Monday, October 24, 2016

Original Production Animation Concept Painting of Robin Hood from "Robin Hood," 1973

Original production animation concept painting of Robin Hood from "Robin Hood," 1973, Walt Disney Studios; Watercolor and ink on paper mounted to board; Size - Robin Hood: 5 1/2 x 5 1/2", Sheet 8 x 8"; Unframed.

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"Robin Hood" was the twenty-first full length animated film released by Walt Disney Studios on November 8, 1973. Robin Hood is an anthropomorphic fox and the protagonist of the film. Although Robin Hood is often shown as an outlaw who chooses to rob from the rich to help the poor people, in this Disney animated version, he is shown mainly attacking Prince John and his agents (Sir Hiss and the Sheriff of Nottingham), who have impoverished Nottingham with high taxes. Robin Hood and Little John steal the tax caravans and give it back to the peasants while trying to avoid capture. Robin Hood was animated by the veteran Disney animator Ollie Johnston and he was voiced by the English actor Brian Bedford.

Close up of the original production animation concept painting of Robin Hood

From Andreas Deja:
"When Walt Disney Productions decided to produce an animated film based on the classic tale of Robin Hood, it was Ken Anderson who got to get to work before anyone else. During conversations with the animators Ken found out that some of the most fun they ever had was animating the anthropomorphic animals in "Song of the South." So he suggested that the story of Robin Hood be told with animal characters. Everybody loved the idea and after completing early design work Ken presented his research to some of Disney's top talents... Once a character concept had been approved, it was up to Milt Kahl to finalize Ken's designs for animation."
This is an extremely rare original production animation concept painting of Robin Hood. The work is accomplished in watercolor and ink, and is almost certainly by Ken Anderson completed during the early character design phase of the film. Robin Hood is full figure and dressed in his iconic green tunic, leggings, boots, and hat. His quiver of arrows is over his shoulder and his dagger is by his side. A fox was chosen to portray his character, and his long bushy brown and white tail becomes his most prominent feature. Perhaps the most interesting part of the drawing, is him holding out and presenting his "Robin Hood" calling card. A rare and important piece of Walt Disney animation artwork, and a great addition to any animation collection!