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Birth of An Industry: Blackface Minstrelsy and the Rise of American Animation

Nicholas Sammond, Author

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Labor, Page 98

In Ko-Ko Needles The Boss (1927), a rotoscoped Dave Fleischer as Ko-Ko the Clown does a battle with Ko-Ko's putative creator, Max Fleischer

At first, the Fleischer studio managed with only ten additional workers. Though its staff expanded in 1923, the Fleischers continued to perform the labor of animation on screen as the product of a lone craftsman, usually Dave or Max. Workplace tensions between artists and managers were often expressed on screen as a struggle between the producer and the product regularly in early cartoons, as animated images or characters drawn by artists constantly threatened to escape the drawn world and create havoc in the world of the animator. 
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