2008.014 - 2008.014 accrual

Identity area

Reference code

CA ON00349 2008.014

Title

2008.014 accrual

Date(s)

  • 1970 - 2008 (Creation)

Level of description

Extent and medium

15 m of textual records

320 photographs
236 prints
10 transparencies
74 negatives

219 graphic materials
155 animation cells
45 paintings (backgrounds, key animations, greeting card)
15 drawings (clean-up animations)
4 posters

118 audio recordings
44 audio cassettes (ca. 7 hrs.)
42 CDs (ca. 3 hrs.)
32 CD-Rs (ca. 27 hrs. 47 mins.)

1404 video recordings
5 cassettes ¾ in. (ca. 2 hrs., 38 mins.)
29 cassettes BetaMax ( ca. 23 hrs. 30 mins.)
1256 VHS cassettes (ca. 788 hrs., 21 mins.)
26 DVDs (ca. 27 hrs.)
86 DVD-Rs (ca. 66 hrs., 30 mins.)
1 MP3 (ca. 40 mins.)
1 zip disk

193 artifacts
books (557 titles)
periodicals (4 titles)

Context area

Name of creator

(1948 -)

Biographical history

Michael Hirsh was born in Belgium in 1948. He arrived in Toronto at the age of three, and a decade later the family relocated once more to New York City. While a student at the Bronx School of Science, Hirsh became interested in filmmaking and spent much of his time back in Toronto at York University, working with various partners on a number of live action and animated films. One of those partners was Patrick Loubert.

After graduating, Loubert and Hirsh worked briefly for Cineplast, creating animated sequences for Sesame Street. In 1971, they founded their own company, Laff Arts, which became Nelvana one year later with the arrival of English animator Clive Smith. Nelvana’s earliest years were spent producing short ‘filler’ films (2-4 minute films that could be used to complete an hour of programming when a feature or series film was short) for CBC in addition to whatever contract work they could find. In 1977, the fledgling company produced A Cosmic Christmas; this caught the attention of George Lucas, who hired them to produce a ten-minute animated segment for a Star Wars television special. He subsequently hired Nelvana to co-produce (with his own Lucasfilm Ltd.) two ABC-TV series, Ewoks and Droids. Gradually, the partners at Nelvana evolved into their roles: Loubert became a key administrative figure and co-CEO; Smith became the director of Nelvana’s most important films, and Hirsh asserted himself as Nelvana’s co-CEO and major spokesman for the organization. Nelvana’s period of artistic success ground to a sudden halt when the heavy metal-influenced feature Rock & Rule became a financial debacle; though the film has gone on to achieve cult status, Nelvana could have folded as a result of the film’s failure.

Hirsh persuaded the owners of The Care Bears franchise to have his studio produce their feature film and television series, and The Care Bears effectively saved the company. Nelvana went on to produce some of the most popular children’s series of the 1980s and 1990s, including My Pet Monster, The Adventures of Tintin, Rupert the Bear, Pippi Longstocking, Babar, Franklin, as well as the live action T & T (starring Mr. T.).

Nelvana now has hundreds of employees all over the world, and the company’s backcatalogue includes over 1400 productions. It also now produces both 2D and 3D animation, and its productions are seen in 180 countries. Nelvana was sold to Corus Entertainment in September 2000, and Hirsh resigned his position as CEO in October 2002. Since that time, Hirsh has served as CEO of Cookie Jar Entertainment; he also serves as CEO of the company’s education division, which includes Carson-Dellosa Publishing and HighReach Learning.

Michael Hirsh is the coauthor of The Great Canadian Comics. He lives in Toronto.

Archival history

Immediate source of acquisition or transfer

Content and structure area

Scope and content

Accession 2008.014 is divided into 6 series according to format.
These are: Textual and Other Material, Photographic Material, Graphic Material, Audio Material, Video Material, and Artifacts.
The first series, Textual and Other Material, includes scripts related to Nelvana (scripts, business, legal records, development files,correspondence, personal diaries, notebooks and other production-related files). This series also includes 31 series bibles and over 500 books and periodicals.
The second series, Photographic Material, includes photographs related to the animation production process, as well as images of Nelvana staff at work and play.
The third series, Graphic Material, includes material from different parts of the production process (animation cells, backgrounds, and cleanups).
They include some of the best known and most valuable of such materials, including Tintin, Rupert, Babar and Dog City. This series also includes posters.
The fourth series, Audio Material, consists largely of commercial recordings used for research. This series also includes rough mixes for Nelvana productions.
The fifth series, Video Material, primarily consists of completed Nelvana programs, as well as different versions of productions in progress.
The sixth series, Artifacts, includes a number of promotional items (toys, stuffed animals, clothing, etc.) from Hirsh’s productions.

This fonds includes graphic and textual material relating to a number of productions, including:

The Edison Twins (Television, 1982)
Droids (Television, 1985)
The Care Bears (Television, 1985)
Babar (Television, 1989)
Rupert (Television, 1991)
The Adventures of Tintin (Television, 1991)
Eek! the Cat (Television, 1992)
Cadillacs and Dinosaurs (Television, 1993)
Dog City (Television, 1992)
Tales from the Cryptkeeper (Television, 1993)
Budgie the Little Helicopter (Television, 1994)
Tabaluga (Television, 1994)
Tales from the Crypt (Television, 1996)
Franklin (Television, 1997)
Bob and Margaret (Television, 1998)
The Doodlebops (Television, 2004)
This fonds includes audiovisual material relating to a number of productions, including:

A Cosmic Christmas (Television, 1977)
The Care Bears (Television, 1985)
Tres Estelles (Television, 1987)
My Pet Monster (Television, 1987)
T & T (Television, 1988)
Babar (Television, 1989)
Beetlejuice (Television, 1989)
Little Rosey (Television, 1990)
Ren & Stimpy Show (Television, 1991)
The Adventures of Tintin (Television, 1991)
Rupert (Television, 1991)
Eek! the Cat (Television, 1992)
Fievel’s American Tails (Television, 1992)
Family Dog (Television, 1993)
Cadillacs and Dinosaurs (Television, 1993)
Dog City (Television, 1992)
Free Willy (Television, 1994)
The Magic School Bus (Television, 1994)
Tales from the Cryptkeeper (Television, 1994)
Little Lulu (Television, 1995)
Little Bear (Television, 1995)
The Hardy Boys (Television, 1995)
The Neverending Story (Television, 1995)
Blazing Dragons (Television, 1996)
Stickin’ Around (Television, 1996)
Nancy Drew (Television, 1995)
Waynehead (Television, 1996)
Ace Ventura: Pet Detective (Television, 1996)
Donkey Kong Country (Television, 1997)
Ned’s Newt (Television, 1997)
Gargoyles: The Goliath Chronicle (Television, 1997)
Franklin (Television, 1997)
Anatole (Television, 1998)
Flying Rhino Junior High (Television, 1998)
Dumb Bunnies (Television, 1998)
Bob and Margaret (Television, 1998)
Birdz (Television, 1998)
Pippi Longstocking (Television, 1997)
Rolie Polie Olie (Television, 1998)
Blaster’s Universe (Television, 1999)
George and Martha (Television, 1999)
Redwall (Television, 2001)
The Doodlebops (Television, 2004)
Spider Riders (Television, 2006)

Appraisal, destruction and scheduling

Accruals

System of arrangement

Conditions of access and use area

Conditions governing access

Preservation concerns may limit access, consult archivist.

Conditions governing reproduction

Media Commons does own copyright of collection materials. Consult rights holder for reproduction(s).

Language of material

  • English

Script of material

Language and script notes

Physical characteristics and technical requirements

Finding aids

Contact archivist for further finding aid information.

Allied materials area

Existence and location of originals

Existence and location of copies

Related units of description

Related descriptions

Notes area

Alternative identifier(s)

Access points

Subject access points

Place access points

Name access points

Rules and/or conventions used

Language(s)

  • English

Script(s)

Sources

Accession area

Related subjects

Related people and organizations

Related places