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    Ben and Me Original Bill Peet Storyboard Drawings (Walt Disney, 1953). 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 storyboard art is from the supremely influential Disney story artist, Bill Peet. Personally recognized by Disney for his talent, Peet was integral to the development of many of studio's most beloved efforts, spanning Snow White to The Jungle Book. After leaving the studio, Peet went on to have a long and successful career writing and illustrating children's books. Production artwork from this film is quite rare, though the film itself is widely-seen, and fondly-remembered by generations of American schoolchildren. The shots directly inspired by these storyboard drawings can be seen near the 12m50s point in the film, during which Ben and Amos are typesetting for The Pennsylvania Gazette, in a lively and spirited sequence. Four drawings each measuring roughly 5" x 3.5" have been taped to a sheet of 16 field 3-peghole animation paper. They are rendered in charcoal and graphite; Peet's signature style is immediately recognizable. As this would have been pinned to a corkboard panel for story meetings and presentations, there are small pinholes in all four corners. Due to the age of the piece, there is some toning of the paper and some slight handling and creasing throughout. The tape used to affix the smaller drawings to the animation paper has yellowed considerably. In Fair to Good condition.

    Auction Info

    Auction Dates
    September, 2019
    1st Sunday
    Internet/Mail Bids: 11
    Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
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