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Stephanie McMillan

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my grandfather the animated cartoonist [May. 28th, 2007|11:07 pm]
Stephanie McMillan
My brother just told me that our grandfather has an entry on imdb.com, and that I'm mentioned in it (under the subhead "trivia" -- hmmm). The bio doesn't mention that Opa (what we called him -- "grandfather" in German) created the first animated film in Germany ever.

Here's what it says:

Biography for
Hans Fischerkoesen (I)

Date of Birth
18 May 1896, Bad Kösen/Saale, Germany

Date of Death
23 April 1973

Birth Name
Hans Fischer

Mini Biography

Hans Fischerkoesen was born Hans Fischer in Bad Koesen, Germany. A sickly child, he was encouraged by his parents to indulge in such indoor activities as drawing and puppetry. His asthma kept him from active service during WWI, but he did work in a hospital near the front. His experiences there haunted him for the rest of his life. In the 1920s Fischerkoesen turned to advertising, developing earlier animated cartoons for German merchants. He later established his Fischerkoesen Studio in Leipzig to produce advertising animation. After the Nazis passed an edict in 1941 declaring most non-German art "degenerate", Fischerkoesen was forced by the German government to relocate to Potsdam, near UFA studios, and began producing theatrical cartoons. Despite governmental control, Fischerkoesen managed to keep his productions free of Nazi propaganda. When the war ended, Fischerkoesen was imprisoned by the Soviets as a possible Nazi sympathizer, despite the fact that he had been a member of the Underground. He was released after three years imprisonment, and later escaped to West Germany, where he re-established his advertising animation studio. Fischerkoesen spent the remainder of his life working in advertising, receiving many awards for his work.

IMDb Mini Biography By: Mike Konczewski


Father of Hans Fischerkoesen.

Grandfather of cartoonist and political activist Stephanie McMillan (author of the "Minimum Security" comic strip).

[User Picture]From: gillen
2007-05-29 04:25 am (UTC)
He's also, if you can believe it, on YouTube!

Weather-Beaten Melody. 35 seconds in with the descent into the garden and later when the view pans around the phonograph beats what most US animation studios were putting out at the time.
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[User Picture]From: mcmillan
2007-05-29 01:43 pm (UTC)
Oh my god, thank you for showing me this!! I had no idea. This is my favorite of his films. I don't have a copy and I've only seen it a few times.

I've just invited my mom over to watch it too -- she'll be so excited!

Thanks again!!
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[User Picture]From: mrvetinari
2007-05-29 03:45 pm (UTC)
Thank you for the link!

It took a while to load over a VSAT link, but it DOES beat the average, which is incredible considering the circumstances surrounding its creation.
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[User Picture]From: harkalark
2007-05-29 04:27 am (UTC)
That's really cool. :)
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From: cbrubaker2
2007-05-29 04:36 am (UTC)
I actually have a black and white copy of "Der Schneemann" (English title: Snowman in July) in my cartoon collection somewhere.

Jerry Beck (animation historian) talked about "Snowman in July" on his website. Scroll down a bit:

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[User Picture]From: cosmo111687
2007-05-29 05:14 am (UTC)
Oh my! I just watched one of his animated commercials on youtube and I can definitely see the similarities in style.

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[User Picture]From: gossamerfaery
2007-05-29 05:35 am (UTC)
That is really neat! I would love to see what he did! And I think it's incredibly cool that they mentioned you!

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[User Picture]From: cosmo111687
2007-05-29 05:40 am (UTC)
I watched a few of his animations and they're really stunning. And I can definitely see a resemblence between your artistic tastes and your grandfather's. :)

I think I've found a new animator to love. :)

(it's a shame that so few can see past disney)
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[User Picture]From: mrvetinari
2007-05-29 03:48 pm (UTC)
My lord, WWI Medical Worker, brilliant animator, Member of the anti-Nazi underground, Escaped Political Prisoner....

Aw hell, you must have all kinds of cool floating around your DNA.
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From: zorchon
2007-05-29 05:01 pm (UTC)

Energy Efficient Lightbulbs!

Your Opa was so great! I particularly liked his Philips Ad. ( http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7YxsXGs37xo )
I had to laugh so loud!!! It was like Banannabell's drug-induced vision about how to save the world! (The Lightbulbs! It's all in the lightbulbs!) Is this some hereditary fascination? (Oh, and I thought that the Merry wives of Windsor music fit in perfectly.)
Go FischerKösen!
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