Tuesday, December 12, 2006

The Birth of Looney Tunes and Merrie Melodies :

The Ascendancy of Warner Bros

The Bosko film was the impetus for the birth of Warners Bros.' Looney Tunes (see more below). The black and white Sinkin' in the Bathtub (1930), with Bosko in the starring role, was the earliest talking 'Looney Tune', released on May 30, 1930. It also included the song later popularized by Tiny Tim: "Tiptoe Through the Tulips." Following their success with Looney Tunes, Warners expanded with a lively new series called Merrie Melodies beginning in 1931 - the first of which featured a character named Foxy. The first Merrie Melodie was Lady, Play Your Mandolin! (1931), released on August 31, 1931, followed by Smile, Darn Ya, Smile! (1931) (animated by Isadore Freleng & Max Maxwell) and One More Time (1931). Looney Tunes and Merrie Melodies were made with Harman-Ising until near mid-1933, when they split with Schlesinger.

Animators at Warner Bros. Studios began to challenge the style, form and creative content of Disney's pastoral animations in the early 1930s and after. Their cartoons were characterized as being more hip, adult-oriented, and urban than the comparable Disney cartoons of the same period.

From 1933-1935 , producer Leon Schlesinger began assembling more staff for Warners, including Bob Clampett and Disney animator Jack King (famous for The Three Little Pigs) to begin creating the official Looney Tunes series. The first Looney Tune was Buddy's Day Out (1933), featuring a Bosko-like character (subsequent Looney Tunes were just a series of Buddy pictures), and the first color (Cinecolor) WB Merrie Melodie was Honeymoon Hotel (1934).

Friz Freleng, Chuck Jones and other animators also joined the Warners staff - who would soon be creating some of the best-loved cartoon characters and animations of all time. Beginning in 1935, they worked in a run-down back lot building known as 'Termite Terrace.'

Thanks for www.filmsite.org

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