Winsor McCay animated and released The Sinking of the Lusitania in 1918. In order to do so, McCay had to draw over 20,000 detailed drawings by himself. The short 12 minute film attempted to capture the event as realistically as possible. This task was difficult to accomplish in that there was no live action footage of the sinking. McCay had to base his drawings on mere reports and pictures of the boat from before its departure.
The film is notable in that it was the first animated film to depict a historical event as if it were a live action documentary. Various angles and cuts were incorporated into the drawings in order to make it appear more realistic. In addition, the film was propaganda at its best (if that is possible). The music that accompanies the film tugs at the viewer's heart. The viewers of the time period were convinced of Germany's callousness and the country was encouraged to abandoned its isolationist ways. Even viewers today can attest to its powerful nature.