It was on this day, August 31, 1911 American cartoon animator and film director, Frank A. Smith was born in Gladstone, Michigan,
Not having any money, Smith left home in his teens with the dream of working in films. Living as a hobo Smith made his way across country to Hollywood by hitching rides illegally on freight trains. After some time, he finally reached Hollywood in 1930.
Eventually hired as an animator at the Fleischer Studios in the late 1930s, he worked on several feature films with that studio, including Gulliver’s Travels (1939) and various short films including Popeye cartoons and Betty Boop. He then joined UPA studios, working alongside Robert Cannon, John Hubley and others. His films at UPA included the Oscar-winning Gerald McBoing-Boing (1951).
He was the father of actor and film director Charles Martin Smith, and the brother of animator/director Paul J. Smith (director) and animator Hank Smith.