Learning To Draw The Genie With Legendary Disney Animator Eric Goldberg!


Hey All!

It’s pretty surreal when you grow up and have the opportunity to go to Disneyland to see Aladdin. The magic of Disneyland truly brings those animated characters to life. It’s also a full circle moment when you then have the opportunity to head to Disney Studios to meet the legendary animator Eric Goldberg (He created and animated the Genie in Aladdin). Disney’s Aladdin was my favorite growing up. I would put on full on productions of Aladdin in my grandmother’s living room. I was happy to share that info with the voice of Aladdin Scott Weinger as well. I recently had the opportunity to do this and it was an incredible experience as we heard some amazing behind the scenes stories and learned how to draw the Genie.


Eric had an incredible presentation that included lots of behind the scenes images and photos.


He also shared some amazing heartfelt stories of Robin Williams. One story in particular truly touched my heart and it was a story about when he had fallen ill during the making of Aladdin, Robin Williams pulled the who animation team together to send him a get well message. You could really get a sense of how much Robin cared for Eric and this film.


Eric also spoke about how he was honored to do the memorial image for Robin Williams when he sadly passed.


Eric had modeled the Genie after Robin and he drew it in a non-traditional Disney style.


Most Disney animated characters are based on a circle shape, The Genie is based off of this S like shape you see below. It’s one of the only Disney animated characters to not be based on a circle.  He did try different looks for the Genie, before settling on what you see today in the film.  They tried the Genie with a long beard and even horns.  Can you imagine the Genie with horns? I can’t! I think he got the Genie just right. He is pure blue awesomeness!


Eric was kind enough to show us how to draw the Genie step by step. I can’t tell you how much I enjoyed this as I grew up wanting to be a Disney animator. It’s a huge honor to learn how to draw one of my most beloved characters from the Disney animator who created him.


He wasn’t too difficult to draw surprisingly enough. You start with the S like shape which is the nose and work your way around the face with the last pieces being the beard and neck.


After we were done with the lesson, Eric lastly spoke about all the ways Robin Williams would improvise when he was recording the Genie. It really helped him as an animator to come up with some fun gags for the Genie, like the scene you see above with Aladdin and the Genie.

There was so much improvisation by Robin Williams, that for the Diamond Edition of Aladdin on Blu-Ray, out 10/13/15, they created the Genie blooper reel. Eric said he went through hours of Robin William’s recordings to put together this incredible bonus feature for the Diamond Edition Blu-ray. These are never before heard outtakes of Robin Williams as he was recording Aladdin. You have to see all the amazing things to come from the mind of Robin Williams. Some didn’t make it into the DVD, Because if you know Robin Williams, he can get a little risque!


It was so incredible to have this opportunity to meet the incredible Eric Goldberg.


It was an absolute magical day. I’ve met him before, but it’s always such an incredible experience to be in the same room as this Disney Legend. In case you didn’t know he was the voice of Tweety Bird as well! So dang awesome!


You can see Eric’s work next in the new Disney Animated film Moana. He animates the tattoos on the Hawaiian God character played by the Rock. I can’t wait to see this movie as it looks amazing. I almost cried when I saw footage of it at Disney D23!



Be sure to pick up your Diamond Edition copy of Aladdin on Blu-ray and DVD on Tuesday 10/13!