Wednesday, June 17, 2015

Professor Sito's Month in Cartoon History

From the TAG Prez Emeritus:.

June 1, 1939 - SUPERMAN - Joe Seigel and Jerry Shuster, two aspiring cartoonists in High School, create a character called “Superman”. Being Jewish kids, they read about the Nazi racial concept of the Aryan Superman and wanted to show a Superman that could be on the American side. On this day, they sell all the rights to their characters to Detective Comics (D.C.) for $130.

June 1, 1931 - 48-year-old Swiss artist Albert Hurter joins the Disney staff, giving cartoons like Snow White a more Germanic storybook look. He creates a new type of job at the studio, the Inspirational Sketch Artist. Today, they’re called Viz-Dev artists.

June 2, 1973 - London animator Richard Williams closes down his Soho studio for a month so his staff could be lectured by Hollywood animation legends Art Babbitt, Chuck Jones and Ken Harris.

June 3, 1964 - Hanna & Barbera’s first feature Hey There, It’s Yogi Bear premieres.

June 4, 1938 – The Walt Disney Studio holds the crew party to celebrate the success of Snow White. The young artists, released of tension and filled with booze, swap bedrooms and gallop horses through the Hotel Norconian. Walt and Roy flee the scene for fear of bad publicity.

June 6, 1982 - The film Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan premieres. Besides starring Ricardo Montalban as “the bad guy with the great pectorals”, the movie features the Genesis Effect. This one minute sequence was a landmark of computer graphics effects. Done by the Lucas Graphics Group, who four years later would break off and become Pixar.

June 6, 1984 - In Moscow, 29-year-old mathematics Professor Alexey Pajitnov invents the game Tetris.

June 7, 2002 – Disney’s Kim Possible premieres.

June 8, 1946 - Bob Clampett's cartoon Kitty Kornered, the first Sylvester the Cat cartoon, premieres.

June 9, 1934 - Walt Disney short, The Little Wise Hen, introduces Donald Duck.

June 9, 2006 - Pixar’s Cars opens.

June 10,1910 - Cartoonist George Herriman has been drawing a strip for Hearst called The Family Upstairs. He was amused at the idea of a friendship between a cat and a mouse. So Herriman put them in the corner playing marbles while the family quarreled. First an office boy and later editor Arthur Brisbane suggested they have their own strip. Krazy Kat and Ignacz Mouse are born. ...

June 10, 1995 - 110,000 people jam Central Park in New York to see Disney's Pocahontas. It’s the largest audience ever to attend a single movie premiere.

June 11, 1984 - Wall Street corporate raider Saul Steinberg announces he intends to target the ailing Walt Disney Company for takeover. Disney CEO Ron Miller pays him $23 million to make him go away. The Disney shareholders, outraged at this payment of "greenmail”, demanded Miller’s resignation. This is exactly what Roy Disney had hoped would happen.

June 11, 1993 - Steven Spielberg’s Jurassic Park opens. The film sets a box office record for the time of $931 million. The production started with modelers and puppeteers planning to create the dinosaurs with clay and beeswax. But after seeing tests using the new 3D CGI – computer graphic imaging, Steven ordered ILM to do it digitally. Jurassic Park marks the digital takeover of Hollywood and set the standard for future VFX.

June 12, 1999 - Disney’s Tarzan premieres.

June 15, 1994 - Disney’s The Lion King premieres.

June 16, 1902 - A musical play of L Frank Baum’s fantasy story The Wizard of Oz premieres at Chicago’s Grand Opera House.

June 16, 1955 - Disney’s Lady and the Tramp premieres.

June 16, 1960 - Alfred Hitchcock's thriller Psycho premieres.

June 18, 2010 – Pixar’s Toy Story III opens.

June 19, 1954 - Bugs Bunny short Devil May Hare debuts featuring the first showing of the Tasmanian Devil.

June 19, 1998 - Disney’s Mulan premieres.

June 20, 1941 - Walt Disney's The Reluctant Dragon opens while striking cartoonist's picket the Pantages Theater in Hollywood. Police actually have to close part of Hollywood Blvd. out of concern for what the rampaging animators might do.

June 21, 1988 - Who Framed Roger Rabbit? premieres at Radio City Music Hall.

June 21, 2002 - Disney’s Lilo & Stitch premieres.

June 22, 1342 – According to JRR Tolkeins’ The Hobbit, Bilbo Baggins returns to his home at the Shire with the one true ring.

June 22, 1977 - Disney’s The Rescuers premieres, featuring the last work of animator Milt Kahl.

June 23, 1989 - Disney’s Roger Rabbit short Tummy Trouble premieres with Honey I Shrank the Kids featuring animated titles by Kroyer Films.

June 25, 1934 - Young artist Milt Kahl's first day at Walt Disney Studios. It was said he was the first artist to ever show Walt a real portfolio of drawings to get hired.

June 25, 1997 - Disney’s animated feature Hercules premieres.

June 26, 1926 - From his London flat, John Logie Baird invents television.

June 26, 1974 - Bob Taylors’ The Nine Lives of Fritz the Cat opens.

June 27, 1984 - Hollywood introduces the PG-13 rating to indicate graphic violence. It was invented for the film Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom.

June 29, 1936 - Pope Pius X publishes an encyclical warning of the evils of Motion Pictures. “They glorify Lust and Lascivious behavior.”

June 29,1940 – According to Batman Comics, this is the day mobsters rub out a circus highwire team known as “The Flying Graysons”, leaving their son Dick an orphan. As the story goes, millionaire Bruce Wayne then adopts the young Grayson as his ward so Batman could have his Robin the Boy Wonder.

June 29, 2007- Pixar’s Ratatouille premieres.

June 30, 1933 - A group of actors meet in secret at Frank (The Wizard of Oz) Morgan’s house and form the Screen Actors Guild. They needed secrecy because studios threatened to blacklist anyone who so much as breathed the word “Union”. Among the founding members attending that night meeting are James Cagney, Groucho Marx, Joan Crawford, Franchot Tone, Frederic March, Robert Montgomery and Boris Karloff.

June 30, 1999 - South Park: Bigger, Longer, Uncut opens.

Birthdays: Lotte Reiniger, Dick Huemer, John Dykstra, Gary Trousdale, Maurice Sendak, Gustave Courbet, Richard Sherman, Tim Allen, Cliff Edwards (the voice of Jiminy Cricket), Pete Burness, Oskar Fischinger, Phil Harris (voice of Baloo), Alex Toth, Ricky Gervais, Woolie Reitherman, Katherine Beaumont (the voice of Alice in Alice in Wonderland and Wendy in Peter Pan), Mel Brooks, Ray Harryhausen, Lena Horne,


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