Following on from my post in week one about web-doc ‘Everything is a Remix’, here’s some actual proof.
In the earlier parts of the company’s career, Disney occasionally used rotoscoping as part of its animation repertoire. Rotoscoping is effectively an arduous process whereby animators draw over a projection of filmed actors frame by frame, giving the movement of the drawn characters a real sense of human fluidity – sort of like a very old school version of motion capture. This technique was used explicitly in Snow White‘s animation, but subsequent films often used the rotoscoping process as a reference point. Fair enough, animation without reference would look rigid and robotic.
However, rotoscoping was taken to a further extreme later on in Disney’s history. In order to churn out more films and stick to budgets, Disney animators often rotoscoped previous Disney features frame for frame for use in new ones. Essentially, Disney was remixing itself. What’s perhaps most impressive about this is how long it took to notice it. Without the advent of digital video editing and sharing channels like Youtube, it’d be hard to compile and spread a clip quite as revealing as this.