Willy McBean and his Magic Machine
||This article consists almost entirely of a plot summary. It should be expanded to provide more balanced coverage that includes real-world context. (November 2015)|
|Willy McBean and his Magic Machine|
|Directed by||Arthur Rankin, Jr.
|Produced by||Jules Bass
Arthur Rankin, Jr.
|Written by||Arthur Rankin, Jr.
|Starring||Larry D. Mann
Billie Mae Richards
|Music by||Edward Thomas
|Distributed by||Magna Pictures Distribution Corporation|
Willy McBean and his Magic Machine (1965) is a Rankin/Bass full-length stop-motion puppet animation film released in theaters. Its main theme is time travel. It was also the first stop-motion animated feature film in the United States.
Professor Rasputin Von Rotten builds a time machine to travel into the past to all the important accomplishments made in history to take credit for them himself. It is up to Pablo, his talking pet monkey, and boy genius Willy McBean to stop him.
Willy McBean is sick of trying to learn history for school. Meanwhile, an evil scientist called Rasputin Von Rotten is building a magical time machine so he can go back in time and be the most famous person in history. A Spanish-English talking monkey named Pablo climbs through Willy's window. He explains that he escaped from Von Rotten and he tells Willy what he is planning to do. Pablo stole the plans to the time machine.
Willy builds his own machine to go back in time to stop Von Rotten. The machine isn't working properly. They end up with General George Armstrong Custer (1839–1876), and escape moments before Custer is killed.
They then arrive in the Wild West, where they meet Buffalo Bill Cody. Von Rotten plans to become the fastest gun in the west. Von Rotten asks Bill for a showdown, but both guns are sabotaged before anyone can be shot.
Von Rotten moves onto his next target, Christopher Columbus. Once there, Von Rotten, disguised as a Chinese trader, convinces Columbus's crew that they should mutiny. Once more McBean and Pablo stop the evil professor by showing the crew that land is not far off.
After that, Von Rotten goes back to England in the days of King Arthur in the kingdom of Camelot, but Pablo and Willy get Arthur to pull Excalibur the magic sword that can talk. A talking green dragon then crashes into Camelot in an effort to eat everyone, but King Arthur and Excalibur are able to drive him away.
Willy and Pablo later go to Ancient Egypt to stop Von Rotten from building the Great Pyramid, but the duo reach Ancient Rome on the way. Then they go back to prehistoric times to get a caveman to invent fire and the wheel before Von Rotten.
As they return to the present, Von Rotten shows the students history through his magic machine (in the form of a movie projector) during history class.
- Larry D. Mann as Professor Von Rotten
- Billie Mae Richards as Willie McBean
- Paul Soles as Pablo
- Alfie Scopp as Buffalo Bill Cody, The Dragon
- Paul Kligman as Christopher Columbus
- Bunny Cowan as Khufu, Ned the Neanderthal
- Peggi Loder
- Claude Ray
- Corrine Connely
- James Doohan
- Written, Produced, Directed by Arthur Rankin, Jr.
- Associate Producers: Jules Bass, Larry Roemer
- Associate Director: Kizo Nagashima
- Soundtrack Supervision: Bernard Cowan
- Music Supervision by Forrell, Thomas and Polack, Associates, Inc.
- Music by Edward Thomas
- Songs by Jim Polack, Edward Thomas, Gene Forrell
- Animation Supervision: Tadahito Mochinaga (credited as Tad Mochinaga)
- Puppet Makers: Ichiro Komuro, Kyoko Kita (both uncredited)
- Animation: Fumiko Magari, Hiroshi Tabata (both uncredited)
- Choreography: Edward Brinkmann
- Continuity Design: Anthony Peters (credited as Antony Peters)
- Additional Dialogue: Len Korobkin
- a Videocraft/Dentsu picture
- a Marshall Naify/Magna Pictures Distribution Corporation presentation
© 1965 Videocraft International, Limited and Dentsu Motion Picture Corporation.