THE CARTOON CRYPT: Monkey of the Week, April 6, 2007: The Peanut Vendor

THE CARTOON CRYPT

Meet the Peanut Vendor. It is credited to “Len Lye” on youtube (although in the comments, someone claims it is actually by Dave Fleischer). Judging from the other Len Lye films on youtube, it seems unlikely it is by him, as none of the others feature any character animation that I saw… and the character animation in this gem is quite good, and would appear to be by someone with experience. Anyone know the answer to this?

Wow.

Update: It is directed by Dave Fleischer all right. No wonder it’s so great.

Update 2: Or not… Tyler in the comments points us to lenlye.com, which credits it to Len Lye here. Tyler says:

Hi – I can assure you that this film is by Len Lye – see my comment on YouTube. The monkey happens to be owned by the New Zealand Film Archive, actually. Lye made one other stop-motion animated film – The Birth of the Robot. Anyway, glad you liked the film.

Thanks Tyler! Lenlye.com says:

Experimental Animation (also “Peanut Vendor”) (1934)
3 min, 35mm, b&w, sound
Music: “Peanut Vendor” by Red Nichols and his Five Pennies
The protagonist of this film is a marionette monkey built by the film-maker himself. Lye presented this film as a prototype in the hope of finding partners for a series of puppet films, but without success.

So, presumably, the Internet Movie Database is wrong, which credits the film to Dave Fleischer (item 301) and makes no mention of it under Len Lye’s filmography. Or it’s right and the Len Lye site is wrong, but I’m leaning towards Len Lye at this point, since I have seen no credible attributon to Fleischer. I have no idea who did it, but it’s a great cartoon! Now I want to see The Birth of the Robot…

7 thoughts on “THE CARTOON CRYPT: Monkey of the Week, April 6, 2007: The Peanut Vendor

  1. Hi – I can assure you that this film is by Len Lye – see my comment on YouTube. The monkey happens to be owned by the New Zealand Film Archive, actually. Lye made one other stop-motion animated film – The Birth of the Robot. Anyway, glad you liked the film.

  2. Hey there,

    THE PEANUT VENDOR accidentally gets its IMDB Fleischer credit because Fleischer directed an unrelated cartoon version of the song for Max Fleischer/Paramount’s “Screen Songs” series. It has no connection to Lye’s version, nor is it a puppet film.

    IMDB has a lot of misinformation and confusion…

  3. It is by Len Lye….though never released officially. The print on youtube is from my 16mm transfer done in the late 80’s. It appears on the new DVD ‘Cultoons, Volume 3’ from Thunderbean Animation (my dvd company). Lye never meant to have this little experiemental film seen by the general public. Ken Priebe was kind enough to provide commentary…. far from what Lye wouyld be famous for, though interesting…..

  4. Hi there is the monkey puppet somewhere in New Zealand? If so where abouts? I’d love to have a look at it.

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