[John Canemaker has just completed the manuscrpt of an exciting new book project to be published by The Walt Disney Family Foundation Press, titled Secrets of Disney Movie Magic (1938 - 1941): Herman Schultheis and his Special Effects Notebooks. The book is expected to be published in late 2014.
Herman Schultheis (1900-1955) was a German-born engineer who worked at the Walt Disney Studios during the its most ambitious period of animated feature production. He worked in the studio's Process Lab, which created the special visual effects for Pinocchio, Fantasia, Dumbo and Bambi.
An avid photographer, Schultheis meticulously documented the work of the Process Lab in several large-format notebooks, detailing how they accomplished the dazzling effects imagery that still amazes audiences today. His hand-printed commentary and photographs offer a rare look at the state of the art in special effects during this important era at the Disney studio.
Schultheis left Disney in the early 1940s, and his notebooks remained unknown until his widow's death in 1990. They have since been acquired by The Walt Disney Family Museum, located at The Presidio in San Francisco, where the Special Effects notebook is on permanent view in an extraordinary interactive digital display.
In this new book, John Canemaker interweaves the life story of the enigmatic Schultheis with a close analysis of the notebooks' content, and the many people who worked with Schultheis at Disney.]