Tuesday, January 09, 2007

TOPIC: A Great Talent Has Passed Away
Iwao Takamoto is not a name you would likely know, unless you read the credits on kids cartoons and animated movies. Yet, his work is known around the globe. I have marveled at Takamoto's talent for more than three decades, learning of his gift to animation when I was a young boy. Although I never took the time to research the man, his work or his personality, I have always admired him. Iwao Takamoto passed away, at age 81, yesterday.
So, who is Iwao Takamoto and why should we care? Well, he was the creator of Scooby Doo (my son's favorite cartoon). Takamoto also worked with Hanna-Barbera Productions as production designer on dozens of cartoon series. He also worked at Disney, as an animator, on 101 Dalmations, Cinderella, Lady & the Tramp, Peter Pan and Sleeping Beauty.
Two of my other childhood favorites that Takamoto had a huge part in developing are Hong Kong Phooey and Johnny Quest. He was also responsible to designing the characters of Penelope Pitstop and the Jetsons' dog, Astro. Not that all of Takamoto's accomplishments can be listed here... but there is one more that we need to be reminded of -- Charlotte's Web (1973). Takamoto was the director for the animated movie that told the story of Wilbur, the terrific pig. Iwao Takamoto was quite terrific himself.
THANK YOU for our contributions to childhood entertainment and imagination Mr. Takamoto. You will long be missed and remembered.

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