Tag Archives: Rob Minkoff

Chuck 102Gether at the Alex Theatre — A Terrific Event!

If you were at the Alex Theatre this past Sunday, September 21st for Chuck 102Gether then you’ll know that the following is not hyperbole: IT WAS AN AWESOME AFTERNOON!

Outside the Alex Theatre

Outside the Alex Theatre

First, there’s the Alex Theatre itself…an Art Deco pile on Brand Blvd. in Glendale that is absolutely a knock-out–it’s just a good time being there! When you walk through the forecourt into the cool interior you just know you’re going to be treated to a film spectacle and Chuck 102Gether delivered just that.

A corner of the lobby of the Alex Theatre

A corner of the lobby of the Alex Theatre

Chuck 102Gether was a celebration of collaborative creativity…many family members of the original group of directors and artists who worked at Leon Schlesinger Studios, then Warner Bros. on the Looney Tunes and Merrie Melodies were in attendance: Sybil and Hope Freleng, Ruth Clampett, Linda Jones, Robert McKimson, Jr., and the children of Abe Levitow: Judy, Roberta, and Jon. Heck, even Leon Schlesinger’s relatives were there!

 

Juls Aspinall, right, meets Robert McKimson, Jr., the author of "I Say, I Say Son!" a biography of his father, director Robert McKimson, Sr.

Juls Aspinall, right, meets Robert McKimson, Jr., the author of “I Say, I Say Son!” a biography of his father, director Robert McKimson, Sr.

The afternoon got off to a rousing start with a screening of Chuck Jones’s classic, “Duck Amuck”, followed by introductory words from Linda Jones Clough, Chuck Joens’s daughter who introduced the Master of Ceremonies for the afternoon, George Daugherty (a world-class symphony orchestra conductor who regularly guest conducts for the Los Angeles Philharmonic, the San Francisco Symphony, and other major ensembles. Creator and producer — with David Ka Lik Wong) of the “Bugs Bunny at the Symphony” and “Bugs Bunny on Broadway” touring concerts that have played to millions of people worldwide. He is also a five-time Emmy nominee, and Emmy Award-winning producer/writer/director/conductor of Chuck Jones’s “Peter and the Wolf.”

George Daugherty on the stage of the Alex Theatre with a photo of him and Chuck Jones at Warner Bros. in the early 1990s projected onto the screen behind him.

George Daugherty on the stage of the Alex Theatre with a photo of him and Chuck Jones at Warner Bros. in the early 1990s projected onto the screen behind him.

George was a fantastic M.C.! Not only because he worked closely with Chuck Jones for so many years, in fact, he said he considered Chuck a second father…his own father having been born on the same day as Chuck, but also because he’s a font of knowledge about the music, arranged and conducted by the amazing Carl Stalling, and shared many insights into the how and the why of the music used in the cartoons, particularly those of Friz Freleng, Chuck Jones, and Bob Clampett. Great stuff!

In between cartoons by Looney Tunes directors Tex Avery, Chuck Jones, Bob Clampett, Friz Freleng, and Robert McKimson, Sr. there were panel discussions about the directors and films we'd seen. This one is composed of Leith Adams, former Executive Director Warner Bros. Corporate Archives; Bill Kroyer, director of "Ferngully" and Director of Digital Arts at Chapman University; Tom Sito, now head of the Animation Department at USC's film school; Linda Jones Clough, Emmy Award-winning producer and founder of Linda Jones Enterprises.

In between cartoons by Looney Tunes directors Tex Avery, Chuck Jones, Bob Clampett, Friz Freleng, and Robert McKimson, Sr. there were panel discussions about the directors and films we’d seen. This one is composed of Leith Adams, former Executive Director Warner Bros. Corporate Archives; Bill Kroyer, director of “Ferngully” and Director of Digital Arts at Chapman University; Tom Sito, now head of the Animation Department at USC’s film school; Linda Jones Clough, Emmy Award-winning producer and founder of Linda Jones Enterprises.

The second panel was made up of three of the four "Dover Boys": Chris Bailey, Jeff DeGrandis, and Rob Minkoff along with the indomitable Eric Goldberg. Seen here with a photo of them meeting Chuck Jones for the first time in the early 1980s at CalArts. That's Jeff in the rabbit ears! Their list of credits is pretty impressive too: DeGrandis is the former producer of Nickelodeon's "Dora the Explorer" and is now a producer at DreamWorks; Chris Bailey was the director of the animated feature, "Hop"; Rob Minkoff was the director of "The Lion King", "Stuart Little", and "Mr. Peabody; and Eric Goldberg was the director of "Pocahontas" and the supervising animator of the Genie in "Aladdin".

The second panel was made up of three of the four “Dover Boys”: Chris Bailey, Jeff DeGrandis, and Rob Minkoff along with the indomitable Eric Goldberg. Seen here with a photo of them meeting Chuck Jones for the first time in the early 1980s at CalArts. That’s Jeff in the rabbit ears! Their list of credits is pretty impressive too: DeGrandis is the former producer of Nickelodeon’s “Dora the Explorer” and is now a producer at DreamWorks; Chris Bailey was the director of the animated feature, “Hop”; Rob Minkoff was the director of “The Lion King”, “Stuart Little”, and “Mr. Peabody; and Eric Goldberg was the director of “Pocahontas” and the supervising animator of the Genie in “Aladdin”.

Linda Jones Clough, right, with Tom Sito.

Linda Jones Clough, right, with Tom Sito.

Hope and Sybil Freleng

Hope and Sybil Freleng

Marian Jones, Chuck's widow, with Eric Goldberg

Marian Jones, Chuck’s widow, with Eric Goldberg

From left: Ruth Clampett, Robert McKimson, Jr., and Phil Roman

From left: Ruth Clampett, Robert McKimson, Jr., and Phil Roman

From left: Robert McKimson, Jr., Robert Schlesinger, Linda Jones Clough, Hope Freleng Shaw, Sybil Freleng Bergman, George Daugherty, Judy Levitow, Ruth Clampett, and Valerie Kausen

From left: Robert McKimson, Jr., Robert Schlesinger, Linda Jones Clough, Hope Freleng Shaw, Sybil Freleng Bergman, George Daugherty, Judy Levitow, Ruth Clampett, and Valerie Kausen (granddaughter of Chuck Jones)

There was a lot of laughter brought to us by the following cartoons (selected, by the way, by the director’s family members): Chuck Jones’s “Duck Amuck”, “They’re They Go Go”, “One Froggy Evening”; Friz Freleng’s “Birds Anonymous” and “High Diving Hare”; Tex Avery’s “I Love to Singa” and “A Wild Hare”; Bob Clampett’s “The Great Piggy Bank Robbery” and “Bugs Bunny Gets the Boid”; Robert McKimson’s “Hillbilly Hare” and “Walky Talky Hawk”. Thank you all for joining us!

 

Photographs courtesy Stephen Russo as noted.

 

Special Guests @ Chuck 102Gether!

Chuck 102Gether at the Alex Theatre, Sunday, September 21 from 3 to 5 PM!

A Film Festival celebrating the collaborative creativity of the Golden Age of Looney Tunes!

Need another reason to attend besides being able to see these great cartoons on the big screen as they’re meant to be shown? Here’s a partial list of guest panelists:

GEORGE DAUGHERTY, creator of “Bugs Bunny at the Symphony” will be the afternoon’s Master of Ceremonies.
ROB MINKOFF–Director of “The Lion King” and “Mr. Peabody & Sherman”
TOM SITO–Key figure in the Disney Renaissance and one of the 100 most influential people in animation
LEITH ADAMS–Longtime Executive Director of the Warner Bros. Archive
JEFF DEGRANDIS–Now at Dreamworks, formerly a supervising producer at Nickelodeon
ERIC GOLDBERG–Animator of the Genie in “Aladdin” and director of “Fantasia 2000” and so much more!

Other special guests may include: JUNE FORAY, AURIL THOMPSON, and MARTHA SIGALL (health permitting.)

Tickets from $10 available at AlexTheatre.org!

Employees of Leon Schlesinger Studios, circa 1935.

Employees of Leon Schlesinger Studios, circa 1935.

Meet Leonard Maltin at Creativity Season!

Film Critic, Author, Historian to Be the Special Host

Chuck Jones Center for Creativity Fall Fundraiser

Costa Mesa, CA: The Chuck Jones Center for Creativity announced today that noted film critic, author, and historian, Leonard Maltin will be the special host for the fall fundraiser, Creativity Season, to be held Saturday, September 22, 2012 from 6 PM to 10 PM at the Center, 3321 Hyland Avenue, Suite B, Costa Mesa, CA in the South Coast Collection (SoCo). Creativity Season will include a Chuck Jones Big Draw starring several of today’s most noted artists working in animation and other media.

“Red Carpet” tickets are $100.00 per person and include an exclusive cocktail party to meet Mr. Maltin along with artists and film directors such as Rob Minkoff (director, “The Lion King”), Kelly Asbury, (director “Gnomeo and Juliet”), George Daugherty (Creator and Conductor of “Bugs Bunny on Broadway”), and Mike Peraza (Disney Art Director “The Little Mermaid”).  

“Gala” tickets are $50.00 and include cocktails beginning at 7 PM, the Chuck Jones Big Draw, and dinner. Silent and live auctions will be presented throughout the evening and after dinner Mr. Maltin will deliver a short paean to Chuck Jones.

The evening will be catered by the Center’s partner, 24 carrots Catering & Events. Tickets may be purchased online at http://bit.ly/CreativitySeasonTickets or by phone at 949-660-7793.

“If you love the movies, you’ll love meeting Leonard,” said Linda Jones Clough, Chuck Jones’s daughter, Board member of the Center as well as a member of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences.  “His depth of knowledge of all things film and his love for the work my father created during his lifetime are astonishing. We’re delighted he has agreed to join us for this important fundraiser.”

“The Chuck Jones Big Draw we have planned will give our patrons and donors the opportunity to interact with some of today’s most creative talent working in animation and the arts today,” said Craig Kausen, Chairman of the Board of Trustees for the Center and Chuck’s grandson. “And it will also help explain the important work we do. It is a challenge these days to find adequate arts education; creativity is one of the most important attributes of highly successful scientists, mathematicians, and business leaders. The Center is committed to helping everyone, but particularly children, find the creative genius that resides in each of us.”

The artists who will be attending include:

George Daugherty – Symphonic conductor, Creator and Conductor of Bugs Bunny On Broadway and Bugs Bunny at the Symphony, producer/director of Chuck Jones’ Peter and the Wolf, Emmy Award winning producer and director for ABC, Warner Bros., and PBS
David Ka Lik Wong – Creator and Producer of Bugs Bunny On Broadway and Bugs Bunny at the Symphony, producer of Chuck Jones Peter and The Wolf, Emmy Award winning producer for ABC, Warner Bros., and PBS

Rob Minkoff: Director of Lion King, Stuart Little, The Forbidden Kingdom, The Haunted Mansion

Jeff DeGrandis: Producer of Dora the Explorer, Director for Chuck Jones Enterprises, Animator at Disney and Warner Bros.

Chris Bailey: Animation Director of Hop, Alvin & the Chipmunks, Kim Possible, Animator on Lion King

Kelly Asbury: Director of Gnomeo and JulietShrek 2, Writer of Chicken Run and Beauty and the Beast

Eric Goldberg: Director of PocahontasFantasia/2000, Animation Supervisor of AladdinPrincess and the Frog, and Hercules

Mike Peraza: Disney Art Director The Little Mermaid, Warner Bros. Animation Director, Production Designer- Anastasia, Concept- Ice AgeBeauty & Beast, Roger Rabbit, Aladdin, Ducktales, Darkwing Duck; Disney Parks Designer Carsland, Fantasyland.

John Ramirez: Designer, Art Director, Animator, Illustrator for such films as Beauty and the Beast, Aladdin, The Lion King, Hercules, and Toy Story II 

The Chuck Jones Center for Creativity was founded in 1999 by four-time Academy Award recipient and legendary animation creator and director, Chuck Jones. The Center’s vision is to inspire the innate creative genius within each person that leads to a more joyous, passionate, and harmonious life and world.

These are important goals, particularly in today’s world, when arts education is practically non-existent; we are dedicated to re-invigorating the creative spirit and we are doing it through art classes, exhibitions, lectures, and film festivals, all of which spring from the material in the Chuck Jones archive. Jones was a determined saver and his writings, art, and other ephemera from a nine-decade life, along with his philosophy of guiding and nurturing instruction, form the basis of our programs.

For more information, photo files, or to arrange an interview, please call Robert Patrick at 949-660-7791 x 22103 or via email rpatrick@ChuckJonesCenter.org

The Big Day: The Chuck Jones Experience Opens With a Big Kaboom!

The Chuck Jones Experience at Circus Circus, Las Vegas, opened Thursday, January 19th with a big kaboom!

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On hand to inaugurate the new space were artists (from left) Jeff DeGrandis, producer and director of "Dora the Explorer" and other Nickelodeon cartoons; Eric Goldberg, renowned Disney animator and director who had also worked with Chuck Jones; Mike Peraza, Disney art director ("The Little Mermaid" and many others); muralist and actor, James C. Mulligan; celebrated mat painter and fine artist, James Coleman; emerging POP/OP artist Tennessee Loveless, Art Deco-inspired artist, Mike Kungl, and surf artist, Bob Elias (not shown).  All of the artists are creating artwork for the Chuck Jones Centennial Homage series to be released throughout 2012.  Watch this space for more information!

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There was speechifying: Craig Kausen, grandson of Chuck Jones and Chairman of the Chuck Jones Center for Creativity acted as the Master of Ceremonies and kept the assembled journalists, photographers, videographers, fans, and collectors laughing and the proceedings humming along.

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Craig (left) introduced Neil Cantor, managing director of The Chuck Jones Experience, and the man who 17 years ago had dinner with Bill Hanna, Joe Barbera, and Chuck Jones where his idea for the Experience first blossomed. 

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Don Thrasher (right), President of Circus Circus enjoyed the Experience and officially welcomed it to the hotel.

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The Jones Family was on hand to celebrate, from left: Todd Kausen, Valerie Kausen, Marian Jones, Linda Jones Clough, and Craig Kausen. 

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The inimitable animator and director, Eric Goldberg, shared with the crowd his love of all things Chuck Jones and how, over the years, Jones has influenced his work.

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Linda Jones Clough, Chuck's daughter, made everyone laugh with her self-deprecating wit and then everyone teared up when she read a letter Chuck had written to Craig on his first birthday, "You charm me completely.  I am captured by your smile, touched by your bright love of life, enchanted completely and absolutely by your uniqueness. I think that being within you, looking out at this wonderful world must be a very splendid thing."  (There was not a dry eye in sight.)

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"Dover Boys" Rob Minkoff (left) and Jeff DeGrandis (right) flank Craig Kausen. "The Dover Boys", so named by Linda Jones Clough, were a young group of students at CalArts that Chuck took a shine to and mentored over the remaining years of his life. 

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How would you rather have a grand opening, by cutting a boring old red ribbon (see scissors in Craig's right hand) or blow it up with a bouquet of ACME TNT as Neil is suggesting?  Everyone chose the ACME TNT and the plunger was pushed, the explosion 'rocked' and The Chuck Jones Experience opened with a bang (that big kaboom I mentioned at the beginning of the post.) 

Visit The Chuck Jones Experience online for more information and make sure to add it to your "to-do" list, "bucket" list or any other list you might be making.  As we celebrate the Chuck Jones Centennial (1912–2012) this year, we're hoping to reach 100,000 'likes' (or more) on Facebook.  If you're not a fan already, please join us in celebrating this amazing artist's life and times.

The Dover Boys Decamp to Culver City, Part Two

The amazing Dave Lowenstein (what can be said about him that hasn't been said already?  Let me try:  Dave is a gracious and gregarious host, a raconteur extraordinaire, a passionate collector & an all-around-fun guy) hosted a wonderful evening for the Chuck Jones Center for Creativity last night at his home (filled from floor to ceiling, corner to corner with an astounding collection of the art of the animated film.)

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Dave Lowenstein (2nd from left) flanked by Cheryl Posner & Pamela Marsden (l to r) Executive Director & Program Director, respectively, of the Chuck Jones Center for Creativity and at far right, artist Sonny Dolberg, at last night's fund-raising event for the Center.

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Craig Kausen, far right, grandson of Chuck Jones and Chairman of the Board of Trustees for the Center guffaws (and we might add, that image is the perfect visual description of the word 'guffaw') at the bons mots dropping like a hard rain from the Dover Boys, from left, Rob Minkoff, Kelly Asbury, Chris Bailey and Jeff DeGrandis. 

These "Dover Boys" were so named by Linda Jones Clough, Chuck's daughter, after they started hanging out with Chuck in the early 1980s while they were students at CalArts in Valencia.  Linda, center below, is shown with, from left, Kelly Asbury, Rob Minkoff, Clough, Chris Bailey and Jeff DeGrandis.

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Want to know more about these amazing animation directors and producers?  Read the first part of this article, by clicking here.

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Kelly Asbury, director of the hit animated film, "Gnomeo & Juliet" brought a roll of movie posters which he graciously signed for attendees at last night's evening get-together for the Chuck Jones Center for Creativity.

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Linda Jones Clough, Chuck Jones' daughter (and only child) shares a laugh with the very funny Emmy Award-winning animation director & producer, Bob Kurtz. (All photos courtesy Stephen Russo.)

The Dover Boys Decamp to Culver City

On the evening of Thursday, April 7th, at 6 PM, The Dover Boys will be guests-of-honor at the home of animation art collector and patron of the Chuck Jones Center for Creativity, Dave Lowenstein.  

Because you may know who we speak of when we say "The Dover Boys" and you'd like to meet them and at the same time support the important work that the Chuck Jones Center for Creativity is doing, all you have to do is donate here.  Call Pamela Marsden for event address, 949-660-7793 and to confirm your reservation.  SPACE IS LIMITED.

 

On the other hand, you might ask who are The Dover Boys?  Well, they're not these Dover Boys:

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These Dover Boys (Tom, Dick and Larry) are the young men who appeared in the Chuck Jones 1942 ground-breaking short cartoon of the same name.  No, we're talking about a group of young men (yes, still) who made Jones's acquaintance when they were students at CalArts (in Valencia, CA) in the early 1980s.  As students of animation they had the opportunity to meet Chuck when he gave a lecture at the school and afterward, Jones stunned them by inviting them down to his home in Orange County "to talk."  (Now, they're all better at telling this story and quite a story it is, so you'll want to make sure you take the opportunity to put this very special fund-raising event on your calendar.)

These Dover Boys (a named coined for them by Chuck's daughter, Linda, BTW,) are Kelly Asbury, Rob Minkoff, Chris Bailey and Jeff DeGrandis.  

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Kelly Asbury (from left,) Chris Bailey, Jeff DeGrandis and Rob Minkoff at the Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences in August of 2010 participating in a panel discussion at the Samuel Goldwyn Theater after a showing of all nine of Chuck Jones' Oscar-nominated short cartoons.

Kelly Asbury:  Kelly Asbury is the Director and co-writer of the 3D computer-animated feature filmGnomeo & Juliet (2011).

Asbury's past directorial efforts include the Oscar-nominated films "Shrek 2" (2004) and "Spirit – Stallion of the Cimarron" (2002). During his twenty-seven year career as an animation artist, Kelly Asbury has served many creative capacities on some of Hollywood's most popular animated films, including "Shrek" (2001), "Toy Story" (1995), "Tim Burton's The Nightmare Before Christmas" (1993), "Beauty and the Beast" (1992) and "The Little Mermaid" (1989). Asbury also provided a variety of character voices on "Gnomeo and Juliet" and "Shrek 2". In addition to films, Asbury is a noted author and illustrator of several published children's books, as well as having written and compiled the offbeat, non-fiction book, "Dummy Days – America's Favorite Ventriloquists from Radio and Early TV" (Angel City Press – 2003) Read more at his IMDB page. (Biography courtesy Internet Movie Database)

Rob Minkoff:  Known for directing the Academy Award-winning animated film, "The Lion King", Minkoff is also the director of "Stuart Little" and "Stuart Little 2."  While at Disney, Rob wrote the song "Good Company" for "Oliver & Company" and directed two Roger Rabbit shorts, "Tummy Trouble" and "Roller Coaster Rabbit," along with the feature films, "The Haunted Mansion" and "The Forbidden Kingdom."  He has a new film due for release this year, "Flypaper."  Visit his IMDB page for a complete listing of his credits.  

Chris Bailey: Writer, director, special effects wizard, animator, all words that describe Chris Bailey's career.  Born in Portland, Oregon, Bailey has worked in TV and film throughout his career including Disney's "Oliver & Company" (writer,) "The Little Mermaid" and "The Rescuers Down Under" (character animation) and the producer and director of the hit TV series "Kim Possible."  You can read the details of Chris Bailey's career at this IMDB page.  

Jeff DeGrandis:  DeGrandis has made his name in the world of TV animation as the producer and director of the hit TV series, "Dora the Explorer," "Go, Diego, Go!" and "Ni Hao Kai Lan."  Jeff got his first big break working with Chuck Jones on the animation for the 1992 movie, "Stay Tuned" and sharpened his skills at "The Ren and Stimpy Show."  If it involves drag racing, Jeff DeGrandis will be there.  He cites the custom car stylings of the iconic Ed "Big Daddy" Roth as one of his major influences. If you absolutely must know more about Jeff DeGrandis, click on his name to view his IMDB profile and credits.  

And as if that were not enough!   

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This will be the setting for the evening's entertainment!  Dave Lowenstein has collected animation art for many years and his home is a museum of contemporary animation art collecting.  He's graciously opened his doors (and his heart and his wallet) to the Chuck Jones Center for Creativity  for the evening.  

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Oh, and one more thing!

To top off the evening we will be paying special tribute to animation pioneer, Martha Sigall as she and her husband, Sol, celebrate their 65th wedding anniversary!  

Please join us for this special evening, meet the Dover Boys, wish glad tidings to Martha and Sol, chat with Linda Jones (Chuck's daughter) and her children, Craig and Todd Kausen.  Tickets are just $50.00, use the PayPal button to make your reservation today!

Chuck Jones Film Fest at Samuel Goldwyn Theater

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As we were saying earlier this week,
a group of like-minded individuals got together for a road trip that
began at the Chuck Jones Galley in Tustin (3065 Edinger Avenue, open
M-F, 9-6 PM, 949-660-7791) and up to Burbank and the Warner Bros.
Studios for a private screening of their new 3D short cartoons (directed
by Matthew O'Callaghan) which were awesome!  After that incredibly fun
experience, what better way to celebrate all things Chuck Jones than to
drive over the hills to Beverly, Beverly Hills that is, movie stars,
swimming pools, (oof, I'm off topic) and down to the Academy of Motion
Picture Arts & Sciences where Linda Jones Clough, Chuck Jones'
daughter, led a tour of the exhibition "Chuck Jones: An Animator's Life
From A to Z-Z-Z-Z". 

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Her insightful (and first-hand) knowledge of the subject matter made for a fascinating tour of the exhibit.  It was at turns, nostalgic and heart-warming, funny and laugh-out-loud (LOL for you internet users,) and filled with the kind of knowledge only someone as intimately involved with the creator of so many magical moments could share with us.  We all felt honored to have shared in that moment.

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Linda Jones with collectors Brian S. (center) and Jim O'N.

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Leigh Y. and her son, John Jr., pore over some of the dialogue sheets from a Chuck Jones directed cartoon.

Later that afternoon we strolled down Wilshire Blvd. (like we owned it) and had a fantastic dinner at Kate Mantilini's (Wilshire & Doheny, if you're in the 'hood.)  It was a great time for all of us to recount the favorite part of our day, and share in some good old-fashion camaraderie, the kind that's so often missing in today's fast-paced, plugged-in, media saturated environment.  It also gave us a chance to get all fired up about the evening's presentation back at AMPAS of all of Chuck Jones' Academy Award-nominated and -winning short films, many of which some of us had never seen before on the big screen in their original 35 mm form.  Woo Hoo!

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Cathy Dicken, wife of Scott Dicken, the VP of Retail for Linda Jones Enterprises, peeks over the menu at Kate Mantilini's. 

After the screening at the Samuel Goldwyn Theater a panel discussion was held led by Bill Kroyer, head of Digital Arts at Chapman University & featuring “The Dover Boys”, four animators who were mentored by Chuck Jones in the
early 1980s; Kelly Asbury, Chris Bailey, Jeff DeGrandis & Rob Minkoff (all of whom have become extremely successful & well-respected directors/producers & artists.)

Hooray for Hollywood!  Although the day was long the rewards were great, exhilarating & heart-warming.

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From left: Bill Kroyer, Linda Jones Clough, Marian Jones (wife of Chuck Jones) and Kelly Asbury.

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"The Dover Boys" from left: Kelly Asbury, Chris Bailey, Jeff DeGrandis and Rob Minkoff.  So named by Linda Jones because she envisioned starting a production company with the four of them when they were first being mentored by Chuck Jones in the early 1980s.