Moving to Hanna-Barbera after 15 Years at Disney

Dream of Being an Artist Loss When Leaving for Manzanar Camouflage Net Weaving in Manzanar Developing Art Skills in Camp Return to Los Angeles First Portfolio & Disney Interview Interactions with Walt Disney Moving to Hanna-Barbera after 15 Years at Disney Disney vs. Hanna-Barbera Development of Scooby Doo TV show Designing Scooby Doo’s Character

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In the meantime, the same reason that caused Walt Disney to give up his shorts program. Also the same thing was happening at the studio MGM, where they closed up shop on their shorts program. They fired a couple of guys named Bill Hanna and Joseph Barbera who were doing Tom and Jerry. So they went out and started Hanna-Barbera Studios.

Arount that time, coincidentally we were on the last stages of something like 101 Dalmatians, and we getting into The Sword and The Stone. By this time I took a look around and here Walt is saying he wants to produce one feature film every other year, and I’m looking at the men around me at the peak of their careers, this tremendously talented group of people that had practically developed the art of cell animation to the level of Disney features, they were about as good as you can go. The whole studio was just bulging with people like this. What did I do? Where do I go? In the meantime, all these people that used to work on shorts at Disney Studios had joined Bill Hanna’s animation group at Hanna-Barbera, and they kept calling and saying we need people like you, come on over. That’s when I made the switch and moved over to Hanna-Barbera.

I’d get called in and lectured about things like, “you’re part of the major leagues and hope you realize you’re stepping down into the minors.” I thought okay, that’s the way things are. After they had gotten through laying off this group of animators that worked on the short subjects, I guess it bugged them that somebody would resign and quit on them instead of being laid off. They got a little bit tough about things. Here’s a guy that’s practically illiterate in the art of letter writing. They made me write a formal letter of resignation. I fooled them though- I made friends with the secretary. She did it for me.

Data: August 6, 1998
Localização Geográfica: California, US
Interviewer: Janice Tanaka
Contributed by: Watase Media Arts Center, Japanese American National Museum

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