Persistence of Vision | Chicago Reader

Persistence of Vision

Kevin Schreck tells the engrossing story of Canadian animator Richard Williams, who founded a successful London studio in the 50s, and his three-decade quest to complete a wildly ambitious children's feature called "The Thief and the Cobbler," which ended in heartache. Williams sought production funds for years; then, after his groundbreaking work on Who Framed Roger Rabbit (1988) won him two Oscars, Warner Bros. bankrolled the project at last, with a clear contractual stipulation that if Williams fell behind schedule the movie could be seized by the completion-bond company and finished by another animator, which is exactly what happened. Still going strong at age 80, Williams refused to be interviewed for the documentary, and given the hard feelings nursed by some of his employees, one can understand why—to their chagrin they discovered that he had never even finished storyboarding the film.

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