Same process? Perhaps. But maybe not. Unlike the other Laugh-O-Grams, this one combined live action and animation. Walt took the money he got for making a dental-health film and blew it on a demo reel for a new idea. Instead of animated characters interacting wiht the real world, how about a real kid who enters the world of animation?

Meet Virginia Davis. A little girl who would star in all the Alice films. Guileless and happy. She lived long enough to see Toy Story 2. Hell, she lived long enough to see "Up."

She knocks at the door of the Laugh-o-Gram studio.

 

 

As it happens, a fellow is sitting at his desk animating a dog house:

 

 

She wants to see funnies being created, so he shows her how it's done.

 

 

It's Cat!

 

 

The action shifts to another drawing table - and yes, we see all the great animators of the day in their cheap studio, working and laughing and acting as best as the situation requires.

Musical notes, of course.

 

 

While the boys work on the cartoons that will not stave off bankruptcy, unaware that the entire studio is doomed, Proto-Mickey interacts with an actual cat.

 

 

Here's the thing. Walt Disney didn't do much of the animation here; he was the impresario, the creator and producer, the idea man - a role he would fill with unerring aptitude for decades to come. What we see here is something marvellous:

This is Walt.

 

 

Virginia goes home and dreams she's gone to cartoon hand, complete with INFORMATIVE HANDS

 

 

 

 

Live-action and animation are blended nicely, for the era:

 

 

 

 

 

But it all turns into a tiresome chase sequence with lions, with the usual OW and WOW and ZOW and OUCH pouring out of a cave or hole to indicate conflict. It's not particularly amusing, but it showed what they could do, what they wanted to do.

And how did that work out for them? Click NEXT to find out.

 

Here it is. (Embedding disabled on this one.)