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Cannon, Robert (“Bobe”)

Posted in WB Cartoon Companion on January 30, 2004

(1901-1964)

    By all accounts, a quiet, gentle, self-effacing man with enormous talent as a draftsman. His best work at Warner Brothers was during his stint in the early 1940s with Jones, who seems appropriately grateful for his work in his autobiography. Cannon’s masterpiece of animation during this time was for the landmark film The Dover Boys (Jones, 1942). Cannon, along with Jones and Clampett, was a charter member of the original “Termite Terrace” unit headed by Tex Avery.

    Cannon also worked briefly for Avery at his MGM unit. He is one of the animators credited in three classic Avery MGM cartoons: Little Rural Riding Hood, Doggone Tired, and Wags to Riches (all 1949, and all first rate).

    Cannon had an active and successful career at UPA in the 50s, directing such cartoons as Madeline (1952) and Gerald McBoing-Boing (1951); the latter film having been adapted by Bill Scott from a Dr. Seuss story. Both cartoons were Oscar nominated, Gerald won. Cannon also directed an interesting short UPA made for the United Auto Workers in 1946 about racism entitled The Brotherhood of Man. Katz cites Cannon as having worked at Disney’s studio.

    Cannon is one of the Artists who make up the picket fence of petrified humans in Porky’s Hero Agency (Clampett, 1937). A headline in Wise Quacks (Clampett, 1939) reads “Bobo Cuts New Tooth”, a probable reference to Cannon.

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