.”
Then find DISNEY.EXE on the virtual PC hard drive in “C:\Program Files\Walt Disney\Walt Disney Biography” – right click and choose “Properties” – on tab “Compatibility” check “Run this program in compatibility mode for” and choose “Windows 98/Windows Me.”
You can now run DISNEY.EXE to start the CD-Rom (which must be in the drive). (You may have to check the Virtual PC settings for the drive settings. I didn't have to).
You will find a shortcut to the application in the Virtual PC menu on the Windows 7 machine, but in my machine I have not been able to run from this. Just start XP Mode from the Virtual PC menu and run the program from the icon on the Virtual PC desktop. I know this works, as I tried this on a machine that natively runs Windows 7 Pro Sp1 (64bit).

The CD-Rom will work in either VMware or Virtual PC, though video might not run smoothly, depending on your setup. On a Mac there are Windows 98 emulators, too, and those seem to work, as well. Enjoy!


Wednesday, August 26, 2015

Prod. 2069 (Alice) Seq. 01.0 Sc. 27 explained

Just a quick note: the question was raised in a comment, just how the scene 27 in seq. 01.0 of Alice could "turn" as it did. I added a little graphic explanation in the first posting of the Alice draft!


Tuesday, April 14, 2015

Prod. 2179 - Jungle Book (XIV)
  - Seq. 012 - Boy Cub Meets Girl Cub and Ending

207 208 209 210 211
212 213 214 215 216
217 218 219
Assistant director Ed Hansen, layout Don Griffith and Basil Davidovich. This FINAL draft typed 9/19/67. Thank you, Lorraine Thilman! Notice the name of the sequence. Someone must have had a giggle over that.

Animated by Ollie Johnston with eleven scenes of Mowgli and the girl by Walt Stanchfield and two scenes of Baloo and Bagheera by Eric Larson. Ollie as supervising animator would have roughly posed out the entire sequence - at least as thumbnails - and then let Walt Stanchfield handle a good deal of them.

As Bo recently pointed out, Ollie was footage king on this production. It's hard to comprehend that today it's already seven years ago that we lost dear Ollie...

This concludes the draft of Prod. 2179, Jungle Book, the sixteenth complete draft on this blog. Remember my "standard disclaimer" which states that drafts were not prepared as historical documents, but as "go-to" documents assigning responsibility during production. As such there can be situations that the person indicated as animator was instead an assistant or other "replacement."

The next thing should not be that long! Whatever that may be...

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Monday, April 13, 2015

Prod. 2179 - Jungle Book (XIII)
  - Seq. 011 - Tiger Fight - Part 2

199 200 201 202
203 204 205 206
A continuation of the previous sequence, yet seemingly separate, this part is animated by Ollie Johnston with scenes by Eric Larson and Dick Lucas.

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Sunday, April 12, 2015

Prod. 2179 - Jungle Book (XII)
  - Seq. 011 - Tiger Fight - Part 1

184 185 186 187 188
189 190 191 192 193
194 195 196 197 198
Assistant director Ed Hansen, layout Don Griffith.
This FINAL draft typed 9/19/67.

It seems that this sequence was originally two, and I split it up where the second part starts and we hop from scene 67 to 300, just to prolong that delicious agony a day more.

Animated by John Lounsbery, Fred Hellmich, Walt Stanchfield, Eric Larson, Eric Cleworth, Hal King and a scene by John Ewing. A burning tree by Dan MacManus. Actually, I suspect there are a bunch more scenes with fire that MacManus worked on, but he is only credited for the one without character animation.

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