It’s the second to last week of classes here, and a mad scramble on the part of students to finish work. I’m in a mad scramble myself, working on getting as many things to the finish line as possible while reviewing work on many projects from folks helping with them. I’ll be bringing on a few more people in the coming weeks as school wraps up and I have more time to brings many of these things to fruition.
Here’s what the past week has looked like since the last Thunderbean Thursday post:
• Friday: More film scans for some of the ‘special’ sets as well as some stop motion films
• Saturday: viewing and rejecting some 2k scans that had DVNR all over them, erasing lines on a bunch of the characters! They’ll be redone this week.
• Sunday: building a new master on ‘Missle to the Moon’. Reviewng Noveltoons cleanups and working on some
• Monday: Scheduling for pulling and scanning more Rainbow Parades and Comi-Colors, more Nolvetoon cleanup
• Tuesday: Reviewing and doing Flip the Frog cleanup
• Wednesday: prepping more films for Friday scan, sending more ‘Cartoons to the Rescue’ discs.
I’m looking forward to a little break for a day or two. If you didn’t get Cartoons to the Rescue yet, we should have the rest of them all out the door in the coming few days… so sorry to all for taking so long.
Watching all of these projects in progress at the same time is dizzying, but I’m enjoying seeing how nice the material is looking. I’m somewhat exhausted but happy that things are going well.
Fleischer Rarities isn’t back from replication yet, but since I said I would show some things from it, here’s a little sneak peak of what the bonus materials are on the set:
…..and a sneak peek at one of the finished films: Finding his Voice (1929).
Of course, you’ve probably seen this film before; it was a fun one to steady and clean up. The film was produced while the Fleischers were sharing space with Audio Productions, a small studio that made educational materials as well as providing post work to various film productions made in New York. This film was one of a series of shorts made for Western Electric. Funny enough, Audio Productions seems to have kept the Western Electric contract/ account, producing a sequel to this film called Family Album with Paul Terry (who took Fleischer’s place as a resident of the Audio Productions facility).
The film presents an incredibly dry (by overall simple and understandable) explanation of how sound on films works. “Talkie”, the talking piece of film (played by early recording artist Billy Murray) takes “Mutie”, the silent piece of film to visit Dr. Western, who appears to be a caricature of Bell Lab’s brilliant pioneering physicist Harvey Fletcher (and quite possibly is the voice of ‘Dr. Western’ as well). He was the director of Bell Labs at this point in history. Although it isn’t confirmed that indeed this is him. it would be a really interesting side note if it is. His many inventions and innovations include being the father of stereophonic sound.
It’s pretty clear that this particular film was post-synced (audio added after the animation was produced). This is a little ironic since the film is about synchronization, and often has very poor sync to mouth action. My guess is that it was much too ‘wordy’ to attempt to sync everything up at the time. It’s an interesting little short in the Fleischer history timeline, and nice to have an improved version (in HD too!). Special thanks to Tommy Jose Stathes for lending this terrific print!
I’ll post an overview of the whole Fleischer Rarities Blu-ray next week, finally! Hope we’ll be sending them out before then!
Have a good week everyone!