WBA revives voice of late Mel Blanc for series of 3D theatrical Looney Tunes shorts

Warner Bros Animation is making a new series of 3D shorts for theatrical releasebased on classic characters from the Looney Tunes series, Sam Register [pictured], executive vice president, Creative Affairs at WBA announced at the Annecy Film Festival on Wednesday.

Two of the shorts – Daffy’s Rhapsody and I Tawt I Taw a Puddy Tat - feature long-lost recordings made by the late Mel Blanc in the 1950s, the original voice of many Looney Tunes characters known in the business as the “Man of a Thousand Voices”.

“When I arrived Warner Bros someone told me of the existence of the so-called ‘Mel Blanc tracks’and said that one day someone will find them and do something with them. I said, ‘why don’t we do something now’,” Register told a conference at Annecy.

“This could be the last time that Looney Tunes fans will see an original Mel Blanc short featuring these characters,” he added.

A 30-second trailer of the first title in the series, Daffy’s Rhapsody, met with an enthusiastic response from the young audience at Annecy.

The short will hit the big screen in the United States in November, preceding screenings if Warner Bros Pictures’ Happy Feet 2. It features Daffy performing an extravagant musical number while trying to escape hunter Elmer Fudd.

The second title in the series I Tawt I Taw a Puddy Tat will revive Tweety Bird and Sylvester the Cat in one of their classic cat and bird chases in Granny’s apartment. The short features the hit song performed by Blanc, which sold three million copies worldwide. The third short is an as yet untitled adventure caper featuring the Coyote and Road Runner.

All three titles will be directed by Matthew O’Callaghan, who worked a previous series of WBA Looney Tune theatrical shorts featuring Coyote and Road Runner, and are being created using CG animation and stereoscopic 3D

Register was talking at an Annecy conference on WBA’s recent and upcoming TV series including a new version of the 1980s hit Thundercats, a DVD hybrid tale Tom and Jerry and The Wizard of Oz, combining two MGM classics, and the new Looney Tunes sitcom which has just started broadcasting in the United States. 

Asked whether the shorts were a precursor to an eventual Looney Tunes feature-length film, Register replied: “We’re focused on our television activities and theatrical shorts right… it’s a possibility and it would be a great opportunity… so possibly one day, maybe no.”