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Cinematic Arts featured speaker: Bruce W. Smith

Friday, February 28, 2020 6:30 PM-8:30 PM

Ward Hall

Bruce Smith

The Cinematic Arts Department will host Disney animator, director and show creator Bruce W. Smith. He will speak on his career in animation, creating “The Proud Family” television series and directing the Academy Award–winning “Hair Love” short film. 

This event is free and open to the public. 

Smith is best known as the creator and executive producer of the Disney Channel hit show “The Proud Family” and for directing “Hair Love,” a 2019 animated short film that won an Academy Award.

Smith studied animation in the Character Animation program at the California Institute of the Arts. He joined the Walt Disney Studios as an animator on “Who Framed Roger Rabbit” and various other Roger Rabbit shorts that the studio produced, and worked on such well-known films as “Space Jam,” “Tarzan” and “The Emperor’s New Groove.”

While working animation on the feature film side, Smith started feeding into his love of television animation and created “The Proud Family” for Disney Channel. He co-founded Jambalaya Studio for the production of the series and crafted 52 episodes, as well as “The Proud Family” TV movie. 

He rejoined Walt Disney Studios to supervise animation on “The Princess and the Frog” and “The Winnie the Pooh Movie,” and he was the lead animator on the short “Tangled Ever After.” He has also worked on visual development for other projects at the studio, including “Wreck-It Ralph” and “Frozen.”

Smith is also director of “Hair Love,” a 2019 American animated short film that follows the story of a man who must do his daughter's hair for the first time and features Issa Rae as the voice of the mother. The film was produced after a 2017 Kickstarter campaign and was also released as a children's book in May 2019. “Hair Love” won Best Animated Short Film at the 92nd Academy Awards.