Born: 1892 August 16 in Union City, New Jersey, United States
Died: 1983 October 28 in Fort Lee, New Jersey, United States
Biography: Otto Messmer was an artist working in animation, newspaper strips, and comic books in the first half of the last century.
In his early twenties, Messmer had a strip running in the New York World and he collaborated on an animated series based on the life of President Teddy Roosevelt.
Messmer served in World War I and returned to animation when he came home. In 1919 he produced his best-known creation, Felix the Cat, in the cartoon “Feline Follies”.
He was working for Pat Sullivan’s studio and only Sullivan’s name appeared on the cartoons. Felix was the first cartoon character created and developed for the screen, as well as the first to become a licensed, mass-merchandised character.
He also drew the “Felix the Cat” newspaper strip from its beginning until 1954. New Felix cartoons were produced until 1931, but the character did not make the transition to sound film.
In the 1940s and 1950s, Messmer produced Felix comic books for companies such as Dell Comics, Toby Press, and Harvey Comics.
Notes: To be confirmed against the Who's Who entry.
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