Brian Sibley reviews Channel 4’s documentary about veteran Disney animator, Art Babbitt.
Young Art Babbitt appears in unique 16mm footage from his personal archives.
For years his name languished in obscurity: official Disney historians ignored his existence, while those who wrote about Disney in critical, iconoclastic terms only ever referred to him darkly as the animator who led the Disney studio strike of 1941.
Having reached the venerable age of 80, Art Babbitt is finally receiving, in some measure, the recognition due to him, and even the Disney studio now feels able to acknowledge his unique contribution to such films as Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, Pinocchio, Fantasia and Dumbo.
Evidence of this recognition was his appearance, in 1986, at a Guardian Lecture at London’s National Film Theatre – an event featured in Channel 4’s documentary Animating Art (Producer/Director: Imogen Sutton).