Fred Mogubgub was among the New York animation scene’s innovative figures of the Sixties and Seventies. One of his most famous artistic statements was not on film, but on the side of a building in Manhattan. Richard O’Connor of Ace & Son animation studio wrote on his blog about Mogubgub’s work at the time: What may be his best-known work was made at this time a three-story mural painted on the outside of his Sixth Avenue studio. The left side was a beautiful woman; design by Irene Trivas, the right hand side was a word bubble saying, “Who Will Give Mogubgub Ltd. two million dollars to make a feature?”
Without the millions Fred Mogubgub still made a feature. “The Day I Met Zet” runs 71 minutes and has 72,000 scenes. Zet consumed Mogubgub for three years. In 1967, a distributor offered him three points of advice after screening a work print, the next day the film was in the trash and Fred started over. When the New York Film Festival refused Zet, the film maker mounted a protest. Fred marched through Lincoln Center with a sign reading, “Screw the New York Film Festival”. When the police came, Fred threw the film into the trash and ignited it. The newspapers had shown up questioning him about how many hours of work was he destroying. Fred Mogubgub stood by silently as he watched an old 16mm print goes up in flames. Meanwhile the whole proceeding was being filmed. Fred planned to make it into a short called The Day I Burned Zet.