Hey, cartoons hit the C-barrier!
This is from the ASIFA-Hollywood blog:
Animation Celebrates Its Centenary
"The first examples of animation fascinated and delighted audiences and that appeal has never waned in the past hundred years. Animators continue to explore and develop new technology, but the goal of entertaining an audience hasn't changed very much since the days of J. Stuart Blackton." -Leonard Maltin, Film Historian
The ASIFA-Hollywood Animation Archive is celebrating Animation's 100th Birthday on April 6th. From its humble beginnings with J. Stuart Blackton's film, "Humorous Phases of Funny Faces" first released on April 6th, 1906, animation has gone on to become one of the greatest American creative contributions to the arts, second only to Jazz.
The Director of ASIFA-Hollywood's Animation Archive, Stephen Worth explains, "Although there were many early films that experimented with stop motion and other techniques related to animation, Blackton was the first to create 'drawings that live'... sequential drawings of characters acting and reacting to each other. The word 'animate' literally means 'to give life to'. Blackton gave life to a whole new artform with his pioneering efforts."
James Stuart Blackton was a "Lightning Sketch Artist" in Vaudeville billed as "The Komikal Kartoonist". Inspired by Thomas Edison's recent invention of moving pictures, Blackton teamed with Albert E. Smith to form the first movie studio, Vitagraph Films. Smith and Blackton created what were then called "trick films"... the camera was stopped for a moment while the scene was changed, making objects and people magically appear and disappear; images dissolved from one to another; and shots were double exposed to create ghostly images. In 1900, Blackton experimented with putting his lightning sketch act on film in a movie called "The Enchanted Drawing", but it was in April of 1906 when he made his most important breakthrough. With a trick film titled "Humorous Phases of Funny Faces" Blackton created what is widely regarded as the first American animated film.
Now if we could get more classic animation out there on DVD for new generatiosn of fans to appreciate!
Standard disclaimer: These are my words alone.