Tuesday, February 22, 2011

A Walt Peregoy Afternoon -- Part I

TAG Interview with Walt Peregoy

*Click to listen in your browser. Right-Click and Save to download to your computer to listen later.

Find all TAG Interviews on the TAG website at this link

Walt Peregoy went to work at Walt Disney Productions in 1942. Wikipedia would have you believe he started as an in-betweener, but Mr. Peregoy tells us otherwise.

"Inbetweener? I was a traffic boy. And I stayed at Disney's for two months. I didn't go back again until the fifties. ..."

The attached interview, of which this constitutes the first half, is free-wheeling and ... ahm ... salty. If you're of a delicate nature, you might be offended by some of the language. However, Mr. Peregoy wanted us to put the discussion up as is, and we are servants to his wishes. But be forewarned: you could find parts of it profane and ... how should we put it? ... a bit scalding to sensitive ears. But that's Mr. Peregoy.

Walt -- in his 1950s incarnation -- became one of Disney's most innovative background artists. He color-styled and painted the featurette Paul Bunyan, he was the color stylist on 101 Dalmatians as well as Sword in the Stone and Jungle Book. A WED Imagineer for fifteen years, he was a major player in the design and execution of Disney World's EPCOT, and today continues to do art at his home studio in the San Fernando Valley.

Some of Walt's handiwork from Paul Bunyan...

And two Peregoy color studies from Dalmatians.

28 comments:

Anonymous said...

What a cool guy!

Anonymous said...

Thanks for keeping it real.

Anonymous said...

This is the 1st TAG interview that didn't put me to sleep. I'm looking forward to Part 2.

Floyd Norman said...

Back in the olden days of Disney I would leave my drawing board and head upstairs for a visit with Walt. Peregoy, that is. What fun we would have as he ripped the Disney management. Peregoy always spoke his mind, and that meant telling the boss a thing or two.

You may not agree with Walt Peregoy, but you gotta admit the man is fearless. There's no other like him.

Steve Hulett said...

This is the 1st TAG Interview that didn't put me to sleep. ...

Suffer from narcolepsy?

Ruben Chavez said...

I met Walt when I was working on backgrounds for, "Cat's Don't Dance" and he had come over to visit with the same "piss & vinegar" attitude then as he does now.
He tore apart the current Disney feature crew that left me shocked and laughing.

Anonymous said...

That old fart needs meds. Stat!

Floyd Norman said...

In case the readers didn't know, Walt Peregoy was not the only "old guy" who knew how to speak his mind. Many of the old guard were quite outspoken when it came to studio politics and the games run by management.

Wimps dominate the industry today, and most are afraid of their own shadow. I experienced this first hand this afternoon after a screening. Pathetic.

Anonymous said...

And many of the old guard were very political beasts themselves--who's easily bruised very large egos did little to advance the art of what Disney was doing after Walt died.

Floyd Norman said...

And, most earned those "large egos" by a life time of impressive work.

Advance the art? Most were wise enough not to buy that B.S. In case you hadn't noticed, this is a business.

Abused said...

Thanks a lot for putting this interview up, I look forward to listening to the second one asap.

I can't stand anymore seeing people not having a say when we are treated so badly. I'm talking about UK Vfx Industry when contracts are not respected, unexplained layoffs and pretentious management teams taking a s*** on the animators and bullying crews. All I hear from my fellow workers is : "that's the way it is and it's always been... stick to it or shut up". There are no friends, just contacts that you keep you have to meet at the pub. No pubs, no jobs. Not for me.

There are no unions around here for us, Thatcher's ghost still around...

So when I hear people like Walt having a say (as brutal as it may sound) and unfortunately being right and still hold about today's business, I think passion about the art form is still keeping me alive and naive but I don't want to compromise my integrity anymore. I may not land anymore in big VFX houses,but at least I won't carry years of bitterness.

Thanks Walt Peregoy, we need experienced talented people that have guts and show us that we can have a say and be ourselves.

Thank you guys from the Guild to keep up the fight, I hope we'll have our Norma Rae of the UK vfx Industry... soon.

Anonymous said...

I love the way the interviewer giggles nervously every time the language gets "salty."

Steve Hulett said...

Wasn't nerves. And I prefer to think of it as a "chortle."

Anonymous said...

**Wimps dominate the industry today, and most are afraid of their own shadow. I experienced this first hand this afternoon after a screening. Pathetic.**

I know you can't get into specifics, Floyd, but can you at least tell us if the screening concerned an animated film or a live-action film? Thanks.

Floyd Norman said...

I wouldn't call Walt's language unusual. That's what this green kid heard when arriving at Disney back in the fifties.

Most people buy into the bogus Pixie dust sprinkled facade created by the company. That's hardly the reality I experienced at Disney back then.

Floyd Norman said...

My focus is always animation. I have little interest in Disney's live-action slate.

The live-action dreck make the cartoons look like brilliant film masterpieces.

Anonymous said...

Were you there, Floyd? If you're thinking that dreck like sword and the stone, aristocats, and robin hood are better than Mary Poppins, I very much doubt you were. Although you sure talk a good game.

Dignan said...

Great job Steve. Thanks for leaving it uncut. I really needed a laugh here working late on Transformers up in Vancouver.

Dave Rand

Anonymous said...

Hey, Floyd! I watched the DVD "Walt: The Man Behind The Myth", and you were in it! Awesome!

Thank you for giving us the benefit of your insight and experience. You are a lucky guy.

Steve Hulett said...

Thanks for leaving it uncut. I really needed a laugh here working late on Transformers up in Vancouver.

Dave:

We made the decision to do all these things uncut when we started. I find them more interesting that way, and we don't really have the time (or staff) to prune them anyway.

What gets recorded is what you hear.

Anonymous said...

I met Walt long time ago, and he said few things that are not true about Eyvind Earle. Eyvind Earle was poor as could be when he got the job at Disney. Eyvind Earle quit Disney because of the politics,not like Walt who become a puppeteer, but he claims he did not. He forgot a lots of things, and now he claims he painted all the animation movies that were created "mine, mine, mine" what a joke?
Eyvind Earle kept him at Disney by rehire him to work on Sleeping Beauty. Earle thought him how to paint in a new style. Walt had a different style, look at the "four artists painting a tree"
Where is Walt fine artwork now? Few pastels each and there but that's about it.
Funny interview I have to say it but that's all.

Anonymous said...

This is truly the best animation interview I have ever heard.

Thank you for this.

Mike Barroca said...

I had the great luck to have Walt as teacher when I was going to Art Center College back in the eighties. I think he only taught there for a brief time.
Listening to this interview is exactly the way he used to talk then. He's not one to mince words. There is just no fake bullshit in him. He's real.
The thing I remember was that he had a lot to teach us and was eager and excited about teaching us. I learned a lot in that class and never forgot him because of all that I learned.
When the other students and I found out about his past at Disney the first thing we asked was about Walt Disney and what he was like. He told us the truth as he experienced it and shattered a lot of my illusions about Mr. Disney.

nightflightfilm said...

Hello Mr. Hulett, can you please provide me with an address to send Mr. Peregoy a letter of appreciation?
My email is: alannow@live.com.

Thank you very much for you and your colleagues continuing endeavors to preserve and educate us about animation history!

Alan Nowogrodzki

Jennifer Peregoy said...

Walter is my Great Uncle and I wanted to let everyone know he greatly enjoys reading all of these comments.

We have had a lot of fun discussing them. haha Bringing back a lot of memories for him.

Greg Duffell said...

I really enjoyed this fantastic HONEST interview. Everyone who cares about animation, or knows about it, is aware of Walt Peregoy. Whenever I saw his name on a film, I knew it was going to be good. Nice to hear him laud Nordli's work, who was fantastic. Look at his few Warner cartoons in the 1950's for Chuck and they're a cut above. I'm so thankful that Mr. Peregoy spoke his mind. So many of the great artists of animation were frightened to say anything or be honest, and they've subsequently deprived us of inspiration because of it.

I looked at the "Shooting of Dan McGrew" film when I heard it mentioned in the interview. Great Manny Gould animation!

I could listen to Walt Peregoy forever. He's testament to why the great cartoons are so exciting to watch. They're ORIGINAL and spontaneous. Thanks Steve Hullett for conducting this and sharing it.

G. Duffell, Toronto

Frank Forte said...

This was hilarious! I was pissing myself. Can we interviewing him once every few weeks. maybe ask his opinion on politics, TV, Film, sports and everything else?? Damn! Also--can you post more of his art--maybe the stuff he's doing now too?--thanks

Steve Hulett said...

There's a short interview of Walt that he made when he displayed artwork at Gallery 839. (Type "Walt Peregoy" in the search engine at upper left and it should come up.)

You can find samples of his artwork in various corners of the internets.

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