1st Edition

Directing for Animation
Everything You Didn't Learn in Art School

ISBN 9780240818023
Published September 9, 2013 by Routledge
256 Pages

USD $39.95

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Book Description

There’s no class in art school that can teach you this.

Believe it or not, there’s a lot more to directing a great animated film than beautiful illustrations and cool characters. You need to bring out your inner creative visionary and take your savvy leadership skills to the front lines – being great with a pencil, brush, or stylus is not enough. Tony Bancroft released his inner creative visionary when creating Mulan. In Directing for Animation he shows you exactly how.

Pull the right strings to bring your characters to life and center your story by developing the visual cues that lend to your audience’s understanding of the plot, place, and purpose. Tony walks you through the process, bringing you behind the scenes of real, well-known projects – with a little help from some famous friends. Learn from the directors of Aladdin, The Little Mermaid, Ice Age, Chicken Run, and Kung Fu Panda, and see how they developed stories and created characters that have endured for generations. Get the inside scoop behind these major features… pitfalls and all.

Table of Contents


-Chapter 1, "C.C.V-Chief Creative Visionary"

Interview with John Musker 

-Chapter 2, "The Creative Process"

Interview with Nick Park

-Chapter 3, "Story, Story, Story"

Interview with Dean DeBlois

-Chapter 4, "Teamwork"

Interview with Jennifer Yuh Nelson

-Chapter 5, "Express Yourself!"

Interview with Pete Docter

-Chapter 6, "Be Prepared"

Interview with Eric Goldberg

-Chapter 7, "Budgets and Schedules"

Interview with Chris Wedge

-Chapter 8, "You’re Only as Good as Your last Gig"

Interview with Tim Miller


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Tony Bancroft, director of Disney's Mulan, is an award-winning animator whose work is well-known to animation audiences. He served as supervising animator on new Disney classics The Lion King and The Emperor's New Groove, for which he created the recognizable characters Pumbaa and Kronk. He has gained experience in every artistic position from assistant animator to director, serving as the animation supervisor over all CG characters in Stuart Little 2 (Sony), and gaining directorial credits on numerous animated commercials for Disney, Hasbro, and others. Bancroft’s years of experience have culminated in the founding of his own animation studio, Toonacious Family Entertainment, where he directs and produces commercials and direct-to-DVD projects. A multiple animation award-winner, Bancroft’s proudest moment came when he was given the Annie award for Best Director for his work on Disney’s Mulan.