Sunday, July 08, 2007

Happy Birthday, "What's Opera, Doc?"

TheStar.com - entertainment - 50 glorious years of `kill da wabbit'
At any other time, the film would not have been made. Imagine the pitch: "Let's steal time and funding from our other projects so we can go way over budget making a cartoon with no jokes, and no real gags. The score will be a German opera. Kids won't get it. Most adults won't get it, but I don't care because I think it's funny."

Fortunately, the time was 1956, the director was Chuck Jones, and the place was the Warners Bros. backlot animation studio dubbed "Termite Terrace." The result – released 50 years ago this week – was "What's Opera, Doc?," voted by animators in the 1994 book The 50 Greatest Cartoons: As Selected by 1,000 Animation Professionals to be the greatest cartoon of all time.


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4 comments:

Brent McKee said...

Yet another example of the lionization of Chuck Jones over such equally great (or greater in a couple of cases) animation directors as MicKimson, Clampett, Tashlin, Freleng and the greatest of them all (in my opinion, and the opinion of a lot of people) Tex Avery.

Bill Crider said...

You gotta respect a guy named Tex.

Brent McKee said...

Full name Fred Bean Avery. He claimed that he was a descendant of Judge Roy Bean and Daniel Boone. Descendants of the latter are common as mud but I don't know about the former.

Bill Crider said...

The Judge had a bunch of kids, so it's possible.