Sunday, June 19, 2005

Live action Spence film

Marc Crisafulli spotted this on the Ralph Bakshi Forum, posted by Bakshi himself:

Irv Spence had a live action 16 mm film that he'd directed, an amazing gangster epic, about 35 minutes long, starring him, Tex Avery and a lot of the other Warner/MGM animators of the time playing crooks. The film was great, Irv's family may have is worth trying to get a hold of.

This is news to me, which doesn't mean it isn't common knowledge everywhere else. Does anyone know anything more about this film? Has anyone seen it? I'd be grateful for any information you can pass along.

(And speaking of gratitude, I'm way overdue in thanking Marc for providing the picture of Spence used in the column at the right.)

UPDATE, from Mark Kausler:

You are no doubt referring to Irv's 1944 live action (b/w, silent) film, RATS IN SPATS. Irv showed this film to us when I was in his animation class back in '68. It is very nicely shot, although the outdoor shots used reflectors that shake a bit. I don't remember Tex being in it, but Tony Ligerra and Harvey Eisenberg play roles. Irv made a color silent movie in Big Bear a few years later called RUGGED RANGERS, which again has Harvey Eisenberg and Mike Lah in central roles as forest rangers. It was made in beautiful Kodachrome. There are video copies of these films, one has running commentary by Irv and others, as the projector runs in the background. You can tell from these diary pages that Irv was a real "home movie" buff, even though he didn't have sync sound!


Blogger Chris Sobieniak said...

That's quite facinating to hear. I wish I had a video copy of said films myself. I've been following this blog for some time and have added it to the links of mine!

7:55 PM  
Blogger jon said...

We are trying to find good doom movie to take the kids this weekend. Good doom movie reviews are hard to find

I just stumbled onto your blog while looking. Seems to happen to me a lot since I am a knowledge mooch LOL


9:19 PM  

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