Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Young Kimball

Last Saturday I attended an outdoor screening of "Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs" in the heart of Hollywood, it was organized by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences.
I was asked to introduce the film to an excited family audience.
When I raised the question who had never seen this movie before, I saw quite a few hands going up from little children and a few from teenage boys, 
who -no doubt- accompanied their girlfriends to the screening.

What a great way to watch Snow White for the first time, on the big screen.

As the movie played along, and the seven dwarfs appeared on the screen, for some reason I thought of Ward Kimball, whose terrific Soup Eating Sequence had been cut from the film. It was eventually shown on a Disney TV show, but in cleaned up form.
When you study Ward's rough drawings though, you see the real genius behind the pencil.
There is an exuberance here, in the drawings and the animation. Which shows how much he got involved with the material. The squash and stretch is pretty extreme, but it really adds to the scene's appeal.

In the following rough keys Happy takes a sip of soup and then reacts rather strongly.
This is ONE beautiful scene, done by a very young animator.

A few years later Ward is working on Casey Jr. for Dumbo. He also drew a model sheet of the train engineer, a caricature of himself.  That character didn't make it into the final film either….
But that's part of the animation process, not everything you draw will end up on the screen.
And I am speaking from experience  ; )


  1. Ah, so he was the mastermind behind the singing-soup-slurping-dwarves-scene. :D

  2. I would swear Ward put a caricature of himself in the Ferdinand the Bull short. It's one of guys who follow the matador into the arena. A short fellow, and looks just like a Ward Kimball caricature!

    Andreas, did Ward Kimball and Milt Kahl ever team up on a character or characters on Disney feature films? I thought I had read some time back where Milt worked with Ward on the tea party scene in Alice in Wonderland. Just curious.

    I love Ward Kimball's artistic genius!

    1. They both worked on the character of Pecos Bill in Melody Time, and Milt animated a few shots of Jiminy Cricket, which Ward supervised.

    2. Michael is right.
      Kimball did animate a lot of the Tea Party sequence, but he got some help from John Lounsbery and other animators.

    3. There are several caricatures in that scene in Ferdinand the Bull: Ham Luske, Art Babbitt, Bill Tytla, Fred Moore as I recall, and the final matador was said to be a caricature of Walt himself.

  3. He must have been about 21 or 22, right?
    Boy, I've got to catch up!

  4. Andreas thanks for another inspiring post. Like you said not everything ends up on the screen. Is there anything that comes to mind that you did you wish would've made it to the final film?

    1. A deleted sequence from Lilo & Stitch, called "Bedtime Story"
      comes to mind.

    2. it brings a tear when Lilo starts to cry at the end of her tale.