A pioneering British tv series from Halas &
was titled after its
innocent clown-like star. Foo Foo's heart was stolen
by the attentions of
young Mimi, but his rival in love, Gogo, was
always coming between them.
Optimistic Foo Foo was never beaten easily,
though, and he would work around
the problem somehow, defeat the bullying Gogo,
and win his way back in to
young Mimi's affections...
Foo Foo was very obviously derived from Charlie
Chaplin's "Little Tramp". As
with many of the characters created by Halas
& Batchelor at this time, the
character design was wonderfully simple. Foo
Foo had a square body and a
circle for a head, with a bulbous nose and black
line arms and legs. He resembled
a type of upturned exclamation mark, actually.
The other characters were
depicted in a similarly beautiful, broad,
"Foo Foo" proved a hit with ITV
viewers and, evidently, tv executives because
the series was snapped up for syndication
in the USA. It thus earned itself the
distinction of being the very first British
animated series to be broadcast over
there. A comic strip version of the series
also appeared in "TV Comic".
The animated characters for "Foo Foo"
were drawn directly onto cels, rather than
being traced from paper drawings. This speeded
up the production schedule, and
significantly reduced costs. This innovative
technique was referred to as the HABA
At this time, Halas & Batchelor had put
together an extraordinary studio of talent,
who had crafted their skills on the likes
of Animal Farm. The animation
on "Foo Foo",
and indeed, right through their series and
shorts of this period, have a purity of line
and a vitality that's rarely seen in today's
Four years later, Halas & Batchelor struck
even bigger and still brighter tv gold with
that science-fiction pixie DoDo.
1960 - Edinburgh Festival Award for "Foo
Foo: The Stowaway"