Tag Archives: Norton Juster

Chuck Jones Image of the Day: The Dot and the Line

There really aren't enough superlatives to adequately describe the beauty of this short film.  From its perfect screenplay to its totes awesome animation and all of the ingredients in-between (layouts, voice over, sound effects, color, pacing) Chuck Jones's 1966 Oscar-winning "The Dot and the Line" will always be a perfect work of art.  

Robert Storr, Dean of the Yale School of Art has said, “Great art is essentially work that has proven inexhaustible in terms of value it gives to those who pay attention to it.  It says ‘I am in the present tense despite the fact that I was made five or fifty years ago.’”

We had stumbled upon this advertisement that MGM had placed in Variety when "The Dot and the Line" was nominated for an Oscar on our way to something else, but it stopped us long enough to share it with you and to share the animated film as well.  Enjoy!

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“The Phantom Tollbooth” at the Seattle International Film Festival

The Seattle International Film Festival (SIFF) announced the line-up for their "Animation Fascination" series of animated short cartoons and feature films to be shown April 22-24.  Included in the line-up will be Chuck Jones' only feature-length animated film, "The Phantom Tollbooth."  Adapted from the Norton Juster book of the same title, "The Phantom Tollbooth" utilizes both live action and animation to tell the story of Milo, a young boy whose boredom catapults him into the adventure of his life.  

If you're in the Seattle area, order your tickets today!


Original production cel on key matching background of Milo, Tock and the Spelling Bee from the 1970 animated feature "The Phantom Tollbooth" directed by Chuck Jones.  

Image of the Day: The Dot and The Line


If you had found your perfect soul mate, so perfect
in fact (36-36-36) but she refused to acknowledge your existence, what would
you do?  Would you end your rigid,
stick-in-the-mud ways and learn to bend a little?  Do you think you could learn to be a little
less ‘straight’ and a little more ‘fun’? 
Well, that’s what you would need to do to win the heart and soul of the
Dot in this 1966 Academy Award-winning short film, “The Dot and the Line”
directed by Chuck Jones and adapted from the book by Norton Juster (who also
wrote “The Phantom Tollbooth” adapted by Jones in 1970, his only feature-length

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 Working with his Warner Bros. crew at MGM, Jones
and his layout designer, Maurice Noble devised and implemented innovative ways
to animate the charming narrative of the Norton Juster book.  Using overlays, graphic design elements,
cut-outs & collage they developed a unique take on this “romance in lower


Image of the Day: The Phantom Tollbooth

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Original mixed media on board by Phyllis Graham.  Chuck Jones, in preparation for filming his only feature film, 1970's "The Phantom Tollbooth," had several artists prepare original interpretations of scenes from the Norton Juster book of the same title.  Phyllis Graham, wife of famed Chouinard Institute life-drawing instructor, Don Graham, contributed several dozen images, all mixed media on 5" x 9" artist board.  Each one is a miniature work of art, one that can stand independently from the film and the book as its own entity, but seen together form a compelling story-line. 

Image of the Day: The Phantom Tollbooth

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Original pre-production art (mixed media on board,) 5.25" x 9.5", artist unknown, for the Chuck Jones 1970 feature film "The Phantom Tollbooth."  Several different artists provided interpretive visual ideas for Jones' adaptation of the much loved Norton Juster book, "The Phantom Tollbooth."  This one shows the hero of the book, Milo, as he enters the land of the Lethargians. 

If you'd like to view editions created from art for "The Phantom Tollbooth," please click here.

Image of the Day: The Phantom Tollbooth

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"It's an Alphabeautiful Mathemagical New Musical Movie!" That is the tag line used in advertising "The Phantom Tollbooth" a 1970 feature length film directed and produced by Chuck Jones.  (It was his only feature length film.)  A combination of live action (Chuck makes a cameo appearance in the beginning live action sequence) and animation, "The Phantom Tollbooth" is about a young boy, Milo, who is bored with his life when suddenly a magic tollbooth appears in his room & propels him into a marvelous quest to save the Princesses Rhyme and Reason.  This is the second adaptation of a book by Norton Juster that Chuck Jones made into a film, the first being his Academy Award-winning "The Dot and The Line" of 1966.

The artwork (mixed media on board, approx. 4" x 8") pictured is a pre-production concept work by Phyllis Graham, the wife of the revered teacher and artist, Don Graham, from whom Chuck Jones took many a life-drawing class in the 1940s and 1950s.  It has been selected by the curator of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences gallery to be a part of an upcoming exhibition of the art of Chuck Jones opening May 14, 2010 in their Beverly Hills facility.