Monday, May 11, 2015

More Mme Bonfamille

It seems extraordinary to realize that Milt Kahl animated Mme Bonfamille's scenes without any live action reference. Milt had such command and control over the mechanics of the human body, he was able to animate any human type out of his head, realistic or caricatured.
This character is as close to total realism as you could possibly get. Milt employed the might of his drawing powers as well as subtle acting to bring her too life. He reminisced later that he thought the one moment in which she comes alive is when she finds her cats gone. She shows strong feelings there, allowing Milt to show her emotionally engaged.
These rough animation drawings are from that sequence. It starts with Mme Bonfamille waking up during a stormy night.













She puts on a gown and approaches the cats' night quarter. (What stunning drawings.)

A tight close up shows her disbelief.





She runs out of her bedroom and calls for her cats.






About characters like this one Milt said that though not very enjoyable to do, you know that you DO have more entertaining characters in the picture, so it doesn't hurt to do a straight job once in a while.


  1. Madame, to me, in this sequence kinda looks like Briar Rose. You know with the facial expressions and the hair? Kinda familiar but very beautiful to look at. I'm not sure if Milt did some animation of Aurora since all of her animation was done by Marc Davis(?).

  2. This scene is astonishing. I also enjoyed the scene mire towards the start, where Edgar is ironing his trousers great animation, expressions you really know Edgar is a "sour puss" by the way his jaw almost becomes unhinged at the very thought of Madame Bonne Famille's money going to cats.
    Thank you for all your posts.

  3. Yes, the animation on this character is extraordinary! When I first viewed the Aristocats, I felt distracted by the stark contrast between the white hair, and xeroxed rough lines of Milt's drawings. Now I watch and appreciate more the fine movement and acting and the opportunity to see Milt's pencil drawings unaltered on screen.

  4. Hi Déjà,i Like your job and this blog :) Thanks for this treasure

  5. Es war und ist für mich bis heute die ergreifenste Szene des Films!....Danke fürs Veröffentlichen und Erinnern! :)