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    Ben and Me Amos Mouse Animation Drawing (Walt Disney, 1953). "Joke? You call this a joke?" Ben and Me was actually the second Disney adaptation of a Robert Lawson children's book, the first being 1938's Ferdinand the Bull. This film was a light-hearted reimagining of American Revolutionary-era history, in which Amos (a literal "poor church mouse"), strikes up a friendship with inventor and statesman, Benjamin Franklin, in colonial Philadelphia. The diminutive mouse ends up becoming responsible for some of the inventor's most famous - and lasting - ideas, including the Franklin stove, the events-based newspaper, and the bifocal lens, among others. Ultimately, he even composes the opening lines to the Declaration of Independence! The film was headed by long-time Disney director Ham Luske, responsible for overseeing many of the most memorable sequences in Disney films. Numerous members of Walt's "Nine Old Men" also contributed animation to the film. The reluctance of Disney's distributor, RKO Radio Pictures, to release Disney's first live-action feature documentary, The Living Desert, lead to the formation of the iconic Buena Vista Pictures; this "two-reeler" short was packaged together with the much-lauded, Oscar-winning Living Desert, and was itself nominated for an Academy Award. Oft-used Disney voice actor Sterling Halloway provided the voice of Amos, the mouse. This drawing can be seen at the 16:19 point in the film. Becoming overly reliant upon poor Amos - and taking the mouse's loyalty for granted - Franklin unwittingly pushes Amos to the brink of sanity time and time again. Here, Franklin has been conducting experiments with electricity - and has just tweaked Amos' tail, in what he had thought a good-natured joke. Amos is drawn in graphite and colored pencil on 12 field, 3-peghole paper. He measures 5" tall. Production artwork from this film is quite rare, though the film itself is widely-seen, and is fondly-remembered by generations of American schoolchildren. Small crease near bottom left corner. In Very Good condition.

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