One of the great pleasures writing a history of the New York animation studios is finally doing some appreciative analysis of John Gentilella, or “Johnny Gent,” and his work. Admittedly, it will be brief. He was a relatively minor player—he worked at a higher skill level than any of his Famous Studios colleagues on increasingly mediocre cartoons—but he was an amazing repository of knowledge on the inner workings and personalities at Van Beuren, Terry’s, and Famous. It’ll be nice to have his memories give color to the larger story.
Bob Jaques called my attention to a story drawn by Gent for Giggle Comics #4 (January 1944). Gent said he recalled doing a few stories, and it’s easy to see why his memory was fuzzy. The art here reflects a bit of his animation’s dynamism in the posing, but largely looks like it was dashed out in a lunch hour between working on Popeye. But it’s still his, and to me (and maybe only me and Bob), anything Gent did is of interest.