Report: Cinderella's 50th Anniversary Royal Celebration
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Below are some scenes and stories from the video montage. The narration for the video was done by Marc Davis himself, taken from interviews he had recorded over the years.
A young Marc Davis
Marc Davis began drawing to entertain himself. While in art school he thought he'd be another Michelango painting the ceiling of chapel. Unfortunately no one was looking for a chapel painter so he wrote Walt Disney. He received a letter addressed to Ms. Davis explaining that the Disney Studios was not currently looking for new hires. He attributes the mistaken gender to the unusual of his first name, Marc with "c" not the normal M-A-R-K spelling. Eventually the Disney Studio did call on him and he was hired to work on Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs. He did drawings on Snow White.
Marc Davis spent many years studying the movement of animals and sketching their muscular structure and motion, similar to the drawings done by daVinci of the human body. Walt used this expertise in Bambi. In Bambi the animators sought to make the animals move realistically and yet maintain characatures. Marc worked on Bambi for three years and was instrumental in Flower's love sequence. At the Bambi premiere Marc's sequence of Flower receiving a kiss, stiffening, and then falling over backwards was well received by the audience. While they were all laughing Marc says he cried. A co-worker seated next to him told him to enjoy this experience as it would never happen again and Marc said it never did.
Following Bambi Marc worked on Victory through Air Power. Walt strongly supported this strategy for the War and used animation to prove the point. Next Marc worked on Song of the South and then Cinderella. In Cinderella Marc worked on what he would later find out was Walt's favorite sequence. He animated the film from the point where Cinderella appears at the top of the stairs wearing the dress created by the mice until Cinderella's dress is altered for the ball by her fairy godmother.
Marc described his next role, Alice from Alice in Wonderland, as difficult because he had to develop a normal girl who was in a madhouse. He attributed the success of the character to the supporting characters such as the Mad Hatter and March Hare. Those characters crazy antics helped identify her in comparison. Next was Tinker Bell who had been represented on Broadway as a simple spot of light. Marc came up with the idea of a pantomime character and the illuminating glow that surrounded her.
Marc Davis works on Sleeping Beauty
Continuing through the years Marc discussed working on Sleeping Beauty and the inspriation for the Malificent wardrobe he worked on. But the character he described as the most fun was Cruella DeVil. He described her as not very nice but entertaining, always talking but never listening. He said he worked every scene of her so "if there are bums scenes, I did those too" he added with a chuckle.
Next Marc moved over to WED (now known as Walt Disney Imagineering). His sketches were the inspiration for scenes found in the Pirates of the Caribbean, it's a small world and the Jungle Cruise. Video clips displayed these sketches and many appearances Marc and his wife Alice made at Disneyland for various celebrations. At a recent Pirates of the Caribbean celebration Marc spoke of the Imagineers who were already gone saying, "Gee, they left something very wonderful."