Tracy Butler‘s webcomic Lackadaisy, about a group of anthropomorphic jazz-cats running a hidden prohibition speakeasy, is now a short movie courtesy of director Fable Siegel and Iron Circus Comics. The 27-minute crowdfunded animated film released on Youtube today and appears to also be a pilot for a potentially longer project.

The Lackadaisy animated movie short features the voice talents of SungWon Cho (Mordecai Heller), Michael Kovach (Rocky Rickaby), Lisa Reimold (Ivy Pepper), Belsheber Rusape (Calvin “Freckle” McMurray), and Ashe Wagner (Mitzi May); with music provided by Sepiatonic.

Crowdfunded in 2020in just six hours – initially asking for $85,000 to fund a 10-minute animation, it made nearly four times its target ($330,256) – and managed to hit a stretch goal of a regular blog to cover the behind the scenes of the production. A trailer dropped in January 2023 and at time of writing has amassed over 895,000 views.

Lackadaisy movie

Lackadaisy is a movie adaptation of Tracy Butler’s ongoing webcomic that has been running since 2006. It is available via its own hosted website and Webtoon. Since April 2020 the comic has been on hiatus while Butler worked on developing the film but an interlude comic was posted last month on Webtoon indicating a potential return for the series. The webcomic has won multiple Web Cartoonists Choice Awards in 2007 and 2008, and in 2011 it was nominated for an Eisner for Best Digital Comic.

Creator Tracy Butler talked about the immense task behind the production of the short:

“The shift from sole writer and artist on Lackadaisy to crew member among more than 150 people working on the animated adaptation was nothing short of jarring. The amount of work laid out before us seemed impossible at times. Meanwhile, a global pandemic raged in the backdrop. It was the best time of my life.


“Throughout production, it hasn’t escaped me that I’ve been existing on some surreal plane of privilege and luck. To be surrounded by a team of incredible artists, all collaborating with me to imbue these characters, this story and setting with all of the motion, voice and music I dreamed in my head? Amazing. I hope viewers will enjoy the film even fractionally as much as I have loved making it.”

Iron Circus Comics and Iron Circus Animation head Spike Trotman said:

“Tracy Butler is a visionary cartoonist and storyteller. The Lackadaisy webcomic has been running online since 2006 and it has developed a devoted, passionate fanbase whose enthusiast support helped fund the production of this incredible short. In working to produce Lackadaisy: The Animated Short Film, our intention was to create an experience that would both thrill the comic’s devoted fans and introduce a whole new audience to the adventures of Rocky Rickaby, the fan-favorite criminal kitty, Mordecai, and the loveable cast of Lackadaisy.”

The film’s director Fable Siegel talked about what the voice cast brought to the production:

“Michael Kovach, Belsheber Rusape, and Lisa Reimold bring with them an infectious energy as chaos trio Rocky, Freckle, and Ivy. Benni and Malcolm both sell themselves so well as the hitmen duo Serafine and Nicodeme Savoy that you could swear they really were sister and brother, the perfect foils to SungWon Cho’s dry stylings as fan favorite, Mordecai Heller. Mitzi’s southern ennui is conveyed with natural smoothness by Ashe Wagner, balanced well against the uppercrust inflection of Bradley Gareth’s Wick and Valentine Stoke’s sarcastic, smooth talking Zib. And if any voice could grate parmesan via auditory oscillation alone, it would be Jason Marnocha as Viktor, the once-muscle now bartender.”


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