John Cannizzaro Jr., better known as John Canemaker, is an independent animator, animation historian, author, teacher and lecturer. In 1980, he began teaching and developing the animation program at New York University, Tisch School of the Arts', Kanbar Institute of Film and Television Department. Since 1988 he has directed the program and is currently a tenured full professor. From 2001-2002 he was Acting Chair of the NYU Undergraduate Film and Television Department. In 2006, his film The Moon and the Son: An Imagined Conversation, a 28-minute animated piece about Canemaker's relationship with his father, won the Academy Award for best animated short. In 2007 the same piece picked up an Emmy award for its graphic and artistic design.
Raised in Elmira, New York, Canemaker began an acting career which included off-Broadway and advertising work in New York City from 1961 to 1965.