The Academy teams up with New York’s Museum of Modern Art to present a restoration of Richard Williams’s ‘The Thief and the Cobbler: A Moment in Time. 1992.’ with special appearances by the director and a discussion with animation historian John Canemaker.
The Academy has teamed up with New York’s Museum of Modern Art to present Richard Williams’s The Thief and the Cobbler: A Moment in Time. 1992.
The Thief and the Cobbler is a legend in animation circles, both as a breathtakingly beautiful work of hand-drawn animation and for its troubled production history. An Arabian Nights fantasy about a mischievous thief and a resourceful shoemaker who save a golden city from the clutches of a wicked vizier, the film entered production in 1964. As the scope widened and financiers came and went, production only reached an endpoint in 1992, when Williams lost control of the film and other animators were brought in to finish what was eventually released in the U.S., in a much-altered version, as Arabian Knight.
Luckily, Williams was able to make a copy of his work print as it existed on May 13, 1992, the last day of production, and the “moment in time” of the title. This print has been preserved and restored by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences’ Academy Film Archive, and will be screened at MoMA September 22-27.
Williams, a three-time Oscar winner, will be present to introduce the film himself on Friday, September 23, and will also participate in a discussion hosted by animation historian John Canemaker on September 24. The program will include a selection of clips from Williams’s work (including his brilliant animation for Who Framed Roger Rabbit) as well as his (personally) hand-drawn 2015 short film, the Oscar-nominated Prologue.
The Thief and the Cobbler: A Moment in Time. 1992.
Introduced by Richard Williams
Friday, September 23, 6:30 p.m.
Tickets go on sale on September 9
John Canemaker Interviews Richard Williams
Saturday, September 24, 4:00 p.m.
Tickets go on sale on September 10