Legend Tribute: Chuck Jones

Born September 21, 1912 Animator and Director Chuck Jones! 

“Animation isn’t the illusion of life; it is life!” -Chuck Jones

I cannot really put into words how I feel about Chuck Jones and his artistry…  All I know is that when I saw some of his sketches at the Smithsonian Museum of American History a few years ago, I stood mesmerized, absolutely transfixed, gazing at the drawings with a huge smile on my face… those wonderful images from my childhood, those wonderful images that, to this day, make me laugh out loud, those wonderful images that are more than ‘just’ images — they’re ‘friends’ — friends that I have known and loved for as long as I can remember!

Chuck Jones sketch from Smithsonian Institute Museum of American History“I will do it with my spear and magic helmet!”
(picture from The Smithsonian Museum of American History)

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Of course I could never really list all of the accomplishments and successes of Jones — or even list all of the characters that he’s either directed or created — so I will just do my best to present some of my favorite highlights here…

Chuck Jones 1996 Honorary Oscar

In the course of his 60+ year film career, Chuck Jones directed over 300 animated films.  He won a competitive Oscar in 1966 for “The Dot and the Line: A Romance in Lower Mathematics” (Best Short Subject, Cartoons) and, in 1996, received an Honorary Lifetime Achievement Oscar (pictured above) for ‘the creation of classic cartoons and cartoon characters whose animated lives have brought joy to our real ones for more than a half century’.

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Chuck Jones, three films inducted into National Film Registry: Duck Amuck, What's Opera Doc, One Froggy Evening

Three of Chuck Jones’ cartoon shorts (“Duck Amuck,” “One Froggy Evening” and “What’s Opera Doc?”) were inducted into the National Film Registry.

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And, yes, Chuck Jones ‘directed’ some of the biggest ‘stars’ on the Warner Brothers lot! 🙂

Producer-director-artist Chuck Jones sits at the drawing table in his southern California home, 1999

Jones ‘directed’ and helped in the development of some of the most beloved Warner Brothers characters including Bugs Bunny, Daffy Duck, Elmer Fudd and Porky Pig…

Daffy Duck and Porky Pig, Elmer Fudd and Bugs BunnyDaffy and Porky, and Elmer and Bugs…

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And that’s not all folks (sorry, couldn’t resist)…

Chuck Jones and his creations, Wile E. Coyote, Road Runner, Pepe le Pew, Gossamer, Marc Antony and Kitty, Marvin Martian, Michigan J. Frog

Chuck Jones also created his share of Warner Brothers characters — including Wile E. Coyote, the Road Runner, Pepe le Pew, Gossamer, Marc Antony and Kitty, Marvin Martian, Michigan J. Frog (all shown below) — plus Henery Hawk, Sam Sheepdog, Witch Hazel and a multitude of other lovable characters.

And…

Chuck Jones sketch for The Grinch

Chuck Jones produced, directed & wrote the screenplay for the 1966 television cartoon classic “Dr. Seuss’ How the Grinch Stole Christmas.”

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That's All Folks!

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–Annmarie Gatti for Classic Movie Hub

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