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Abstract:

When the Disney studio shifted into digital animation by the early 1990s, it radically reduced its ink and paint department and discarded a number of production tools and documents that had once formed a part of the company’s earliest history. These included the paints and mustard grinders that Ub Iwerks had purchased for the Hyperion Studio’s ink and paint department in the late 1920s. Along with records of the paint formulae, and other production materials used in cel animation, these artefacts were subsequently acquired by several animation restorers and made available to the author. The discovery of these extant materials is a rare opportunity to better understand the colour production processes of a leading studio, which pioneered the introduction of three-strip (or Technicolor IV) colour into the motion picture industry in the early 1930s.