There are two houses of thought when it comes to the current state of 2D animation. There are those who feel that 2D animation continues to thrive on TV, the Internet, and in areas outside the US. Then there are those that argue that a industry-wide renaissance in 2D animation is still a possibility. Either way you lean on the subject, there’s no denying that traditional animation is where it all began. This industry wouldn’t be where it is now without the incredible work that was born from the tips of many an animator’s pen.
With all that being said, I bring you this neat little tribute (courtesy of The Animation Guild blog) that celebrates the legacy of traditional animation:
The video begins with this quote from Eric Larson, one of Disney’s legendary ‘Nine Old Men’: “There are only two things that limit animation. One is the ability to imagine, and the other is to draw what you imagine.”
From there we are treated to an eclectic montage featuring footage of 2D animators shown working and commenting on their craft and moments from a wide-ranging number of 2D-animated works.
And when I mean “wide-ranging”, I mean just about every 2D animated feature ever produced is showcased in this video. From the various Disney films to Studio Ghibli classics to Glen Keane’s most recent Duet and everything in between. The creator even makes the odd choice of including a few anime shows and one non-Studio Ghibli production (Five Centimeters per Second), but it still serves to get the video’s central point across.
From beginning to end, this was obviously made by somebody who is staunch supporter of 2D animation and the continued existence of its craft. This is readily apparent when the last clip the creator uses to close out the video is from Hullabaloo, an Indiegogo-supported animated project that was reported on last September to a universally enthusiastic response.
But alas, even as we look back with a sense of nostalgic joy, supporters of 2D animation will have quite the uphill climb if they want to challenge the now industry-wide norm of CG animation.
As cynical as this sounds, this may only happen if (as Steve Hulett points out in his post) two or more hand-drawn features gross $600+ Million at the box office. Furthermore, said features would have to have stories that grab audiences in order for that to happen.
In conclusion, I honestly don’t think that hand-drawn animation will fade away. But for there to be a big-screen comeback, a film would have to do very big numbers and draw in just as many people.
What do you think? Do you like the video? Would you like to see hand-drawn animation make a comeback to the silver-screen?
Edited by: Morgan Stradling