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Ub Iwerks

Biography

Early Disney animator and cartoonist who drew the very first images of Mickey Mouse; champion of two Academy Honours. Also well-known for his Turn the Frog personality that was created through his short-lived Iwerks Studio room. He fulfilled Walt Disney in 1919, once the two doing work for Kansas City’s Pesmen-Rubin Artwork Studio. Both made a decision to become animators while used using the Kansas Town Film Ad Organization. He co-created Mickey Mouse and Oswald the Lucky Rabbit with Disney. He produced the Academy Award-nominated unique results for Alfred Hitchcock’s horror film “The Parrots” from 1963. He was the daddy of Disney story Don Iwerks as well as the grandfather of documentary film maker Leslie Iwerks. He collaborated with Bob Clampett on two “Looney Music” cartoons while under agreement with Leon Schlesinger Productions in 1937.

Quick Facts


Full Name Ub Iwerks
Date Of Birth March 24, 1901
Died July 7, 1971, Burbank, California, United States
Place Of Birth Missouri
Profession Cartoonist
Nationality American
Spouse Mildred Sarah Henderson
Children Don Iwerks, Dave Iwerks
Parents Laura May Iwwerks, Eert Ubbe Iwwerks
Awards Academy Award for Best Technical Achievement, Academy Scientific and Technical Award (Award of Merit)
Nominations Academy Award for Best Visual Effects
Movies Steamboat Willie, Plane Crazy, The Hand Behind The Mouse: The Ub Iwerks Story, Balloon Land, Fiddlesticks, The Gallopin' Gaucho, Sinbad the Sailor, Alice's Wonderland, The Opry House, Hell's Bells, The Reluctant Dragon, Little Black Sambo, The Karnival Kid, The Barnyard Battle, Arctic Antics, Jack Frost, Oh What a Knight, Springtime, Porky and Gabby, Soda Squirt, Cuckoo Murder Case, Dick Whittington's Cat, Movie Mad, Room Runners, The Office Boy, Ragtime Romeo, The Village Smitty, The Soup Song, The New Car, The Village Specialist, Puddle Pranks, Laughing Gas, Techno-Cracked, Little Orphan Willie, The Village Barber, Jail Birds, What a Life, The Milkman, The Bully, Insultin' the Sultan, Flying Fists, The Goal Rush, Phoney Express, Coo Coo the Magician, Stormy Seas, Nurse Maid, Bulloney, The Music Lesson, Chinaman's Chance, Africa Squeaks, Porky's Super Service
Star Sign Aries

  • Facts
  • Filmography
  • Awards
  • Salaries
  • Quotes
  • Trademarks
  • Pictures

#Fact
1The 1964 film "Mary Poppins," Ub Iwerks modified the technicolor camera that was used to mix live action and animation, also known as the "Sodium Vapor Process." This camera had a prism installed to separate the sodium vapor lights from the rest of the color. Ub Iwerks, Petro Vlahos & Wadsworth E. Pohl received an Academy Award in 1965 for its use in Mary Poppins. Alfred Hitchcock went to Walt Disney asking to borrow Ub to help make the film "The Birds." In 1964 Ub was nominated for a Academy Award for "Best Effects, Special Visual Effects", but lost to the film Cleopatra.
2The DC Comics supervillian Dr. U'bx was named in his honor.
3Biography in: "American National Biography." Supplement 1, pp. 290-291. New York: Oxford University Press, 2002.
4Walt Disney referred to him as "the greatest animator in the world."
5He was regarded as a technical genius in the areas of animation and special visual effects. He never finished high school.
6The sodium-vapor process, developed in England by the J. Arthur Rank Organization, was brought to the United States by Iwerks where he made further refinements.
7He was in charge of Research and Development at the Disney studio.
8In addition to his skill as an animator, he became an expert in special visual effects. Outside of Disney, he did special effects work on such films as Alfred Hitchcock's The Birds (1963).
9He developed new apparatuses and processes for the photography and optical compositing necessary to combine live-action and animated characters in films such as The Three Caballeros (1944), Song of the South (1946), and Mary Poppins (1964).
10In 1930, he left Disney to start his own animation studio. Among the creations of his own studio was the "Flip the Frog" series.
11He co-created (with Walt Disney), designed, and animated the first version of Mickey Mouse in 1928.
12Ub Iwerks widow, Mildred, died in 1992.
13Father of Dave Iwerks. Grandfather of Leslie Iwerks.
14He was known as the fastest animator in the business in early sound period. He animated Mickey's first short, Plane Crazy (1928) by himself in only two weeks (700 animation drawings a day!).
15Iwerks' unusual name is of Dutch origin.
16He was honored as a Disney Legend in 1989.
17Father of Don Iwerks.


Animation Department

Animation Department

TitleYearStatusCharacter
The Barn Dance1929Short animator
The Gallopin' Gaucho1928Short animator
Steamboat Willie1928Short animator - uncredited
Sleigh Bells1928Short animator
Tall Timber1928Short animator - uncredited
Poor Papa1928Short animator
Oh What a Knight1928Short animator - uncredited
Plane Crazy1928Short animator
Ozzie of the Mounted1928Short animator - uncredited
Ride 'Em Plowboy1928Short animator
Sagebrush Sadie1928Short animator
Bright Lights1928Short animator
Africa Before Dark1928Short animator
Rickety Gin1927Short animator
The Banker's Daughter1927Short animator
The Ocean Hop1927Short animator
All Wet1927/IIShort animator
Great Guns1927/IShort animator
Trolley Troubles1927Short animator
Alice in the Big League1927Short animator
Alice the Beach Nut1927Short animator
Alice the Whaler1927Short animator
Alice's Medicine Show1927Short animator
Alice in the Klondike1927Short animator
Alice's Channel Swim1927Short animator
Alice's Picnic1927Short animator
Alice's Knaughty Knight1927Short animator
Alice's Three Bad Eggs1927Short animator
Alice's Circus Daze1927Short animator
Alice's Auto Race1927Short animator
Alice in the Alps1927Short animator
Alice the Collegiate1927Short animator
Alice at the Rodeo1927Short animator
Alice at the Carnival1927Short animator
Alice Foils the Pirates1927Short animator
Alice the Golf Bug1927Short animator
Alice the Lumberjack1926Short animator
Alice's Brown Derby1926Short animator
Alice's Spanish Guitar1926Short animator
Alice Helps the Romance1926Short animator
Alice Cuts the Ice1926Short animator
Alice the Fire Fighter1926Short animator
Alice in the Wooly West1926Short animator
Alice's Monkey Business1926Short animator
Alice Charms the Fish1926Short animator
Alice's Orphan1926Short animator
Alice's Mysterious Mystery1926Short animator
Alice's Little Parade1926Short animator
Alice's Balloon Race1926Short animator
Alice on the Farm1926Short animator
Alice in the Jungle1925Short animator
Alice Rattled by Rats1925Short animator
Alice Plays Cupid1925Short animator
Alice the Jail Bird1925Short animator
Alice Chops the Suey1925Short animator
Alice's Tin Pony1925Short animator
Alice Picks the Champ1925Short animator
Alice Wins the Derby1925Short animator
Alice Is Stage Struck1925Short animator
Alice Loses Out1925Short animator
Alice's Egg Plant1925Short animator
Alice Solves the Puzzle1925Short animator
Alice Gets Stung1925Short animator
Alice the Toreador1925Short animator
Alice Cans the Cannibals1925Short animator
Alice the Piper1924Short animator
Alice and the Three Bears1924Short animator
Alice Hunting in Africa1924Short animator
Alice Gets in Dutch1924Short animator
Alice the Peacemaker1924Short animator
Alice's Day at Sea1924Short animator
Alice's Wonderland1923Short animator
Cinderella1922Short animator
Little Boy Blue1936Short animator - as U.B. Iwerks
Tom Thumb1936Short animator - uncredited
Simple Simon1935Short animator - uncredited
Sinbad the Sailor1935Short animator - as U.B. Iwerks
Mary's Little Lamb1935Short animator
Little Black Sambo1935Short animator - as U.B. Iwerks
Bulloney1933Short animator - uncredited
The Music Lesson1932Short animator
The Goal Rush1932Short animator
Circus1932Short animator
Stormy Seas1932Short animator
Puppy Love1932Short animator
Fire! Fire!1932Short animator
The Milkman1932Short animator
Spooks1931Short animator
Africa Squeaks1931Short animator
Jail Birds1931Short animator
The Village Specialist1931Short animator
Movie Mad1931Short animator
The New Car1931Short animator
Ragtime Romeo1931Short animator
Laughing Gas1931Short animator
The Soup Song1931Short animator
Minnie's Yoo Hoo1930Short animator - uncredited
Puddle Pranks1930Short animator - uncredited
Cuckoo Murder Case1930Short animator
The Village Barber1930Short animator - uncredited
Flying Fists1930Short animator
Little Orphan Willie1930Short animator
Fiddlesticks1930Short animator - as 'Ub' Iwerks
The Cactus Kid1930Short animator - uncredited
The Merry Dwarfs1929Short animator - uncredited
The Haunted House1929Short animator - uncredited
Hell's Bells1929Short animator
Jungle Rhythm1929Short animator
Springtime1929Short animator - uncredited
El terrible toreador1929Short animator - uncredited
The Skeleton Dance1929Short animator
Wild Waves1929Short animator
The Jazz Fool1929Short animator - uncredited
The Plowboy1929Short animator - uncredited
Mickey's Follies1929Short animator - uncredited
Mickey's Choo-Choo1929Short animator - uncredited
The Karnival Kid1929Short animator - uncredited
The Barnyard Battle1929Short animator - uncredited
When the Cat's Away1929Short animator
The Opry House1929/IShort animator - uncredited

Director

Director

TitleYearStatusCharacter
Stop That Tank!1942Documentary short uncredited
The Reluctant Dragon1941/Icartoon sequences, uncredited
A Busy Day1940Short
Baby Checkers1940Short
Beauty Shoppe1940Short
Wise Owl1940Short
Ye Olde Swap Shoppe1940Short
The Egg Hunt1940Short
Blackboard Revue1940Short
Crop Chasers1939Short
Nell's Yells1939Short
The Gorilla Hunt1939Short
Midnight Frolics1938Short
Snowtime1938Short
The Frog Pond1938Short
Showtime1938Short
The Horse on the Merry-Go-Round1938Short
Porky's Super Service1937Short
Foxy Pup1937Short
Porky and Gabby1937Short
Merry Mannequins1937Short
Scrappy's Trip to Mars1937Short
Skeleton Frolics1937Short
Two Lazy Crows1936Short
Happy Days1936Short uncredited
Little Boy Blue1936Short uncredited
Dick Whittington's Cat1936Short uncredited
Tom Thumb1936Short uncredited
Ali Baba1936Short uncredited
Humpty Dumpty1935Short uncredited
Simple Simon1935Short uncredited
See How They Won1935Short
Balloon Land1935Short uncredited
Sinbad the Sailor1935Short uncredited
Summertime1935Short uncredited
Mary's Little Lamb1935Short uncredited
Old Mother Hubbard1935Short uncredited
The Brementown Musicians1935Short uncredited
Little Black Sambo1935Short uncredited
The Microbe Army1935Short
Jack Frost1934Short uncredited
Don Quixote1934Short uncredited
The King's Tailor1934Short uncredited
The Headless Horseman1934Short as Ub. Iwerks
Viva Willie1934Short uncredited
The Good Scout1934Short uncredited
Aladdin and the Wonderful Lamp1934Short uncredited
Jungle Jitters1934Short uncredited
Cave Man1934Short uncredited
The Queen of Hearts1934Short
Rasslin' Round1934Short uncredited
Reducing Creme1934Short uncredited
Puss in Boots1934Short
Insultin' the Sultan1934Short uncredited
The Brave Tin Soldier1934Short uncredited
The Little Red Hen1934Short uncredited
Robin Hood, Jr.1934Short uncredited
Hell's Fire1934Short uncredited
Davy Jones' Locker1933Short uncredited
Jack and the Beanstalk1933Short uncredited
Stratos-Fear1933Short uncredited
Spite Flight1933Short uncredited
Soda Squirt1933Short
Play Ball1933Short uncredited
Pale-Face1933Short
Chinaman's Chance1933Short
Bulloney1933Short
Techno-Cracked1933Short uncredited
Flip's Lunch Room1933Short uncredited
The Air Race1933Short uncredited
Coo Coo the Magician1933Short uncredited
Funny Face1932Short uncredited
Nurse Maid1932Short uncredited
The Music Lesson1932Short uncredited
Phoney Express1932Short uncredited
The Goal Rush1932Short uncredited
Circus1932Short
Stormy Seas1932Short uncredited
Room Runners1932Short
The Office Boy1932Short uncredited
'The Bully'1932Short uncredited
School Days1932/IShort uncredited
Puppy Love1932Short uncredited
What a Life1932Short
Fire! Fire!1932Short uncredited
The Milkman1932Short uncredited
Spooks1931Short uncredited
Africa Squeaks1931Short uncredited
Jail Birds1931Short uncredited
The Village Specialist1931Short uncredited
Movie Mad1931Short uncredited
The New Car1931Short uncredited
Ragtime Romeo1931Short uncredited
Laughing Gas1931Short uncredited
The Soup Song1931Short uncredited
The Village Smitty1931Short uncredited
Puddle Pranks1930Short
Cuckoo Murder Case1930Short uncredited
The Village Barber1930Short
Flying Fists1930Short uncredited
Little Orphan Willie1930Short uncredited
Fiddlesticks1930Short uncredited
Arctic Antics1930Short
Autumn1930Short uncredited
Summer1930Short uncredited
Hell's Bells1929Short
The Jazz Fool1929Short
Mickey's Follies1929Short
Mickey's Choo-Choo1929Short
The Karnival Kid1929Short
The Barnyard Battle1929Short
The Opry House1929/IShort
The Gallopin' Gaucho1928Short
Steamboat Willie1928Short
Plane Crazy1928Short

Producer

Producer

TitleYearStatusCharacter
Phoney Express1932Short producer
The Goal Rush1932Short producer
Circus1932Short producer
Stormy Seas1932Short producer
Room Runners1932Short producer
The Office Boy1932Short producer
'The Bully'1932Short producer
School Days1932/IShort producer
Puppy Love1932Short producer
What a Life1932Short producer - uncredited
Fire! Fire!1932Short producer
The Milkman1932Short producer
Spooks1931Short producer
Africa Squeaks1931Short producer
Jail Birds1931Short producer
The Village Specialist1931Short producer
Movie Mad1931Short producer
The New Car1931Short producer
Ragtime Romeo1931Short producer
Laughing Gas1931Short producer
The Soup Song1931Short producer
The Village Smitty1931Short producer
Puddle Pranks1930Short producer
Cuckoo Murder Case1930Short producer
The Village Barber1930Short producer
Flying Fists1930Short producer - as 'Ub' Iwerks
Little Orphan Willie1930Short producer
Fiddlesticks1930Short producer - as 'Ub' Iwerks
A Busy Day1940Short producer
Baby Checkers1940Short producer
Beauty Shoppe1940Short producer
Ye Olde Swap Shoppe1940Short producer - uncredited
Blackboard Revue1940Short producer - uncredited
Crop Chasers1939Short producer
Nell's Yells1939Short producer
The Gorilla Hunt1939Short producer
Midnight Frolics1938Short producer
The Frog Pond1938Short producer
Showtime1938Short producer
The Horse on the Merry-Go-Round1938Short producer
Foxy Pup1937Short producer
Merry Mannequins1937Short producer
Scrappy's Trip to Mars1937Short producer
Skeleton Frolics1937Short producer
Two Lazy Crows1936Short producer
Happy Days1936Short producer
Little Boy Blue1936Short producer
Dick Whittington's Cat1936Short producer
Tom Thumb1936Short producer
Ali Baba1936Short producer
Humpty Dumpty1935Short producer
Simple Simon1935Short producer
Balloon Land1935Short producer
The Three Bears1935Short producer
Sinbad the Sailor1935Short producer
Summertime1935Short producer
Mary's Little Lamb1935Short producer
Old Mother Hubbard1935Short producer
The Brementown Musicians1935Short producer
Little Black Sambo1935Short producer - uncredited
The Microbe Army1935Short executive producer
Jack Frost1934Short producer
Don Quixote1934Short producer
The King's Tailor1934Short producer
The Headless Horseman1934Short producer
Viva Willie1934Short producer
The Good Scout1934Short producer
Aladdin and the Wonderful Lamp1934Short producer
Jungle Jitters1934Short producer
Cave Man1934Short producer
The Queen of Hearts1934Short producer
Rasslin' Round1934Short producer
Reducing Creme1934Short producer
Puss in Boots1934Short producer
Insultin' the Sultan1934Short producer
The Brave Tin Soldier1934Short producer
The Little Red Hen1934Short producer
Robin Hood, Jr.1934Short producer
Hell's Fire1934Short producer
Willie Whopper1933Short producer
Davy Jones' Locker1933Short producer
Jack and the Beanstalk1933Short producer
Stratos-Fear1933Short producer
Spite Flight1933Short producer
Soda Squirt1933Short producer - uncredited
Play Ball1933Short producer
Pale-Face1933Short producer - uncredited
Chinaman's Chance1933Short producer - uncredited
Bulloney1933Short producer - uncredited
Techno-Cracked1933Short producer
Flip's Lunch Room1933Short producer
The Air Race1933Short producer
Coo Coo the Magician1933Short producer
Funny Face1932Short producer
Nurse Maid1932Short producer
The Music Lesson1932Short producer

Visual Effects

Visual Effects

TitleYearStatusCharacter
Mary Poppins1964special processes - uncredited
The Sword in the Stone1963special processes - uncredited
The Birds1963special photographic advisor
The Parent Trap1961special photographic effects
101 Dalmatians1961special processes
Jungle Cat1959Documentary special processes
Sleeping Beauty1959special processes
White Wilderness1958Documentary special processes
Walt Disney's Wonderful World of Color1954-1957TV Series special processes - 30 episodes
Johnny Tremain1957special processes
Disneyland, U.S.A.1956Documentary short special processes
Westward Ho, the Wagons!1956special processes
Secrets of Life1956Documentary special process
The Hardy Boys: The Mystery of the Applegate Treasure1956TV Series special processes - 19 episodes
Davy Crockett and the River Pirates1956special processes
The Great Locomotive Chase1956special processes
Men Against the Arctic1955Documentary short special process
The Mickey Mouse Club1955TV Series special processes - 3 episodes
The African Lion1955Documentary special process
Lady and the Tramp1955special processes
Davy Crockett: King of the Wild Frontier1955special processes
20,000 Leagues Under the Sea1954special processes
The Vanishing Prairie1954Documentary special process
The Living Desert1953Documentary special process
Prowlers of the Everglades1953Documentary short special process
Bear Country1953Short documentary special process
Peter Pan1953special processes
Water Birds1952Documentary short special process
The Olympic Elk1952Documentary short special process
Nature's Half Acre1951Documentary short special process
Alice in Wonderland1951special processes
One Hour in Wonderland1950TV Special special processes
Beaver Valley1950Documentary short special process
Cinderella1950special processes
The Adventures of Ichabod and Mr. Toad1949special processes
So Dear to My Heart1948special process
Melody Time1948special processes
Fun & Fancy Free1947process effects
Song of the South1946special processes
Make Mine Music1946process effects
The Three Caballeros1944process effects: live action sequences

Special Effects

Special Effects

TitleYearStatusCharacter
Walt Disney's Wonderful World of Color1963-1965TV Series special effects - 8 episodes
The Three Lives of Thomasina1963special effects
Ten Who Dared1960special effects
Pollyanna1960special effects
Toby Tyler, or Ten Weeks with a Circus1960special effects
Perri1957special effects
The Reluctant Dragon1941/Ispecial effects

Writer

Writer

TitleYearStatusCharacter
The Microbe Army1935Short
Steamboat Willie1928Short uncredited

Actor

Actor

TitleYearStatusCharacter
Alice's Wonderland1923Short

Cinematographer

Cinematographer

TitleYearStatusCharacter
Alice's Wonderland1923Short as Ubbe Iwerks

Archive Footage

Archive Footage

TitleYearStatusCharacter
From Kansas City to Hollywood2005Video documentary shortHimself (uncredited)
The Hand Behind the Mouse: The Ub Iwerks Story1999DocumentaryHimself

Won awards

Won awards

YearAwardCeremonyNominationMovieAward shared with
1978Winsor McCay AwardAnnie Awards
1965Academy Award of MeritAcademy Awards, USA· Petro Vlahos
1960Technical Achievement AwardAcademy Awards, USAFor the design of an improved optical printer for special effects and matte shots.

Nominated awards

Nominated awards

YearAwardCeremonyNominationMovieAward shared with
1964OscarAcademy Awards, USABest Effects, Special Visual EffectsThe Birds (1963)


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