robert sherman


“On Fridays, after work, [Walt Disney would] often invite us into his office and we’d talk about things that were going on at the Studio. After a while, he’d wander to the north window, look out into the distance and just say, ‘Play it.’ And Dick would wander over to the piano and play 'Feed the Birds’ for him. One time just as Dick was almost finished, under his breath, I heard Walt say, 'Yep. That’s what it’s all about.” —Robert Sherman

a quick summary of but mr adams

franklin: hey john you should write the declaration

adams: but people hate me, you write it

franklin: but john. fuck politics.

adams: ok good point. hey sherman you should write it

sherman: but im just a cobbler do i fuckin look like i know how to write properly

adams: fine. livingston.

livingston: but i have to go home to my new son

adams: reasonable.

adams: [ looks at thomas ]

thomas: no john i have to go home to my wife and bust my nut

adams: thomas what the fuck just write the declaration

thomas: my nut john

thomas: [ leaves ]


The Sword in the Stone

103 in x of animated feature film history
Release: Dec. 25th, 1963
Country: USA
Director: Wolfgang Reitherman

“The Sword in the Stone is the 18th Disney animated feature film, and it the final animated film to be released before Walt Disney’s death. The songs in the film were written and composed by the Sherman Brothers, who later wrote music for other Disney films like Mary Poppins (1964), The Jungle Book (1967), The Aristocats (1970), and Bedknobs and Broomsticks (1971).

After years of warring, England can’t agree on a new ruler. A mysterious sword appears, which claims that whoever can pull the sword from its stone will become king. After no one can do it, the test is forgotten. Many years later, Arthur––a measly servant knave known as Wart––dreams of becoming a knight, but is barely certain he may act as squire to castle lord Sir Ector’s son Kay; then, the sorcerer Merlin and his grumpy, talking owl Archimedes invite themselves to the castle and move into its dilapidated north tower. Merlin, who can magically access the future, intends to give Wart a proper education. They transform themselves into animals, face dangerous situations, and battle the Mad Madam Mim. In the end, Arthur accidentally finds the forgotten sword in the stone and becomes king.

The film is based on the novel of the same name, which was first published in 1938 as a single novel. It was later republished in 1958 as the first book of T. H. White’s tetralogy The Once and Future King.

Walt Disney first obtained the film rights to The Sword in the Stone in 1939, and the initial storyboards were produced in 1949. When work on One Hundred and One Dalmatians was completed in 1960, two projects were in development, which were Chanticleer and The Sword in the Stone. The former was developed by Ken Anderson and Marc Davis who aimed to produce a feature animated film in a more contemporary setting. Both of them had visited the Disney archives, and decided to adapt the satirical tale into production upon glancing at earlier conceptions dating back to the 1940s. Anderson, Davis, Milt Kahl, and director Wolfgang Reitherman spent months preparing elaborate storyboards for Chanticleer. When the time came to approve one of the two projects, Walt replied to Anderson’s pitch with ‘Just one word—shit!’

Meanwhile, work on The Sword in the Stone were solely done by veteran story artist Bill Peet. After Disney had seen the 1960 Broadway production of Camelot, he approved the project to enter production. Peet recalled ‘how humiliated [the other team was] to accept defeat and give in to The Sword in the Stone…They never understood that I wasn’t trying to compete with them, just trying to do what I wanted to work. I was the midst of all this competition, and with Walt to please, too.’

This was the first Disney animated feature made under a single director. Previous features were directed by either three or four directors, or by a team of sequence directors under a supervising director. The man hired for the job was veteran animator Wolfgang Reitherman, who would direct all of the Disney features up until the 1980’s.

Although Disney never knew it, he himself was Bill Peet’s model for Merlin. Peet saw them both as argumentative, cantankerous, but playful and very intelligent. Peet also gave Merlin Walt’s nose. This was the second instance in which Walt unknowingly served as model for a wizard, the first being the wizard Yensid from the Sorcerer’s Apprentice in Fantasia (1940). 

For the voice of Merlin, director Wolfgang Reitherman estimated that seventy actors read for the part, but “none evidenced that note of eccentricity that we were seeking. We wanted Merlin to be eccentric but not hokey.” At the same time, Karl Swenson was initially cast for Archimedes, but the filmmakers decided to cast him instead as Merlin. Rickie Sorensen, who had voiced young Arthur, entered puberty during production, which forced the older Reitherman to cast his sons, Richard and Robert, to replace him.

The Sword in the Stone was a financial success at the box office and became the sixth highest-grossing film of 1963. However, it received mixed reviews from critics, who thought it had too much humor and a ‘thin narrative.’”



More board to final comparisons from “Robert Peary” with a critique on Peary’s design.

I feel like the design they did for Peary didn’t translate as well with a lot of the final animation, as I felt since he’s mischievous, the round eyes in the center like classic Jay Ward, along with very round shapes would have done it more justice. DHX did the best to translate it, but I wasn’t comfortable at the time speaking up about the design choices for Peary.

You can see where they started with the design, and where it ended up, but I still think it should have been simplified, more round and eyes in the center, making for a more appealing design and easier range / expressions.


Robert Mapplethorpe

Robert Mapplethorpe took pictures of a very hard subject matter but he did it in a very classical way. Mapplethorpe took pictures of things that had not been photographed yet, (the nude male models and such.) “Perfection is beauty”, is what he just to say. Most people today see him as beeing one of the masters of photography in the 20th century, and i do have to agree to that. He’s pictures are simply ; Timeless.


This is so touching.  I’m actually crying right now.


Today I want to talk about a song that is near and dear to my heart, and has become a staple for children growing up. It’s one of the first songs we remember when leaving our first trip to Disney, for some it’s the first ride they ever took, for others it’s a boat ride with a song that just won’t get out of their head. Either way to say that this ride is a classic would be doing it a disservice in many ways “It’s a small world” has become a staple in our culture and almost a rite of passage for many.

When first coming up with the concept of the song for it’s a small world it was originally intended that each doll would sing their national anthem from each respective country. On paper this was a brilliant Idea, but in practice what came out was a mess of garbled noise. So during the rehearsal when Walt heard how bad it sounded he demanded they stop the music and he turned his attention towards the Sherman brothers and jokingly yelled “You better write me a song!” the rest as they say is history. The following song that they ended up creating is most likely one of the most famous and beloved pieces of music today, as Robert Sherman put it best you either want to kiss them or kill them for making it.

Even though the song that we know today is loved it wasn’t always such a happy and upbeat tune. In fact the version that is in the ride is actually not the original composition that the Sherman brothers came up with. The original version is much more somber and more like a prayer for peace.  Walt Disney was the one who suggested that the tempo be sped up to match the theme of joy found inside the ride. As for the original being more somber this can be due to the fact that when they were composing the song it was after the wake Cuban missile crisis. Another cool thing to note is that “It’s a small world” is one of the only Disney songs that was never copyrighted, due to UNICEF’s request.That way it could be translated and used by all those who wanted to hear it. It was truly the Sherman Brothers gift to the children of the world.

In the video sample above you will see Richard Sherman perform the original version as he composed it with the help of Disney legend Alan Menken filling in for his departed brother and fellow Disney legend Robert Sherman. One thing is certain his song will always be a huge part of all our hearts and a huge part of Disney’s DNA. Above all this song is a prayer for peace and understanding, and that hopefully one day we will reach it, There is so much that we share, that it’s time we’re aware, its a small world after all. 

She was such a witch.

Robert Sherman on Mary Poppins author P. L. Travers.

Travers was aparently stickler about details in the script, driving many of the Disney writers to distraction about Poppins minutiae. Among the list of things that she disliked about the final film was the Sherman Brothers’ score. She wanted the only music in the movie to be period pieces such as “Ta Ra Ra Boom De Ay” or “Greensleeves”.