Courage the Cowardly Dog
Courage the Cowardly Dog
John R. Dilworth
John R Dilworth
Birth name: John Russell Dilworth
Sex: Male
Born: February 14, 1963
Birth place: New York City, New York, U.S.
Occupation: Animator
Years active: 1982–present

John Russell Dilworth (born February 14, 1963 in New York City, New York) is an American animator. He is best known as the producer, director, writer, and creator of the animated television series Courage the Cowardly Dog.

Dilworth attended the School of Visual Arts in New York, where he graduated in 1985 with a Bachelor of Arts. After graduation, Dilworth became an art director at Baldi, Bloom and Whelan Advertising, but continued to work on his own films in his spare time, providing much of his own funding. His animated short, The Chicken from Outer Space, was nominated for an Academy Award in 1996. Cartoon Network later commissioned Dilworth to turn the short into a series, which eventually became the wildly popular and critically acclaimed Courage the Cowardly Dog. Dilworth is the president of Stretch Films, a New York-based design and animation studio, which he founded in 1991.

Other works

Dilworth's short Angry Cabaret was also featured in MTV's 1994 Animation Weekend. His breakout film was The Dirdy Birdy. He served as animation consultant on Gumby: The Movie. Dilworth also worked on the original opening for Nicktoons and for the show Doug. His film, Life in Transition, was included in the Animation Show of Shows.

Psyched for Snuppa, a short film created by Michael Pearlstein and animated by Dilworth, was spun-off into a series called Sniz & Fondue which became part of Nickelodeon's KaBlam! from seasons 1 through 3. However, Dilworth had no involvement with the series aside from the pilot.


  • Pierre (1985)
  • The Limited Bird (1988)
  • When Lilly Laney Moved In (1991)
  • Psyched For Snuppa (1992) (Jumbo Pictures for Nickelodeon)
  • Smart Talk with Raisin (1993) (Appeared on MTV's Liquid Television)
  • The Dirdy Birdy (MTV) (1994)
  • Angry Cabaret (1994)
  • Cartoon Network (ID's) (1994-1997)
  • The Chicken from Outer Space (1995)
  • Noodles and Nedd (1996) (later appeared on Sesame Street)
  • Big Bag: Ace and Avery (1998)
  • Hector The Get-Over Cat (1998)
  • A Little Curious (short films) (1999)
  • Catch Of The Day (featuring Noodles and Nedd) (2000)
  • Courage in Scary Monsters (2000; Web Premiere Toons short)
  • Courage the Cowardly Dog (Rated TV-Y7/TV-Y7-FV) (series) (1999–2002)
  • The Mousochist (2001)
  • Life In Transition (2005)
  • The Return of Sergeant Pecker (2006, credited as Pierre Delarue)
  • Garlic Boy (2008)
  • Rinky Dink (2009)
  • Bunny Bashing (2011)
  • Pumpkin Reports (2012) – CGI pilot episode made by Spanish studio Motion Pictures, S.A., that hired John to direct the pilot. In 2016, was turned in a TV series.
  • The Fog of Courage (2014) – A special CGI short starring Courage the Cowardly Dog.
  • The Dirdy Birdy Redux (2014)
  • Dirdy Birdy II: A Night at Club Sheik (2015) – A cancelled sequel to The Dirdy Birdy.
  • Prudence and the Imps (2016) – An unfinished animated pilot
  • Goose in High Heels (2017)
  • Mom got eaten by a Spider Demon (2017)
  • Howl if You Love Me (TBA)


  • His sister, Michelle Belly Dilworth, was a staff writer on Courage.
  • His late brother, Jim P. Dilworth, was a designer who designed King Ramses and the Bugle Monster on Courage.
  • Some of his influences include Tex Avery, Bob Clampett, John Hubley, The foundations of Disney animation, Salvador Dali, Woody Allen, Charlie Chaplin, Richard Pryor, George Herriman, MAD magazine, Rankin Bass stop motion, and among so many others.[1]
  • His name makes several cameos as the prefix "Dil" in the show.
  • There is a caricature of him called "Dilly" who also makes several appearances.
  • In October 2018, Dilworth commented on a Facebook post that he was in negotiations with Boomerang to make a prequel to Courage the Cowardly Dog. Later that same month, he announced on Facebook that development on a "potential prequel" to Courage, entitled "Before Courage" was expected to begin.[2] In 2021, Dilworth revealed that the project is on indefinite turnaround as CN's management is shifting their focus to other properties.
  • He does the voice of the laughing mouth in the Stretch Films logo.



External links