Sunday, January 17, 2010

January 17: In Honor of Mr. Franklin

On this day in 1706 Benjamin Franklin was born in Boston, Massachusetts. An important figure in early American history, Franklin was a statesman, inventor, scientist, printer, publisher and the first U.S. Postmaster General. In honor of Mr Franklin, let's take a look at the animated Disney short Ben and Me.
First released through RKO in November 1953 (along with The Living Desert) Ben and Me was adapted from a 1939 children's book written & illustrated by
Robert Lawson. The story reveals the contributions of a mouse named Amos to Franklin's career. Narrated by Amos (voiced by Sterling Holloway), he recalls how he first met and befriended Franklin (voiced by Charles Ruggles) and eventually helped in his publishing, inventions, and political career.
Directed by Hamilton Luske (a long time Disney writer, director & producer) Ben and Me was adapted from Lawson's original tale by Bill Peet along with Winston Hibler, Del Connell, and Ted Sears. Animation was handled by a large group of Disney's finest including Wolfgang Reitherman, John Lounsberry, Ollie Johnson, and Les Clark.
Amos: My name's Amos, one of the church mice from over on Second Street, and the first thing I'd do is figure a way to heat this place. All your heat's going up the chimney.
Ben Franklin: And what would you propose?
Amos: Put the fire in the middle of the room.
Ben Franklin: Oh, nonsense! You want to burn the place down?
Amos: Make something out of iron to put it in.
Ben Franklin: Say, that might be an idea.
U.S history with a Disney twist, Ben and Me was nominated for an Academy Award.

Click HERE for more January 17 Disney history.

No comments: