June Foray--A Remembrance by Craig Kausen


I truly feel as though we lost part of the family yesterday as June Foray, at the age of 99, passed away.Of all of the people that Chuck worked with throughout his career, June is by far the person that I became closest to.  I remember her perfectly at the premiere of "The Phantom Tollbooth" in Hollywood when I was 7 years old and my memories of her and with her only grew from there.

In an interview a couple of years ago, I was asked about June Foray and what came to mind that day was that she always said "yes" to whatever was requested.  Can you come to screening? Can you take a call from a fan? Can you do an interview?  Every time she said yes.  She was the epitome of a living, giving star in Hollywood.  Others will recap her accomplishments and certainly there are so many, but my memories of June are all about her sincerity, her passion for everyone she worked with and her genuine loving spirit she shared with everyone.

She and Chuck were dearest of friends and they had a professional love and respect for each other seldom equaled.


The last time I visited June along with my mother, we went to dinner with her, her sister, and brother-in-law at their favorite restaurant in the Valley.  We spent time at her house and then all went to dinner at 4:30 in the afternoon.  The stories, the banter, the laughter never stopped and it was a wonderful way for me to have a final personal memory of my time with her.  


I am sure, just like I still do with Chuck, I will pick up the phone to call her and regardless that she is not physically there, she, along with Chuck, will continue to live on through the wonderful memories (and a lifetime of work) she left behind.


My deepest condolences to all that loved her..

15 Years


It's hard to believe it has been 15 years and, at the same time, only 15 years since my Grandfather, Chuck Jones, passed away on February, 22, 2002.On the one hand, I still have instantaneous thoughts of calling him to ask about this or that during my day to day activities. It feels like he is still actively involved in the world, at least in my world, because so many people continue to talk about him, continue to study his vast creations, and continue to use his guidance and principles to shape their creative careers.  And I personally continue to unearth answers from him to new questions that arise from his writings, scribbled notes, an obscure interview, or a story that someone relays to me about him in a happenstance conversation.

On the other hand, the world seems to have so dramatically changed since he died in 2002, certainly my world has, that it feels like an eternity since then.

I suppose that these instantaneously contradicting perspectives of time illustrate one of his most often quoted philosophies.  Although it is apparent that the mechanics of animation is an illusion created one moment at a time, he profoundly observed that "Animation isn't the illusion of Life; it is Life."  Perhaps this contradiction of illusion and not illusion points to a piece of why he and his films, philosophies, and teachings are so timeless.

I miss him but fortunately he is timelessly with me always.