Veteran animator Euan Frizzell brought his artist's hands to almost every form of the genre, from traditional cartoons to stop motion to computer generated animation. Along the way, he animated stories by local legends Margaret Mahy and Lynley Dodd, and directed and animated for Bugs Bunny, Road Runner and Fred Flintstone. Frizzell died on 23 September 2012.

Computers have opened up new areas that animation can be used in. Aside from traditional 2-D animation, which is still hand-drawn, everything else has changed and is still changing quite rapidly. Euan Frizzell

Margaret Mahy's Rambustifications

2012 - 2013, Animator


Asylum Pieces

2010, Animator



2009, Animator


Under The Mountain

2009, Animator - Film

Maurice Gee's classic novel about aliens running amok under Auckland has rarely gone out of print, since its debut in 1979. First adapted as a memorable 80s TV series, this movie retooling sees teenage twins Theo and Rachel stumbling across shape-shifting creatures that are hiding beneath Auckland's extinct volcanoes. American showbiz magazine Variety praised Black Sheep director Jonathan King's "solid helming", and the excellent acting of Sam Neill as the mysterious Mr Jones. Oliver Driver plays lead villain Mr Wilberforce, under four hours of make-up.  


My Senator and Me

2008, Animator


A Tall Long Faced Tale

2008 - 2008, Animator - Television

In this 70-minute documentary children's author Margaret Mahy is interviewed at her Governors Bay home by friend and fellow author Elizabeth Knox. Knox is aided and abetted by Mahy's beloved storybook characters who put her on the spot about their origins. In this excerpt the famous lion from A Lion in the Meadow thanks her for making him yellow, and Mahy talks about eating porridge thrice a day as a young solo mum. Yvonne Mackay directed this seamless mix of real life and Euan Frizzell-created animation. The doco screened as part of TV ONE's NZ Festival series.


Dinosaur Bones

2007, Animator


The Return

2007, Animator


Here to Stay - The English

2007, Photo Effects - Television

Actor Michael Hurst began life in northern England, then moved to Christchurch at age eight. In this Here to Stay episode he looks at the pervasive elements of Kiwi culture that derive from mother England — from roasts, rugby, tea and the Mini, to a language and legal system. In this excerpt Hurst fries up fish'n'chips with Ray McVinnie, stalks deer with Davey Hughes, and explores how class ideals travelled south to Mt Peel and Christ's College .... A chorus of Kiwis, including ex-All Blacks' captain David Kirk and historian Jock Phillips, ponder the influence.  



2006, Director, Animator


Small Blacks TV

2012, Animation Director


From Len Lye to Gollum - New Zealand Animators

2004, Director of Animation, Subject - Television

Presented by an animated pencil, but no less authoritative for it, From Len Lye to Gollum traces the history of Kiwi animation from birth in 1929, to the triumphs of the Lord of the Rings trilogy. The interviews and animated footage cover every base, from early pioneers (Len Lye, Disney import John Ewing) to the possibilities opened by computers (Weta Digital, Ian Taylor’s Animation Research). Along the way Euan Frizzell remembers the dog he found hardest to animate and the famous blue pencil; and Andrew Adamson speculates on how ignorance helped keep Shrek fresh.


Ella Fitzgerald - A Tale of a Vocal Virtuoso

2003, Animator


Dave 'n' Elbit

2003, Writer, Director, Animator


Shrinking Violet

2002, Animator


So You Want to be President?

2001, Animation Supervisor


The Huff’n Puff Show

2001, Director, Animator


The Irrefutable Truth about Demons

2000, Animator - Film

The debut feature from writer-director Glenn Standring, The Irrefutable Truth about Demons sees anthropologist Harry Ballard (Karl Urban) threatened by a sinister cult. With the help of beautifully bizarre Bennie (Katie Wolfe) he endures a terrifying night as his friends are killed by demons. Or are they? Hounded by the memory of his dead brother, Harry suffers beatings, heart surgery and assault by cockroaches. Variety said Demons "conjures a creepy, brooding atmosphere and enough thrills to keep young horror enthusiasts glued." The film sold to more than 45 countries.


Panda to the Rescue

1999, Animation Director


Hairy MacLary - Ten Favourite Stories

1997, Director


Hairy Maclary from Donaldson's Dairy

1996, Director, Animator - Short Film

Based on the chldren's books by Lynley Dodd, this show follows beloved dog Hairy McLary on his adventures in the neighbourhood. Opening with the theme tune familiar to many Kiwi families, this is Hairy's first screen adventure, introducing his canine mates — Schnitzel von Krumm, Bottomley Potts and Muffin McClay — and his tomcat tormenter: Scarface Claw! Actor Miranda Harcourt narrates, capturing the rhythms of Dodd's prose that have seen the stories sell in the millions since they first appeared in 1983. The 10-part series was anmated by the late Euan Frizzell.


Oscar and Friends

1996, Director


The Magical World of Margaret Mahy

1994 - 1994, Writer, Director



1992, Animator - Film

After his mother gets infected by a bite from a deadly Sumatran rat monkey, Lionel (Almighty Johnson Tim Balme, in an award-winning performance) has to contend with a plague of the living dead while attempting to woo the love of his life. Peter Jackson had already been tagged with the title  ‘The Sultan of Splatter’ after his first two features, but this was the film that confirmed it. Armed with a decent budget, he takes a Flymo to fusty 1950s New Zealand and takes cinematic gore to a whole new extreme in the process.


The Great White Man-Eating Shark

1991, Director, Animator - Short Film

Norvin has razor teeth and looks as much like a shark as any young boy can. So he makes a dorsal fin out of plastic and sets off to scare everyone out of the water. Now Norvin has the cove to himself. Or does he? The success of animator Euan Frizzell's wry adaptation of the Margaret Mahy picture book saw four more Mahy tales follow (collected on DVD as The Magical World of Margaret Mahy). Among a trio of awards, The Great White Man-Eating Shark won best children's short at the Ottawa International Animation Festival. Ray Henwood provides the droll narration.


The Dominant Species

1985, Animator, Designer - Television

The Dominant Species is a loopy look at the relationship between people and cars in 1975 Aotearoa ... from an alien's eye view. Nifty animation and FX intersperse the automotive anthropological survey of Mark IIs, VWs, anti-car activism and driveway car-washing. There's a ladykilling Jesus Christ atop-a-motorcar dream sequence; and Wagner's Ride of the Valkyries scores a rugby match traffic jam (predating Apocalypse Now's choppers). Filmhead will note the tripped out assembly is flush with formative industry talents (see Derek Morton’s guide, under the 'background' tab).  


The Wizard and his Magic Spells

1984, Director, Animator


Ready to Read

1986, Director, Animator



1983, Camera, Camera - Film

Merata Mita’s Patu! is a startling documentary record of the mass civil disobedience that took place throughout New Zealand during the winter of 1981, in protest against a South African rugby tour. Testament to the courage and faith of both the filmmakers and marchers, Patu! is a landmark in New Zealand's film history. It staunchly contradicts claims by author Gordon McLauchlan a couple of years earlier that New Zealanders were "a passionless people".


Pheno was Here

1982, Animator


Heavy Metal

1980, Animator


Good Night Old Man

1979, Director, Animator


Norman's New Garden

1979, Graphics


The Sadness of the Post Intellectual Art Critic (Art Man)

1979, Camera


Ma Olsen

1977, Camera


A Speck of Truth

1976, Director, Editor


The Peaceful Partisans of the World

1975, Director, Editor