The origin of Uncle Scrooge
Daniel van Eijmeren
dve at kabelfoon.nl
Fri Sep 19 12:46:57 CEST 2003
TRISTAN BREIJER, 15-09-2003:
> I recently saw a WWII propaganda cartoon by Disney from 1943 which
> features a character who looked remarkably like Uncle Scrooge, he
> was wearing a kilt and spoke with a Scottish accent had sideburns
> and a cane.
> Does anyone know if Carl Barks created this character or maybe got
> his inspiration from this cartoon?
That must be "The Spirit of '43", of which two pictures are shown in
Marcia Blitz's book on Donald Duck.
As far as I know, this question has never really been answered.
Please correct me if I'm wrong.
I don't know when the cartoon was released. If it was in 1943, or 1944,
there might a chance that Barks was still working at the Disney Studio,
when the cartoon was being created and produced.
According to the Carl Barks Library (07B-430), Barks left the Studio on
November 6, 1942. Cartoons to which he contributed, appeared up to 1944.
So, I guess that there might at least be a chance that Barks has seen
something of "The Spirit of '43", before he left the Studio.
Any comments on this are welcome. And again, I might be wrong. However,
I've always thought that the looks of this Scrooge-like character would
have prevented Barks from getting a copyright on Scrooge. That Scottish
duck and Scrooge McDuck look very similar to me, even though it might
just be a coincidence. (The other duck looks a bity like the early
Gladstone to me, by the way.)
But even IF Barks would somehow have used this cartoon as inspiration
for his characters, it would just have been a little spark. Opposed to
some similarities, there are MANY differences. Just try to imagine how
Donald Duck would have been if Barks never existed.
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