In 2009, the Library of Congress’s National Film Registry added the charming and innovative animated work “Little Nemo” to its list. Animated works–both long-form and short-form-are often added to the Registry. And no list that attempts to convey the depth and richness of animation can ignore the work of the great Winsor McCay.
As Daniel Eagan wrote in an essay:
“Winsor McCay was not only the most advanced animator of his time, he was also a canny marketer who knew how to promote himself and his products in newspapers, vaudeville, and on film. McCay didn’t invent comic strips, but he was the first to realize their full potential, both artistically and economically. He brought the medium to a level that illustrators today are still trying to match. Similarly, McCay wasn’t the first to perform a ‘quick sketch’ stage act. In 1894, J. Stuart Blackton drew what he called ‘Lightning Sketches,’ accompanying them with patter. But it was McCay who developed the idea into a viable touring act, working up a narrative framework that could be inserted into vaudeville programs.”
Title: “Little Nemo”
Year of Release: 1911
Year Added to the National Film Registry: 2009 (See all films added to the Registry in 2009.)
This blog post is the 21st in our “30 Years of the National Film Registry” series which was launched to celebrate the 30th anniversary of the Registry. The National Film Registry selects 25 films each year showcasing the range and diversity of American film heritage to increase awareness for its preservation. The 30th National Film Registry selections will be announced on December 12, 2018.