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TV Show Name: The Snowman
Studio: TVC London
Release Date(s): December 26, 1982
MPAA Rating: Not Rated
A man named James recalls the wonderful adventure he had with a snowman one evening as a child. Telling the tale of a cold winter’s night, the snowman shows the boy the wonder in the world and gives him memories that last a lifetime.
The Snowman was a British animated special directed by Dianne Jackson and Jimmy T. Murakami and based on the 1978 illustrated book by Raymond Briggs. It features the song “Walking in the Air” by Peter Auty (it was later covered more famously by Aled Jones). The movie was praised by critics and nominated for an Academy Award for Best Short Animated Film.
The Snowman is a very simple, nice tale. There are two different versions of the intro. One version which primarily aired in England had the author Raymond Briggs doing the introduction. In the United States where the show cartoon ran on PBS, David Bowie was tapped to introduce the tale. Other than the intro, be it David Bowie or Raymond Briggs, there is virtually no dialogue for the half-hour program.
The cartoon looks great. The style gives a nice watercolor painted feel and without dialogue, viewers can concentrate on the great imagery. The movie kind of reminds me of something like the famous short film The Red Balloon which also uses very little dialogue to tell a nice story.The original story left out the Santa Claus portion and I kind of wish that it had left it out here (leaving the story more of a winter’s tale). The story has such a nice feel that the Santa Claus part seems a bit unnecessary, but does give it a bit more direction.
The Snowman is a nice, great looking and seldom seen cartoon in the United States (it is a bit of an institution in England where it airs regularly). I encourage people to seek it out and enjoy the art and style of the production. In honor of its 30th anniversary in 2012, a new special The Snowman and the Snowdog is set to reunite the original team for a sequel story.