Richard Rich: Mormon Director
Richard Rich is an animation director, producer, and writer best known for his work as director of two Disney animated feature films, The Fox and the Hound (1981) and The Black Cauldron (1985), and his family videos. He joined Disney in 1972 and worked up from the mailroom to act as assistant director on Winnie the Pooh and Tiger Too (1974), The Rescuers (1977), Pete’s Dragon (1977), and animated short The Small One (1978). Before he left, he became the youngest director of animation features in the history of Disney at that time. He also has the distinction of being one of a few animation directors who never worked as an animator. He received attention at Disney because he gave piano lessons during the lunch hour and made presentations to the music department
Rich formed his own animation studio, Rich Animation Studios (later RichCrest), and directed nationally distributed films that include The Swan Princess (1994) and four sequels, The King and I (1999), and The Trumpet of the Swan (2001). He also worked with Living Scriptures and directed dozens of 30-minute animated family videos in scriptural categories such as the Old Testament, the New Testament, the Book of Mormon, as well as historical figures such as Abraham Lincoln, Benjamin Franklin, Beethoven, Harriet Tubman, and Florence Nightingale. He is the producer of the Alpha and Omega computer-animated comedy drama.
Rich was born in 1951 and is a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.