Last Sunday afternoon, the motion picture industry celebrated its annual superficial glitterfest at the Doby Theater in Hollywood. However, out in the San Fernando Valley another event was taking place. I dare to say, this event may have been more important than the coveted, bloated Oscar Ceremony that takes place annually.
I won’t be providing any details at this time except to say that a group of animation professionals came together to have lunch and talk about their lengthy careers. And, you gotta believe me - their careers have been lengthy. The group included a who’s who of Hanna-Barbera’s Saturday Morning filmmakers. The guys who created and produced a ton of stuff that entertained children, sold toys, sugared cereal and did so for several decades. Yes, boys and girls, the guys who gave you everything from Huckleberry Hound, The Flintstones and Scooby Doo. These “old men” who were once “young men” did all this through several decades at a crazy, prolific animation studio called, Hanna-Barbera.
Included in this crazy, talented group of animation professionals were, Willie Ito, Don Jurwich, Iraj Paran, Jerry Eisenberg, Wally Burr and Tony Benedict. They were the writers, producers, designers and directors who made Saturday Morning Television what it was. Love it or hate it - these guys wrote, produced, designed and directed the stuff you probably grew up on. They talk about what they did and how they did it. The reflections include more than your fair share of incredible, crazy, and wacky stories told by the people who lived it and experienced it firsthand. It was an amazing afternoon, and it will be a gathering that you’ll all be able to eventually attend. However, at this point - I’ll say no more.
Except to say… I was part of that group as well. I’ll reveal more in the upcoming weeks, okay?