In Thunderbean News:
So many projects! I haven’t had much of a chance this week to sit down and spend a lot of time in cleanup or edit personally for a handful of days- it’s been three solid days of packing things and catching up, but, happily, most every disc that is completed has the orders all out now and I can get back to more time finishing sets. I hope to bring on several more people to help with digital cleanup in the coming weeks, and very much looking forward to seeing the little company growing.
In ‘Snappy Video’ news, we did manage to get Vintage Education finished (and the pre-orders going out). It’s a pretty fun set, and available here on Amazon.
The Snappy Video Party Disc (featuring Reefer Madness and shorts) is almost done- it looks like it will wrap up in the coming few days. We’ll offer it on Amazon, but it will likely not be available for very long.
Other projects are ongoing.
In going out of print news: Thunderbean is retiring (for now) many of the older DVD titles this week as well; these titles were ones only available in DVD-R editions. They include: The Strangest Cartoons Ever Made, Cultoons Volume 2 and 3, Return of the 30s Characters, Makin’ ‘Em Move, The Complete Animated adventures of Tom and Jerry, Aesop’s Fables Volume 2, Classics from the Van Beuren Studios and Complete Adventures of The Little King. The last handful copies are available on Amazon.
The More Stop Motion Marvels DVD/ Blu-ray Combo is also coming right along. I get lots of requests for the original, often every day. The first set was released in 2010 and has been out of print since we ran out of stock in 2015. I’ve been regathering and scanning materials for it since 2014.
Another pre-order: The Stop Motion Marvels Blu-ray upgrade!
This was one of the favorite sets to work on, and the Blu-ray update is coming together really well. For the new Blu-ray edition, we’ve been able to come closer to obtaining *all* of the Kinex Stop Motion shorts produced between 1928 and 1930 (largely thanks to Tommy Jose Stathes), an ongoing project since 2007.
The new Blu-ray edition will feature the original booklet (with updates) by Stewart McKissick as well as his original package art. All the commentaries and bonus materials will be included on the new set as well. It’s available in pre-order for a week only and includes with another ‘special’ disc of things that won’t be on the final set. It’s available here.
While it’s been fun to work on the upgrade, there’s been some setbacks as well. One of the biggest bummers in the past few months was borrowing back the only print I know exists of a little stop Motion short ‘George Washington in Clay’ only to find it was now curled (badly) from Vinegar Syndrome/ Acetate deterioration. I’m soaking it in Film-guard right now in hopes to get a decent 2k scan from it.
The sort of ‘unofficial’ beginning of the upgrade started with this scan of ‘Hector the Pup’, from a beautiful 35mm print at the Library of Congress. We’ve cleaned this up since, but here is the raw scan we did in 2014. 35mm material on Pepper the Pup (1931), the pre-curser to this short, has also surfaced.
A while back, we posted a short article about Horse Laffs (1934), also by John Burton.
I’m a little sad to see the ‘Cultoons’ discs going out of print, but do hope they come back at some point! I think I might enjoy finding the weirdest stuff more than any other thing. What are some of your favorite discoveries, either in prints or on video/ youtube?
Here’s one of the curios that is part of the Cultoons, Volume 2 set: A Desert Dilemma (1930), a short commercial produced at Audio Productions, animated by Cy Young. It was produced for Aetna Insurance, and is pretty Fleischer-esque in appearance. The inked drawings also seem to use some of the Fleischer Studio’s ways of avoiding the Bray cel patent. If you are familiar with Young’s Mendelssohn’s Spring Song (1931) you’ll recognize some of his design ideas present in this film. My guess is that was produced with sound, although the soundtrack hasn’t surfaced so far. The track here is cobbled together for the set using sound effects from some early 30’s cartoons.
The print was discovered in an estate by an antiques dealer, who contacted our own Jerry Beck, who was kind enough to connect me with them. The original print (possibly the only surviving print) now lives at the Library of Congress.
Have a good week everyone!