Roger Rabbit Turns 25

After 25 years, Who Framed Roger Rabbit still remains one of the boldest and¬†most exciting achievements in animation history. It paved the way for the second Disney¬†renaissance, launched a year later with The Little Mermaid, proving that ‘toons could be hip again theatrically, that they weren’t just for kids, and that hand-drawn 2D could hold its own dramatically — and culturally — with live-action.

Indeed, the project was in development hell until the Michael Eisner/Jeffrey Katzenberg regime came to Disney to shake things up with the help of exec producer Steven Spielberg and director Bob Zemeckis, fresh from Back to the Future.

And Thursday night’s love fest at the Academy (featuring a dazzling digital presentation, which is also available on a new must-own Blu-ray/DVD combo set from Disney) merely reinforced a hunger for the return of 2D. “Plplplllease!

It might’ve been exhausting for director Zemeckis to revisit Roger Rabbit on the big screen, but for the rest of us the wild ride through LA and Toon Town again circa 1947 was zany fun and pure joy. It was always Chinatown meets Tex Avery and the two biggest laughs are still Jessica Rabbit’s zinger, “I’m not bad — I’m just drawn that way,” and Bob Hoskins’ remark about not needing a car in LA when you’ve got public transportation.

Read the rest at Jerry Beck’s new site, Animation Scoop on Indiewire, where I’m contributing editor.

Posted on by Bill Desowitz in Animation, Below the Line, Blu-ray, Clips, Home Entertainment, Tech, Trailers, VFX

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