Energetically Energetically

“Energetically Yours” by Dave Hilberman

We’ve been meaning to post this for a long time: Energetically Yours (1957). An industrial film about the history of mankind’s use of energy, it was produced for the Standard Oil Company and directed by UPA co-founder Dave Hilberman – with animation production supervised at both Playhouse Pictures (by Bill Melendez) and Quartet Films (under Art Babbitt).

The film stands apart due to its design by British illustrator Ronald Searle, perfectly translating his unique style of drawing to animation. Sorry this copy of the film is so faded… to see some behind the scenes photos, artwork (with the correct color) and to read more information on the film, I highly recommend this post at Matt Jones’ Searle tribute blog, Perpetua.

And yes, that’s Marvin Miller doing the narration.

(Thanks, J.M. Urbina)

  • I wonder if the already knew what problems fuel emissions cause to the enviroment.

  • GW Finster

    Nobody raised a lasting word of protest about air pollution until the mid 1960’s. The older generation viewed motor vehicles that fed gas and oil consumption as scientific advancements meant to better our lives, the way today’s general public views CG animation. It’s true that asphalt pavement and high octane traffic were an improvement over dirt roads but dirt roads never caused cancer. Now, watch this putt!

  • Mike Kazaleh

    I’m the guy who posted this on you tube. This was a transfer that Jerry Beck made from my 16mm print. The print was given to me years ago while I was working at Playhouse Pictures. Unfortunately, the prints were made on Eastman stock and they had all turned pink. This is sad, because the film originally had vibrant color. I’ve seen a lot of the artwork, because Mary Cane (who did the amazing ink and paint work on this and other films) had made a book full of cels and backgrounds from the film as a souvenir. The book was later broken up, and some of the cel set ups were framed and hung up at Playhouse. I have reason to believe that the art still survives… somewhere…

  • Thanks for the link Jerry. Interesting comment Mike-I’d kill to see some of the production artwork! I believe Amid struggled to track some down for his book CARTOON MODERN.

  • J.M. Urbina

    yeah I was doing research in youtube for Public Service Announcements and UPA style shorts and found it. I originally thought it was meant to be pink, and terracota, but looks like the artwork had more colour in it!.

  • You’re correct, Mike. The original artwork was gorgeous. Too bad about the film stock used.

    Dave Hilberman joined our layout crew at Hanna-Barbera sometime in the seventies, I think. He was already a legend as far as we were concern. It was an honor to work with this talented gentleman who was still doing beautiful work.

  • Very interesting. Too bad about the magenta print stock. I’d almost rather watch it in desaturated Black & White/greyscale print until a good color print shows up.

  • A completely DELIGHTFUL piece of education entertainment. Thank you for posting this!

    I especially enjoy the way each segment is milked for total “entertainment value” and comedy (the James Watt segment for instance). Aspiring edu-tainment filmmakers (I am a hopeful) can learn YEARS of shortcuts by studying this film.
    Beautiful achievement!


  • I just looked through the links of original cel artwork from the film and I am SO BUMMED OUT that the colors haven’t come through. I’m wondering that since we have some color keys (in the case of the cels and color magazine shots) could a computer algorithm come close to remastering the colors for these sequences?

    Just “blue-skying” here. I know nobody (Corporate) would pick up the tab to do this — but generally if a film is this far gone colorwise, does anybody know if it can be restored to something even *close* to its original vibrancy?

  • DonaldC

    If the color is a problem, I suppose you could try pulling out the red in color correction in any video editing software.

  • Mike Kazaleh

    I have an interesting artifact relating to this film. It’s a 12″ record (one sided) of the musical score. How many sales films have soundtrack LPs?


  • Thanks for sharing this! The character design and backgrounds are absolutely awesome. I really love the way that move and I think that narrative resources they use to solve the scenes are very imaginative. High talented work!

  • bob kurtz

    and here i am lucky again. when i was writing at format films,the great dave hilberman was brought in to teach me layout on my own film. dave became my teacher and close friend. again,i was so lucky!