Friday, April 17, 2009



You have to be really REALLY old (like Bill Crider) to know who Bobby Driscoll was. For noir fans he was the kid in The Window one of the truly great Bs. He was my first cousin, my mother and his father the youngest of a large family so they were very close. It was cool being his cousin when he won the first kids' Academy Award. A few short years later it wasn't so cool when he started getting arrested on various charges.

I found this drawing by accident. It was done by a man named Pete Emslie. He has a site you definitely should spend some time on. The drawing depicts Bobby and British actor Robert Newton. As Emslie points out in the full piece, they both had sad ends. Bobby and Newton were in "Treasure Island," a film that holds up well today.

Pete Emslie:

"Today is the birthday of Bobby Driscoll, who had a memorable career as an impish child actor, but whose life ended all too soon and tragically in 1968 at the young age of 31. After some years of drug and alcohol abuse as a young adult, Bobby was finally able to clean himself up, yet found himself shunned by the entertainment industry and unable to get work. How different it is nowadays, when even repeat offenders like Robert Downey Jr. seem to get welcomed back into Hollywood's arms for an infinite number of second chances. Bobby Driscoll was never given a second chance though, and he died impoverished after having shown such promise so early on in his young life."

for the rest go here:
http://cartooncave.blogspot.com/

The man who drew this is very talented. Scroll through his whole site.

Pete Emslie:
I've worked as a cartoonist in the print medium for nearly 30 years. Currently, I continue to freelance, as well as teach in the Animation program at Sheridan College. Though my feet may be physically planted in this 21st century, my mind prefers to take up residence in the 1960's - a time when everything in commercial art and popular entertainment still made sense to me. It was Sinatra's world and I'm still livin' in it. Welcome to The Cartoon Cave...

http://cartooncave.blogspot.com/

6 comments:

Bill Crider said...

I'm so old that I saw Treasure Island on its original theatrical release.

Todd Mason said...

Wow. It seems like the youth of your generation in your family didn't have such a good time no matter where they were.

pattinase (abbott) said...

Astonishing how many child actors end up tragic figures. And yet, there are still parents who line up in casting offices with their six month olds.

Todd Mason said...

The parents, as Harry Shearer makes clear whenever the subject comes up, are at least half the problem. (He seems permanently grateful that his parents never let him become a full-time professional child actor, despite having roles on the likes of THE JACK BENNY SHOW and doing Eddie Haskell in the BEAVER pilot.)

Ed Gorman said...

Hey Bill--you and me both. I saw it when it came out and then Bobby sent us (or his dad actually) all kinds of stuff from the movie. I made a dashing pirate let me tell ya.

Anonymous said...

Ed there's a great wikipedia page on Bobby. Lots of links.
Terry Butler