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Sunday, December 6, 2015

Original Animation Production Cel of Grumpy Set On A Wood Veneer Courvoisier Background from "Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs," 1937


Original hand painted and hand inked production cel of Grumpy set on an airbrushed wood veneer Courvoisier background from "Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs," 1937; Size - Grumpy: 4 3/4 x 4 1/2", Image 8 x 8"; Unframed.

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

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!

Grumpy was animated by Vladimir "Bill" Tytla, who also animated Doc. Tytla's Grumpy is the second most popular of the seven dwarfs, just behind Dopey.

From Disney animator Andreas Deja:
"Tytla animated 'from the inside out.' For every scene he did, he lived inside of that character. He drew absolutely beautifully, but bringing out  emotion and personality came first. Even if that lead to an off model drawing here and there. Walt had Fred Moore take a look at a few of Tytla's Grumpy scenes in order to punch up the 'charm level.'"

This is an absolutely wonderful original hand painted and hand inked production cel of Grumpy set on an airbrushed (used to create the shadow and the dwarf name) wood veneer Courvoisier background. The Courvoisier portrait series from Snow White is highly desired by collectors for their beauty. Courvoisier Galleries, the first to recognize the artistic value to the newly emerging animation art form, in the 1930s and 40s created the series to sell to the public. All the characters from the film were made for the series including The Seven Dwarfs, Snow White, The Huntsman, The Old Hag, and The Evil Queen. The character cels were trimmed and applied to the wood veneer background. This is a large portrait of Grumpy with one eye open, one closed, and he is wearing his ever present frown.