The Los Angeles Breakfast Club will present a talk by animation legend Willie Ito on Wednesday, Nov. 29, from 7 to 9 a.m. at Friendship Auditorium, 3201 Riverside Dr. (at Los Feliz Boulevard) in Griffith Park.

Ito will share stories from both his 50-year career in animation — he worked on classics such as “Lady and the Tramp,” “The Jetsons,” “The Flintstones,” “The Yogi Bear Show” and “Josie and the Pussycats” — and his childhood years spent in the Topaz concentration camp in Utah during World War II.

In 1954, Ito was hired by Walt Disney Studios to assist on “Lady and the Tramp,” where his very first assignment was the iconic spaghetti-eating scene. He later moved on to Warner Bros. Cartoons, where he worked on the Coyote and Roadrunner series as well as Bugs Bunny and Daffy Duck cartoons. In the 1960s, Ito joined the newly formed Hanna-Barbera studio and became a part of the “Jetsons” team.

After 14 years at Hanna-Barbera, Ito formed his own company, Aloha Productions, to create commercials and cartoons, until Disney lured him back in 1976 with the role of staff comic strip artist. He eventually rose to the title of director of character art international and traveled around the world to mentor and oversee Disney artists.

Ito’s now retired and writes and illustrates children books about the wartime incarceration of Japanese Americans.


Ticket sales close 48 hours before breakfast. Non-members are $25 and members receive a 25% discount when logged into their Membership Portal. You must arrive between 6:45 and 7 a.m. sharp. Doors close at 7:15 a.m. Your admission includes a buffet breakfast, enjoyment of 98-year-old club traditions, plus a special presentation from the Speaker of the Week.

Health and safety: Surgical disposable face masks or medical-grade masks (i.e., KN95, KF94, N95) are strongly recommended when not eating or drinking, especially during the cold and flu season, and will be provided on request.

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