One part that was dear to my heart during my trip to California was meeting the creator of Genie from the movie Aladdin, Eric Goldberg. Hearing his story on how he created the Genie, working with Robin Williams, and giving us a drawing lesson was so inspiring. I mean truly inspiring and something I will never forget.
How He Got Started/Inspiration
It started off with Eric Goldberg telling us how he came up with the drawing of Genie. He started drawing when he was 4 and learned to draw woody woodpecker from his brother and loved it from there. He was 6 he started creating flip books getting inspiration from a toy called flip show. He said no memo pads were safe in the house as he created flip books instead of playing with his friends.
Eric got his inspiration to draw Genie from Al Hirschfeld who was an American caricaturist best known for his black and white portraits of celebrities and Broadway stars. He said that characters can be all shapes and sizes and that is why the Genie is the way he is. Although he says he did not come up with the color blue for Genie.
Being an animator is not just about drawing a character. It is more work than that as you have to bring the character to life with the person casted for the voice, scenes, and tailed in with the rest of the movie.
Since this was Eric’s first Disney gig, the Genie became dear to his heart like a favorite child. You could tell in his sincereness in the way he talked about creating the Genie and the voices he did that it was something he was passionate about. His favorite part of the movie was the Genie dancing scene.
On Robin Williams
As Eric talked about working with Robin Williams you could tell that he is deeply missed and that there are so many memories to tell. He talked about how Robin brought it to the table and never stopped working. Robin gave them so much content that didn’t make it in the movie that is why there is “Genie Outtakes” bonus content in the Aladdin Diamond Edition that is a must see.
I am clearly not an artist but love to learn. Eric Goldberg gave us a step-by-step instruction on how to draw Genie from Aladdin. We were given a drawing board and drew what Eric told us to draw. My finished drawing was no where close to what Eric drew but better than I thought I would do.
And when we were finished he surprised us all with a drawing of Genie that was made out to each of us and signed by Eric Goldberg himself. I framed it and am going to hang it in my office to cherish forever.
Aladdin Diamond Edition will be available on Blu-ray and DVD on October 13th so be sure to pick up a copy and watch those “Genie Outtakes” with Robin Williams. Eric Goldberg also has a book called “An Animators Gallery” if you want to check that out.
Disclosure: Disney provided me with an all expense paid trip to LA to the #TomorrowlandBloggers #AladdinBloggers & #Disneyland60 Events. All opinions are 100% mine and not influenced in any way.