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The Hand Behind the Mouse: The Ub Iwerks Story (1999)

A documentary on the life of the under-appreciated animator Ub Iwerks, who played a major role in the creation of Mickey Mouse.

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
Himself / Narrator (voice)
Mark Kausler ...
Himself
...
Himself
Russell Merritt ...
Himself
...
Himself
...
Himself
Ollie Johnston ...
Himself
Don Iwerks ...
Himself
Dave Smith ...
Himself
...
Himself
Virginia Davis ...
Herself
Bob Broughton ...
Himself
John Hench ...
Himself
Joseph Adamson ...
Himself (as Joe Adamson)
Ed Friedman ...
Himself
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A documentary on the life of the under-appreciated animator Ub Iwerks, who played a major role in the creation of Mickey Mouse.

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17 December 2008 (Japan)  »

Also Known As:

La main derrière la souris - L'histoire d'Ub Iwerks  »

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$600,000 (estimated)
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References 101 Dalmatians (1961) See more »

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Outstanding documentary of Ub & Walt
28 May 2002 | by (Charlotte NC) – See all my reviews

This production is outstanding throughout. At the start, much needed time is spent on making clear Ub's and Walt's earliest endeavors into the field of commercial art and animation. The video is 90 minutes long, but I could have easily watched double that time. The quality is excellent, though the video cautions that "this film has been modified from its original version. It has been formatted to fit your TV." (This is confusing since my TV is 16:9!) In any case, I could find little missing from a 1.33 cropping. Two of Ub's earliest animation shorts for Walt, Plane Crazy and Steamboat Willie, are windowboxed. I would have liked to see the explanation of why Ub changed his name from Ubbe Iwwerks to Ub Iwerks. Some of the documents presented in the film and at least one reader use the older form, but the story is never acknowledged in the production. We know he changed his name, but I'd like to know more details as to why and when. Included are comments by Roy E Disney and the always effervescent Leonard Maltin. (We sure miss your thoughts around here!) It's good to hear a brief testimonial by Chuck Jones about how UB inspired him. There is little video of Ub, though; the short clip at the Academy Awards presentation is about it. Walt never recorded much about Ub but all I've ever seen is included here. Overall, this is a "must" for the collection of a Disneyphile or animation lover. A companion book is also available.


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