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Louis Scheimer October 19, 1928 October 17, 2013
21/10/2013 09:46 GMT

Posted by Martin

Animation producer Louis Scheimer has died aged 84.

Scheimer was born in Pittsburg in 1928. He joined the army in 1946, then attended Carnegie Tech University (now Carnegie-Mellon University). Scheimer graduated with a bachelors degree in Fine Arts in 1952, then worked as an animator for Kling Studio, Warner Bros. Animation,and Hanna-Barbara. By 1962 he was working with Hal Sutherland at True Line, when they decided to incorporate a new company and take on the studio's contract for  Rod Rocket. This became Filmation Associates, and they found a niche producing tie in cartoons on a lower budget than the already meager television animation rates.

Filmation produced television commercials, then a Superman series in 1966. They were approached to animate Archie Comics' title character, added the innovation of a laugh track (the first Saturday morning cartoon to do so) and had a number one hit with the song Sugar, Sugar.

Filmation could do no wrong for the next few years, with more  tie ins (Star Trek, The Brady Kids), original animation (Fat Albert, Will the Real Jerry Lewis Please Sit Down), and a move into live action (Shazam!, The Ghost Busters). In the 1980s they produced He-Man, the first cartoon based on a toy.

Scheimer, Sutherland and Norm Prescott sold the company to Westinghouse in 1969, but remained as executives. In 1989 they closed the studio. He formed his own company, Lou Scheimer Productions, and remained active in the field of animation. In 2012 he published his autobiography Lou Scheimer: Creating the Filmation Generation (pictured). He died of undisclosed causes two days short of his 85th birthday, and is survived by his wife Mary Ann and a son and daughter from his first marriage.

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