Animation veteran Jack Zander has passed away on Dec. 17, 2007, at the age of 99.
Zander began his career in animation through a fluke. While he was attending Chouinard School in California, he took a job at Roemer Grey Studios, claiming to be an animator when in actuality he had no animation experience at all. Learning on the job, he worked under the tutelage of Tom and Bob McKimson. After Roemer Grey Studios closed, Zander went on to work at Warner Bros. and later made the move from Los Angeles to New York to work at Van Buren Studios and later for Terrytoons.
Just prior to World War II, Zander moved back to L.A. to animate for MGM, but he returned to New York to make training films for the military. After the war, he did another tour of duty at MGM, where he worked on the first seven TOM & JERRY cartoons.
Zander returned to NYC once more to work in commercials and, after several years with various commercial houses, he formed Zander's Animation Parlour, which brought in top talent -- including Emery Hawkins, Irv Spence and Preston Blair -- to work on their commercials. The studio also produced TV specials, with Zander directing the King Features comic strip-inspired THE MAN WHO HATED LAUGHTER and GNOMES, based on Rien Poortvliet's book.
Read more about Jack Zander's historic career in Animation World Magazine's recent interview with the animation vet.