Wetzel Whitaker biography

Wetzel Whitaker

Animator, Film director

1908 – 1985

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Who was Wetzel Whitaker?

"Judge" Wetzel Orson Whitaker was a prominent Mormon filmmaker. Most of the films he was involved in, such as The Windows in Heaven, Johnny Lingo and Pioneers in Petticoats, were made in cooperation with his brother Scott Whitaker. The two of them ran the BYU Motion Picture Studio during this time, receiving commission from The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints to make films.

Whitaker was born in Heber City, Utah and grew up primarily in Utah and Colorado. His nickname came from his brother calling him "Judge", comparing him to the local justice of the peace. He attended the Art Institute of Chicago and became the Art Director for the St. Louis Times. In the 1930s he moved to California, where he worked many years for Walt Disney as an animator.

From 1953 on, Whitaker directed the BYU Motion Picture Studio. In 1971 he was given an honorary doctorate by BYU and he retired from his work at the motion picture studio in 1974. Judge was succeeded by Jesse Stay, his Assistant Director.

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Born
Sep 30, 1908
Heber
Also known as
  • Wetzel Orson Whitaker
  • Judge Whitaker
  • Wetzel O. Whitaker
  • "Judge" Wetzel Orson Whitaker
  • Judge
  • W. O. Whitaker
Siblings
Spouses
Religion
  • Mormon
Nationality
  • United States of America
Profession
Died
Nov 1, 1985
Murray

Submitted
on July 23, 2013

Citation

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