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Friday, July 17, 2020

Original Production Animation Cel of Prince Phillip and Princess Aurora from "Sleeping Beauty," 1959


Original hand painted and hand inked production animation cels of Prince Phillip and Princess Aurora set on a lithographic background from "Sleeping Beauty," 1959, Walt Disney Studios; Production numbers lower cel edges; Size - Prince Phillip & Princess Aurora: 5 1/4 x 3 3/4", Image 11 x 17"; Unframed.

"Sleeping Beauty" is a Walt Disney animated full length feature film and was based on "The Sleeping Beauty" by Charles Perrault and "Little Briar Rose" by The Brothers Grimm. The film was the sixteenth in the Walt Disney Animated Classics series, and it was released to theaters on January 29, 1959 by Buena Vista Distribution. This was to be the last Disney adaptation of a fairy tale for many years, both because of its initial mixed critical reception, and because of it's under performance at the box office. The Walt Disney studio did not return to the fairy tale genre until 30 years later, with the release of "The Little Mermaid" in 1989.

The film was directed by Les Clark, Eric Larson, and Wolfgang Reitherman, under the supervision of Clyde Geronimi. The story was written by Joe Rinaldi, Winston Hibler, Bill Peet, Ted Sears, Ralph Wright, and Milt Banta. The film's musical score and songs, featuring the Graunke Symphony Orchestra, was under the direction of George Bruns. Arrangements and/or adaptations were derived from numbers from the 1890 "Sleeping Beauty Ballet" by Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky. In addition, Igor Stravinsky's music compositions were also adapted into the film. "Sleeping Beauty" was the first animated film to be photographed in the Super Technirama 70 widescreen process, as well as the second full-length animated feature film to be filmed in anamorphic widescreen; following "Lady and the Tramp" four years earlier. In select first-run engagements, the film was presented in Super Technirama 70 and 6-channel stereophonic sound.

"Sleeping Beauty" introduced two characters that would become universal favorites; Maleficent and Princess Aurora. Aurora, along with Snow White and Cinderella would be forever immortalized in the public's view as the three greatest Disney Princesses. The original design for Aurora was developed by Tom Oreb, who based the character on the famed Hollywood actress Audrey Hepburn; known for her thin frame and a very graceful demeanor. Marc Davis, the head animator for Aurora, would continue the development of the character by morphing her general appearance and the clothing of the heroine. The fine tuning of the character continued so that she could be combined with the very angular forms present in the Eyvind Earle hand painted backgrounds.

As with other Disney films, an actress was hired as a live-action model (as a guide for the animators) for Princess Aurora. Helene Stanley, who was also the model for Cinderella in 1950, became the model for the heroine. It is interesting to note that prior to marrying Marc Davis in 1956, Alice (Davis) designed some of costumes worn by Stanley in her acting role as Aurora.

In 1952, the professional opera singer Mary Costa, after meeting people at a party with her future husband director Frank Tashlin, auditioned for the part of Disney's Princess Aurora. Walt Disney called her personally within hours of the audition to inform her that the part was hers. The success of the film "Sleeping Beauty," owes many of those accolades to the voice of Mary Costa. Her songs were some of the most beautiful ever sung by a Disney Princess. In November 1999 Mary Costa received the Disney Legends Award, and her hand prints are now a permanent part of the Disney Legends Plaza at the entrance to Walt Disney Studios.

The majority of the film does not have Aurora on the big screen, but rather her disguised form Briar Rose. Even though Princess Aurora is one of the most loved of all the Disney Princesses, she has least amount of screen time of any prior Princess; only 18 minutes to be exact and during those 18 minutes she only has 18 lines.

Prince Phillip was animated by Milt Kahl and voiced Bill Shirley and Aurora was animated by Marc Davis (who was also lead animator for Maleficent) and voiced by Mary Costa. Both Bill and Mary would be live action models for Prince Phillip and Briar Rose/Princess Aurora for the animators, and their chemistry was magical on screen. In addition, their singing together was one of the many highlights of the film. As discussed by Andreas Deja, Milt Kahl did not like the job of animating Prince Phillip: "Some of you might know that Milt absolutely despised working on the prince. During one of our get togethers I asked him, how he could do such a beautiful job on a character he loathes. To my best recollection he said: 'Well, the character needs to be in the picture, I didn't like the assignment, but you do the best you can.'"

The animation of Prince Phillip by Milt Kahl was radically different than prior Princes in other films.  Phillip was an active character; speaking to his horse Sampson and Sampson understanding what he was saying.  Phillip was also seen as a child at the start of the film, had to be animated in more than one outfit, was the first Prince to use weapons against a Villain; and had to speak, interact, and sing with his love interest Princess Aurora/Briar Rose.

Also from Andreas Deja:
"As I mentioned before, Milt Kahl really didn't enjoy animating Prince Phillip. A handsome dude with a limited range for acting just didn't appeal to him. Of course he still gave it all he'd got to put a descent performance on the screen. (In reference to viewing some of Kahl's rough drawings)... It looks to me that this scene was somewhat based on live action reference, but the translation into drawn animation is incredible. Just dealing with the horse turning direction would be a real challenge. Assistant artist Dave Suding, who worked on the film, told me once that one clean up drawing with the prince on his horse took one full day. That means a second of final clean up footage would require a whole month! Incredible."

When the Walt Disney Company began to promote the theme of Princesses to the public, it was the Princess Aurora character dressed in either the blue or pink dress, that was the preferred form. For animation collectors, the opportunities to acquire cels or drawings of Princess Aurora are few and far between; let alone with Prince Phillip. These cels however, represent one of the greatest setups I have ever seen. Both Prince Phillip and Princess Aurora's are eyes open and they are full figure walking arm in arm towards their parents. They soon end up dancing on the floor of King Stephen's castle and fade into the clouds for the film's stunning finale. This would be a spectacular addition to any high end Walt Disney animation art collection!

Thursday, July 16, 2020

Original Production Animation Cel of the Headless Horseman from "The Legend of Sleepy Hollow" Section of "The Adventures of Ichabod and Mr. Toad," 1949


Original hand painted and hand inked production animation cel of the Headless Horseman numbered 9 in ink lower right; Set on an original hand painted production background with production numbers lower edge from "The Legend of Sleepy Hollow" section of "The Adventures of Ichabod and Mr. Toad," 1949, Walt Disney Studios; Size - Headless Horseman: 6 3/4 x 6 1/2", Background 12 1/2 x 15 1/4", Image 11 1/4 x 15 1/4"; Unframed.


"Yaaaah-ha-ha-ha-ha-haaaa!" - The Headless Horseman

"The Adventures of Ichabod and Mr. Toad," 1949 is an animated package film produced by Walt Disney Productions and released by RKO Radio Pictures. The film consists of two segments – the first is based on the 1908 children's novel "The Wind in the Willows" by British author Kenneth Grahame, and the second is based on the 1820 short story "The Legend of Sleepy Hollow," (named Ichabod Crane in the Disney film) by American author Washington Irving. The famed American singer and actor Bing Crosby provided the voice of Ichabod Crane, Brom Bones, and the Narrator.

The story takes place in October 1790 when Ichabod Crane, a lanky, gluttonous, superstitious yet charming man; arrives in Sleepy Hollow, New York. It's a small village north of Tarrytown and is renowned for its ghostly hauntings and Ichabod is to be the town's new schoolmaster. Despite his odd behavior and awkward appearance, he soon wins the hearts of the village's women. Brom Bones, the roughish town hero, does his best to bully Ichabod; however he is very good at ignoring Brom's taunts. Soon Ichabod falls in love with eighteen-year-old Katrina van Tassel, the beautiful daughter and only child of Baltus van Tassel who is the richest man in all of Sleepy Hollow. Brom, who is also in love with the beautiful Katrina, begins to compete with the schoolmaster for her affection. However, Ichabod succeeds in winning Katrina over at every opportunity. Unbeknownst to Ichabod, Katrina is only using him to make Brom jealous.


Original production animation cel of the Headless Horseman without the background.


Original hand painted production background with production numbers lower edge.

Both Brom and Ichabod are invited to the annual van Tassel Halloween party. While sitting down to dinner, Brom tells Ichabod and the party guests the ghost story of the Headless Horseman, who had lost his head a long time ago during the Revolutionary War. Ever since, on every Halloween night he rides into Sleepy Hollow looking for a new head. The only way to escape him is to cross the covered bridge, as the Headless Horseman's evil powers are limited to within the dark woods.

After the Halloween party ends, Ichabod rides home alone and keeps imagining that he is being followed. He hears strange sounds and then realizes that it's only cattails bumping against a log; Ichabod and his horse begin to hysterically laugh. But then suddenly both stop, as they realize that another laugh has joined them. As Ichabod and his horse slowly turn around, they find the Headless Horseman about to attack them with his sword. The Horseman begins to chase them, laughing all the while. Ichabod gallops for the bridge and barely manages to make it across. As Ichabod turns around, he screams as the Horseman's black horse rears up, and the Headless Horseman throws a flaming jack o' lantern right at him. The very next morning, Ichabod's hat was found next to a shattered pumpkin; however, Ichabod was never heard from again.

The Headless Horseman was animated by veteran Walt Disney animator Wolfgang Reitherman. During an Academy Award tribute to Reitherman's work in the early 1980's, his wonderful chase sequence that occurs between Ichabod Crane and the Headless Horseman was screened. Afterwards he turned to the audience and said, "You know, this stuff is holding up pretty good after all these years."

The Headless Horseman is actually one of a very few Disney Villains to actually "win" rather than being defeated at the end of the film. Also, despite having a small amount of screen time, the Horseman is considered one of the darkest and most disturbing of all the Disney Villains. This is an extremely rare original production animation cel of the Headless Horseman. He is full figure with his burgundy cape blowing in the wind, as he wields a large sword in his left hand. He is astride his dark black horse whose eyes are glowing red, and both are charging forward to pursue Ichabod Crane. Making this piece exceptionally nice is that the production cel is placed on an original hand painted production background. A top shelf piece of Walt Disney vintage animation production artwork, perfect for any art collection.

Thursday, April 23, 2020

Original Production Animation Cel of Pongo and Perdita from "One Hundred and One Dalmatians," 196



Original hand painted production animation cel of Pongo and Perdita from "One Hundred and One Dalmatians," 1961, Walt Disney Studios; Set on a lithographic background; With original Art Corner Certificate sticker; Size - Pongo & Perdita: 5 1/4 x 9", Image: 9 x 11 1/2"; Unframed.

To purchase this cel or to visit the Art Gallery, CLICK HERE!

"Wilt thou love her, comfort her, honor and keep her in sickness and in health; and forsaking all others, keep thee unto her so long as ye both shall live?" - Priest

"One Hundred and One Dalmatians" ("101 Dalmatians"), is a 1961 full length animated feature film by Walt Disney Productions. It was adapted from Dodie Smith's 1956 novel of the same name. It stars Rod Taylor as the voice of Pongo and Cate Bauer as the voice of Perdita; with Betty Lou Gerson as the voice of the evil and villainous Cruella de Vil. The animation of all the characters from the film was quite extraordinary.

The film "Sleeping Beauty," 1959 was very expensive to make and it took a huge financial loss at the box-office; as a result, the Disney animation studio was considering closing. During the production of "Sleeping Beauty," Walt Disney told animator Eric Larson: "I don't think we can continue, it's too expensive." Because Disney's entire company was based on animation, he was looking for a way to continue with animation, and at the same time significantly reduce costs.

The animator Ub Iwerks had been experimenting with Xerox photography to aid in animation process. By 1959 he had modified a Xerox camera to transfer the drawings by the animators, directly onto animation cels. The process would preserve the spontaneity of the penciled drawings but eliminate the inking process, thus saving time and money. However, the limitation was that the camera was unable to deviate from a black scratchy outline, and the resulting cels lacked the fine lavish quality of hand inking.

One of the enormous benefits of the Xerox was that it was a tremendous help towards animating the spotted Dalmatian dogs. According to famed animator Chuck Jones, Disney was able to complete the film for about half of what it would have cost if they had had to animate all the dogs and spots. To achieve the spotted Dalmatians, the Disney animators envision the spot pattern as a star constellation. Once they had an "anchor spot," the next spot was placed into the pattern, and so on until the fully spotted Dalmatian was achieved. All totaled, the film featured 6,469,952 spots, with Pongo having 72 spots, Perdita 68, and each puppy 32.

Pongo was animated by Ollie Johnston and voiced by Rod Taylor, who was an Australian TV an movie actor who appeared in over 50 films. Perdita was also animated by Ollie Johnston, and she was voiced by Lisa Davis and Cate Bauer. Lisa Davis (who also voiced Anita) recorded about a third of the film as Perdita, but got married and moved to New York. So for the balance of the film, Perdita was voiced by Cate Bauer. It is unknown which actress recorded which lines.

This is a fantastic original production animation cel of Pongo and Perdita from the famous double wedding ceremony scene. Pongo's plan to get Roger to meet Anita at the outdoor park works, and soon they are standing before a Priest (seen through a stained glass window) inside of church. Pongo and Perdita are standing outside of the same church window, and both couples are wed in unison. It really doesn't get any better than this! A large and perfect image of the pair, with both dogs looking into each others eyes, sporting their blue and red collars, and paw in paw as they are read their wedding vows. A fantastic piece of original production artwork that is perfect for any serious animation art collection!

Original Production Animation Cels of Snow White and Dopey from "Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs," 1937


Original hand painted and hand inked production animation cels of Snow White and Dopey from "Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs," 1937, Walt Disney Studios; Set on a hand-painted background; Size - Snow White & Dopey: 7 x 5", Image 8 x 6 1/2"; Unframed.


“Lips red as the rose. Hair black as ebony. Skin white as snow.”
―The Magic Mirror describing Snow White

Development on Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs began in early 1934, and by June Walt Disney announced to The New York Times the production of his first feature, to be released under Walt Disney Productions. Before Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, the Disney studio had been primarily involved in the production of animated short subjects in the Mickey Mouse and Silly Symphonies series. However, Disney hoped to expand his studio's prestige and revenues by moving into features, and he estimated that Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs could be produced for a budget of $250,000 (this was ten times the budget of an average Silly Symphony).

Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs was to be the first full-length cel animated feature in motion picture history, and as such Walt Disney had to fight to get the film produced. Both his brother and business partner Roy Disney, as well as his wife Lillian attempted to talk him out of it.  The Hollywood movie industry mockingly referred to the film, while is was in production, as "Disney's Folly."  Disney ended up having to mortgage his house to help finance the film's production, which would eventually ran up to a total cost of $1,488,422.74; an absolutely massive sum for a feature film in 1937!

A large number of actresses auditioned for the voice of Snow White. Walt Disney listened to each audition in his office while the actress performed in another room, without any knowledge of the actress' appearance or reputation. This would insure that he would only judge based on the sound of the voice. According to later accounts, most of the voices Disney felt, did not sound young enough. Eventually, in September of 1935, Adriana Caselotti was chosen for the voice of Snow White. Caselotti was eighteen at the time and made her coloraturo soprano sound younger, knowing that the character was intended to be 14 years old. In recording sessions Caselotti found difficulty in the line, "Grumpy, I didn't know you cared"; instead of "didn't", Caselotti was only able to say "din". After rehearsing the line many times, Walt Disney eventually said "Oh, the heck with..." and "din'" remained in the final film.

Snow White's design was supervised by Grim Natwick, an animator who had previously developed and worked on Betty Boop at Fleischer Studios. It is interesting to note that early designs for the Snow White resemble Betty Boop, and some appear to be caricatures of famous actresses of the time. As development continued, Snow White became more and more lifelike. Another animator, Hamilton Luske's first designs for Snow White depicted her as a slightly awkward, gangly teenager. However, Walt Disney had a different idea in mind; he wanted Snow White to be older, and more realistic-looking. This was achieved by the use of live-action references for the animators. Also, in order for Snow White to better relate onscreen to the seven Dwarfs, it was decided that her head be slightly larger than normal. In addition, the women in the animation studio's ink and paint department felt that Snow White's black hair was too unnatural and harsh, so they drybrushed whisps of light grey over the top of each and every cel.

Although the initial concept designing of the dwarfs was relatively easy for the Walt Disney animation department, the actual animating of them proved to be difficult. The animators, already finding human figures difficult to animate, now had to animate dwarfed human figures. The great Disney animator Vladimir Tytla noted that the dwarfs should walk with a swing to their hips, and Fred Moore commented that they had to move a little more quickly in order to keep up with the other human characters.

In the pre-production stages of "Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs," Dopey was simply called 'The Seventh'. His personality and role were finalized late in the process, after it was suggested that Dopey should move like burlesque comedian Eddie Collins. Collins began his career in vaudeville and went on to become a successful comedian, actor, and singer. He helped to define the character's personality through his live action filmed sequences, as well as providing the few vocal sounds that Dopey made during the film. He also provided the sounds of a sneezing chipmunk and a squirrel.

Dopey is the youngest of the dwarfs, as proven by his lack of a beard. But perhaps his most notable trait is his lack of speech. In the film Happy states Dopey is simply unaware whether or not he can speak, as he has simply never tried. In spite of this, he can occasionally be heard making various vocal sounds such as whimpers, hiccups, and a one-shot yell. The other dwarfs seem to have no problem understanding Dopey, and Doc was able to easily translate Dopey's blathering into a cohesive sentence. Various Walt Disney artists were involved in the animation of Dopey throughout the film including: Vladimir Tytla, Fred Moore, Frank Thomas, Shamus Culhane, Les Clark, Ollie Johnston, and Art Babbit.

These original production animation cels are from the scene in the film that occurs just before the Dwarfs head off to work in the gemstone mine. They warn Snow White to be careful with Doc saying, "Now, don't forget, my dear. Th-The old Queen's a sly one. Full of witchcraft. So beware of strangers." Snow White assures them that she will be careful. Each Dwarf says goodbye to Snow White and this is an absolutely beautiful cel setup of her with Dopey, standing just outside of the Dwarf forest cottage door. Both are large full figure centered images and the piece would be a highlight for any serious animation art collection!

Wednesday, April 22, 2020

Original Production Animation Drawing of Mickey Mouse from "Steamboat Willie," 1928


Original production animation drawing of Mickey Mouse from "Steamboat Willie," 1928, Walt Disney Studios; Graphite pencil on peg hole paper; Numbered 239 bottom right and 67 center right; Walt Disney Archives stamp number verso; Size - Mickey Mouse: 2 1/2 x 6 1/4", Sheet 9 1/2 x 12"; Unframed.

 To purchase this drawing or to visit the Art Gallery, CLICK HERE!

"I only hope that we don't lose sight of one thing - that it was all started by a mouse." - Walt Disney

"Steamboat Willie" (released on November 18, 1928) is a black-and-white animated short film produced by Walt Disney Studios, released by Celebrity Productions, and was directed by Walt Disney and Ub Iwerks. The cartoon is considered the debut of Mickey Mouse and his girlfriend Minnie Mouse; although both characters had appeared several months early in a test screening of "Plane Crazy" and the earlier produced but not released short film "The Gallopin' Gaucho." Although "Steamboat Willie" was the third Mickey short to be produced, it was the first to be distributed because Walt Disney, having seen "The Jazz Singer," was determined to produce the first fully synchronized sound cartoon. With "Steamboat Willie" Disney achieved not only synchronized character sounds, but also a synchronized musical score. Music for the short was arranged by Wilfred Jackson and Bert Lewis and included the songs "Steamboat Bill" and "Turkey In the Straw." Walt Disney performed all of the voices for the film and it would go on to become the most popular cartoon of it's day. In 1994 "Steamboat Willie" was voted to be 13th in "The 50 Greatest Cartoons" of all time, and in 1998 it was selected for preservation in the United States National Film Registry for being deemed "culturally, historically, or aesthetically significant."

The story of "Steamboat Willie" is that Mickey Mouse is piloting a river steamboat. He cheerfully whistles the song "Steamboat Bill" and he sounds the boat's three whistles. Soon the real ship's captain, Pete, shows up and orders Mickey off the bridge. Mickey blows a raspberry at Pete and Pete attempts to kick Mickey, but kicks himself instead. Mickey rushes down the stairs but slips on a bar of soap on the boat's deck, and he lands in a bucket of water. A parrots laughs at him, and in anger Mickey throws the bucket at him. Back on the deck, Pete pilots the steamboat and bites off some chewing tobacco and spits into the wind. The spit flies backward and rings the boat's bell. Pete tries to repeat this but the tobacco hits him in the face, causing him to get angry. The steamboat stops at "Podunk Landing" to pick up a cargo of livestock. Minnie Mouse almost misses boarding the boat, but manages to get on because Mickey is able to grab her by her underwear with the cargo crane, and swing her onto the deck just in the nick of time. Minnie accidentally drops her guitar and the sheet music to the song "Turkey In the Straw," which was then eaten by a goat. Mickey and Minnie use the goat as a phonograph by winding his tail like a crank, and the song begins to to come out of the goat's mouth. Mickey uses various objects and the animals on the boat as percussion accompaniment. The end of the song is played by Mickey using a pair of mallets to hit the teeth of a mouth open cow, emulating a xylophone. Finally Pete is annoyed by all the racket and puts Mickey to work peeling potatoes. In the potato bin, the same parrot as mentioned prior, laughs at him again; and an annoyed Mickey throws a potato at him, knocking him into the river. The short ends with Mickey laughing.

The following two paragraphs are from a publication excerpt from The Museum of Modern Art, MoMA Highlights, New York: The Museum of Modern Art, revised 2004, originally published 1999, p.137.

"Disney's Steamboat Willie is a landmark in the history of animation. It was the first Mickey Mouse film released and the first cartoon with synchronized sound. It threw silent animation into obsolescence, and launched an empire. Previously, there had been little to distinguish Disney's cartoons from those of his competitors. He was facing bankruptcy when Alan Crosland's The Jazz Singer, with long sequences of song and dialogue, took America by storm in 1927. Sensing that sound movies meant big business, Disney decided to stake all on his talking mouse. The movie opened at the Colony Theater in New York on November 18, 1928, a date that would become known as Mickey's birthday.

Audiences were stunned by the vitality of the film's characters. Unhampered by the difficulties of using new equipment with live actors, Disney was able to fuse technology with hand craftsmanship, naturalism with abstraction, an ability that, over time, proved him to be a great artist. So strong was the audience demand for Steamboat Willie that two weeks after its premiere Disney re-released it at the largest theater in the world, the Roxy in New York City. Critics came to see in Mickey Mouse a blend of Charlie Chaplin in his championing of the underdog, Douglas Fairbanks in his rascally adventurous spirit, and Fred Astaire in his grace and freedom from gravity's laws."

This is a spectacular drawing by Ub Iwerks of Mickey Mouse from the film that started it all, "Steamboat Willie," 1928. Mickey is eyes open and has a huge smile; while using a pair of mallets to play the teeth of cow like a xylophone, to the song "Turkey In the Straw." Walt Disney performed all of the voices for the film, and so no Disney animation art collection would be complete without an original piece of art from the first released Mickey Mouse cartoon "Steamboat Willie!"

Saturday, April 18, 2020

Original Production Animation Drawing of Stromboli from "Pinocchio," 1940


Original production animation drawing in red, blue, green, and graphite pencils of Stromboli from "Pinocchio," 1940, Walt Disney Studios; Numbered C72 in pencil and production numbers stamp lower right; Size - Stromboli: 3 3/4 x 6 3/4", Sheet: 10 x 12"; Unframed.

To purchase this drawing or to visit the Art Gallery, CLICK HERE!

"Pinocchio," 1940 was the second animated feature film produced by Disney, and followed on the success of "Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs." 1937. It was released to theaters by RKO Radio Pictures on February 23, 1940 and was based on the Italian children's novel "The Adventures of Pinocchio" by Carlo Collodi. The general plot of the film involves an old wood-carver named Geppetto, who carves a wooden puppet that he names Pinocchio. One night the puppet is brought to life by the Blue Fairy, who informs him that he can become a real boy if he proves himself to be "brave, truthful, and unselfish". Pinocchio's journey to become a real boy is challenged by his encounters with an array of scrupulous characters.

"Pinocchio" became the first animated feature to win an Academy Award; it won for both Best Music - Original Score and for Best Music - Original Song for "When You Wish Upon A Star." Most critics and audiences agree that "Pinocchio" is among the finest Disney features ever made, and one of the greatest animated films of all time. In 1994, it was added to the United States National Film Registry as being "culturally, historically, or aesthetically significant."


Close up of the original production animation drawing of Stromboli.

Although Pinocchio encounters a wide range of antagonists, two of the cruelest are the Coachman and Stromboli; the evil puppeteer, showman, and gypsy whose only goal was to make money. Both the Coachman and Stromboli were voiced by Charles Judes who added a heavy Italian accent. Stomboli is also the only Disney Villain who cursed, however it was obscured by being done in Italian.

Hamilton Luske directed the live-action footage of most of the actors posing as characters for Pinocchio. Luske admitted to the fact that the character, acted by story man T. Hee dressed in full gypsy garb, was a bit understated but that he did not want Stromboli's animator Vladimir Tytla doing "too many things." Tyla was a tall and imposing personality and he had a physical build that was similar to that of Stromboli, which may account for him being given the character to animate. It is known that while Tytla was working out sequences for Stromobli in his room, that he would perform the story aloud and that Eric Larson stated that he "thought the walls would fall in." Obviously the performance worked because the villainous Stromboli is one of Walt Disney's greatest memorable villains!

This is a large, waist up image of the evil puppet master Stromboli! The drawing is accomplished in red, blue, green, and graphite pencils. Stromboli is eyes and mouth open, with a wicked smile. A great pose and expression of this famous vintage Disney villain, and he would be a wonderful addition to any animation art collection!

Original Production Animation Drawing of Pinocchio from "Pinocchio," 1940


Original production animation drawing in red and graphite pencils of Pinocchio from "Pinocchio," 1940, Walt Disney Studios; Numbered 8A in pencil lower right; Production numbers stamp lower left; Size - Pinocchio with Rock: 5 1/2 x 2 1/2", Sheet: 10 x 12"; Unframed.


"Pinocchio," 1940 was the second animated feature film produced by Disney, and followed on the success of "Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs." 1937. It was released to theaters by RKO Radio Pictures on February 23, 1940 and was based on the Italian children's novel "The Adventures of Pinocchio" by Carlo Collodi. The general plot of the film involves an old wood-carver named Geppetto, who carves a wooden puppet that he names Pinocchio. One night the puppet is brought to life by the Blue Fairy, who informs him that he can become a real boy if he proves himself to be "brave, truthful, and unselfish". Pinocchio's journey to become a real boy is challenged by his encounters with an array of scrupulous characters.

"Pinocchio" became the first animated feature to win an Academy Award; it won for both Best Music - Original Score and for Best Music - Original Song for "When You Wish Upon A Star." Most critics and audiences agree that "Pinocchio" is among the finest Disney features ever made, and one of the greatest animated films of all time. In 1994, it was added to the United States National Film Registry as being "culturally, historically, or aesthetically significant."


Close up of the Pinocchio original production animation drawing.

Due to the huge success of "Snow White," Walt Disney wanted more famous voice actors for "Pinocchio." He cast popular singer Cliff Edwards (who had made the first record selling over a million copies) as Jiminy Cricket. Disney also wanted the character of Pinocchio to be voiced by a real child. The role ended up going to twelve year old actor Dickie Jones, who had previously been in Frank Capra's enormous Hollywood hit, "Mr. Smith Goes to Washington."

Animation began in September 1938 and just as in "Snow White," live-action footage was shot for "Pinocchio" with the actors playing the scenes; which was supervised by Hamilton Luske. The animators then used the footage as a guide for their animation drawings by studying the human movement and then incorporating many of those poses and scenes. The title character was animated by Milt Kahl (initial design), Frank Thomas, and Ollie Johnston. "When I was doing Pinocchio," Johnston said, "I thought of the character being real, a living person, not a drawing."

"Pinocchio," was groundbreaking in the area of effects animation. The animators gave realistic movement to vehicles, machinery, and natural elements; such as rain, lightning, snow, smoke, shadows, and water. In contrast to the character animators, effects animators create everything that moves around the characters. Sandy Strother, one of the Disney effects animators from "Pinocchio," kept a diary about his year long animation of the water effects; which included splashes, ripples, bubbles, waves, and the illusion of being underwater. All of this attention to detail contributed to "Pinocchio" being one of the first animated films to have highly realistic effects animation. Ollie Johnston remarked "I think that's one of the finest things the studio's ever done" and Frank Thomas stated, "The water looks so real a person can drown in it, and they do."

This is a wonderful full figure drawing of Pinocchio underwater. His eyes and mouth are open, he has his donkey ears and tail from his encounter at Pleasure Island, and he is surrounded by bubbles. In order to to weight him down, he has a rock tied to his donkey tail. This is large image of Pinocchio as he goes about searching for his father Geppetto, who was swallowed by the whale Monstro. A great vintage Walt Disney production drawing, perfect for any collection!