Monday, August 13, 2007

The Other Walt

Looking at Thad's animator breakdown of the Lantz cartoon "Abou Ben Boogie" (directed by Shamus Culhane), I was interested to note that when Art Davis became a director at Warner Brothers, his staff had a number of Lantz people on it, including three who worked on this cartoon: background man Phil De Guard, and animators Don Williams and Emery Hawkins. And Williams and Hawkins had both animated for Disney before going to Lantz, which meant that Davis was working with three ex-Disney animators in his unit: Williams, Hawkins and Bill Melendez.

That may explain why the animation in Davis's cartoons has a slightly different feel from the animation in the other units -- a bit less "solid," less based on precise movements and more on animating the entire body. A cartoon like "What Makes Daffy Duck" sometimes feels like a WB-ized version of the style of Disney or Lantz (whose studio tried to do Disney-style animation on a lower budget).



4 comments:

Thad K said...

Hilarious cartoon! Hawkins steals the show with the swan disguise, but I love Williams' acting scene of Daffy exhibiting his anguish over the horrors of duck hunting.

Jorge Garrido said...

>That may explain why the animation in Davis's cartoons has a slightly different feel from the animation in the other units -- a bit less "solid," less based on precise movements and more on animating the entire body.

For some reason, ARtie's cartoons lways seemed horribly inbetweened. It's also as if the WB style or budgets can't sustain or support the Disney style animation.

J Lee said...

Writers Bill Scott and Lloyd Turner also seemed to leave Davis more room within their stories for both broad gestures and personality animation around the basic plotline. In contrast, the three cartoons Davis did with Dave Monahan as story man have more linear plots and feel more like the type of cartoons the other WB units were doing at the time.

PCUnfunny said...

I always got a Lantz/Disney vibe from Art Davis. He favored a slower pace and broad cartoony action.I think "What Makes A Daffy Duck" is the secound best portrayal of the character, secound only to "Book Revue"(or "The Great Piggy Bank Robbery", I can never decide which one I like best).Watching cartoons like this makes me wonder why Jones decided to dumb down Daffy so much. He is alot funnier when he's sharp witted and looney instead of angry and stupid.