From time to time, I. KLEIN, famed animator and pioneer 'New Yorker' cartoonist, reminisces for CARTOONIST PROfiles about his experiences over the years. Here Klein tells of some of his experiences at the Walt Disney Studios in the mid-1930's.
I RECEIVED A BREATHLESS LETTER that we were on the brink of a revolution, in the animation profession. That was in 1928. I was in France, in Paris spending the summer sketching, visiting museums and having a very pleasant time with other young American artists. Sid Marcus was sweating it out over a hot animation board in a New York Studio.
He wrote that he had heard hat some guy in California was working on an animated cartoon with sound. Talking animated cartoons would be sensational, it would revolutionize the business. Sid practically ordered me home to join in the fun. His letter got a raised eyebrow from me, that was all. had left animated cartoons several years before and had no intention of returning to it. I was doing all right with my magazine cartoons getting a good income, time to paint, time for extended European trips, such as I was enjoying when I received the letter, and such as 1 enjoyed the previous year, traveling around southern Europe.
Sid Marcus joined the ranks of animators around 1920 and is still turning out animation footage. He has been living and working in Hollywood since 1932 or thereabouts. We had worked together animating Mutt & Jeff and Krazy Kat when animation was new and silent.
Then back again to New York. This was in the Fall of 1928. "Steamboat Willie" was playing in a Broadway movie house. It was getting rave notices. I went to see it. Marvelous! There was no question about it. Animation had taken a giant step. I felt a great kinship with it due to my own relation to animated cartoons. Nevertheless remained with my magazine cartoon work.