Tuesday, August 14, 2007

DAS Walkabout

Disney Animation Studio, if you're not up to speed with the above acronym.

I hadn't been there in a while, but got over to the hat building yesterday afternoon. Bolt is moving into production, with finalers getting educated on the new tools (images of picks, shovels and rakes flicker in my head, but it's actually computer software I'm talking about.)

A few production staffers are fully engaged, but many are still in launch pad phase -- knowing the big production wave will soon crash onshore, even as the beachfront stays quiet...

Up on the third floor, the various story crews work on the latest passes of their respective pictures. The work tempo moves to a faster beat than it did in my time (I've had this confirmed by grizzled veterans.)

What I'm saying is, nobody dawdles. And nobody waits for Woolie Reitherman to make an appearance in his own sweet time. Everybody has a schedule, and the keep it.

And everybody does more drawings in the digital age. As a story guy said to me at 4:40 p.m:

"Bill Peet couldn't make it on the kind of boards he used to do. Which is kind of too bad. You could get through the story quicker then, and find out what wasn't working. Now there's way more panels."

Nothing remains the same, not even ace storyboards. The only constant in the universe is change.

25 comments:

Gabriele Pennacchioli said...

Could you please tell us what that note says (the one on the lion's drawing).

Anonymous said...

Looks like it says:

MILT is one of
"Randy's Dandy Lions"
with best wishes
to all
Bill Peet
March 19 (17? 13?) 1967

Crash McQuarrie said...

What do you think of the new designs for Bolt? Has anyone commented on the new story and how it differs from Chris Sanders?

The Frog Princess? I hate that new title: Princess and the Frog. It sounds straight to video. How's production going on that?

Any progress on Glen Keane's Rapunzel? I can't wait to see this film. It looks amazing!

Anonymous said...

I just want to know how the place is running under Lasseter?

Better?

Worse

More or less creative atmosphere?

Anonymous said...

The big plus about the new design of Bolt is that now the main character looks like a dog.

Anonymous said...

"Better? Worse?"

FASTER!

Steve Hulett said...

The Frog Princess? I hate that new title: Princess and the Frog. It sounds straight to video. How's production going on that?

The story crew is doing a new pass. Not hugely different than the old pass, but they have to get the running time down. Hardly unusual.

Any progress on Glen Keane's Rapunzel? I can't wait to see this film. It looks amazing!

Good progress, I'm told.

(Note that I pay minimal attention to story development when I'm in the studios. Not my bag anymore.)

Steve Hulett said...

"Better? Worse?"

FASTER!


Yep.

As I noted above. Morale varies floor to floor, person to person.

Steve Hulett said...

MILT is one of
"Randy's Dandy Lions"
with best wishes
to all
Bill Peet
March 19 (17? 13?) 1967


Peet left the studio a few years prior to '67.

I don't think he received a credit on Jungle Book, even though he contributed a lot of the material in it.

Anonymous said...

Peet left the studio in '64. But what does that have to do with the inscription on the drawing? :0)

Floyd Norman said...

Bill Peet left in 1966. I was on "Jungle Book's" story crew.

Frankly, I think we did a better job back then. Today, everybody works their butts off -- but the results aren't all that impressive.

Of course, that's just me.

Steve Hulett said...

Peet left the studio in '64. But what does that have to do with the inscription on the drawing? :0)

Nothing probably. I thought the "MILT" might have referenced Milt Kahl. And by '67 Peet was a full-time kid's book author, with no ties to Diz.

Anonymous said...

"Frankly, I think we did a better job back then. Today, everybody works their butts off -- but the results aren't all that impressive"

Ya' know you can't have it both ways. You can't drool over the story guys at Pixar and declare them geniuses and then say that no one can live up to the quality of storytelling on Robin Hood and The Aristocats.
And before you point to Jungle Book as your prime example I have two words for you: the vultures!

Anonymous said...

Bill Peet left in 1966.
I'm not disputing your memory, Floyd, but in the Bill Peet interview in "Walt's People, Vol. 3", Peet says he left in '64 (pg 166). That's what I was going on when I said he left then.

Steve Hulett said...

Every age offers it's strengths and weaknesses. Thirty years ago I saw Robin Hood and The Rescuers back to back, and couldn't believe that pretty much the same crew worked on both.

OTOH, I had a Disney background guy (in 1999) say to me in awe and wonder: "I just saw a documentary on Sleeping Beauty. And the background artists in it are saying they were painting three of those large-field backgrounds a week! We wouldn't be able to do two."

Anonymous said...

Floyd pull your head out of your ass. You can't handle the level of work that is demanded on story artist today. BTW, jungle book is boring!

but hey, thats just me.

scorpiotsm said...

If you're going to comment to Floyd then be respectful. The man's extremely talented so even if you disagree with him, respect where he's coming from and stop using your vulgarity. It makes you look like you don't know how to express yourself.

The comment about Jungle Book makes you look like you need to pull your head out of your own butt, btw.

Paul Naas said...

...Not to mention Floyd had the cajones to put his name on his comments...

Anonymous said...

scorpiotsm and paul, stop sniffing floyd's butt dude! hahaha

Paul Naas said...

Like I said...

Steve Hulett said...

Floyd pull your head out of your ass. You can't handle the level of work that is demanded on story artist today. BTW, jungle book is boring!


If I'd been paying attention earlier I would have deleted this.

Flaming in ignorance is bad enough. Doing it anonymously is worse.

Anonymous said...

Frankly, I think we did a better job back then. Today, everybody works their butts off -- but the results aren't all that impressive.


Who's rude again? Ohh perhaps I am the only who didn't get that as a compliment. Sorry. i'll sniff your butt too then.

Anonymous said...

What, exactly, did he say that's untrue? His first sentence is his opinion, one he's entitled to, especially given his career. Second statement acknowledges the hard work being done, third, again, is his opinion - still entitled to it.

If you knew anything about Floyd, you'd know that he's still an in-demand story artist today, in his 70's. You should have such a career.

If you're offended, maybe you have reason to be.

Anonymous said...

Disney will officially declare Floyd Norman a "Disney Legend" on Octobor 10, 2007.

Congrats, Mr. Fun!

:^) :^) :^)

Anonymous said...

Who the hell is "floyd norman?"

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