Milt Schaffer

Birth Name: Lester Milton Schaffer

Birth: May 10, 1913, Seattle, WA

Death: March 24, 2005, Westlake Village, CA

Occupation/Title: Writer, animation department, art department, Director, animation expert

Bio Summary:
Schaffer was about 19 when he first went to work for Disney. Being a good draftsman he found his way through many of Pluto and Goofy cartoons as well as several Woody the Woodpecker animations. He worked with Ben Hardaway and Emery Hawkins at Lantz and Dick Kinney at Disney. At the end of his career, Schaffer’s talent reached into storyboard sketches, artwork, and designs for a variety of other companies.

Early Life/Family:
Father: Lester A. Schaffer was born on August 4, 1888, West Point, PA
Mother: Olga Amanda Anderson was born 1891, WA and died sometime before 1922.
Step Mother: Ethel Lamb was born January 20, 1895, England and died in 1977.
Sister: Margaret Alice was born June 8, 1916, WA.
Brother: Girard born on April 20, 1923, WA and died November 14, 1991, CA
Married to his spouse in 1936: Margaret E. was born on May 7, 1916 and died in LA Country in 2007.

Son: Don Schaffer (?)


Career Outline:
Schaffer started at Disney between 1934- 1941 as an animator and story writer. He left to work at Lantz at Universal from 1941- 1947 as writer & director perhaps being fired after the Disney strike in 1941. From here he returned back to Disney as a writer between 1947-1954. During the 1950s and 1970s he worked at various studios like Lantz and Next Entertainment Living History Productions and TV commercials as an animator. Through the 1980s and 1993 Schaffer had his hands in different TV series, features and even books.

Comments On Style:
He was quite a clever draftsman-- Armstrong

In Ollie Johnston and Frank Thomas', Disney Animation, The Illusion of Life, it states that Schaffer was inspirited by Ben Sharpsteen who encouraged them of the greatness and the hard work they would endure throughout their careers.

“When I first went to Disney’s all of the young fellows wanted to animate…As young people trying to animate, we were not terribly aware of scripts and stories and gags, although they were coming from somewhere. Our whole focus was on animation, and if you couldn’t animate, you might as well commit suicide.” –Schaffer (Barrier)

Schaffer’s drawings probably were good enough to use as character layouts.-- Barrier
Many of the sketches are appealingly loose and expressive. --Barrier

I found out that Milt Schaffer was a Leo Burnett animation expert and he helped come up with the design of the Doughboy with Judy Perz, concept of Little Green Sprout, and was one of the animators in Pete and Harry the Carnation Rabbits commercials.

1993- Animated Hero Classics (and Total Learning Resource and Activity Book)
1993 – The Good Samaritan (The Animated Stories from the New Testament)**
1990 *The Dream Stone * (TV series) (storyboard designer - 1990 / as Milt Schaeffer)
1989 *Little Nemo: Adventures in Slumberland
* (story sketches - as Milt Schaefer)
1987 *Little Clowns of Happytown
*(TV series) (storyboard artist - 1987)
1977 *What's New, Mr. Magoo? * (TV series)
– Rip Van Magoo/Secret Agent Magoo (1977) (writer)
– Magoo's Driving Test/Shutterbug Magoo(1977) (writer)
– Jungle Man Magoo/Millionaire Magoo (1977) (writer)
– McBarker the Wonder Dog/Spaceman
Magoo(1977) (writer)
– Miniature Magoo/Roamin' Magoo
(1977) (writer)
See all 16 episodes
Mid 1970 Leo Burnett (animation expert)
1963 *Greedy Gabby Gator * (short) (writer)
1956-1961 *Walt Disney's Wonderful World of Color * (TV series)
– The Coyote's Lament (1961) (writer)
– The Adventures of Chip 'n' Dale (1959) (writer)
– How to Relax (1957) (story)
– Pluto's Day (1956) (writer)
– At Home with Donald Duck (1956) (writer)
See all 6 episodes
1960 *Popeye the Sailor * (TV series)
– Popeye's Used Car (1960) (story)
– Popeye the Lifeguard (1960) (story)
1957 *The Woody Woodpecker Show * (TV series)
1957 *Red Riding Hoodlum * (short) (story)
1956 *Niagara Fools * (short)
1956 L.A. Bus Commercials (directed for ERA Productions)
1956 *Chips Ahoy * (short) (story)
1955 *Bunco Busters * (short) (story)
1955 *Up a Tree * (short) (story)
1954 *Grand Canyonscope * (short)(story)
1954 *Social Lion * (short) (story)
1954 *The Lone Chipmunks * (short) (story)
1953 *How to Sleep * (short) (story)
1953 *The New Neighbor * (short) (story)
1953 *How to Dance * (short) (story)
1952 *Pluto's Christmas Tree *(short) (story)
1952 *Pluto's Party * (short and director)
1952 *Hello Aloha * (short) (story)
1952 *Father's Lion * (short) (story)
1951 *No Smoking * (short)
1951 *Fathers Are People * (short) (story)
1951 *Get Rich Quick * (short) (story)
1951 *Tomorrow We Diet! * (short)
1951 *Cold War * (short) (story)
1951 *Home Made Home * (short) (story)
1951 *Cold Storage * (short) (story)
1951 *Lion Down * (short)
1950 *Hold That Pose * (short) (story)
1950 *Camp Dog * (short)
1950 *Food for Feudin' * (short) (story)
1950 *Motor Mania * (short) (story)
1950 *Puss Cafe * (short) (story)
1950 *Pluto and the Gopher * (short) (story)
1949 *Sheep Dog * (short) (story)
1949 *Bubble Bee * (short) (story)
1949 *Pluto's Sweater * (short) (story)
1949 *Pluto's Surprise Package *(short) (story)
1949 *Pueblo Pluto * (short) (story)
1948 *Mickey and the Seal * (short) (story)
1948 *Pluto's Fledgling * (short) (story)
1947 *Pluto's Blue Note * (short) (story)
1947 *Solid Ivory * (short)
1947 *Well Oiled * (short)
1947 *The Overture to 'William Tell' *(short)
1947 *The Coo Coo Bird * (short)
1947 *Smoked Hams * (short)
1946 *The Wacky Weed * (short)
1946 *Fair Weather Fiends * (short)
1946 *The Reckless Driver * (short)
1946 *Bathing Buddies * (short)
1946 Reddy Made Magic (story)
1946 *Who's Cookin Who? * (short)
1946 *Mousie Come Home * (short)
1946 *Apple Andy * (short)
1946 *Musical Moments from Chopin *(short) (story)
1945 *The Loose Nut * (short) (story)
1945 *The Dippy Diplomat * (short)
1945 *Crow Crazy * (short) (story)
1945 *Woody Dines Out * (short) (story)
1945 *Sliphorn King of Polaroo *(short) (story)
1945 *Chew-Chew Baby * (short)
1945 *The Pied Piper of Basin Street *(short)
1945 *The Poet & Peasant * (short) (story)
1944 *Fish Fry * (short) (animator - uncredited)
1944 *The Painter and the Pointer *(short) (screenplay)
1944 *Ski for Two * (short) (story)
1944 *The Beach Nut * (short)
1944 *Abou Ben Boogie * (short) (story)
1944 *Fish Fry * (short) (story)
1944 *Jungle Jive * (short)
1944 *The Barber of Seville * (short)
1944 *The Greatest Man in Siam *(short)
1943 *Ration Bored * (short and director)
1943 *Meatless Tuesday * (short) (writer)
1943 *Boogie Woogie Man Will Get You If You Don't Watch Out (short) (writer)
1943 *Andy Panda's Victory Garden *(short) (story)
1943 *Pass the Biscuits Mirandy! *(short) (writer)
1943 *Canine Commandos * (short) (writer)
1943 *The Dizzy Acrobat * (short) (story)
1943/II *Swing Your Partner * (short) (story)
1943 *The Egg Cracker Suite * (short) (story)
1943 *The Screwball * (short) (story)
1943 *Cow-Cow Boogie * (short) (story)
1942 *Air Raid Warden * (short)
1942 *Boogie Woogie Sioux * (short)
1942 *The Loan Stranger * (short)
1942 *Yankee Doodle Swing Shift *(short)
1942 *Pigeon Patrol * (short)
1942 Mickey's Birthday PartyAnimation
1942 *Ace in the Hole * (short)
1940 *Mr. Duck Steps Out * (short) (story - uncredited)
1939 *Beach Picnic * (short) (animator)
1939 Society Dog Show Animation
1938 *Brave Little Tailor * (short) (animator - uncredited)
1938 Moth and the FlameAnimation
1937 Don Donald Animation
1934 *Hollywood Party* (animator - uncredited) A Silly Symphony
1934 Hot Choc'lit Soldiers Animation
(part of "Hollywood Party")
1935 The Tortoise and the HareAnimation
The Cookie Carnival Animation
1936 Elmer Elephant Animation
The Country Cousin Animation


Related Links:

Bibliographic References:

- Animation Who and Where, by Joseph L. Campana (pre-release of information on Schaffer to be published in 2012)
- Ollie Johnston and Frank Thomas', Disney Animation, The Illusion of
Life, Abbeville Press, 1981.
- The Art of Walt Disney, From Mickey Mouse to the Magic Kingdoms,
Abradale Press, 1973.
- Hollywood Cartoons: American Animation in Its Golden Age By Michael Barrier, 1999.

Contributors To This Listing:
Angela Leyvas
Joe Campagn

Hans Perk

Animators Hall of Fame