Rubén Procopio

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Rubén Procopio
Biographical information
Born: November 21, 1961
Died: N/A
Nationality: Mini argentina.gif Argentinian
Occupation: Artist, Cover artist
Website: N/A

Rubén Procopio (born November 21, 1961, Buenos Aires, Argentina) is an American animation and comic book artist. Long affiliated with Walt Disney Feature Animation as an animator and sculptor, Rubén is credited with restoring the maquette process to feature animation film production in the early 1980’s. He is the founder of Masked Avenger Studios, whose clients include Walt Disney Studios, Warner Bros. Studios, New Line Cinema, Cartoon Network, Electric Tiki and DC Comics. He is known for his versatile sculpting and illustration style in both cartoony and realistic characters, with an emphasis on Disney characters, superheroes, and the masked heroes of yesteryear.


Procopio's parents, emigrants of Italian origin, came to Los Angeles when Ruben was 4 years old and his father Adolfo Procopio began an acclaimed 35 year career as a Walt Disney Imagineering sculptor whose works can be seen in Disney theme parks worldwide.

A seminal moment in Procopio's childhood was when he read Alex Toth's Super Friends DC Treasury process of TV Animation. Later in life, Toth became one of Procopio’s mentors and close friends, and Procopio now owns the original artwork of that comic book that inspired him.[citation needed]

Procopio's artistic development was guided through daily drawing assignments from his father. His early dedication and discipline earned him scholarships to Cal Arts and Art Center College of Design, followed by the opportunity to join Walt Disney Feature Animation at age 18.

At Disney Feature Animation, Procopio trained under Eric Larson, one of Disney’s legendary "Nine Old Men", and other Disney veterans. Procopio recalls, "It was such an honor to work with the artists who created this industry. I never thought it was possible to make a living doing what I really enjoyed – drawing cartoons."[citation needed]

From the 1980's through the early 2000's, Procopio contributed his varied 2D and 3D talents to more than 25 feature films produced in Disney's California and Florida studios, several of which received Academy Award nominations.

Over this time Procopio worked as an animator, artistic supervisor, head of department, character designer, story-board artist, video game supervisor, and maquette sculptor, in addition to being credited with restoring the maquette art form to the film production process. Rubén also served as an international ambassador for Disney promoting its films, and was dispatched by Roy Disney to oversee construction of the Walt Disney Monument in Madrid, Spain. His Ursula maquette from The Little Mermaid holds a place in the Smithsonian Institution permanent collection.

In 2003, inspired by his lifelong admiration of the masked heroes of yesteryear, Procopio founded Masked Avenger Studios, specializing in sculpture, animation and design. Procopio’s father Adolfo and sister Vivian also participate in Masked Avenger Studios to offer its clients more than 60 years of combined artistic experience and talent to numerous major motion picture, animation and television studios, comic book publishers, and manufacturers and designers of toys and collectible statues.

Procopio is a key contributor to the award winning Walt Disney Classics Collection, bringing Disney characters to life through three dimensional porcelain sculptures and promoting the products through gallery appearances. His works include Elastigirl and Edna Mode from The Incredibles, Ursula from Disney's The Little Mermaid, Genie from Disney's Aladdin, Chernabog and the 2006 Signature Series Magical Maelstrom from Fantasia (for which Procopio animated the brooms and pails of water before sculpting them), and several pieces in the Pirates of the Caribbean series.

Procopio also developed, with Electric Tiki Design, the Classic Heroes line of collectible statues, which includes such characters as The Phantom, The Green Hornet and Kato, Dick Tracy, The Lone Ranger, Zorro, Flash Gordon, The Tick, Mandrake the Magician, Prince Valiant, Tarzan and Lassie, in their Teeny Weeny line he has sculpted such memorable characters as Mighty Mouse, Woody Woodpecker, Popeye, Mr. Magoo, Rocky and Bullwinkle, Andy Panda and Chilly Willy, and in 2006 sculpted the new "Sergio" award for the Comic Art Professional Society, named for its founder Sergio Argonés. When Rubén steps from his sculpting table to his drawing board, he illustrates comic books and graphic novels, including works featuring his original characters Chameleonman and Goliath. Rubén’s father Adolfo and sister Vivian are the inspiration for the characters in the Chameleonman comic series.

In 2006, Procopio began to provide Phantom artwork for Moonstone Books. He has made covers, comic story art aswell as illustrations for all the prose stories published in The Phantom Chronicles. For the latter, an Artist's Annex was published detailing Procopio's work on the illustrations.

Procopio is fluent in Spanish and Italian, and enjoys international correspondence with artist community colleagues and fans. His sister Vivian Procopio, who contributes her design and project management talents, also enjoyed a long career as a Research Administrator in the Walt Disney Feature Animation Research Library.

Phantom Works by Rubén Procopio


Moonstone stories

Comics and graphic stories

# Title Writer Artist
1 "Five Days of the Dragon Chapter 1" Marz Procopio

Prose stories

# Title Writer Illustrator
1 "White Knight" Bullock Procopio
2 "The Ghost Who Dies" C. Griffith, S. Griffith Procopio
3 "Debt of Honor" Henderson Procopio
4 "The Fastest Animal" Fortier Procopio
5 "Truth or Consequences" Alexander Procopio
6 "Stranger from Walker's Table" Murray Procopio
7 "The Servants of Set" Oliveri Procopio
8 "Here, There, Everywhere" Kilpatrick Procopio
9 "Bad Medicine" Bullock, Rhoades Procopio
10 "House of Ghosts" Bishop Procopio
11 "The Promise" Sauvé Procopio
12 "Not That Kind of Girl" Robbins Procopio
13 "Lessons Learned" Starr Procopio
14 "Reflection of the Ghost" Wickline Procopio
15 "A Ghost Without Yesterday" Michelinie Procopio
16 "The Hungry Swamp" Powell Procopio
17 "The Ghosts Who Walk" Gardner Procopio


External links

Wikipedia-logo.png This article, in the version of May 28, 2008, includes information from Wikipedia: Rubén Procopio (comics).