Animation &Animation Artifacts &Disney 12 Oct 2007 08:13 am

Kahl’s Jungle Book

– Since there was such popularity with the post I had put up earlier this week about The Jungle Book, and since the new DVD is being celebrated everywhere, I thought I’d post some more bits I have from that film.

These are some of the drawings by Milt Kahl from a sequence featuring King Louie doing a dance. It’s interesting that I think immediately of Shere Kahn as Milt Kahl’s work, and I don’t think of Louie. Yet I’ve had these copies for the past 25 years.

Somewhere – I have to find it – I remember Walt Disney being quoted as having said the one thing you should never animate is a monkey. They’re funny enough in real life; animation can’t improve on them. I remember thinking of that quote the day I first saw this film. I also wondered how Louis Prima felt knowing that they were representing him as an orangutan. I suppose that’s not a monkey.

The copies of these drawings I have are xeroxes. I’m posting them for the magnificent drawing alone; I don’t have timing sheets to be able to work out the movement. Honestly, with Milt Kahl’s work, looking at the images alone should be enough. I apologize if these are at all fuzzy or grey; that’s the quality of the images I have. They’re also not full sheets of animation paper. I copied only the peg holes and drawings.

01 21
(Click any image you’d like to enlarge.)

31 37

44 52

55 60

66 75
Talk about breaking of joints,
_______________this scene couldn’t be a greater lesson in animation for you.

31 89

00 21
I know I don’t have to say, but I will; these drawings are extraordinary.
#100, here on the left, is a masterpiece in weight, balance, forshortening and sheer brilliance. And it’s only one frame from a scene.

49 61

65 67


By the way, Michael Barrier is back (Oct.11th), and he opens with some comments about The Jungle Book as well as a reprint of his 1978 Funnyworld review.

10 Responses to “Kahl’s Jungle Book”

  1. on 12 Oct 2007 at 1:59 pm 1.Thad Komorowski said …

    These drawings are fantastic! I took a look at in motion… Perfect timing! Kahl and Thomas did a great job with handling the character.

    Thanks again!

  2. on 13 Oct 2007 at 12:35 pm 2.Wil Raymakers said …

    Absolutely stunning indeed, a treat to see these roughs,especialy as they appear in the film (as in the model sheet) in the “touched up” version.These are so more lively!
    If you do have more Kahl roughs, please post some more, as no book gives you the information such drawings in sequence do, done m by a master animator as Milt Kahl.

  3. on 13 Oct 2007 at 1:13 pm 3.David Nethery said …

    Not Kahl, but here’s a short John Lounsbery scene of King Louis :

    I’d love to get a pencil test of the Lounsbery scene where Baloo (in drag)
    and King Louis are dancing together . I’ve seen those roughs and they are beautiful , but unfortunately I never got a copy of them.

  4. on 17 Oct 2007 at 2:50 am 4.Jez Hall said …

    Great post!
    Thank you.

  5. on 17 Oct 2007 at 3:31 pm 5.Stoyan Petrov said …

    That’s my favorite part of the movie!!! Thank you so very much for posting these! Each drawing is like a work of art…

  6. on 17 Oct 2007 at 11:11 pm 6.Will Finn said …

    Thanks a million for posting these. I have a copy of the top ruff and a flip copy of the scene but only the cleanups.

    According to legend Milt animated the King with a noticably receding hairline (as shown here), but at some late date Walt (or possibly Woolie, post-Walt) insisted on giving him a shock of shaggy hair on top. The story goes that Milt hated the idea and it was added by his assistants, probably lead by Dave Michner. I have to say i like the original design better.

    BTW Milt seemed to be unaware that he was actually drawing a female orangutan. Dominant males have huge cartiledge plates framing their faces. I know someone who tried to point this out to him in later years and allegedly he refused to believe it.

    There was also a verse cut from the song, and I once saw an Ollie scene in ruff from that segment but who knows where it is now…?

    Final note: there’s a paint mistake around pose 49, where someone filled in the negative space between his belly and his left foot. That has been corrected in the new DVD along with a number of other minor paint errors. I’m not keen on overly-tampering with original films, but this is a genuine plus as far as I’m concerned.

  7. on 18 Oct 2007 at 8:01 am 7.Michael said …

    I, on the other hand, love those human errors that showed up in the films. There’s a cel with dribbled paint under the belly of Tramp, there’s the famous raccoon mothering a cub that pops to another part of the screen in Bambi. These and other errors are now gone from the digitally perfect universe we live in. The heart is slowly being wrenched from the actual films that had to fight deadlines to get to the finish.
    Because the baby is born with a birth mark, one doesn’t love it less.

  8. on 18 Oct 2007 at 4:29 pm 8.Will Finn said …

    Michael, im sorry we don’t seem to agree on much… That’s fine, but in my opinion this is the difference between a birth mark and a birth defect, and if a baby were born with a curable condition i would attend to it, even if it took years to alleviate. Especially if it was ultimately as painlessly addressable as this.

    To be sure: that’s not the same thing as tampering with creative/artistic elements, which i believe we all kind of have to make our peace with once something is “finished”.

    Speaking of fixable mistakes: the paint error i refer to (on film and earlier videos) is near frame 149, not 49 as i previously mis-typed. As far as i know all the paint flashes are addressed, although several shooting errors still stand.

    Thanks again for the outstanding scans.

  9. on 19 Oct 2007 at 2:33 pm 9.Floyd Norman said …

    I was working in D-Wing back in the sixties when Milt was doing these drawings, along with many others I might add. What struck me was the ease in which these drawings were made. While others struggled, Milt was at the top of his game, and doing great animation seemed to be a breeze. It was for him, anyway.

    I enjoyed doing my Kimball scenes, and had little interest in “The Jungle Book.” Little did I know I would soon be recruited for Disney’s story team after the sudden departure of Bill Peet. Life is full of surprises.

  10. on 26 Jan 2008 at 1:03 am 10.Dennis James said …

    Very great post. I will look at these every night before I go to bed.

    I would like to know more about Khal’s drawing practices. Like what pencils he uses or how he “build up” his drawings.(not that I wanna copy him but you know..)

    Also I see these action curves lines running thru, is this common to animation_keyers?

Trackback This Post | Subscribe to the comments through RSS Feed

Leave a Reply

eXTReMe Tracker
click for free hit counter

hit counter