This week, two Disney oddities collecting dust for several decades in Mark Kausler’s film closet – one, a lost educational film from the 1940s, the other some rare behind the scenes footage from Pinocchio.
Jiminy Cricket Roto Footage. Says Mr. Kausler: “It demonstrates how an old vaudeville comic who posed for some of the opening stuff on Jiminy Cricket pantomimed warming himself on a hot coal, and the business of entering Gepetto’s house. Ward Kimball, Wilfred Jackson, a Disney layout artist and a lot of the technical staff appear in this silent home movie reel, shot in 1938 or so at the Hyperion studio. It also shows the individual photostats derived from the live action film frames being printed out by big machines that do several frames at a time. A great reel that shows that even a relatively “cartoony” character like Jiminy was based on live action reference. The footage was shot in Oct. of 1938.”
According to J.B. Kaufman’s book on Pinocchio, Jiminy’s model was Val Stanton. He appeared with his brother Ernie in Vitaphone shorts.
Here’s an obscure educational subject which Kausler had a nice Kodachrome print of. Environmental Sanitation was produced by Walt Disney for the Coordinator of Inter-American Affairs as part of their “Health For The Americas” series in 1946. Says Kausler, “It has a few scenes of animation and a lot of pans over nicely painted backgrounds. It tackles some pretty gruesome subject matter involving untreated human waste, rats, typhus and other picture postcards.” Perhaps J.B. Kaufman or Dave Bossert can illuminate us further on this short.