Friday, January 4, 2013

Jafar Pencil Tests


I finally got around to putting a reel together with my Jafar rough animation.
It was strange looking at this footage again after so many years. 
Some of the scenes don't hold up as well as others. To give you a couple of examples:
The line "Your Majesty certainly has a way with dumb animals" needs a juicier acting approach. There is something in Jafar's attitude that I could have milked more.
On the other hand, the close up scene "I think she took it rather well" still comes off pretty good. (So does the preceding sequence with Jafar and Jasmine.)

I had a blast animating this character. As I mentioned before, he was a relief after Gaston's realism.

The reel shows scenes in various stages, from first rough pass to tied down inbetweened footage. There are also a couple of versions of a cleaned up scene that was eventually cut from the film, you'll find it.
The first clip was cut as well, the second one is an experimental scene.
Sometimes the sync is a little off, which was fixed for the final version (I hope it was, anyway.)

Any Iago acting scenes were animated by Will Finn, and Jasmine was drawn by Mark Henn, both beautifully done.
As far as I know everybody had a great time working on this film under the direction of Ron Clements and John Musker. We did receive some criticism though from some of the Nine Old Men, they thought that certain scenes and the contemporary dialogue would date the film.
If so, I think it is dated in a beautiful way.

Here is a link to some Jafar development art from a recent post:




45 comments:

  1. You can't beat the raw energy/magic of a pencil test. Thank you for creating such an iconic villain! Happy New Year:)

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  2. Great job of animating Jafar with all the energy you had done.

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  3. Aladdin remains one of my top favourite animated Disney movies from the 90s, notwithstanding what the Nine thought about its pop culture references.
    Maybe American audiences were a little closer to those but I dare say even back in '92 some people, especially younger viewers, would have been hard-pressed to get the Genie's references to Groucho's "You Bet Your Life", Ed Sullivan or William F. Buckley.

    I think Jafar holds up and is even a nice antithesis to some of the visual goofiness of the movie (in spite of being rather on the cartoony side himself). You can always tell he has no sense of humour that isn't cruel and that he can't and won't be bothered with the Genie's shenanigans, like when he claims him as his slave. I like it when he informs Jasmin about, "Death - by beheading", he says it with such chilling conclusiveness.

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  4. Wicked and delicious lines! Thanks Andreas!

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  5. Excellent work! I Would like to see a whole movie in this rough style.

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  6. Haha oh my god. This is just wonderful. Today is my birthday too! What a way to start my morning! Thanks for sharing Andreas!

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  7. amazing work! thanks for sharing :)
    Who animated jafar as the genie? and as the snake? and the old man costume in the begining of the movie??

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  8. Just absolutely brilliant. Wow. It's amazing to see the stages, from just a few lines (that are so wonderfully placed that it already tells the story) to finals completely in-betweened. Also what a blast to see that the original (I imagine?) version of Iago's "Big problem here, a BIG problem-" wasn't cut off, but that Jafar affectionately stroked his head to calm him down! Such a vastly different mood to such a simple scene!

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  9. Beautiful animation work (As always) Andreas. I wished I had worked on this movie.
    I agree with the comments above, it would be great to see a hand drawn film done in this rough style.

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  10. So awesome. As much as I love the 9 old men, they were wrong in their criticism. This movie, for me at least, is in the top 5 best Disney's of all time. 20 years later, it holds up very well and I think will stand the test of time. As far as sheer entertainment value alone, my personal opinion is that none of the movies the 9 old men worked on holds a candle to Aladdin. And again, I respect the crap out of them too.

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    1. Do you really know what you're saying? What do you mean with "crap"? How can you critize so bad the quality of the work of that geniuses? I agree Aladdin is a very good movie, but in my opinion there are too much character in other movies where Nine Old men worked on. I think you must take care on what you say.

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    2. Abel,
      this is a misunderstanding.
      The phrase: "respecting the crap out of someone" is slang for:
      "respecting someone very much".
      Tim respects the 9 Old Men very much.

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    3. oh! now I understand... Sorry I don't understand too much about slangs. Anyway Great stuff your work on Jafar! I'd like to watch more about Gaston and Scar.

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  11. Thank you so much for sharing these, Andreas! I basically agree with your self-evaluation, but there's great texture to these scenes regardless, and they are very entertaining.

    When I hear about the Nine Old Men's dislike of "dating" a work, I immediately recall the vultures in THE JUNGLE BOOK -- alleged Beatles parodies who sing like a barbershop quartet. However, I feel to obligated to add that, two years later, Ward Kimball directed "It's Tough to Be a Bird!," which ended in a raucous cut-paper montage that smacks of the sixties but still cracks me up today. That's because it makes clear, if somewhat weird and Pythonesque, visual riffs on social and cultural phenomena that would be relevant forever -- the NBC logo, ridiculous fashion design, Godzilla, Gandhi, Mary Poppins, and so forth.

    Was Ward among ALADDIN's critics? Either way, I maintain that the film benefits from a comparable combination of timeliness and timelessness.

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  12. The perfection and the life that a great artist and a pencil are able to create. Astonishing!

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  13. The magic words Rasoul Azadani line made me laugh. I've always heard about this in-joke cut from the film, but I was glad to finally see it! For those who don't know, Rasoul Azadani is the name of the head layout artist on Aladdin.

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  14. This is so wonderful Andreas! I really love the rough animation style.
    Your animations of Jafar remind me of how you referred to Johnathan Freeman's mouth shapes at that time. It's still fun to watch these totally different characters side by side.
    (03:52) http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RtLR47nQ8-s&list=PLE0FA63DCB45FD5E2

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  15. -B-
    Mr. Deja, in 2011 post "Follow the Trail" - scene with Jaffar on horse, you said that it was your first time animating horse in Disney films. So who animated Gaston on horse in "Kill the Beast" sequence?

    -Amir

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  16. Dschafar ist so toll böse. Mein Sechsjähriger fand ihn neulich 'echt gruselig' und wir hatten riesig Spaß.
    Liebe Neujahrsgrüße aus Deutschland.
    Der link ist ein kleines Deja-Namedroping dieser Tage im Fernsehen
    bei 8.30 Min

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lGVvk4949Ts

    °o° Christian

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    1. Christian,
      ich kann nicht aufhoeren zu lachen!
      Die Reaktion von Heike Greis, wenn Du meinen Namen nennst,
      ist fantastisch!!
      Ebenfalls herzliche Neujahrsgrüße aus LA.

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  17. Beautiful Work! Thank you so much for sharing it with us, a real pleasure to watch!

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  18. Regardless of 9 Old Men criticism (which could be hard to take I imagine!) Aladdin continues to be one of my favorites and holds up well a mere 20 years later. I'm hoping it gets a fair blu-ray treatment that will do the animation some justice.

    Hope all is well!! Love the blog.

    - Brendan

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  19. Thanks to that video, that´s so great. Nice to see progress of animation from rough lines to cleanup also in character sheets.

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  20. Its nice to see similarities between Jafar and Scar from the Lion King, especially when he's biting the apple. Was this intentional or accidental?

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  21. Sehr geehrter Herr Deja, ist es möglich, etwas von Ihnen zu lernen, womöglich sogar ein Praktikum bei Ihnen zu machen? Liebe Grüße, Giannina.

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    Replies
    1. Vielleicht in Zusammenhang mit meinem Film.
      Aber ich bin ja in LA, und Du in Deutschland?

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    2. Um mit Ihnen zusammen zu arbeiten, kümmere ich mich gerne um einen Flug und eine Unterkunft. Im Rahmen meines Studiums kann ich bis zu 6 Monate ein Praktikum machen. Darf ich Ihnen meine Bewerbung schicken?

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  22. Pure pencil test magic!

    Which is harder? The first rough pass or tying it down?

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    1. Making your acting choices early on is the most difficult but also the most important thing. Once decisions have been made, the rough pass goes pretty quickly, you get on some kind of a roll.
      Tying everything down is the easiest phase for me.

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    2. That's fun to hear, because tying down for me is the hardest part! Ha ha, I guess that's because you have such a great handle on drawing that it's like "Oh all I have to do is add to what's there." I know for me that's when I stress out most! (Which means time to get back to drawing practice, yeah?) :)

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  23. I suppose an artist like yourself always finds something in his work that he thinks could've been better. To my les-trained eye, it all looks just about perfect.

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  24. Its always great to see your pencil tests. Your roughs are quite a sight to behold. Aladdin is such a memorable film,I think all the performances, including yours, were excellent.

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  25. When I saw The Lion King I always felt that Scar and Jafar were very similiar in terms of design and attitude. Do you feel the same way about them after all this years Andreas?

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  26. Not really.
    Scar is a lot scarier and very intelligent.
    Jafar is cartoonier and not as heavy as a villain.
    Design styles are different, too.
    But then, every animator has a style.

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    1. Aladdin is my 2nd favorite Disney film behind The Lion King, and though my favorite character from the film is the Genie, Jafar is fucking AWESOME! You did an outstanding job animating him, Andreas! He's probably my favorite Disney villains ever and it must have been a pleasure animating the character! I'll bet you were purposefully chosen to do the villain after your work in Beauty and the Beast! I'm curious, how long did it take you to animate all the scenes you'd did and how much footage exactly did you do?

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  28. This is so great Andreas! Funny how I grew up watching this character, only then to find myself, now a professional animator, reading the blog who the man who supervised the character. Thank you for putting the reel up and thank you for making this awesome blog!

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  29. page flickers, scribbles, blotches, time charts, charming imperfections. there is so much life in this alone!

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  30. Wow these are great. You put so much life to your work! And that's Tony Bancroft on the Parrot . . . so many short moments. Such accurate detail.

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  31. Aladdin is my 2nd favorite Disney film behind The Lion King, and though my favorite character from the film is the Genie, Jafar is fucking AWESOME! You did an outstanding job animating him, Andreas! He's probably my favorite Disney villains ever and it must have been a pleasure animating the character! How long did it take you to animate all the scenes you'd did and how much footage exactly did you do? Just out of curiosity!

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  32. Amazing!! Thanks for sharing these. Classic film. Great animation. Something special about seeing the "in the works" stages of the animation and seeing the progression of certain scenes. Jafar is certainly one of the great Disney villains.

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  33. Something I want to add is that I love how expressive Jafars hands are. He does a lot of talking with his hands and it really adds to the menacing nature of the character. Great work on the hands Andreas.

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