Search form

Category: In Passing

Disney Headline News

Oscar-Winning Animator Chang Dies At 86

Wah Ming Chang, an Academy Award-winning animator and artist, died Dec. 22, 2003 in Carmel, California at the age of 86.

Some of his more notable works include a stop-motion animation production of THE THREE BEARS. Chang created posable wooden models of PINOCCHIO and BAMBI so that Disney animators could study body movements. He also contributed to BOZO THE CLOWN, TOM THUMB, THE WONDERFUL WORLD OF THE BROTHERS GRIMM and THE SEVEN FACES OF DR. LAO, reported Associated Press.

India Headline News

Toonz Animation Chairman Menon Dies

G.A. Menon, chairman of Toonz Animation India (Technopark, Trivandrum, India), died on Dec. 2, 2003 at the age of 72 of a heart attack he suffered on a Los Angelesbound flight from Singapore.

A native of Kerala, Menons career spanned more than 40 years in the global electronics business. He began his career at a statistician in the Thackersey Mooljee Group of textile mills in Bombay. Upon receiving his M.B.A. from Harvard, he held various managerial positions at IBM for 15 years.

Years Headline News

ABC Family Exec Mancuso Dies At 44

TV Industry vet Linda Mancuso, svp, head of programming, ABC Family Channel, died Dec. 7, 2003 at Good Samaritan Hospital in Los Angeles after a seven-year battle with cancer at the age of 44.

Linda made so many contributions to our industry. Her love of the creative process, talent and her team, were inspiring to everyone who came in contact with her, said Anne Sweeney, president, ABC Cable Networks Group and Disney Channel Worldwide. We will remember her warmth, humor and generosity of spirit forever.

Headline News

Sealab 2021 Voice Silenced At 71

Stage and voice actor Harry Goz passed away Sept. 6, 2003 at the age of 71 of cancer at a hospital in Manhasset, New York. Goz was the voice of Captain Murphy in the popular Adult Swim series SEALAB 2021, which airs on Cartoon Network

The co-creators of SEALAB 2021, Adam Reed and Matt Thompson, said in a statement, We are devastated by the loss of our good friend, Harry Goz. Working with him was always sheer joy, and his talent was beyond compare. Our thoughts and prayers are with his family, and we shall all miss him dearly.

Film Headline News

SeaQuest Star & Aladdin Voice Actor Brandis Dead By Suicide

Jonathan Brandis, who landed numerous roles as a child actor in television, commercials and film, including THE NEVERENDING STORY 2: THE NEXT CHAPTER, SEAQUEST DSV and was the voice of Mozenrath on DISNEYS ALADDIN TV series (1993), took his own life at the age of 27 and died Nov. 12, 2003 at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles.

Films Headline News

Jetsons’ Mother Penny Singleton Dies

Penny Singleton, the voice of Jane Jetson and the actress who brought the popular comic strip character Blondie to life in films, died Nov. 12, 2003 at Sherman Oaks Hospital, two weeks after suffering a stroke, at the age of 95.

Singleton was best known on camera for her role as the wife to bumbling husband, Dagwood Bumstead (played by Arthur Lake) in THE BLONDIE series, which had 28 films from 1938 to 1950. The films were based on the cartoon strip, created by Chic Young in 1930, about the misadventures of a small town family.

October Headline News

Animation Director Urbano Dies At 94

Veteran animator and director Carl Urbano died on October 16, 2003 at the age of 94. Starting in 1931, he worked for Winklers, Van Beuren, Harman-Ising, MGM, Hugh Harman, John Sutherland and Hanna-Barbera. He was awarded the Motion Picture Screen Cartoonists Golden Award in 1981.

In the second half of his career, Urbano, along with Ray Patterson and a few others, formed the directing backbone at the Hanna-Barbera studios for nearly three decades, working on such programs as CHALLENGE OF THE SUPERFRIENDS, POPEYE, SCOOBY-DOO, POPEYE and CASPER specials.

Animation Headline News

Jules Engel Tribute

Animation pioneer Jules Engel, who passed away Sept. 6, 2003 at the age of 94, was loved by many and inspired many generations of animators by way of his teaching, art and animation career. ANIMATION WORLD MAGAZINE will pay tribute to this inspirational man in a collection of thoughts and pictures from those who knew and admired him. We have been receiving many e-mails already from people who were touched by him. Please add your remembrances, anecdotes, express your feelings about him as well as any photos or drawings you would like to share in this online memorial to Jules Engel.

Headline News

CINAR Mourns Loss Of Caillou Voice Actor

Jaclyn Linetsky, the English voice of Caillou in the animated series produced by CINAR, died at the age of 17 on September 8, 2003, in a fatal automobile crash in Montreal.

"Jaclyn's voice enchanted thousands of children and viewers and she brought her own special personality and character to Caillou, said CINAR president/ceo Stuart Snyder. She was a very talented performer and will be deeply missed by us all."

Headline News

Jules Engel Passes, Funeral Announced

Animation talent and instructor extraordinaire Jules Engel passed away Sept. 6, 2003 in Simi Valley, California at the age of 94. He had experienced complications from a recent fall.

With him at his death, former student and colleague (and marvelous animator/instructor in her own right), USC Animation's Christine Panushka, said, My heart is heavy with the news that Jules passed today [Sept. 6] at 5:15 pm, at a Simi Valley Hospice. The end was peaceful and Jane Ann Dill was at his side as he slipped away.

Film Headline News

Former Ottawa Film Festival Director Dies

Kelly O'Brien, former Ottawa Festival director in the '70s and 80s, died May 5, 2003, at age 50 at her home in Beaches, near Toronto in Canada. According to a report in the TORONTO STAR, she suffered from liver disease, but autopsy results were inconclusive, so the matter is still under police investigation.

Film Headline News

Maurice Rapf, Film Writer, WGA Co-founder Dies

Veteran Hollywood screenwriter Maurice Rapf who wrote DISNEY'S SONG OF THE SOUTH and co-founded the Writers Guild of America (WGA), died April 15, 2003 at the age of 88 in Hanover, New Hampshire. Rapf was the son of Harry Rapf, one of the MGM Studio pioneers. He appeared briefly as a child actor. While attending Dartmouth College he went on a summer trip to the USSR in 1934. He became active in politics and attended Communist Party functions. Rapf became a Hollywood writer of live-action features and later helped found the WGA.

Studios Headline News

Blue Sky Studios' Co-Founder Brown Passes Away

David Brown, co-founder and ceo of Blue Sky Studios, passed away April 11, 2003 at the age of 64 in Westchester County, New York. Brown, joined MAGI SynthaVision to lead the newly opened New York sales and production facility. As the industry downsized in the late '80s he helped co-found Blue Sky Productions (later renamed Blue Sky Studios), in White Plains, New York in 1987. In the early years he concentrated on developing an animation language built around ray tracing mathematics. Blue Sky focused on photo realism and character animation.

Story Headline News

Babar's Mother Dies At Age 99

Cecile de Brunhoff, the lady who invented the story of the little elephant, BABAR, in 1931 to tell her boys as a bedtime story, has died of a stroke at the age of 99 in Paris on April 7, 2003, it was reported by the LOS ANGELES TIMES. Her husband, painter Jean de Brunhoff illustrated the story, actually named the elephant and created Celestre, Sephir and the Old Lady who takes care of young Barbar after his mother is killed.

Animation Headline News

ASIFA-SF Co-Founder Margaret Hale Dies

Margaret Hale, one of the founding members of ASIFA-SF who ran ink-and-paint departments for more than 20 years, died of a heart attack at the age of 76 on February 16, 2003 at her home in Jacksonville, Oregon. Born and educated in England, she met her husband Jeff Hale when they were students at the Royal Academy of Art. They soon moved to Canada to work in animation and then moved to the U.S. in 1964 to work for Imagination, Inc. in San Francisco, California, which they ultimately owned. The company was known for its commercials and work for SEASAME STREET.

Headline News

Pulitzer-winning cartoonist, Bill Mauldin, dies at 81

Cartoonist Bill Mauldin died of respiratory failure at a nursing home in Newport Beach where he had lived since mid-2001 while battling Alzheimer's disease. He was awarded in 1944 for his World War II cartoon G.I.s, Willie and Joe, and again in 1959 for providing his visual commentary on Boris Pasternaks treatment by the Soviets.

Headline News

Caricaturist Al Hirschfeld Dies At Age 99

Artist Al Hirschfeld, one of the best known caricaturists in history, died in his sleep at his home in New York City on January 20, 2003. He was 99. Best known for his witty caricatures of actors and personalities, Hirschfeld's drawings also provided the inspiration for the "Rhapsody in Blue" segment of FANTASIA 2000. Directed by Eric Goldberg, the segment evoked New York in the 1930s. Hirschfeld, whose life was detailed in the 1996 documentary, THE LINE KING, was also well known in the American theater community.

Headline News

Mel Blanc's Widow Estelle Passes

Estelle Blanc, wife of legendary voice actor Mel Blanc, died Sunday, January 12, 2003 in Santa Monica, California of natural causes. She was 92. Born in Denver, Colorado, Estelle Rosenbaum began her career in early radio with soon-to-be husband Mel in 1932 in Portland, Oregon where they co-hosted a one-hour radio show called COBWEBS AND NUTS. Married in 1933, the couple moved to Los Angeles in 1936. There, Mel joined Warner Bros. where he gained fame as the signature voices of the characters Bugs Bunny, Daffy Duck, Porky Pig, Sylvester & Tweety, Tazmanian Devil, Wyle E.

Headline News

UPA Founder Zack Schwartz Has Died

Karl Cohen of ASIFA-SF has brought AWN the news that animator Zack Schwartz, one of the founders of UPA, passed away on January 13, 2003 in Israel. After working at Disney, most notably as an art director on BAMBI and FANTASIA, Schwartz went on to work under Frank Tashlin at Screen Gems and was a founder of UPA. In 1946, Schwartz sold his interest in the studio and moved to New York, where he worked in television advertising, eventually becoming an advertising agency executive.

Henson Headline News

Animator Tex Henson Dies At 78

William "Tex" Henson, who supervised animation on ROCKY & BULLWINKLE and was a force behind the popularity of CHIP 'N DALE, died Monday, December 2, 2002 of head injuries after being hit by a pickup truck in Dallas, Texas. He was 78 years old. Born in Dallas, Henson moved to California to join Disney Studios in 1944, where he was an animator on films such as SONG OF THE SOUTH, PECOS BILL and PETER AND THE WOLF. He was also one of the forces behind Chip & Dale's leap from bit players to outright stars. The chipmunk duo went on to star in 23 theatrical cartoons.

Headline News

Pixar Animator Glenn McQueen Passes

Glenn McQueen, supervising animator for some of Pixar's biggest hits, including A BUG'S LIFE and MONSTERS, INC., died on October 29, 2002 in Berkeley, California at the age of 41. The cause of death was melanoma, which he was diagnosed with in December 2001. McQueen had worked at Pixar since 1994, helping to create such memorable characters as Woody from TOY STORY and MONSTERS, INC.'s Boo. He was working as animation supervisor on Pixar's next animated feature CARS when he passed away.

Series Headline News

Batman Beyond Writer Hilary Bader Dies

Emmy-winning television writer Hilary Bader has died of breast cancer Thursday, November 7, 2002. She was 50 years old. Bader is probably best known as one of the writers of the Emmy and Annie award winning series BATMAN BEYOND, and has also penned scripts for Kids' WB! series THE ZETA PROJECT and the STAR TREK series THE NEXT GENERATION, DEEP SPACE NINE and VOYAGER.

Disney Headline News

Animator Tom Ferriter Passes Away At Age 74

The Animation Guild has informed AWN that animator Tom Ferriter has passed away at the age of 74. He started his animation career at Disney in 1955, and went on to work for Filmation, Hanna-Barbera, Krantz and Chuck Jones. He returned to Disney in 1976, where he remained until his retirement in 1990. Ferriter's credits include THE FLINTSTONES TV series and the feature films THE LITTLE MERMAID, THE GREAT MOUSE DETECTIVE, THE FOX AND THE HOUND and THE WHITE SEAL.

Disney Headline News

Disney Composer Buddy Baker Dies At Age 84

Buddy Baker, a 29-year Disney veteran who composed the musical scores for nearly 200 Disney feature films, television shows and theme park attractions, passed away from natural causes on Friday, July 26, 2002, at his home in Sherman Oaks, California. He was 84 years old. Baker first came to the Disney Studio in 1954 and went on to compose music for such popular television shows as DAVY CROCKETT and THE MICKEY MOUSE CLUB. His theatrical credits include the featurette DONALD IN MATHMAGIC LAND, plus memorable scores for the three original WINNIE THE POOH offerings.