After years of researching and collecting materials, silent cartoon expert Tom Stathes has launched an incredible new website devoted to the films of animation pioneer J.R. Bray. This is a must-bookmark location for any student of animation history, fans of classic cartoons and all those who study early cinema.
The Bray Animation Project is a major research tool devoted to the 1913-1927 output of animated films from the Bray Studios. Stathes describes it this way:
“Combining imagery, videos, essays, and the most complete filmography published to date, the Project pays overdue homage to an early New York City film studio whose product has been painfully understudied. Noted film and comics historians David Gerstein, Charlie Judkins, Mark Newgarden, Ray Pointer, Tom Stathes (yours truly) and Jack Theakston have provided informative texts for the site.
The animated cartoon filmography can be viewed either chronologically or by series. It establishes whether each film is lost or survives (to our present knowledge), as well as noting whether an element has yet been collected for the Bray Animation Project proper.”
This site is a significant resource of animation history and knowledge. You will spend hours pouring through what’s here: essays, rare video, formerly lost material encompassing filmmakers such as Max and Dave Fleischer, Ted Eshbaugh, Walter Lantz, Milt Gross, Pat Sullivan – about characters like Bobby Bumps, Farmer Al Falfa, Krazy Kat and Dinky Doodle and many others. There is also a discussion board on the site, where film scholars, historians, and fans are encouraged to post messages and contribute further information.
One of the best animation history websites I’ve ever seen – perfectly organized, expertly written, wonderfully illustrated. If it were a book, I’d be urging you to buy it. A valuable contribution to our field. Go there now – and enjoy the stay.