August 10, 2017 posted by

New York Animation Block Party, Cartoon Commercials Vol 2 pre-order, River Rouge Cartoon Character Wall

Animation Block Party 2017!

I had a great time this past week at the Animation Block Party in New York. It’s really fun event that you shouldn’t miss if you are interested in what is happening in animation right now. The highlights for me were being on a panel about old cartoon preservation with Tommy Stathes, David Gerstein and Charlie Judkins. All great cartoon folks! I also was able to attend one of Tommy’s famous Cartoon Carnival showings. If you’re a cartoon fan and in New York, this is as close as youll get to the old 16mm screenings as you’ll get- a wonderful night.

Charlie Judkins, besides also being a cartoon historian, plays a mean piano along with many of Tommy Stathes’ Cartoons on Film releases – and live at his events! Here’s Charlie playing ‘The Barrelhouse Rag’ earlier this year. He has also produced a CD recently.

The other highlight was being lucky enough to be on the Raggedy Ann and Andy – a Musical Adventure panel, hosted by our own Jerry Beck, with Dan Haskett and Doug Crane, who both did excellent work on this feature. It was nice that the film got a proper 35mm presentation on its 40th anniversary – and fun to hear some of their stories. Many of the people in the audience were children, and a large percentage had never seen the film.


…it’s been another week full of dubbing and sending. All the older ‘Special’ discs are now out the door, so watch your mailbox if you had any of those older sets coming. This leaves us to the work on finishing a whole series of other things here. Thanks as always to everyone for supporting these things.

We’ve launched a pre-order for ‘Cartoon Commercials Volume 2’ Blu-ray/ DVD. Im happy to have a set of old commercials in progress again. Volume 1 was in 2007- so its about time for another. Details for the set are posted here on the IAD forum, a great place for golden age cartoon information and discussion!

We’ve also been releasing titles under the ‘Snappy Video’ label- now repurposed for non-animated releases. This week we’ve started a pre-order for Count Dracula and his Vampire Bride. Off topic here I know (A long way from Willie Whopper!) but here’s the pre-order page anyway!

Some Off Model Adventures:

If I ever need to not think about anything for a few minutes, I go to the Facebook group page: Off Model and Loving It. Its a closed group, but if you manage to join, its full of amazing images of many classic cartoon characters in depictions that are far from what made them great! Many of the images are laugh-out-loud funny. The ‘Wise Puppet’ (above right) is one of my favorite things of all time – although, ‘Specialman’ (above, center) should get at least get notice.

Over the weekend, Mary and I were driving around ‘Downriver’ near Detroit (about 36 miles from where I sit here in Ann Arbor, Michigan). The downriver communities include some pretty industrial areas. One of the highlights of this weekend for me was exploring a little neighborhood near ‘Zug Island’ on the Detroit River in River Rouge, Michigan. One of the steel plants has a white brick wall separating the neighborhood from a mammoth steel mill/ factory. On the neighborhood side, the wall contains an incredibly long, continuing series of mural paintings- all by amateur artists. It looks as if one artist painted quite a few, and was getting better as they went. My guess is that many were done by teenagers that lived in that very neighborhood. Mary suggested I shoot a video while slowly going down the road, so here it is. My guess is that the mural started sometime in the mid 80s and continued through the early 90s judging by the various characters on the wall. Its pretty fun and a great candidate for great off-model folk art.

Have a good week everyone!


  • Are the Noveltoons and Screen Songs discs still being worked on? I preordered both a few months back but have heard nothing about either one in quite some time.

    • Yes.. they are still in progress. Noveltoons is going through restoration, while Screen Songs are not getting cleaned up… so screen songs will be out first

  • That Mickey toy in the thumbnail makes me happy beyond all reason..

  • I love your stuff but I won’t use PayPal; I don’t trust the internet. Wish you would provide additional payment options.

    • It’s hard to be convinced to do that online, just be thankful it isn’t Bitcoin!

  • Wow! Love the character fence! Leave no franchise behind!

    • I don’t suppose any teen in the area will convince themselves to keep adding onto this wall? I’d love to see a new generation take a crack at this and add on recent characters if they wanted (as long as they don’t erase over everyone else’s work.

  • As you might expect, Steve, I immediately pre-ordered this CARTOON COMMERCIALS, VOL. 2. The first volume was a lot of fun, and I’m hoping that some very familiar ads are among these…and of course I’m anxious and eager to check out the extra disk I’ll get, if I understood the pre-order offer. I hope all my information is getting to you okay, and I await those older disks, too. Sure wish I could have been at the block party this year. The forum on the restoration of animation must have been quite interesting, as frustrating as that process can be.

    I’m glad you’re also releasing disks under that SNAPPY VIDEO name. Perhaps, in the future, you should release a volume or two of surreal commercials of the 1960’s, you know, those that make you stand back and wonder what they were thinking when they created them. I know I’d seen a number of them when growing up, and believe it or not, so many were aired during the daytime TV hours, not the prime time slots. Many of those, I realize, must be harder to find as I would imagine that those were more discardable since some were only local ads, but the ones I remember were for nationally familiar products, like Mazola Corn Oil or a candy bar with an odd name, produced by Stan Freiberg. As always, good luck with all that you do, and I can’t wait for the results!

  • All that was missing was the Fox and Crow, then all studios would have been represented!

    • Needs some Mr. Magoo while we’re at it!

  • Eeeeeeeek!!!!!! Those two Mickey Mouse bootlegs (the proper term of unlicensed unauthorized rip offs of licensed cartoon and movie products) would give anyone nightmares!!

    “Can’t sleep Mickey Mouse would eat me!!”

    Sadly there’s a lot of those bootleg toys and clothing based on D.C./Marvel heroes, Star Wars, Disney and other animated characters and popular anime characters like Sailor Moon that are flooding swap meets/flea Markets , cheap discount shops and dollar stores to unsepecting buyers, one I remember seeing was a “Mouse and Friends” battery operated toy with a psychotic looking Mickey Mouse that looked like it came from the Mickey Mouse short Runaway Brain (1995).

  • Just wanted to let you know that I received the special disks yesterday afternoon, and I’ve been spending the rest of the day up to now devouring them. There are so many great moments here, so rare and treasurable. Thanks again for all that you do, and I know that the major projects will also be that special as they are completed.

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