Saturday, May 21, 2011

Pudgy The Watchman Mosaic


Haven't tried this before ... I thought I'd take a crack at a mosaic for the 1938 Betty Boop cartoon Pudgy The Watchman. Fleischer boards differ quite a bit from the storyboards of today, which often need to be designed to be understood six months later by people in another country. Depending on the show some modern boards are practically mini-layouts. Not the case with Fleischer boards. They are more akin to what are today called 'thumbnail boards': a loose gestural description of the cartoon's action which is submitted to the director before adding the detail. At Fleischers, since the director was responsible for laying out the picture and was not only there to answer questions through the length of production (from animators under the same roof) , but also animating on the show itself, I can understand that there was no need for specific detail. Unbelievably the footage sheet still exists for 'Watchman' which solves some mysteries but creates a few others. Sc.25B, for example, is listed as being both by Harold Walker & Tom Johnson. Some scenes were animated as one scene & split up according to the fielding. Sc. 25 for example was split into 25, 25A & 25B though presumably (?) done as a single scene*. Sc.08 is indicated in the board as done by both Feuer (on page 2) & Johnson (page 3). I suspect Sc.8 was done by Feuer as part of Sc.6 but I don't know for sure. Sc.8A is my designation. Etc. There is no indication of who animated the scene of the cat winking (I designated Sc. 12B) - could this have been part of Sc.12A fielded in? If any of you Fleischer experts out there can answer or correct me on any of this speak up! To get an idea of how loose the board is and to see the footage list visit here (you will have to scroll down a bit).

BTW-the crew for Pudgy the Watchman was:

Tom Johnson
Harold Walker
Frank Endres
Otto Feuer
Tony Di Paola

* - a closer inspection indicates Sc.25A was probably done as a separate scene. The BG differs slightly from 25 & 25B indicating it is not just fielded in. 25 & 25B could have been done as one scene and split up however.
Click to enlarge

3 comments:

Psychotime said...

Where do you get your info on the complete crew including the names not listed on the cartoon's opening credits?

J.V. (AKA "White Pongo") said...

If you click 'here' (hilited in blue) and scroll down a bit after the jump you will find the route (footage) sheet & storyboard to 'Pudgy the Watchman'. The animator's names are written on these documents.

Mr. Cro said...

Di Paola, another one of those uncredited Fleischer and Famous animators. His one and only credit was on "Mr. Bug Goes to Town".