Skip to main content

Bosustow, Stephen

BOSUSTOW, Stephen



Animator, Writer, Designer, Director and Producer. Nationality: Canadian. Born: Victoria, British Columbia, 6 November 1911; family moved to California when Bosustow was a boy. Career: 1922—won first art prize at school; worked with Ub Iwerks; worked for the Walter Lantz Organisation at Universal Studios; 1934–41—writer and sketcher at Walt Disney's studio; laid off after participating in workers' strike; 1944—produced Hell Bent for Election for Roosevelt's election campaign; 1945—founded UPA (United Producers of America) Animation Studio; 1960—sold UPA. Award: Academy Award, Magoo's Puddle Jumper, 1956. Died: Of pneumonia, 4 July 1981.


Films as Producer at UPA:

1945

Flathatting (Hubley)

1946

The Brotherhood of Man (Hubley and Cannon)

1948

Robin Hoodlum (Hubley)

1949

The Magic Fluke (Hubley); Ragtime Bear (Hubley); Punchy Deleon (Hubley); The Miner's Daughter (Cannon); Giddy Yap (Babbitt); Trouble Indemnity (Burness); The Popcorn Story (Babbitt); Bungled Bungalow (Burness)

1950

Spellbound Hound (Hubley)

1951

Gerald McBoing Boing (Cannon); The Family Circus (Babbitt); Bare Faced Flatfoot (Burness); Georgie and the Dragon (Cannon); Fuddy Duddy Buddy (Hubley); Wonder Gloves (Cannon); Grizzly Golfer (Burness)

1952

Rooty Toot Toot (Hubley); The Four Poster (Hubley); The Oompahs (Cannon); Sloppy Jalopy (Burness); Dog Snatcher (Burness); Willie the Kid (Cannon); Pink and Blue Blues (Burness); Pete Hothead (Burness); Hotsy Footsy (Hurtz); Madeline (Cannon); Captains Outrageous (Burness)

1953

Christopher Crumpet (Cannon); A Unicorn in the Garden (Hurtz); The Tell-Tale Heart (Parmelee); Little Boy with a Big Heart (Cannon); The Emperor's New Clothes (Parmelee); Safety Spin (Burness); Gerald McBoing Boing's Symphony (Cannon); Magoo's Masterpiece (Burness); Magoo Slept Here (Burness)

1954

Destination Magoo (Burness); Bringing Up Mother (Hurtz); Ballet-Oop (Cannon); Magoo Goes Skiing (Burness); The Man on the Flying Trapeze (Parmelee); Fudget's Budget (Cannon); Kangaroo Courting (Burness); How Now Boing Boing (Cannon)

1955

When Magoo Flew (Burness); Magoo Makes News (Burness); Spare the Child (Liss); Four Wheels and No Brake (Parmelee); Magoo's Check-Up (Burness); Baby Boogie (Julian); Magoo's Express (Burness); Madcap Magoo (Burness); Christopher Crumpet's Playmate (Cannon); Stage Door Magoo (Burness); Rise of Duton Lang (Evans)

1956

Gerald McBoing Boing on the Planet Moo (Cannon); Magoo's Puddle Jumper (Burness); Magoo's Caine Mutiny (Burness); Magoo Goes West (Burness); Calling Dr. Magoo (Burness); The Jaywalker (Cannon); Magoo Beats the Heat (Burness); Trailblazer Magoo (Burness); Magoo's Problem Child (Burness); Meet Mother Magoo (Burness)

1957

Magoo Goes Overboard (Burness); Matador Magoo (Burness); Magoo Breaks Par (Burness); Magoo's Glorious Fourth (Burness); Magoo's Masquerade (Larriva); Magoo Saves the Bank (Burness); Rock Hound Magoo (Burness); Magoo's Moose Hunt (Cannon); Magoo's Private War (Larriva)

1958

Trees and Jamaica Daddy (Keller); Sailing and Village Band (Keller); Magoo's Young Manhood (Burness); Scoutmaster Magoo (Cannon); The Explosive Mr Magoo (Burness); Magoo's Three Point Landing (Burness); Magoo's Cruise (Larriva); Love Comes to Magoo (McDonald); Spring and Saganaki (Keller); Gumshoe Magoo (Turner)

1959

1001 Arabian Nights (Kinney); Bwana Magoo (McDonald); Picnics Are Fun and Dino's Serenade (Keller); Magoo's Homecoming (Turner); Merry Minstrel Magoo; Magoo's Lodge Brother (Larriva); Terror Faces Magoo (Ishii)



Publications


By BOSUSTOW: book—


Chief By Birthright, 1981.


On BOSUSTOW: articles—

Montgomery, John, in The Summing Up in Comedy Films, 1954.

American Cinematographer (Hollywood), vol. 46, no. 11, November 1965.

Obituary in Variety (New York), 15 July 1981.


* * *

The name of Stephen Bosustow is inseparably linked with the United Productions of America. This important artist was not only its founder but also its spiritual father. At the end of the forties and the beginning of the fifties, this corporation became the greatest rival of Walt Disney as a result of Bosustow's artistic way of looking at animated—especially cartoon—film, but also it served as a creative base for young artists. Now Bosustow could realize his dreams and ideas both in his own films (the first such film—Brotherhood of Man—raised a sharp reaction and brought about notable success) and in serial stories and series with characteristic figures such as Mr. Magoo, the little boy Gerald McBoing Boing, and others.

The importance of this cartoon filmmaker, scriptwriter, art designer and director consists, above all, in the fact that he was the initiator of new trends and currents. He created conditions for artistic development of modern animation in the United States and to a pleiad of talented artists such as the painter Saul Stenberg, the designer Thurber, Robert Cannon, Peter Burness, Ted Parmelee and others. The basis of the work of this group headed by Bosustow was inspired by modern artistic tendencies, abstraction and children's drawing, and the graphic development of modern posters and caricature. Bosustow gave way to personalities: he did not restrain them by his own style and challenged the established "rules" of American cartoon film from the point of view of both content and graphic form. Thus he broke conventions and established new values. He abandoned gags and the settled "O-style" which was characteristic of the cartoon slapstick of that time. He did not portray animals and did not tell fables but dealt with problems of human beings in cartoon films for adults.

In comparison with Disney and his technical perfection of animation and naturalistic detailed drawings, Bosustow returned to a simpler form of drawing and animation. He often used linear drawing. The scene expressed only the essential, and partial animation stressed absurdity or even the grotesque. This shows in his feature films where he aimed at effectiveness of scenes regardless of the principles of perspective in his desire to make the scenes visually more attractive.

Stephen Bosustow's tendencies influenced others such as Hy Hirsch, Ernest Pintoff, Gene Deitch and, to some extent, even Walt Disney himself. They influenced the commercial trick film and the works of Tex Avery, Walter Lantz, Paul J. Smith, and others. Thus Bosustow could be called the founder of the modern American school of animation.

—Vacláv Merhaut

Cite this article
Pick a style below, and copy the text for your bibliography.

  • MLA
  • Chicago
  • APA

"Bosustow, Stephen." International Dictionary of Films and Filmmakers. . Encyclopedia.com. 19 Dec. 2018 <https://www.encyclopedia.com>.

"Bosustow, Stephen." International Dictionary of Films and Filmmakers. . Encyclopedia.com. (December 19, 2018). https://www.encyclopedia.com/movies/dictionaries-thesauruses-pictures-and-press-releases/bosustow-stephen

"Bosustow, Stephen." International Dictionary of Films and Filmmakers. . Retrieved December 19, 2018 from Encyclopedia.com: https://www.encyclopedia.com/movies/dictionaries-thesauruses-pictures-and-press-releases/bosustow-stephen

Learn more about citation styles

Citation styles

Encyclopedia.com gives you the ability to cite reference entries and articles according to common styles from the Modern Language Association (MLA), The Chicago Manual of Style, and the American Psychological Association (APA).

Within the “Cite this article” tool, pick a style to see how all available information looks when formatted according to that style. Then, copy and paste the text into your bibliography or works cited list.

Because each style has its own formatting nuances that evolve over time and not all information is available for every reference entry or article, Encyclopedia.com cannot guarantee each citation it generates. Therefore, it’s best to use Encyclopedia.com citations as a starting point before checking the style against your school or publication’s requirements and the most-recent information available at these sites:

Modern Language Association

http://www.mla.org/style

The Chicago Manual of Style

http://www.chicagomanualofstyle.org/tools_citationguide.html

American Psychological Association

http://apastyle.apa.org/

Notes:
  • Most online reference entries and articles do not have page numbers. Therefore, that information is unavailable for most Encyclopedia.com content. However, the date of retrieval is often important. Refer to each style’s convention regarding the best way to format page numbers and retrieval dates.
  • In addition to the MLA, Chicago, and APA styles, your school, university, publication, or institution may have its own requirements for citations. Therefore, be sure to refer to those guidelines when editing your bibliography or works cited list.