This Snoopy's Dogfight Snoopy World War 1 Flying Ace limited edition hand-painted cel features a wonderful giclee of concept storyboards.
About the World War 1 Snoopy Flying Ace:
Snoopy's first appearance as the World War I Flying Ace was in the Peanuts comic strip from October 10, 1965, which saw him climb on top of his doghouse (claiming it was a Sopwith Camel biplane) to do battle with the Red Baron. The fantasy ended when Linus came up behind him and imitated the noise of a machine gun.
Often, when Snoopy is seen as the World War I Flying Ace, it is hard for other characters to get his attention, because all Snoopy cares about at that point is his imaginary battles. For instance, in the strip from June 20, 1989, when Charlie Brown comes home from camp, and really misses Snoopy, the first thing Snoopy (as the World War I Flying Ace) says when he sees the boy is, "Don't they realize how dangerous it is to let unauthorized kids on the runway?".
About Larry Leichliter:
Born in May of 1941 in the LA area, Larry Leichliter spent his childhood, as many did, watching cartoons like Betty Boop and Popeye and reading comics in the newspaper, where he fell in love with Peanuts comic strip. A reserved and introspective kid, he resonated most with Linus in particular, appreciating his loyal friendship with Charlie Brown and his musings on life.
Leichliter's career in animation began in 1975 when he worked on You're a Good Sport, Charlie Brown. This was followed by numerous other Peanuts specials throughout the late 1970s and 1980s, and all the way through to 2002. He has worked on over 40 Peanuts specials and TV shows, spanning roles as animator, concept artist, and director.
Since then, he has worked on many animated television series, particularly those made for Nickelodeon, which include Hey Arnold!, ChalkZone, The Fairly OddParents, CatDog, SpongeBob SquarePants, The Mighty B!, and Catscratch. Leichliter more recently was a director for the Cartoon Network original series Adventure Time, for which he directed 114 episodes and the original short. Adventure Time also won him a BAFTA Award, and garnered him three Primetime Emmy Award nominations in the category "Outstanding Short-Format Animated Program" in 2010, 2011, and 2012. Ultimately he won an Emmy in 2015 for his work as animation director on Over the Garden Wall.
Larry has been designing limited editions for Sopwith Productions, which archives Peanuts animation and sells the official art for Bill Melendez Productions, since 2013. His challenge and the fun of these designs, Larry says, is maintaining the integrity of the drawing and animation styles of the many animators he knew and respected during his tenure at Bill Melendez Studios.
Here's a video of an interview I did with Larry:
About Bill Melendez:
Born November 15, 1916 in Hermosillo, Mexico, (Bill) Melendez spent much of his early art career working for animation companies such as Disney and Warner Bros. Cartoons.
In 1964, he founded his own production company, Bill Melendez Productions Inc. and alongside his commercial work, Bill produced his first television special, A Charlie Brown Christmas. Despite being forced to bring it in on a short schedule and tight budget, he managed to garner both an Emmy Award (the first of eight) and the prestigious George Foster Peabody Award for Outstanding Children/Young People's program. The show is a classic, having aired on CBS-TV every year since. The stentorian tenor behind Snoopy's vocalizations, by the way, is the same Bill Melendez drawing Snoopy's aquiline nose.
In 1967 the Television Academy gave three nominations to Bill Melendez; two for producing the outstanding children's program for Charlie Brown's All-Stars and forIt's the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown. Since then he has produced over 75 half-hour Charlie Brown specials, as well as four feature-length motion pictures: A Boy Named Charlie Brown (nominated for an Oscar),Snoopy, Come Home, Race for Your Life, Charlie Brown, and Bon Voyage, Charlie Brown. Melendez also has to his credit half-hour specials based on the famous Babar the Elephant books.
Bill Melendez Productions was the first to animate Jim Davis' Garfield the Cat, and that first special won an Emmy Award in '82. In '87, Bill took on the character Cathy by Cathy Guisewite, and won a Best Animated Special Emmy for that show. Several other Cathy specials have followed, as well as numerous ad campaigns featuring the character. As always, the Peanuts Gang are very visible in commercials and Bill Melendez remains their sole animator, both domestically and internationally. Current campaigns include MetLife, A&W, Chex, Regina, Hallmark, Shell Oil, and numerous European, Asian and Latin American accounts. Notable productions include a special Bill produced in 1990 with the American Cancer Society called Why Charlie Brown, Why? -- a sensitive study of what happens when a child gets cancer. In the late 80's, Melendez produced TV's first animated mini-series. Designed to teach children about American History, it was titled This is America, Charlie Brown. Recently completed is an updated rendering ofFrosty the Snowman, in association with Lorne Michaels and Broadway Video, and starring the voices of Jonathan Winters and John Goodman.