Rankin/Bass Productions, Inc. (founded as Videocraft International, Ltd. and later known as Rankin/Bass Animated Entertainment) was an American production company, known for its seasonal television specials, particularly its work in stop motion animation. Rankin/Bass stop-motion features are recognizable by their visual style of doll-like characters with spheroid body parts, and ubiquitous powdery snow using an animation technique called "Animagic". Often, traditional cel animation scenes of falling snow would be projected over the action to create the effect of a snowfall.
Nearly all of the studio's animation was outsourced to at least five Japanese animation companies: MOM Production, Toei Animation, TCJ (Television Corporation of Japan), Mushi Production and Topcraft
History with the Macy's Parade
A float based off their version of the Hobbit debuted in the 1977 Parade, The float featured Smaug the Dragon, The float was retired after the parade and Smaug was later used in the Dragon Tales float from 1993 as a generic dragon.