May 14, 2006

Fred Moore in 3D

I'm ashamed to say I know little about the circumstances surrounding Fred Moore's work for George Pal on his "Puppetoons".
In fact, it wasn't until going to a big Pal tribute screening at UCLA(in 1999, or thereabouts)that I recognized with palpable shock that Fred Moore had worked on these things at all...he certainly was busy for a man deemed unemployable (at Disney's, anyway) from 1946-48, the period that he worked for Lantz and Pal. But that's another story....I will say that in my opinion--even with all the anecdotes about disappearing after "lunch", napping under the desk, etc.--it's my belief that Fred Moore was a functioning alcoholic. That is, his output no doubt suffered, as did, tragically, other things, but the picture often given out in interviews of a shell of an artist, unable to properly function as an animator is exaggerated quite a bit. Obviously from a man as talented and experienced as this even a smaller amount of work was still a huge boon to a production (until the very end of his life, where he was reduced to minor scenes in "Peter Pan" and "Cinderella"). Again--a complicated story for another day.

Anyway, it's obvious that Moore designed the characters from Pal's "Together in the Weather". Really obvious:

The uncredited author of the page about this short writes of "Judy", the girl character's, sex appeal in bathing suits such as the photo above: "The effect is kind of creepy, because Judy has a very youthful "doll" face with a inappropriately mature body." Funny, because although the last word I'd use to describe Fred Moore's girls is "creepy", he has noticed the signature style Fred used--an almost babyfaced girl's head atop a nubile form. Perhaps the overal doll/toy effect Pal was going for in his sculpts just couldn't do the light, subtle grace of Moore's 2D designs justice. Pastrami with whipped cream? In any case, for those who love Moore's look, seeing these is a bit weird.

More can be found here, in this nice series of pieces on the AWN website; all photos are courtesy of those authors


Ali said...

That's another fine post you've gotten me into!

I never knew Moore worked for Pal. You learn something new every day. I'd better check out that Pal boxed set I bought and nearly forgot. I wonder if Together in the Weather is on it.

I have to admit, I also find that doll in the Betty Grable pose 'kinda creepy'. I don't recall Moore's girls having heads that big.

Gabriel said...

How'd you do that? The gif-making? Wow.

I put the answer to that on a comment on that same post.

By the way, Jenny, I really love your blog. I never knew there were Fred Moore puppets! I'll have to hunt that short.

Marc Deckter said...

Wow - nice post! I didn't know Moore worked for Pal, either - thanks!

Anonymous said...

Hi Jenny,
The web page you quote is written by this guy, I think.

Sadly his site hasn't seen an update in many a year.

Very interesting about Moore - 'twas news to me too.