First, some news on the Thunderbean front:
It’s been a busy week again, with school starting ( I teach at an art college) and heavy work on several Thunderbean titles. I did, however, get a chance to sit down and watch some of the new ‘Hollywood Rarities’ set with a friend, and very much enjoyed his response in seeing things he had never seen.
The Fleischer Rarities is actually processing a short on this very computer as I type this, and I’m happier with this set all the time, and hope to entirely finish it early next week, then off to replication. On the rebooted ’Snappy Video’ side of the company, two fun low budget Sci Fi films, The Phantom Planet and Missle to the Moon are available in pre-orders. Details about those pre-orders are here.
I’ve found that there are few things I enjoy more than putting together a show of vintage animation *OR* attending a show and not knowing what is getting shown.
Perhaps the Thunderbean sets are really just an extension of that in some ways. Stopping by various friends and collector’s houses for a show almost always yields some surprises, whether in live action or animation. These showings used to almost always consisted of 16mm prints, but on occasion 35mm as well, and, rarely, 8mm or video. These days, of course, Blu-rays are often the format of choice.
Different collectors love different things of course- and, if you’re putting on shows for friends, on occasion you make a mistake and show things that really only *you* want to see! With a feature this is more likely than shorts; I once sat through the film The Conqueror Worm (1968) at a friend’s house with an audience that was barely able to contain how much they hated it. I also remember falling asleep while running Scrappy cartoons once, with several friends angry that even I couldn’t stay awake during the late 30s shorts from that series.
Cinevent in Columbus, Ohio every year continues to be an amazing place to see really cool things, as do film shows across the country. Their yearly cartoon show is always a lot of fun. I’d love to hear about the shows you appreciate most in your area.
That said, I like putting together show of cartoons, and am lucky enough to be able to do so pretty frequently these days. Teaching an animation history class at CCS, the college I teach at, allows 15 weeks of putting together shows. Favorite classes each year include a concentration on World War 2 animation, bad TV animation day, early experimental animation, the evolution of cartoons 1933-1937 and many more.
A recent visit to a friend in New Jersey yielded a show that was a lot of fun – consisting almost entirely of really great 16mm Technicolor prints. An especially splicey print of the Tom and Jerry Classic The Night Before Christmas was easy my favorite thing that night; despite the splicyness, this early Blue track Technicolor print contained almost everything I love about vintage Technicolor – the film has a glow and warmth that just doesn’t reproduce exactly any other way.I think there are honestly very few things you *shouldn’t show*- but, In the interest of public health, this is my list of films that I should *NEVER* be shown to a regular audience:
• Most any B/W Columbia Phantasy Cartoon, with a few exceptions
• Any of the Daffy-Speedy Cartoons
• ANY Lantz Beary family cartoons (sorry Jerry)
• More than one educational cartoon in a row (even if it’s the Disney “I’m No Fool’ shorts)
• ANYTHING made by Coronet films (with the exception of Tom Thumb in King Arthur’s Court, and then only for the truly brave)
• Buried Treasure (unless it’s late, you’ve had an especially enlightening converstion about the film or if drinking is involved)
Ok – so, all of that said, what cartoon show would you put together? And what cartoons would you never show?