This film is part of Free

How the Camel Got His Hump

An engaging, hand painted animation of Rudyard Kipling’s origin tale about a work shy camel who gets the hump.

Animation & Artists Moving Image 1981 10 mins

From the collection of:

Logo for North East Film Archive


A Djinn works a little desert magic on a cranky camel who won’t put his back into it with all the other animals. The artist Sheila Graber beautifully illustrates the vivid word play and primitive justice of Kipling’s improbable origin tale, written for his sick daughter Josephine. This is the second tale from the Just So Stories collection, inspired by both a Muslim legend recounted by his father, EW Lane’s version of the Arabian Nights, and the Protestant work ethic.

As a gifted amateur, the South Shields-born animator Sheila Graber received commissions from the Tate Gallery London, Tyne Tees TV and the BBC in the 1970s. The animations of Rudyard Kipling’s Just So Stories for Children were commissioned by Nicole Jouve of Interama, the French agent for The Magic Roundabout. They were first broadcast on French TV in 1983 and went on to be shown worldwide.