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Advice to young animators


Not teaching but sharing
Jules Engel Film-maker
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But the most important thing I tell students, you know, see it. If you can afford it, see it. If you can't afford it, that's a problem, that's something else. But if you can, see it. Because if I ask the students, 'Hey, you're doing something like reminds me of' - and then I ask him, 'Have you seen of'? 'No, who are you talking about?' I said, 'Oh then you never see... next time they come around, why don't you go and see it?' You know? It's a way of... the word teaching, I don't like that word, teaching, because it isn't a question of just teaching, it's sharing, it's sharing, you know? I know more about this thing than you do, so I can tell you a little bit about it. But then, if they come back in the city, go and see it, you see? But I open the door for you by saying, 'By all means, see it'. You see. So when you're talking about teaching, that word sometimes is very misleading because it's not really that. It's that other thing. When I say, 'Hey have you ever seen a Ballet Russe de Monte Carlo'? 'A what?' 'Ballet Russe de Monte Carlo.' 'No? You never?' 'No. Next time they're in time, if you can afford it, by all means, you see it.' You see? Now I'm helping him, you see? And it's not like teaching. I think teaching is very important when you're going to be a doctor. Then you better know what the hell you're doing because you can destroy a person, you can kill a person, you can just accidentally hurt him that he never recovers. But when you deal with art, you don't have that problem. But go and see this anyway. Whether you like it or not, see it, it's going to help. So there's a way of approaching a person and it has nothing to do with that word. Because if that's all you know about, then you have a problem of helping other people. The only one thing is medicine where you either know or you don't know and you deal with life, total life, you know? Just recently a doctor was doing whatever on a person who doesn't need that and it went bad. But you see, when you deal with art, you don't have that problem.

The late Hungarian-American film-maker Jules Engel is best known for his contribution to the field of animation. His work includes the dance sequences in Walt Disney's 'Fantasia' and the creation of 'Mr Magoo'. His films and lithographs are housed in museums all over the world and have won many awards.

Listeners: Tamara Tracz Bill Moritz

Tamara Tracz is a writer and filmmaker based in London.

William Moritz received his doctorate from USC and pursues parallel careers as filmmaker and writer. His forty-four experimental and animation films have been screened at museums in Paris, Amsterdam and Tokyo, among others. He published widely on Oskar Fischinger, James Whitney, Bruce Conner, the Fleischers and 200 pages of animation history for an AbsolutVodka website. He wrote chapters for the "Oxford History of Cinema", appeared in several television documentaries, curated art exhibits and received a lifetime achievement trophy from the Netherlands Royal Academy for his work with visual music. He has served on film festival juries and received an American Film Institute filmmaking grant. His poetry and plays are also performed and published. He is a leading expert of Oskar Fischinger and recently published a biography of him. He teaches at The California Institute of the Arts.

Tags: Ballet Russe de Monte Carlo

Duration: 2 minutes, 50 seconds

Date story recorded: April 2003

Date story went live: 29 September 2010