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Encyclopedia > Bill Peet

Bill Peet (January 29, 1915May 11, 2002) was a children's book illustrator and a story writer for Disney Studios. He joined Disney in 1937 and worked on The Jungle Book, Song of the South, Cinderella, One Hundred and One Dalmatians, The Sword in the Stone, Goliath II, Sleeping Beauty, Peter Pan, Alice in Wonderland, Dumbo, Pinocchio, Fantasia, The Three Caballeros , and other stories. January 29 is the 29th day of the year in the Gregorian calendar. ... 1915 (MCMXV) was a common year starting on Friday (link will display the full calendar). ... May 11 is the 131st day of the year in the Gregorian calendar (132nd in leap years). ... For album titles with the same name, see 2002 (album). ... The Walt Disney Company (NYSE: DIS) is one of the largest media and entertainment corporations in the world. ... 1937 (MCMXXXVII) was a common year starting on Friday (link will take you to calendar). ... The Jungle Book is the nineteenth animated feature in the Disney animated features canon. ... Song of the South is a feature film produced by Walt Disney Productions, released on November 12, 1946 by RKO Radio Pictures and based on the Uncle Remus cycle of stories by Joel Chandler Harris. ... Cinderella is a 1950 animated feature produced by Walt Disney, and released to theaters on February 15, 1950 by RKO Radio Pictures. ... One Hundred and One Dalmatians (often abbreviated as 101 Dalmatians) is the seventeenth animated feature in the Disney animated features canon. ... The Sword in the Stone is the eighteenth full-length animated feature in the Disney animated features canon. ... Sleeping Beauty is a 1959 animated feature produced by Walt Disney Productions and originally released to theatres on January 29, 1959. ... Peter Pan is the fourteenth animated feature in the Disney animated features canon. ... Alice in Wonderland is a 1951 animated feature film produced by Walt Disney Productions and originally released to theaters on July 28, 1951 by RKO Radio Pictures. ... Dumbo is a 1941 animated feature film produced by Walt Disney and first released on October 23, 1941 by RKO Radio Pictures. ... Pinocchio is the second animated feature in the Disney animated features canon. ... Fantasia is a 1940 motion picture, the third in the Disney animated features canon, which was a Walt Disney experiment in animation and music. ... The Three Caballeros is the seventh animated feature in the Disney animated features canon. ...


Early life


It was at this time Peet was asked to send in some cartoon action sketches to Disney. He did, and was asked to come to try outs. He trekked across the country to LA, and participated in a one month tryout; only three of fifteen survived the period. It was at this time Disney was working on Snow White and the Seven Dwarves, and Peet got in on the last minute effort. Of course, the film was a big success, and Disney was off. He was also married during this period. Bill was an in-betweener, making up the frames between two scenes, but he found the work boring. To make some extra money, he sent some ideas about some crazy characters for Pinocchio to the team making the movie. Finally, Bill had enough, and went screaming out of the studio, “no more lousy ducks!” He came back the next day to pick up his jacket and found an envelope. His monsters came through in the nick of time. Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs is a 1937 animated feature, the first produced by Walt Disney Productions. ... Pinocchio is the second animated feature in the Disney animated features canon. ...

He began as a sketch artist, putting the words of a story man into pictures. Peet’s first encounter with Walt Disney was at this time. He reviewed the storyboards. Both of the sequences that Peet had worked on were cut. In all, about half the storyboards were cut from the film. Peet continued to work on the film for another year and a half. Peet also worked on Fantasia. He hated it. He was part of a large group. Peet was a loner, and working in a large group did not suit him well. The war came, and Disney was part of the war effort making propaganda films. Bill helped here as well. Finally, after the war Peet got his break. His work so impressed Walt that he made him a full-fledged story man that also handled the sketching end of it as well. Bill handled the character design for Cinderella, but he was quickly getting bored with Disney. For the company founded by Disney, see The Walt Disney Company. ... Cinderella is a 1950 animated feature produced by Walt Disney, and released to theaters on February 15, 1950 by RKO Radio Pictures. ...

Peet started to paint again at this time, but soon found he had lost touch with the brush. When his young son Bill accidentally destroyed the painting, Peet was actually happy. Fine art had changed dramatically in the years Peet had been at Disney; everything was abstract and his realistic paintings were not in vogue. He also tried editorial cartoons, but failed there as well, so continued to work at Disney, where he developed a few short cartoons and worked on the feature films of the period as we

Children's books

After an argument with Walt on The Jungle Book, Peet left the Disney company on his birthday. Bill initially wanted to go out with a bang, but was glad he didn’t when Disney died a year later. He went on to illustrate many more children’s books, including Chester the Worldly Pig.

More than anyone, Peet was affected by Walt Disney himself. Although Disney was not an artist, he was the final gatekeeper on the artistic side. He reviewed all the work and gave it the final go ahead. He was rather temperamental; if he saw something too much he might give it the boot just because he was tired of it. Peet and Walt quarreled frequently, and from several anecdotes it seems that Bill was very temperamental himself. It is said the two were very similar and it is because of this that they quarreled. Before Disney, Peet had never done any cartooning, so it is because of the Disney company that Peet has his zany, interesting cartooning style. Bill discovered his story telling ability by telling bedtime stories to his children and working at Disney. Quite a few of his bedtime stories metamorphasized into full-fledged story books.

Peet is known mostly for his cartoon illustrations for his children's books, but he has dabbled in a wide variety of mediums. At John Herron he was also taught commercial art. He enjoyed some success out of college as a fine artist, but turned to commercial art, such as greeting cards. After tiring of that, he moved to LA to work for Disney.

Peet's favorite subjects are animals, trains and the circus, seen over and over again both in his books and his autobiography. His beginnings with art began when he went to the zoo, took some photographs and then when the development failed, took up sketching. Most of his adventures as a boy to catch animals were in the hope that he could capture them and sketch them. The young Peet would also sneak onto greeting parties at the train station as a boy just to see the train's mechanical workings. In addition, as a teen, he would try to sketch the circus big top, but he was always in the way of the set up crew. He memorized the scene and would reconstruct it from memory. If Peet's autobiography is any indication of his favorite medium, it is the pencil. Almost all of the illustrations in his book are pencil drawings.

Peet left a legacy at Disney. In fact, Disney once tried to buy the rights to his books. Peet's stories were upheld as great examples of story writing. Bill Peet died May 2002 at the age of 87 He was known as a member of the children's story book triumvirate, including himself, Maurice Sendak and Dr. Seuss. Bill Peet's books for children are all beautifully illustrated, and many are poetry, although they read like prose. The stories have themes very suitable for children, such has trying when there's not much obvious hope, not allowing taunting of others from preventing you from succeeding, finding compromise solutions that make everyone happy and other uplifiting themes. Frequently, the stories have surprise endings. Unlike most other children's authors, Peet did not dumb down the vocabulary of his stories, but somehow managed to include enough context to make the meaning of difficult words obvious. Both the illustrations and the stories themselves easily capture the attention of almost all children. These features make these books excellent for both reluctant readers, and those needing to build their vocabulary. Maurice Bernard Sendak (born June 10, 1928) is an American writer and illustrator of childrens literature who is best known for his book Where the Wild Things Are, published in 1963. ... Theodor Seuss Geisel (March 2, 1904 – September 24, 1991) was a famous American writer and cartoonist best known for his classic childrens books under the pen name Dr. Seuss, including The Cat in the Hat, Green Eggs and Ham, One Fish Two Fish Red Fish Blue Fish, Fox in...


  • The Ant and the Elephant
  • Big Bad Bruce
  • Bill Peet: An Autobiography
  • Buford the Little Bighorn
  • The Caboose Who Got Loose
  • Capyboppy
  • Chester the Worldly Pig
  • Cock-a-Doodle Dudley
  • Cowardly Clyde
  • Cyrus the Unsinkable Sea Serpent
  • Eli
  • Ella
  • Encore for Eleanor
  • Farewell to Shady Glade
  • Fly, Homer, Fly
  • The Gnats of Knotty Pine
  • How Droofus the Dragon Lost His Head
  • Hubert's Hair-Raising Adventure
  • Huge Harold
  • Jennifer and Josephine
  • Jethro and Joel Were a Troll
  • Kermit the Hermit
  • The Kweeks of Kookatumdee
  • The Luckiest One of All
  • Merle the High Flying Squirrel
  • No Such Things
  • Pamela Camel
  • The Pinkish, Purplish, Bluish Egg
  • Randy's Dandy Lions
  • Smokey
  • The Spooky Tail of Prewitt Peacock
  • The Whingdingdilly
  • The Wump World
  • Zella, Zack, and Zodiac

Kermit the Hermit is a childrens book written by Bill Peet, published in 1973. ... The Wump World cover. ...

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