Tadahito Mochinaga (持永 只仁 Mochinaga Tadahito, March 3, 1919 – April 1, 1999), also known as Tad Mochinaga, was a pioneer Japanese stop-motion animator. Having done many stop motion films/shorts in Japan, he is also best known as the animator for Rankin/Bass' "Animagic" specials/movies in the 1960s at his own studio called MOM Productions in Tokyo in association with American director Arthur Rankin, Jr. who write and design other productions before sending them to Japan for animation.
In 1945, Mochinaga traveled to Xinjing in the Japanese puppet state of Manchukuo set up in occupied China, to work at the Manchukuo Film Association. He stayed in China after the war and from 1950, he spent three years in Shanghai working on such films as Thank You, Kitty. He is perhaps the only major artist of the era to have worked in both Chinese and Japanese animation industries.
Foreign productions by Rankin/Bass
- The New Adventures of Pinocchio (1960–1961) (Animation Director/Supervisor)
- Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer (1964) (Animation Supervisor)
- Willy McBean and his Magic Machine (1965) (Animation Supervisor)
- The Daydreamer (1966) ("Animagic" Technician)
- Ballad of Smokey the Bear (1966) ("Animagic" Technician)
- Mad Monster Party? (1967) ("Animagic" Technician)
- Mochinaga, Tadahito (2006). Animēshon Nitchū kōryūki: Mochinaga Tadahito jiden. Tokyo: Tōhō Shoten. ISBN 978-4-497-20606-0.
- Du, Daisy Yan (2012). "Mochinaga Tadahito and Animated Filmmaking in Postwar China, 1945-1953," in On the Move: The Trans/national Animated Film in 1940s-1970s China. Madison: University of Wisconsin.
- Animation World Network article/obituary
- List of Japanese lead staff on Rankin/Bass productions animated at MOM Productions
- Entry in The Anime Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition