Wednesday, March 14, 2007

Century Birthday - Tom Johnson


Thomas A. Johnson was born on March 14, 1907 in New York to parents Calvin and Daisy Johnson. He had an older brother, Richard and a younger sister, Rose. He lived in the Bronx until he migrated to Miami when the Fleischer Studio headed south.

Johnson seems to have spent his career on the east coast. He began as a newspaper cartoonist and made the jump to animation in late 1930 when he took a job with Max Fleischer. His work started with the "bouncing ball" short subjects, but eventually graduated to work on Betty Boop and later Popeye shorts. He animated on the features Gulliver's Travels and Mr. Bug Goes to Town and stuck around when Fleischer's was transformed into Famous Studios when Paramount took over production.

He remained animating for Famous until is death in September, 1960.

UPDATE! (Aug, 26, 2007)
Michael Sporn has posted some late-era Johnson artwork and a lengthy biography for him on his blog (err, Spolg) from a 1939 Fleischer Animated News. It can be reached by clicking HERE and scrolling down to the bottom of the post.

1 comment:

Michael Sporn said...

Tom Johnson is one of the most underrated of animators. On the East coast he was apparently a leader that many people looked up to during the 1950's. I briefly knew his wife Marianna and posted bios of both Tom and Marianna from the Fleischer Animated News.

Thanks for calling attention to him.