Based on the fairy tale by The Brothers Grimm. Hansel and Gretel are trapped in the deceptively decorated house of the witch Griselda who wishes to fatten Hansel so that he may be baked ... See full summary »
If you go down to the woods tonight be sure of the biggest surprise of your life! When Hansel and Gretel's wicked stepmother leads them into the dark forest, the children find themselves in... See full summary »
With brilliant imagination and technical wizardry, this 1954 feature film used stop-action animation, and hand-sculpted dolls and sets to create a fantasy land of unearthly beauty. Set to Engelbert Humperdinck's classic 1892 opera, sung by some of the most acclaimed performers of the 1950's, this recording was nominated for a Grammy Award. This may be the definative production of one of the greatest fairy tales ever told, and it is now on DVD. Written by
The production studio was a former church on E. 2nd St. in Manhattan (near Houston St.). It was a two-story structure, ground floor had a fully equipped kitchen and rooms for offices, the second floor had a high ceiling and a balcony running around it. This per interview with Kermit Love, stop-motion animator, published in "Closeup" magazine #2, 1976. See more »
This was the first full-length stop-motion feature made in the United States. In spite of other comments posted here Mybergh's "Hansel and Gretel" was filmed entirely in New York City.
The film was done sequentially and as funding for the production dried up and the release date drew nearer the animators were forced to speed things up. The animation becomes quite hurried and sloppy near the end and if you look closely you will notice that both the angels from the Dream Pantomime and the Revived Gingerbread Children are only multiple castings of both Hansel and Gretel redressed. There simply was no time to do original sculptures for these characters.
This was to be the first in a series of full-length stop motion features by Mybergh's production team, but despite it doing exceptional business in Germany it failed to ignite at the box office in the United States. According to members of the Mybergh Estate most of the original elements are still intact and we can only hope that someone will take it upon themselves to do a proper restoration of this amazing film to replace the shoddy, amateur DVD edition that is currently available. Anna Russell's vocal performance as Rosina Rubylips is one that is unlikely to ever be equaled and Evalds Dajevskis' set designs definitive.
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