Biography: Walter Lantz

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Birth/Death
Birth: April 27, 1899, New Rochelle, New York
Death: March 22, 1994, Burbank, California

Occupation/Title
American animator, painter, cartoonist & philanthropist

Bio Summary
Walter Lantz was born into a family of Italian immgrants in Westchester County, 16 miles from New York City. Watching Gertie the Dinosaur immediately ignited his passion for animation. While working as an auto mechanic by day, he met a shop customer who helped young Lantz start his career as an artist by paying for his Art Studies League classes.

1924 saw the premiere of his first animated short film, Dinky Doodle. Four years later, film producer Charles B. Mintz hired him to direct some Oswald the Lucky Rabbit (a character stolen from Walt Disney) shorts for Universal. Lantz won all applicable rights to the Oswald character in a card game bet with Carl Lammele.

Early Life/Family

Education/Training

Career Outline

Comments On Style

Influences

Personality

Anecdotes

“1899 is the correct birth year. When Walter turned 40 in 1939, he gave himself one more year in his 30s and listed his birth year as 1900 for the trade annuals — then forgot he had been creative, and maintained 1900 as his birth year for decades! Late in life, though, he caught himself, and admitted that 1899 had been correct all along”
-Joe Adamson

Miscellaneous

Filmography

Honors

Annie Award: Winsor McCay Award 1973; Awarded Lifetime Achievement Academy Award, 1979

Related Links




Bibliographic References

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Walter_Lantz, IMDb profile

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Contributors To This Listing
Enoch Allen
Joe Adamson

To make additions or corrections to this listing, please click on COMMENTS below…

2 Responses to “Biography: Walter Lantz”

  1. Bobby Dias says:

    At least from 1956 to 1960 Walt Disney let Walter Lantz use part of his cartoon facilities at a time when Walter Lantz was broke money wise, but not in heart.

  2. Bobby Dias says:

    “he caught himself”- Sometimes at Disney Studios Walter would suddenly remember a frame that he had forgotten about that would now work fine. Remembering the discarded frames meant saving him time in not having to start from blank page.

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