HALAS AND BATCHELOR CARTOONS: AN ANIMATED HISTORY is a new coffeetable book coming out in August that is “part-history, part-tribute, part-critical analysis of the Halas and Batchelor Cartoon Studio,” a studio that existed in Britain for over fifty years (1940-1995). The studio was most famously responsible for ANIMAL FARM, the first British full-length animated feature, but they produced hundreds of other quality films, commercials and TV series as well. The book is co-written by animation scholar Paul Wells and Vivien Halas, daughter of studio founders John Halas and Joy Batchelor. According to the book’s press release, additional insights are offered by John Canemaker, Giannalberto Bendazzi and Richard Hollis. The book seems to only be available for pre-order at Amazon UK at the moment, but hopefully it’ll receive some US distribution as well. After this, I hope somebody will write a book about Britain’s other great animation outfit – W.M. Larkins Studio. Now there’s a studio that has received virtually no recognition in history books, even though they produced unbelievably cool films and commercials from the 1940s-1960s, and had a roster of superb artists working there including Peter Sachs, Philip Stapp, Bob Godfrey and Richard Taylor.
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