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A popular 1988 live-action/animation hybrid noir comedy directed by Robert Zemeckis and written by Jeffrey Price and Peter S. Seaman. Richard Williams was in charge of the animation. It starred Bob Hoskins, Christopher Lloyd and the voices of Charles Fleischer as Roger Rabbit and an uncredited Kathleen Turner as Jessica Rabbit. The soundtrack was composed by frequent Zemeckis collaborator Alan Silvestri. It is an adaptation of the 1981 novel Who Censored Roger Rabbit by Gary K. Wolf, but the film is far more well-known and influential in pop culture.
This film is set in an alternate 1947 Los Angeles where real life humans and animated characters, called toons, live side by side. The toons function like actors, starring in animated shorts for the humans viewing pleasure. As they are animated characters, they are not subject to the same rules as regular humans; their behavior and their abilities are influenced by whatever would be funniest in a given situation, even if said actions break laws of physics or are illogical. They also live separately from humans, in their own section of LA, called Toontown.
Eddie Valiant was a high-profile detective who was famous for working with his brother Teddy on various high-profile Toon related cases. Unfortunately, Eddie's feelings towards Toons soured when his brother was murdered by one, causing him to drink his sorrows away and renounce working with Toons. However, Eddie is soon pulled back into another Toon case when studio R. K. Maroon, concerned about one of his biggest Toon stars Roger Rabbit, hires Eddie to investigate rumors about Roger's wife Jessica who may be having an affair with Marvin Acme, the owner of Acme Corporation and Toontown. Eddie follows Jessica and gathers evidence that suggests said rumors may be true, but things become more complicated when Acme is murdered and evidence suggests Roger is responsible. Roger heads to Eddie's office, saying that he's innocent and begging for Eddie to help prove this. Roger's friend Baby Herman back him up and tells Eddie that Acme's will, which will give its recipient control of Toontown, is the most important key to this mystery. Eddie must get ahold of the will, find a way to prove Roger's innocence, and try to avoid being caught by Judge Doom, a ruthless judge with a hatred of Toons.
The film is notable for being a blend of live action and animation and is one of the most famous works to use such a technique; real life actors, primarily star Bob Hoskins, are shown extensively interacting with animated characters onscreen. As the film predated the widespread use of CGI, all of the animation was hand-drawn. This film was also, to-date, the only collaboration between Warner_Bros and Walt Disney studios whose animated characters were incorporated into the film as cameos, making the film function as a sort of crossover between the studios.
Although the movie shares the same basic premise and some of its major characters as the original novel, the movie is completely different otherwise. The film is generally more light-hearted and overtly comedic than the original novel. The characterization of the main cast was changed considerably from the book to the movie. Wolf enjoyed the film in spite of its many differences, and in his sequel novels, changed the story and characters so that they would be more consistent with the film's interpretation of the universe he created, effectively making the movie the main canon.
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