Whose The Most Remarkable, Extraordinary Fellow? Popeye the Sailor!

Gonna keep up the Fleischer stuff. Here’s another great cartoon of theirs, and one of my favorites, “Popeye the Sailor Meets Sinbad the Sailor”.  This is a specially made Popeye short.  For one, its a two-reeler, so its about 17 minutes as opposed to the standard 6-7 minute Popeye shorts.  It’s also in color, another huge deal.  I talked about the Fleischer’s invention of Rotoscope animation in my Gulliver’s Travels post.  This cartoon features another innovative Fleischer technique.  You’ll notice the 3 dimensional panning backgrounds throughout this short.  They used to build miniature models on a turntable, and then placed the animation cels vertically (as opposed to being placed flat on an animation light table).  The miniature background would be moved one frame at a time in tune with the animated character as it walked.  This technique wasn’t used as much by other studios.  Walt Disney’s team developed the multi-plane camera as a way of creating the illusion of depth, by placing several layers of a background, enabling the camera to truck into a scene as well as pan side to side, and this technique is what became a standard for creating depth in animated films.  But the Fleischer’s innovation is still very cool, and I remembered be wowed by it the first time I ever saw it.  It’s 3D!  Before there was 3D!

Here’s “Popeye the Sailor Meets Sinbad the Sailor”:

 I so wish the Fleischer’s had made a Popeye animated feature. That would have killed.


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