Please note: if an earlier link doesn't work, it may have changed following an update! Check the Category Labels in the side-bar on the right! There you can find animator drafts for sixteen complete Disney features and eighty-six shorts,
as well as Action Analysis Classes and many other vintage animation documents!

Sunday, June 25, 2006

Walt Kelly in Features (I)

Well, I took a quick peek at all my feature drafts, to see what Walt Kelly actually has been credited for. And there wasn't that very much. Excepting the bit in Dumbo, I found a few scenes with Gepetto catching tuna, and three scenes in Fantasia with fauns. Most of his scenes, though, were in The Reluctant Dragon, the actual short film inside the film, animating the boy opposite Woolie Reitherman's dragon. Here is the first batch of his scenes (more tomorrow) - it is Prod. Nr. 2005:
Note that these drafts are from February to April 1941, JUST before the (in)famous strike. Maybe Walt Kelly was on the brink of animation stardom anyway?

Meet also Tom Oreb, Paul Murry and Fred Moore - and what was called "Music Room" previously, is now "Unit 3-D" - which must be the director's offices on the 3rd floor of D-wing...

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Anonymous Mark Mayerson says...

Thank you for these, Hans. I've got a shelf full of Walt Kelly's comic book, book illustrations and newspaper strip work. His Disney career has always been a major mystery, as no one before has been able to point to specific scenes. This is great.

I've been feeding the information you've published on the Thomson Mickey shorts to Steve Thompson, who is the editor of the Walt Kelly fanzine The Fort Mudge Most and working on a Walt Kelly biography. I'll pass this along to him as well, but may make up a mosaic before doing it.

I'll have to take another look at the film in order to judge Kelly's work. It appears that he got more opportunity for acting in this film than in the Thomson Mickey shorts. If so, then maybe the strike occurred at exactly the wrong time for Kelly.

Kelly's health prevented him from being drafted during the war, so if it hadn't been for the strike, it's probable he would have stayed at the studio for the duration. If he was a rising star, the strike deprived him and us of some good animation.

Sunday, June 25, 2006 at 12:06:00 PM PDT  

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