Saturday, December 25, 2010

Holiday Greetinks!!

Some seasonal bits for your enjoyment:

Gag cartoon from Fleischer's Animated News Dec 1935 - drawn by animator Hal Seeger.

Tuesday, December 14, 2010


I recently got an email from a relative of George Rufle. I'm hoping to get some background info and a photo of him to post here in the near future. In the meantime here's a clip of George's animation from 'A Wolf in Sheik's Clothing'. (1948)

This drawing by Jack Ozark was auctioned on ebay.

I like that Jack chose to draw Popeye (apart from the white sailor hat) in the same style as his Bowsky/Johnson crew days while working at the Fleischer Studio.

Anyone know who drew this model sheet from Puppet Love?? (Facebook friends are not allowed to answer this question)

Friday, October 22, 2010

Tendlar Crew in Miami

Scan of original card that was printed on textured paper

I don't know the reason for this card. One thing cool about it though - it tells us the members of the Tendlar crew when the Fleischer Studio moved to Miami. (sometime after March 1938) It may have been printed just after the move to Miami - I would place this card around the time that Aladdin and His Wonderful Lamp was being finished. My conjecture is based on the animators caricatured here. Shortly after Grossman would join Orestes Calpini's group of animators, and Spector and Bentley would likewise leave Tendlar's group to animate in other crews. There are a couple of Tendlar's animators missing from the greeting that predate the move - Tom Golden and Eli Brucker. Golden likely stayed in New York to finish up business there and followed later. Brucker seemed to disappear after the 1939 credits. I suspect he was one of the animators that didn't want to make the move to Miami.

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Johnny Gent at NYIT - 1989

Back row, left to right - Dante Barbetta (former Famous Studio animator) Johnny Gent, Mike Kaweski
Front Row, left to right - Howard Speileman (production manager), Joan LaPallo (Johnny's assistant)

Photo courtesy of Mike Kaweski. According to Mike, Johnny's work at NYIT in '89 was his last studio gig.

Back to regular blogging soon...

Saturday, July 31, 2010

More Animator Buddies

Front row, left to right: Dick Hall, Edwin Rehberg, unknown, Larry Silverman. Back row, left to right: Otto Feuer, Morey Zukor, Reuben Timmins, Ralph Somerville, George Weiss, Jack Ozark, and Ben Shenkman.

This photo was taken at the side of Filmation's Sherman Way and Lindley Avenue main studio in Reseda. The building stands today, housing medical offices. All the artists, to my knowledge, worked at one time at for the Fleischer or Famous Studios. (some both)

Thanks to Tim Walker and Tom Minton for help with the IDs.

Sunday, July 25, 2010

Inside Joke

This post was prompted by a comment left by blog reader J Lee:

Tendlar also has a unique way of showing the fight at the end of "Fowl Play", where Popeye punches Bluto into the side of the house, but hit outline silhouette remains motionless while the rest of the body bounces back into place.

The action that J Lee described is actually an animation inside joke. Before computer technology, the animation drawings would be traced in ink onto clear celluloid sheets then flipped over and the characters painted in on the back before going to camera. So here's where the in-joke comes into play - when Popeye hits Bluto he is literally punching the paint off him, leaving Bluto's ink outline in place.

Another great use of the cartoon medium courtesy of the Fleischer Studio.

Watch it in action...

Sunday, July 18, 2010

Faux Camera Shake

Here's a technique that you'd only find in a Fleischer cartoon. In Organ Grinder's Swing, de facto director Dave Tendlar chose to simulate a camera shake by flashing 2 different backgrounds - one normal and one distorted - shot on alternating exposures.

This was a smart move on Tendlar's part. (assuming it was his idea) Why you say?? Generally speaking, overlapping the actions of a camera shake and character animation would have weakened the action of the punches and lessened their impact. And for sure the action of Olive in the distance would have been lost.

See it in motion...

Sunday, July 4, 2010

Happy Fourth of July...

... to all my readers and friends in the US.

(Click on image to enlarge)

Friday, July 2, 2010

Aversion to Knee Caps??

For whatever reason, it seems Dave Tendlar did not like to draw Popeye's knee caps. Many drawings do have them, but generally speaking, most of them are missing that part of the anatomy. Unlike his fellow animators, Tendlar would streamline the shapes of the legs instead of drawing them like the model in segmented sections. The following clip of his animation from The Man on the Flying Trapeze is a great example of this particular drawing earmark.

Some other examples from posted clips -

Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Tendlar's Aladdin Animation

Some of Dave's animation from Popeye the Sailor Meets Aladdin and His Wonderful Lamp. (released in 1939) There's lots of the Tendlar tongue action in this clip.

When you're finished here, check out Thad's post on Betty Boop's May Party (de facto directed by Dave Tendlar) - one of my favorite Betty Boop cartoons.

Monday, June 28, 2010

Tendlar Tongues

There are a handful of drawing earmarks that help to identify Tendlar's style - one has Popeye sticking out his tongue for expression. Dave was the only Popeye animator I'm aware of that used the tongue in that manner. (excluding those who used it to express appetite or hunger)

Did anybody spot the other earmarks of Dave's style from last week's clips??

This frame grab was taken part way through a cross dissolve.

Friday, June 25, 2010

Dave Tendlar - Day 5

To wrap up Dave Tendlar week I have some examples of his drawing style - a model from 'I Wanna be a Lifeguard' (released in 1936) and a gag drawing from Fleischer Animated News. I plan to breakdown the particulars of Dave's drawing that helped me ID his style and will post those next week. In the meantime see if you can spot them by analyzing the drawings and animation clips.

Today's clip is some of Dave's animation from the first Popeye cartoon that he de facto directed, 'Choose Your Weppins'. (released in 1935)

Click on image to enlarge
The picture came from an ebay image so it's not the best quality.

Click on image to enlarge

Thursday, June 24, 2010

Dave Tendlar - Day 4

Today's offering - another gag cartoon of Dave from the pages of Fleischer's Animated News and a clip of his animation from Beware of Barnacle Bill. (released in 1935)

Click on image to enlarge

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Dave Tendlar - Day 3

Like many of his colleagues, Dave Tendlar moonlighted in his off hours drawing comics books - among them, print versions of the of Famous Studio cartoons Baby Huey and Herman and Katnip. He also had a regular spot in Jingle Jangle Comics drawing Chauncey Chirp and Johnny Jay and other one page features like the following -

Click on image to enlarge

This drawing of Cousin George looks like a skewed version of Baby Huey. (taken from a Chauncey Chirp and Johnny Jay story)

Today's clip of Dave's animation is from 'We Aim to Please' (released in 1934)

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Dave Tendlar - Day 2

Today we have a gag cartoon with Dave Tendlar from a 1935 issue of Fleischer's Animated News. You can see a caricature of Dave at the bottom of the page. The clip is of two scenes of his animation from The Dance Contest. (released in 1934)

After you finish here go directly to fellow cartoon aficionado and shut-in Uncle John's site to see what he has to say about Tendlar's classic 'Play Safe.'

Monday, June 21, 2010

Dave Tendlar - Day 1

Today's post on Dave includes a bio from Fleischer's Animated News and a clip of two scenes of his animation from 'Shiver Me Timbers!'. (released in 1934) This is one of the earliest Popeye cartoons where I'm able to see his work - Dave's personal drawing style for Popeye is starting to form at this point. More on that later in the week.

Click on image to enlarge

Click on image to enlarge

Friday, June 18, 2010

Dave Tendlar Week Next Week

That's right - starting Monday and ending Friday, there will be a clip of Dave Tendlar's Popeye animation on each of those days along with some info and trivia on him.

Sunday, June 13, 2010

Drunk Camerman??

I must have seen every Popeye cartoon at least one hundred times and it wasn't until last week when I took note of the titles of "Seasin's Greetinks!". The camerawork is really messed up. I never noticed it in the past. I have reason to believe the cameraman may have been a tad intoxicated when he shot the titles. See if you agree with me -

Paramount logo out of focus screen right.

Titles not centered.

Shaky door opening.

The title card is on an angle.

A quick adjustment. That's better.

A shaky truck in and - whoops, it's out of focus.

Focus camera.

See it all in motion.

Thursday, June 10, 2010

Uncredited Animators

A call back to this post regarding misinformation on the internet. Here's another winner on youtube - many titles are rife with imaginary credits. It looks as though this person pulled names out of a hat for his choices.

FYI - if you reference the call back post, someone went and cleaned up the Wikipedia credits.

Thursday, June 3, 2010

Tom Johnson??

Check out this post on Cartoon Brew. Compare the frame grab with photos below that I have of de facto director/animator Tom Johnson. Do you think the actor in the film is him??

Frame grab from The Vacationers' Paradise

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Fleischer/Famous Studios Retrospective in 1988

I found this filed away in a box of unrelated stuff - given to me years ago by friend and colleague Mark Mayerson. I never went to see the retrospective - I wish I had.

I find it strange that the Fleischer and Famous Studios always get grouped together under the Fleischer Studio when it comes to showing or dealing of art.

You can enlarge the images by clicking on them.