Author: Newsroom

Los Angeles, CA, April 18, 2024 – Animator and filmmaker Seth MacFarlane is partnering, through his Seth MacFarlane Foundation, with Martin Scorsese’s Film Foundation. They are teaming up to fund TFF’s first-ever restoration of a curated selection of historically significant animated shorts from the 1920s – 1940s.

MacFarlane, one of the leading names in contemporary animation, has been fascinated by animation since he first began drawing at the age of 2. He studied animation at the Rhode Island School of Design and, after moving to Hollywood, created the long-running animated series FAMILY GUY, which is celebrating its 25th anniversary this year.

He has a deep appreciation for the art of animation, and a genuine respect for its pioneers. MacFarlane is committed to saving and honoring the art form, from its earliest days forward. Since Scorsese’s Film Foundation is dedicated to saving every aspect of the world’s cinema heritage, the partnership was a natural fit.

“I’m so grateful to Seth MacFarlane for his enthusiasm and his support on these restorations,” said Martin Scorsese. “What an astonishing experience, to see these remarkable pictures that I experienced for the first time as a child brought back to their full glory. Imagine the reactions of children today! Because the films now seem as fresh as they did when they were newly made.”

Fans of Max and Dave Fleischer, who created Betty Boop and Koko the Clown, among many other memorable characters, will be delighted to know that nine Fleischer films are among those being restored. Seth MacFarlane is a devoted aficionado of jazz music and The Great American Songbook, so the Fleischer Brothers’ noted use of jazz in their soundtracks, including collaborations with Cab Calloway, Louis Armstrong, and Don Redman, is another reason the Fleischers’ work is so well-represented in this restoration collection.

“The work Martin Scorsese and his Film Foundation have been doing is essential cinematic preservation,” said Seth MacFarlane. “I’m honored to partner with them in restoring their first-ever collection of storied animation.”

Also included are two stop-motion animation shorts directed by George Pal, known for his charming “Puppetoons.” The final film on the list is a Terrytoon, produced by Paul Terry, a name which will be familiar to virtually anyone who recalls American television programming in the mid-20th century.

The films were selected and restored by UCLA Film & Television Archive and The Film Foundation, in collaboration with Paramount Studio Archives. The 12 restorations funded by MacFarlane were completed using unique original pre-print elements and/or print sources, mostly nitrate, held at UCLA Film & Television Archive. 

A program of nine restorations, titled BACK FROM THE INK: RESTORED ANIMATED SHORTS, will premiere at the 2024 TCM Classic Film Festival on Saturday, April 20th at 6:30pm, with an in-person introduction by Seth MacFarlane. Seven shorts directed by Dave Fleischer will be screened: KOKO’S TATTOO (1928), LITTLE NOBODY (1935), THE LITTLE STRANGER (1936), GREEDY HUMPTY DUMPTY (1936), PEEPING PENGUINS (1937), THE FRESH VEGETABLE MYSTERY (1939), and SO DOES AN AUTOMOBILE (1939). Also premiering are THE THREE BEARS, a 1939 Terrytoon directed by Mannie Davis, and TWO-GUN RUSTY, a George Pal Puppetoon from 1944.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Scroll to Top