Animation Studios from the Past: Part 4

It's time for another installment of Animation Studios from the Past! See our previous posts herehere, & here!

Ub Iwerks Studio

In 1930 Ub Iwerks founded the short lived Ub Iwerks Studio. Iwerks, born in 1901, was one of Walt Disney's closest friends and partners throughout the 20's. Iwerks sketched and drew for Walk Disney Animation Studios, but after falling out with Walt in 1928 over being overworked, he left the company. He opened up his own animation studio after he was offered financial support from Pat Powers, one of Disney's competitors. In addition to lending money, Powers was able to arrange a contract to distribute Iwerks' animations with MGM. The studio founded characters such as "Flip the Frog" and later on, "Willie Whopper", unfortunately, neither of these led to any major success. After 4 years, MGM ended their contract due to under preformance. Iwerks and Powers then turned to Comicolor Cartoons to distribute their animations, but after releasing 25 cartoons with only mild success, Powers discontinued his support and Ub Iwerks Studio had no other option but to close. Ub Iwerks closed in 1936. Many believe that if Iwerks would have had better leadership and story development within his cartoons, his studio could have survived longer. 


Studio Ghibli

Studio Ghibli was founded in 1985 in Tokyo, Japan by Hayao Miyazaki, Isao Takahata and Toshio Suzuki. The studio, primarily known for their Anime animations was created after the success of 1984's Nausicaa of the Valley of the Wind, a film directed by Miyazaki. Suzuki, who worked on the production team for film decided to create the studio with Miyazaki, they later invited Takahata, an animator and director, to join them. The studio experienced much success, with 8 of their films being one of the "15 of the highest grossing anime films". The studio had also won numerous awards, including the Animage Anime Grand Prix Award, Japan Academy Prize for Animation of the Year, Golden Bear Award, along with several Academy Award and Nominations in the US. In March 2014, Suzuki retired as a producer and became the General Manager of Studio Ghibli, but not for long. In August 2014, Miyazaki announced he would be retiring, which led the company to halt all production almost immediately. Toshio Suzuki announced that Studio Ghibli would take a "brief pause" to re-evaulate the company after Hayao Miyazaki's departure. The company has yet to resume production.

The Winkler Studio

In 1928, Walt Disney Animation Studio film producer Charles Mintz, asked animators Ub Iwerks and Walt Disney to produce a new character, the result was Oswald the Lucky Rabbit. When Oswald began to gain major success, Mintz hired away the majority of Disney's animators and assumed Oswald's production to Winkler Studios, a studio owned by his wife's family. Soon after Winkler Studios became the Mintz Studios. After losing the contract to Oswald, Mintz Studios began creating a new series, the Krazy Kat. Throughout the studios lifespan, Mintz was nominated for two academy awards for Best Shorts, but never won. In 1939, when Mintz died, Screen Gems took over Mintz Studios.