Gene Deitch’s new blog

It’s Gene Deitch’s 87th birthday today – Happy Birthday, Gene! – and to celebrate, Deitch has started a new blog based around his latest book, a work-in-progress, called Roll The Credits.

For the few reading this unaware of Gene’s career, Mr. Deitch is an Academy Award winning (Munro, 1960) animation director who began his career at UPA where he ultimately ran the New York studio directing Bert and Harry Piels commercials, ran the Terrytoons studio where he created Tom Terrific and Sick Sick Sidney, moved to Prague in 1959 where he directed Tom & Jerry shorts for MGM, Popeye and Krazy Kat TV cartoons for King Features and Nudnik theatricals for Paramount. He spent many years directing animated films for Weston Woods, including an adaptation of Where The Wild Things Are. And that’s just the tip of the iceberg. Oh, and he’s the father of acclaimed underground cartoonist Kim Deitch.

Gene’s new blog will (on a somewhat regular basis) post chapters from the new book, each one devoted to a person who inspired him, “the 65 freaky people – many who have been so far hidden from you – who’ve pushed and prodded me into whatever it is that I’ve accomplished.” The first posts are devoted to his mentor John Hubley, author-illustrator Tomi Ungerer, filmmaker Jan Svankmajer and his mother, Ruth. Gene says this about the book and website:

I’ve tried to keep it light, bright, and short-winded where possible, but a couple of chapters are necessarily semi-sagas. Please cue me if I induce boredom! It’s a “Living Book” because YOU are invited to correct, add, deny, refute, or argue with anything I’ve written. Sadly, many of the people I’ve written about have gone beyond the point of no return, so it’s up to you to challenge my memory. A true history is the goal.

It sounds like a present to all of us who love Gene and the history of animation. Here’s to Gene Deitch, his new blog and our best wishes for his continued success and good health. Happy Birthday, Gene Deitch!

  • Here’s to Deitch. I enjoyed reading the available chapters, especially on Jan Svankmajer.

  • Happy Birthday.

  • Todd Dolce’

    Happy Birthday Gene! You are as animated as you were during our interview a couple of years ago. Anyone that misses out on visiting Gene’s blog is really missing a lot!

  • Yvette Kaplan

    Happy Birthday and YAY to Gene! He is an inspiration and this is great and inspiring news. : ) Thank you!!

  • Matt Jones

    Marvelous! Happy Birthday Gene-

  • Happy birthday to one of my earliest influences. I owe you a lot, as do we all!

  • Carol Drake

    Dear Gene,

    I know that Ken Drake would wish you the very best Happy Birthday. He was always amused by your e-mails and political discussions. He was living with two liberals his last year of life and we had many discussions on politics those last years.

    May you be blessed with good health and much happiness in the years to come and I hope there are many of them.

    Carol Drake
    Ken Drake’s daughter in law.

    • Yours is the most moving comment of all, Carol. My glass is half-empty without
      my daily battle of words with a friend who patiently stood me for so long!

      XXX Gene

  • Happy birthday, Gene! May your creativity never run dry!

  • Walt

    Happy Birthday Gene!!!!!!
    I’ve always admired your work and still do.
    A huge inspiration.

  • Brad Constantine

    Happy Birthday Gene! You Are an International Treasure!!
    Keep up the great Work!!From all of your Fans in San Diego!!

  • Thank you, thank you, and thank you! I desperately hope for such supportive words after you’ve read some of my bite-size opinions! XXX Gene