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Palgrave Macmillan

Animation and Advertising

  • Book
  • © 2019


  • Argues that animation has been fundamentally shaped by its use for advertising
  • Revises famous names of animation history in light of advertising work, including Pixar, Anime, Disney, MTV, Lotte Reiniger, George Pal
  • Examines case studies from early 20th century to present day, and across North America, Asia and Europe

Part of the book series: Palgrave Animation (PAANI)

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Table of contents (16 chapters)

  1. Digital and Contemporary


About this book

Throughout its history, animation has been fundamentally shaped by its application to promotion and marketing, with animation playing a vital role in advertising history. In individual case study chapters this book addresses, among others, the role of promotion and advertising for  anime, Disney, MTV, Lotte Reiniger, Pixar and George Pal, and highlights American, Indian, Japanese, and European examples. This collection reviews the history of famous animation studios and artists, and rediscovers overlooked ones. It situates animated advertising within the context of a diverse intermedial and multi-platform media environment, influenced by print, radio and digital practices, and expanding beyond cinema and television screens into the workplace, theme park, trade expo and urban environment. It reveals the part that animation has played in shaping our consumption of particular brands and commodities, and assesses the ways in which animated advertising has both changed and been changed by the technologies and media that supported it, including digital production and distribution in the present day. Challenging the traditional privileging of art or entertainment over commercial animation, Animation and Advertising establishes a new and rich field of research, and raises many new questions concerning particular animation and media histories, and our methods for researching them.


“Animation and Advertising is a fascinating book—and one whose time has come. Though long marginalised by animation scholars, animated advertising can now be seen as a key object linking film history to the broader history of consumerism: its techniques, technologies and spaces. This is the first book to examine such practices from a global perspective, with sixteen rich essays that cut across historical epochs, geographical borders and media boundaries.” (Michael Cowan, Professor of Film Studies, University of St Andrews, UK )

“Advertising has shaped modern media, but animation has shaped advertising in turn. From 19th century lantern slides to today’s computer graphics, animation practices, pioneers, and processes have profoundly changed how goods are sold and bought. In tracing this history across fifteen eye-opening case studies, Animation and Advertising revises the familiar narrative of art against industry, showing us that advertisers never acted outside of or against culture, but remain a vital and lasting part in it.” (Patrick Vonderau, Professor in Media and Communication Studies, Martin Luther University Halle, Germany)

“Animation and Advertising is a wonderful collection of essays. The topics covered demonstrate the diverse areas in which animation has traction and locates animated advertising at an intersection of different media, with transmedia and intermediality often at the forefront of the discussions.” (Aylish Wood, Professor of Animation and Film, University of Kent, UK)

Editors and Affiliations

  • Film Studies, University of Southampton, Southampton, UK

    Malcolm Cook

  • Film Studies, Seattle University, Seattle, USA

    Kirsten Moana Thompson

About the editors

Malcolm Cook is a Lecturer in Film at the University of Southampton, UK. His book Early British Animation: From Page and Stage to Cinema Screens was published by Palgrave Macmillan in 2018. He is currently researching the role of advertising in the history of animation, and has published several chapters on this topic, which appear in The Animation Studies Reader (2018) and Aardman Animations: Beyond Stop-Motion  (forthcoming).

Kirsten Moana Thompson is a Professor of Film Studies at Seattle University, US, and writes on animation, color and Pacific studies. Recent work includes the material color history of Disney and Faber Birren, advertising in Times Square, Ludwig Von Drake and the Disney promotional film, Egyptian sponsored film and the intersectional aesthetic surfaces of Moana. She is currently working on several new books, including Color, Visual Culture and American Cel Animation and Bubbles.

Bibliographic Information

  • Book Title: Animation and Advertising

  • Editors: Malcolm Cook, Kirsten Moana Thompson

  • Series Title: Palgrave Animation

  • DOI:

  • Publisher: Palgrave Macmillan Cham

  • eBook Packages: Literature, Cultural and Media Studies, Literature, Cultural and Media Studies (R0)

  • Copyright Information: The Editor(s) (if applicable) and The Author(s), under exclusive license to Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

  • Hardcover ISBN: 978-3-030-27938-7Published: 04 February 2020

  • Softcover ISBN: 978-3-030-27941-7Published: 05 June 2021

  • eBook ISBN: 978-3-030-27939-4Published: 17 December 2019

  • Series ISSN: 2523-8086

  • Series E-ISSN: 2523-8094

  • Edition Number: 1

  • Number of Pages: XXIII, 335

  • Number of Illustrations: 9 b/w illustrations, 20 illustrations in colour

  • Topics: Animation, Marketing

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