Tuesday, June 20, 2006

Mickey Part Two

At the Toronto studio of Walt Disney Animation there was a corner lounge we called Cholesterol Corner that a group of Animators would meet in every morning and talk about nothing in particular: our families, the scenes we were going to work on next ... stuff. One morning we were discussing how Disney had acquired control of the merchandising for the Canadian Mounties. Some thought that it might be good to have a big company fighting to protect the "brand" from unlawful use, but others were critical of Disney's exploitation of our Canadian icon.

"You know how they're using it?!" said one Animator. "Thery are dressing up dolls of Goofy and Donald in Mountie uniforms."

You could almost see the thought bubble form over everybody's heads with the same idea: Mickey Mountie. We had the makings for an animated short where Mickey would be our intrepid hero with his trusty sled dog, Pluto, Minnie would be a saloon singer that he was in love with and Pegleg Pete would be our cigar chomping hero who had designs on her, too. Goofy and Donald would be sold a worthless mine, the Iron Pirate, by our villain who thought he had unloded a worthless hole in the mountain to our two prospectors, but they would find the boulder of all nuggets. Our villain would steal the gold and the girl, and Mickey would have to come to the rescue.

It was pitched to the studio as a charity project where we wanted the proceeds would go to Toronto's Sick Kids Hospital, but the head office, while not saying no, was more concerned with production numbers than in making a cool little short. There was a bit of artwork done for the project, like Mickey's Cabin on the previous post, and the few pictures below.


Monday, June 19, 2006

First Post

In ancient Rome people would take their baked goods to a communal oven, a thermopolium, and while they waited for their bread to bake they would have some wine and share conversation. To me, it's the perfect name for an animation studio where people would bring in their half-baked ideas, share in a lively creative discussion and, in the end, have a film that everybody could enjoy.

Over the next while, I'll dig up some of my artwork from filed away ideas that didn't go anywhere to some of the stuff I've done while working in the Animation industry and post it along with some new stuff.

This is from a Mickey Mouse short (Mickey Mountie) from my days at the Disney Studio in Toronto that some Animators and I tried to pitch. I'll post a few more next time.