Friends, I do believe that with the Toon In posts and the dream of the Toon In podcast in the future – I have probably been able to successfully convey how much I love classic animation. If I am being 100% percent honest with myself I am just a fan of animation in general – probably has something to do with all those countless hours before school and after that I was planted in front of the television set watching the likes of Looney Tunes, Scooby-Doo, The Transformers, and so many more. Earlier today, on animation historian Jerry Beck’s EXCEPTIONAL Cartoon Brew site was some rather exciting news. It appears that the Warner Archive Collection is getting set to release a new Blu-Ray – an important one too as it is The Tex Avery Screwball Classic Volume 1 – a collection of 19 theatrical animated shorts by a true master of animation.
As Amid Amidi, who is both Publisher and Editor-in-Chief for Cartoon Brew, pointed out in the article earlier this afternoon – while there is much excitement to be had with this Blu-Ray release… there is also a little bit of confusion to the 19 shorts selected for inclusion for this first volume. Apparently there was news leaked by the Warner Archive about The Tex Avery Screwball Classics Volume One last weekend – fans had hoped this would be the first step in an archival process – the shorts sorted by year, etc. It is certainly still a release to be extremely excited by and you can bet your bottom dollar that I will be picking this up when it is released on February 18th of this year!
If you would like to see the list of Tex Avery shorts that will be included on The Tex Avery Screwball Classics Volume One – I will direct you to Amid Amidi’s article on the Cartoon Brew site. However I will share with you directly from the Warner Archive – where you can pre-order the Blu-Ray now – the synopsis provided by Jerry Beck:
“There were several masters of animation during Hollywood’s golden era. Of the top two geniuses, one created elaborate fairy tales and ornate feature-length fantasias — the other guy was Tex Avery. He just wanted to make you laugh. Having already been integrally involved in the development of Porky Pig, Daffy Duck and Bugs Bunny for Warner Bros., Avery moved to MGM in 1941 to create a set of comedy masterpieces that defined a new slapstick style for animation, inspiring cartoonists, comedians and filmmakers for decades to come. Avery’s unit at Metro Goldwyn Mayer was all about breaking the fourth wall, shattering expectations and making audiences fall down with laughter. His one-shot masterpieces, including Bad Luck Blackie, Red Hot Riding Hood and Symphony in Slang, have proven themselves pure gold. And continuing characters like Droopy, Screwball Squirrel and George & Junior — not to mention Spike, Red and The Wolf – remain unforgettable comic personas among the top rank of cartoondom. Avery’s cartoons were ahead of their time — and their time has come. Finally committed to Blu-ray, this first collection of restored Technicolor shorts feels fresh and new, and is funnier than ever. This set will delight young and old — and will amaze a new generation ready to laugh again. — JERRY BECK, Animation Historian”