Monday, May 30, 2011

Memorial Day, at least a year off

Bugs was the mascot (or whatever that counts as) for the U.S.S. Comfort, a hospital ship. It was commissioned in '44, so this is jumping the gun a bit, but it is Memorial Day.

Tomorrow: Coming Snafu.

057 The Dizzy Acrobat

Title: The Dizzy Acrobat
Studio: Lantz
Date: 05/31/43
Ben Hardaway : Milt Shaffer
Emery Hawkins
Darrell Calker
Series: Woody Woodpecker
Running time (of viewed version): 6:43
Commercial DVD Availability: WWv1d1 , Columbia House WWCE3

Synopsis: Woody acts the fool at the circus.

Comments: Open on a big pleasantly brown circus tent. Unless you count Woody's breakthrough in the opening. Which I apparently do not. Sideshow posters. The rubber man is gone for the duration, in a nod to the ongoing rubber shortage we keep seeing throughout these cartoons. Woody's song: "I went to the animal fair, the birds and the beasts were there, the big baboon by the light of the moon was combing his auburn hair". Woody is walking through dangers he is not cognizant of. The lion is speaking in a specific voice; not sure if it's Irish, or a specific reference, when he says "well waddaya know, just call me stubby". Could be Stubby Kaye, but I'm not familiar enough with him to say for sure (even checking for a YouTube clip like this one ). The next bit of the song: "The monkey he got drunk, and climbed the elephant's trunk, the elephant sneezed, he fell on his knees, Then what became of the monk, the monk, the monk, the monk, the monk, the monk?" Woody's acting like a dick. So's the security guy. The thing is, that guy is doing his job. Woody's just trying to get something for nothing. At least he gets shot a couple of times at the end. Woody sounds like Chip/Dale with the bucket on his head. There is only acrobatting in the last third of the cartoon.

Sunday, May 29, 2011

BoxOffice May 29, 1943

BoxOffice May 29, 1943

"Home Ofjice Family Club, held in the grand ballroom of Hotel Astor in Nete York, had among the guests some 600 employes, including company officials, screen stars. Broadway stage celebrities, etc. Among executives identified in the top panel are William Clark, short subjects sales manager: William Weiss and Harvey Day. Terrytoon representatives: W. C. Michel, executive vice-president: Felix Jenkiiis. secretary and head of the legal department: A. W. Smith jr.. eastern sales manager: Ray Moon. New York exchange branch manager: Morris Sanders. New York exchange sales manager, and Paul Terry, producer of Terrytoons. Identifiable in the middle panel, left to right, are: William J. Kupper. assistant to Connors: Hal Home, advertising and publicity director: Connors: William C. Gehring. western sales manager, and Martin Moskowitz. Kupper's assistant. Ainong those at the table in the bottom panel are Mrs. Annette Downs. Jack Goldstein. Mrs. Charles Schlaifcr. Charles Schlaifer. advertising manager: Peggy Young. Kay Schancer. Joe Shea. Helen Kramer. Nicky Grauer. Home, and Mrs. Jeanette Saicyer."

"Paul Worth Made Head Of Columbia Cartoons

Paul Worth, formerly musical director for Dave Fleischer's Columbia Screen Gems, has been promoted to general manager of the cartoon organization.

"new feature series: "Paramount Musical Parade," a two-reeler; "Little Lulu" and "Noveltoons," the latter an open series introducing new cartoon characters."

"Topping everything were three pages, two of them in color, on the new subjects which Walt Disney developed on his recent South American tour which resulted in the production of "Saludos Amigos." This was in the Pictorial Review section of the Journal Ayncrican. One of these pages was on "El Gaucho Goofy. Twelve inches of type gave high praise to "Saludos Amigos" and described the picture as a "sincere effort on the part of Walt Disney to convey with a feeling of true neighborliness the folklore, romance. art and color of our friendly republics to

the south.""

""Snow White" Voice

In Suit



Against Disney


New York —Adriana

was used


in "Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs." testified in N. Y. supreme court in her suit for $200,000 against Walt

Disney Productions. Mfg. Co.


and the


She said the agreement was that she would receive $1,000 for the time required



making of the film. It covered three She testified it was her understanding that she would be allowed to make personal appearances and records after the

in the


completion of the film. Attorneys for the defense say the contract was oral and that Miss Caselotti signed 30 pay vouchers giving the companies the right to reproduce her voice.

Visits Disney's When Kate Smith visited the Walt


she joas particularly interested in the viusical numbers high-lighting the second Disney Latin- American feature temporarily called "Surprise Package."

Disney studios at Burbank,

The above photo of Kate and Walt Disney was taken at the studio."

"Meny Melodie"




Reissues Chosen by Schlesinger

1943-44 production schedule, recently reduced from 39 to 26 pictures. Leon Schlesinger has annovmced plans to rei.ssue 13 of his most popular "Merrie Melodies." Those selected for rerelease include "Hiawatha's Rabbit Hunt.""

"Mopping Up

(Technicolor Terrytoon)


7 Mins.

The Underground World


7 Mins. (Superman) So-So. Lois Lane and Superman (Clark Kent) are assigned by the editor of the "Daily Planet" to probe the mysteries of a vast, unchartered, underground world. Drawings and

Candy and Sergeant Cat

solved when they learn the place is headquarters for a gang of bond counterfeiters, who have hired a giant goon to terrorize people and make the house appear haunted. The police arrive in time to capture the racketeers.

stage some target practice, with the sergeant shooting a cannon at an apple on Candy's head. A shell sends him through a forest A dud blows up, they fly through of trees.








the short might generally appeal primarily to adolescents.




Adolf is making a speech to Benito. The gags from there on are riotous.


Friday, May 27, 2011

056 Ration Fer the Duration

Title: Ration fer the Duration
Studio: Fleischer
Date: 05/28/43
Seymour Kneitel
Dave Tendlar
Tom Golden
Jack Mercer
Jack Ward
Series: Popeye
Running time (of viewed version): 8:14
Commercial DVD Availability: Pv3

Synopsis: Victory gardens lead to a dream of Jack and the Beanstalk.

Comments: Tires as the Os in the title. Victory garden open. Popeye seems to be growing lots of tomatoes. My understanding is that tomatoes were not rationed (there was a Life of Riley based on this joke). So whether or not that's an intentional joke here or if they were just acting like Riley, I don't know. The chicken has the eyes of the carrier pigeon. Popeye is scolding the nephews for going fishing instead of planting a victory garden; doesn't fishing ultimately fulfill the same function of alternative food gathering? Kind of a Cain and Abel thing. I wonder if there were victory gardens in urban areas before mass urbanization. It would have been helpful if a city was besieged, but the mass of agricultural citizenry seems like it would have mooted it. I'm also not sure there were enough suburbs with lawn that weren't just farms for very long before WWII. This has more of the traditional Famous feel (traditional from the perspective of someone born after they'd finished making them) to it than the previous Popeye cartoons of the year. Fleischery toes (with ingrown nails) and nose (with disgusting bulb) on the giant. Harpo Marx cuckoo. The giant is a sugar hoarder. The chicken lays rubber. The first good looking Popeye cartoon of the year. "Pine-nipples". Combination of doteye and eye white Popeye; and in a shot, a combination of doteye Popeye and eyewhite nephews. The nephew hydra shot is good. Having the giant in a N.Y. Giants shirt is pretty cheap; even the giant thinks so.

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

055 Duty and the Beast

Title: Duty and the Beast
Studio: Columbia
Date: 05/28/43
Produced by
Dave Fleischer
Alec Geiss
Grant Simmons
Paul Worth
Series: Phantasy
Running time (of viewed version): 5:48
Commercial DVD Availability: -

Synopsis: We see the trustworthiness of a hunting dog.

Comments: Opens with a wordy narration about the gossamer veil of dawn hanging over the meadow. Reminds me of Tex Avery in the narration. (Was the narrator used at MGM or (less likely) WB as well? He's not the Superman narrator is he? Or the Goofy how to narrator? Bah, all the narrators now run together in my head. Unless they are the same guy...). Arrow shaped shadow. The dog betrays his master, not only failing to flush the quail, but feeding the his master's sandwiches (while taking a portion for himself). Is the near lifted from Disney's The Pointer? The proportions are off; it's very small compared to that bear (or Mickey is just very small), but the look is similar. And the bear ends up eating the hunter in the end, with the dog on board. Wow. Dog looks a lot like Goofy in some shots; in others, he looks a lot like a WB dog. The humor comes largely form the disparity between the narration and the visible action. It would be sorely unfunny without the narration.