History of animation

Timeline created by JoeB
In Film
  • Magic Lantern

    Magic Lantern
    A book called the "Great Art of Light" describes a new invention called the Magic Lantern: A box with a light source that was a ble to project images
  • Musschenbroek creates illusion of motion

    Musschenbroek creates illusion of motion
    Pieter Van Musschenbroek designed a revolving disk with images printed on it. This was the first form of creating the illusion of motion and an early form of animated entertainment
  • Fantasmagorie show

    Fantasmagorie show
    A travelling show using a magic lantern opens in France. The show called "Fantasmagorie" used to project pictures of paranormal beings onto screens of smoke.
  • Roget publishes "Persistence of vision with regard to moving objects"

    Roget publishes "Persistence of vision with regard to moving objects"
    Peter Mark Roget presented his paper on the persistence of vision to the British Royal Society. This explained how still images in sequence could create the appearance of motion.
  • Thaumatrope invented

    Thaumatrope invented
    It is unknown who invented the thaumatrope. It used the persistence of vision to create the illusion that two images were being merged together.
  • Phenakistoscope invented by Plateau

    Phenakistoscope invented by Plateau
    Joseph Plateau invented the phenakistoscope which was considered the earliest form of proper animation. It involved two disks that counter rotated with images printed on one and slits on the other.
  • Praxinoscope invented

    Praxinoscope invented
    The praxinoscope was invented by Charles-Émile Reynaud in 1877. It used the same principles as the zoetrope, only with an inner circle of mirrors instead of slits
  • Kinetiscope invented

    Kinetiscope invented
    Thomas Eddison creates the kinetiscope that allowed 50 ft length of tape to be viewed in 13 seconds. The kinetiscope then came to be a public attraction, although it was designed for individual viewing with only one window.
  • First animated film

    First animated film
    J. Stuart Blackton creates the first ever animated film in 1906 called "Humorous phases of funny faces". The film was shot by drawing on a chalk board and ran at 20 fps.
  • Emile Cohl creates Fantasmagorie

    Emile Cohl creates Fantasmagorie
    To some it was considered being the first ever proper animation. Fantasmagorie was hand drawn frame by frame on paper then portrayed in negative film. Emile Cohl drew 700 pictures.
  • Cohl creates "En Route"

    Cohl creates "En Route"
    Emile Cohl created "En Route" in 1910. This was the first animation to use cutout animation so that the all of the frames did not have to be redrawn
  • Technique of cel animation

    Technique of cel animation
    There were massive developments in celluloid and it was beginning to be used for animations. It meant that the animator can layer different components of the animation to improve the efficiency of their work.
  • Gertie the dinosaur created

    Gertie the dinosaur created
    After about a year in creation, Gertie was finally created by Winsor McCay. This animation is known as the first popular animation and it consisted of over 10,000 different drawings.
  • First feature length animation released

    First feature length animation released
    El Apostol was created by an argentinian animator called Quirino Cristiani on November 9th 1917. The film ran for a total of 70 minutes and contained 58,000 pictures running at 14fps.
  • Felix The Cat becomes animated

    Felix The Cat becomes animated
    Otto Messmer takes Pat Sullivan's already popular comic strip and creates an animated series named Felix the Cat. Felix the Cat was one of the most popular cartoon characters of all time.
  • Alice's Wonderland

    Alice's Wonderland
    Walt Disney created Alice's Wonderland in 1923 and got distributed by Margaret Winkler in the same year. Walt and Roy later moved to Hollywood. Over its lifetime, the series achieved great success.
  • Disney Brothers cartoon studio formed

    Disney Brothers cartoon studio formed
    Walt and Roy Disney combine together and move to Hollywood. Then they founded Disney Brothers Cartoon Studio.
  • Steamboat Willie is released

    Steamboat Willie is released
    The Disney Brothers release their most memorable animation up to date. It was the first animation to feature synchronised sound and starred a character called Mickey Mouse.
  • Betty Boop makes her debut

    Betty Boop makes her debut
    Max Fleischer created the animated short "Dizzy Dishes" in 1930 that featured a female character named Betty Boop. Little did he know, Betty Boop was going to become one of his most famous characters
  • Snow White released

    Snow White released
    Walt Disney released Snow White on christmas eve 1937 after being in production for 3 years. The film cost a total of 2 million but made a total of 8 million.
  • Disney animators strike

    Disney animators strike
    One third of Disney's animators go on strike because they weren't paid for there overtime. The strike resulted in a lot of animators being fired due to a breach of contract.
  • UPA is formed

    UPA is formed
    After the animator strike at Disney, a lot of animators were left without jobs. Some of these animators joined together to form United Productions of America in 1944
  • Disney releases Cinderella

    Disney releases Cinderella
    After appearing dormant for a while, Disney release the feature length animation "Cinderella" 8 years after their previous movie.
  • Disneyland opens

    Disneyland opens
    The original disneyland opens on July 18th to to the public. The park cost 17 million dollars to construct and takes up a space of 160 acres.
  • Debut of The Flintstones

    Debut of The Flintstones
    The Flintstones were created by Hanna and Barbera. The bedrock family debuted on television on the 30th September 1960. The Flintstones were one of Hanna and Barbera's most famous characters.
  • Designing animation software

    Designing animation software
    In the year of 1964, Ken Knowlton with Bell Labs created a programming language called BEFLIX. It was designed for bitmap computer-produced movies
  • Walt Disney's death

    Walt Disney's death
    Walt Disney sadly dies of lung cancer on the 15th December 1966 aged 65.
  • Animation scripting language created

    Animation scripting language created
    In 1972. Edwin Catmull developed an animation scripting language for his PhD at university. The created test footage by animating his left hand with smooth shading. This was used in a Hollywood film 4 years later. Catmull moved on to become the president of Disney and Pixar.
  • First computer facial animation

    First computer facial animation
    Fred Parke was the first person to create a facial animation that was computer generated. Fred Parke often worked alongside Edwin Catmull to produce his pieces.
  • Tweening is created

    Tweening is created
    Tweening is filling in the generation of images in between two keyframes. The program was created by Brutnik and Wein, who have recently been awarded as making a huge contribution to computer animation
  • Tron is released

    Tron is released
    The movie "Tron" was created by Disney Studios and was one of the first very impressive CGI feature length films. The film cost 17 million to produce but made 33 million in box office. The film has recently been renovated with even more updated CGI
  • Pixar is founded

    Pixar is founded
    The animation company Pixar was founded in 1986 as a computer division under the Lucas Film company. Pixar has been one of the quickest growing companies in the animation industry
  • Wallace and Gromit debut

    Wallace and Gromit debut
    Wallace and Gromit make a debut in their first movie "A Grand Day Out" created by Nick Park in association with Aardman productions. Wallace and Gromit brought a breath of fresh air to claymation.
  • Jurassic Park released

    Jurassic Park released
    Jurassic Park was created by Steven Spielberg in 1993 and is praised for its use of CGI with realistic living creatures. However, this CGI came at a cost. The movie cost 63 million to create.
  • Toy Story released

    Toy Story released
    Not only was Toy Story Pixar's first animation, it was also the first ever feature length movie to be entirely animated using CGI.
  • Chicken run released

    Chicken run released
    Aardman Productions release their first feature length film called "Chicken Run". The movie was entirely claymation and cost 45 million dollars to make. It also took very long as well!
  • Disney buys Pixar

    Disney buys Pixar
    Disney Studios bought out their main rivals Pixar for 7.4 billion dollars. The deal was finalised on May 5th 2006. Most of the executives kept their positions within the company.
  • Avatar released

    Avatar released
    James Cameron created the film "Avatar" and it grew in popularity very quickly. Although it cost 237 million dollars to create, it made almost 3 billion dollars in box office. The film was highly praised for its CGI capabilities and the exceptional use of 3D animation.
  • The future?

    The future?
    I think that we have a lot to look forward to in the near future. I predict that BluRay formats of movies will begin to become more popular than DVD formats. I also think that the majority of cinema releases will be featured in 3D. I think that animations will continue to become better quality just the way they have for the past 10 years. I think that motion capture software will become more detailed and allow for higher quality CGI.
  • Period: to

    History of Animation