×
You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Art Stevens, animator, 92

Disney vet co-directed 'Rescuers,' 'Hound'

Disney animator Art Stevens, who co-produced and co-directed “The Fox and the Hound,” and co-directed “The Rescuers” died of a heart attack May 22 in Studio City, Calif. He was 92.

A native of Montana, Stevens applied for a job at the Disney Studios in 1939 when he learned that Walt Disney was planning an animated feature based on one of his favorite stories, “Alice in Wonderland.” He quickly assembled a group of sketches and submitted them, and was subsequently hired after a six-month wait.

Starting as an in-betweener, he was assigned to work on “Fantasia,” and worked on to the “Toccata and Fugue in D Minor,” “Pastoral Symphony,” “Nutcracker Suite,” and “Night on Bald Mountain” segments. He went on to in-between on “Bambi” and several other features before achieving full character animator status on “Peter Pan.” His animation credits also include “One Hundred and One Dalmatians,” “Winnie the Pooh and the Blustery Day,” “Mary Poppins,” and the underwater sequence from the 1971 Disney feature, “Bedknobs and Broomsticks.”

In the 1950s, Stevens provided story concepts and animation for TV space docus (directed and produced by Ward Kimball) for the “Disneyland” TV show: “Man in Space,” “Man and the Moon” and “Mars and Beyond” (1957). He also worked with Kimball on two Oscar-winning shorts “Toot, Whistle, Plunk and Boom,” and “It’s Tough to Be a Bird.”

After animating on “Robin Hood,” Stevens joined Wolfgang “Woolie” Reitherman and John Lounsbery as a co-director on the 1977 animated feature, “The Rescuers.” “The Fox and the Hound,” which he produced (with Woolie Reitherman), and co-directed (with Ted Berman and Dave Michener), became Disney’s highest grossing film at the time of its release in 1981.

Stevens also worked on title sequences for “Freaky Friday,” “No Deposit, No Return,” “The Strongest Man in the World” and “The North Avenue Irregulars.”

Stevens is survived by his wife of 68 years, Penny, two sons and four grandchildren.

Donations may be made to Parkinson’s Disease Foundation, 1359 Broadway, Suite 1509, New York, NY 10018, or Macular Degeneration Foundation, P.O. Box 531313, Henderson, NV 89053.

More Film

  • How the 'Rich Eisen Show' Mixes

    How the 'Rich Eisen Show' Mixes Sports and Showbiz in an Entertaining Mix

    Walking through the El Segundo studio where veteran sportscaster Rich Eisen tapes his daily “Rich Eisen Show,” the sheer density of sports memorabilia is overwhelming — everything from game balls to jerseys, gear, autographs and uncountable photos are crammed onto every inch of wall and desk space. But step into Eisen’s dressing room, and the [...]

  • Yorgos Lanthimos

    Film News Roundup: 'The Favourite' Director Yorgos Lanthimos Boards Crime Drama

    In today’s film news roundup, Yorgos Lanthimos has set up a crime drama, “Here Lies Daniel Tate” is being adapted, and Donna Langley becomes a member of the USC film school board. DIRECTOR HIRED “The Favourite” producer-director Yorgos Lanthimos has signed on to write and direct crime drama “Pop. 1280,” an adaptation of Jim Thompson’s [...]

  • Brody Stevens Dead

    Comedian Brody Stevens Dies at 48

    Prominent Los Angeles comedian Brody Stevens died Friday in Los Angeles, Variety has confirmed. He was 48. “Brody was an inspiring voice who was a friend to many in the comedy community,” Stevens’ reps said in a statement. “He pushed creative boundaries and his passion for his work and his love of baseball were contagious. [...]

  • Contract Placeholder Business

    Hollywood Agents Blast Writers Guild Over New Proposals

    The war between the Writers Guild of America and Hollywood agents has escalated as the two sides battle over the rules on how writers are represented. The latest volley emerged Friday from Karen Stuart, executive director of the Association of Talent Agents, who accused WGA leaders of misleading its members and asserted that the guild [...]

  • Xavier Legrand Custody

    Cesar Awards: Xavier Legrand’s ‘Custody’ Wins Best Film

    Xavier Legrand’s feature debut “Custody,” a tense portrait of a family torn by domestic violence, won best film, actress (for Lea Drucker), and original screenplay at the 44th Cesar Awards, which took place at the Salle Pleyel in Paris. The awards are France’s highest film honors. “Custody,” which marks Legrand’s follow up to his Oscar-nominated [...]

  • Editorial use only. No book cover

    'Crazy Rich Asians,' 'Late Show With Stephen Colbert' Win Publicity Campaign Awards

    Hollywood publicists have selected “Crazy Rich Asians” as the top movie publicity campaign for 2018 and “The Late Show With Stephen Colbert” as the best television campaign. Warner Bros.’ “Crazy Rich Asians” topped the campaigns for Disney’s “Black Panther,” Fox’s “Bohemian Rhapsody,” Paramount’s “A Quiet Place,” Sony’s “Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse,” and Universal’s “Halloween” for [...]

  • Tessa Thompson Nnamdi Asomugha

    Tessa Thompson and Nnamdi Asomugha to Star in 'Sylvie'

    Tessa Thompson and Nnamdi Asomugha are set to star in the feature film “Sylvie.” Eugene Ashe has written the screenplay and will direct with production currently underway. The film is described as a love story set in the cool jazz era of New York City in the late 1950’s/early 1960’s. Sylvie (played by Thompson) meets aspiring [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content