John Leach (1978)
Hobo Moon Cartoons aims to preserve the beloved Halloween classics of yesteryear for future generations to enjoy!
Witch’s Night Out is a Canadian Halloween cartoon that premiered on October 27, 1978, which is, coincidentally, also my birthday. It was produced in a Toronto studio and featured the voices of Fiona Reid as Nicely and Catherine O’Hara as Malicious, with Gilda Radner as the titular witch.
Witch’s Night Out was produced on 35mm film by Jonathan Rogers (formerly known as John Leach) and Jean Rankin.
A depressed witch is summoned by a pair of children, named Small and Tender, who are upset at not being able to scare anyone on Halloween. The witch turns them into a werewolf and ghost (previously their Halloween costumes), and their babysitter Bazooey into Frankenstein’s monster. The witch then takes them to the Halloween party-in-progress at her isolated mansion on the edge of town. However, the citizens of the town get offended at the thought of real monsters in their town, and form a mob, under the leadership of the strait-laced Goodly. The witch loses her magic wand, which gets attached to a woman named Malicious, and is unable to turn Bazooey and the kids back to humans. The group of supernatural beings is chased through the town and forest by the mob, eventually losing them. Malicious and her partner, Rotten, misuse the wand’s powers, which causes a lot of damage to the town, but also summons the witch and the kids to their location. Regaining her wand, the witch uses its power to turn Malicious and Rotten into monsters (though she turns them back soon after), while turning the Frankenstein monster, ghost and werewolf back into Bazooey, Tender and Small. Eventually, the witch uses her powers to restore everything to normal, showing the town that she is not evil. The town quickly accepts the witch, and she starts turning people into what they want to be for Halloween.
A disco song entitled Witch Magic was sung in this film.