PUTTIN' ON THE FUR
(7:00, 2016) A double frame view of Puttin’ on the Dog and Flying Fur, projected in sync with the original soundtrack.
Puttin’ on the Dog, released by MGM in 1944, was directed by William Hanna and Joseph Barbera, music composed by Scott Bradley, character animation by Irv Spence, Pete Burness, Ray Patterson, and Kenneth Muse. It was inked, painted, filmed by an uncredited studio crew. Hanna and Barbera, the creators of the Tom and Jerry characters, were chiefly responsible for design, story, and key drawings. Fred Quimby, the titular producer, won the Oscar that year for another Tom and Jerry cartoon, Yankee Doodle Mouse.
George Griffin made Flying Fur in 1981. He recorded the audio from a 1980 children’s television program, but did not see the video and didn’t know the story or name of the cartoon until after his film was completed. He assumed the original soundtrack was from a 1940’s cartoon and analyzed it for tempo and climaxes; he didn’t make a storyboard. Instead, he created various characters in an array of inconsistent styles, enacting exaggerated, spontaneous cartoon behavior of that period. He drew, colored, photographed the film in one month (assisted by Sarah Chodoff and Gretchen Peterson).
“Willful Ignorance”, an essay on making Flying Fur, can be found at www.geogrif.com.