Lost Filmstrips

hannafilmstrip.jpg

Over at CreativePro.com, writer Gene Gable has posted a great series of articles on all aspects of vintage design, discussing everything from bizarre children’s books to cocktail napkins.

On his post about Filmstrip propaganda, Gable posts frames from several cool old strips, religious parables aimed at Sunday School kids, mainly drawn by animator George Martsegis. But among the images he posts are two frames of a filmstrip created by Bill Hanna and Gene Hazelton!

Filmstrips were a popular teaching tool back in the 1940s, 50s and 60s, in the era before PowerPoint and video. The medium was a great outlet for commercial artists and cartoonists. I believe even Disney created filmstrips for educational purposes as well. I never knew Bill Hanna and Gene Hazelton did them. I wonder how many they made and when? Anyone have more info on these?

(Thanks, Lliam Amor)


  • http://www.foogersnarts.blogspot.com TStevens

    I remember seeing a lot of Filmstrip material when I was in school in the seventies and even into the eighties.

    It seems like the days of cool educational films has long since past. I doubt you would ever see any of todays top directors take a dive into educational material. Can you imagine Pixar producing playground safety films?

  • amid

    A very INTERESTING find! I just looked back at the interview I’d done with Gene Hazelton before he passed away and he mentions that at one point in the mid-1950s he shared an office in Beverly Hills with Bill Hanna. Based on Gene’s history, I would guess the chronology of this would be around 1954-55, which was when both of them were still working at MGM.

  • http://www.bishopanimation.com Floyd Bishop

    Pixar did do some educational films of sorts, kind of. They did a series of spots for Sesame Street that starred Luxo Jr.

    Bud Luckey, director of “Boundin’” and voice of Rick Dicker also have a rich history of educational pieces for Sesame Street, including “Ladybug Picnic” and “The Alligator Prince”.

  • Chris Sobieniak

    > It seems like the days of cool educational films has long since past. I doubt you would ever see any of todays top directors take a dive into educational material. Can you imagine Pixar producing playground safety films?

    I do! :-)

    Of course I’m going by the same mindset you have over this, and pine for the days when we had something cool to watch on the screen besides a chalkboard!

  • http://www.hoganmag.com Tom Heintjes

    Wow, those drinking designs on the creativepro website are fabulous!

    Speaking of educational films, I assume everyone here knows that the Prelinger Archives houses tons of great “social engineering” films, and that Amazon offers a series of them (broken down by topic) on DVD (edited by Skip Elsheimer).

  • Jess

    I remember watching film strips as late as the mid-90s in public school. One of the most memorable (and I’m not sure if this was a Disney strip, but it sure looked like it) was about the water cycle. It featured a rain drop voiced by Sterling Holloway (from Winnie the Pooh, among other V/O gigs).