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Will Vinton

Will Vinton (born 1948) is a director and producer of animated films. He was born in Portland, Oregon.

Vinton used clay to create characters for animating frame-by-frame. He trademarked the technique as "Claymation". He established Will Vinton Studios in Portland to capitalize on this technology, which primarily produced commercials. Their first big hit was the California Raisins who sang Heard it through the Grape Vine they went on to star in their own specials for television, Meet the Raisins (CBS Prime-time Special, 1988) and The Raisins Sold Out (CBS Prime-time Special, 1990). Some of his films were nominated for Academy Awards for Animated Short Film. Vinton's Studio also did the animated series The PJs. The series was conceived by Eddie Murphy who voiced many of the roles.

In 2002, Will Vinton lost control of the studio he founded after Phil Knight, the founder of Nike, became the majority shareholder and Vinton was fired. Vinton later sought damages for this.