In March 1952 Walt Disney spent three days with Ken Annakin, visiting Sherwood Forest and looking over a number of castles in the
So after leaving Nottingham, he said to Carmen Dillon, the art director and Perce Pearce, “I want this movie to be the truest rendering of ‘merrie old
It was Carman who suggested Peter Ellenshaw, “he is a clever young painter,” he said, “and has the backing of his father-in-law, Poppa Day, who has been doing optical tricks and matte’s with Korda for many years.”
“Sounds good,” said Walt, “we’ll paint all the long shots of medieval
Poppa Day had passed on his knowledge to Peter Ellenshaw, he had taught him how to give depth to a painting, the illusion of movement in a glass shot and how to marry special effects with painted mattes. But it was Walt Disney himself who taught Ellenshaw the use of false perspective and the importance of atmosphere in a painting.
This resulted in Peter Ellenshaw painting twelve matte shots for the movie and later becoming the matte genius of the world. He eventually moved from
© Clement of the Glen 2006-2007