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Saturday, March 25, 2017

Dick Lundy - my 124th pick to be named a Disney Legend

Dick Lundy is my 124th pick to be named a Disney Legend.

In the summer of 1929 Lundy started working for Walt Disney Productions, first assigned in the ink and paint department. In September he transferred to the animation department as an inbetweener. In March the next year Lundy was promoted to animator and later worked on Three Little Pigs (1933) and Orphan's Benefit (1934). After working on Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs (1937) Lundy became a director at Disney.

Lundy was not the first to draw or even animate Donald Duck. This was done by Art Babbitt and Dick Huemer in the short film The Wise Little Hen, a film in which Lundy also worked. This was Donald's first appearance, although the story offered little opportunity for character development. This would come in Donald's second appearance, Orphan's Benefit, in which Lundy was the sole animator of Donald. According to common animation practice, the audio and voices of the film were recorded first and were then played for the animators to reference. In listening to voice actor Clarence Nash portray the Duck in Orphan's Benefit, Lundy said " decided that [Donald] was an ego-show-off. If anything crossed him, he got mad and blew his top.

This is an excerpt form 50 Most Influential Disney Animators blog: In the Illusion of Life Frank Thomas and Ollie Johnston pointed out that Fred Moore was greatly inspired by Dick’s draftsmanship abilities and skills in understanding a character’s personality. At the time Lundy started doing his own thing the only animator ahead of him in that regard was Norman Ferguson, who was the first animator to stress thought process and performance in his animation. This is also completely leaving out Dick Lundy’s achievement of creating Donald Duck. Pay close attention in the shorts of the 30s and you’ll see that Lundy’s scenes were revolutionary and crucial in the development of personality animation.

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