Category Archives: Video of the Day

Rising Country Rock/Blues Star, Andrew Combs, to Headline Benefit at Chuck Jones Center for Creativity

RELEASE – May 17, 2013

Andrew Combs,
Willie Watson and Willy Tea Taylor Headline Orange County Benefit Show

Tickets go on Sale May 23rd; funds support
music and arts education in schools

Andrew Combs
May 15, 2013 – On Thursday, June 27th, Nashville recording artist
Andrew Combs, Old Crow Medicine Show co-founder Willie Watson and Good Luck
Thrift Store Outfit frontman Willy Tea Taylor will take part in a special acoustic concert at the Chuck Jones Center for
Creativity in Costa Mesa, CA.

The performance
will be part of the “Blackwing Sessions” music series in conjunction with the
Blackwing Experience, a travelling exhibit honoring creativity and the
woodcased pencil. Proceeds from the show will benefit the Blackwing Foundation
and its efforts to further arts and music education in schools.

No Depression Magazine named Taylor “one of the most important American
singer/songwriters of our time.” Saving Country Music compared Taylor’s
songwriting to “those now legendary recordings of Paul Simon in his
post-Garfunkel days.”

Watson spent 13 years as lead vocalist and songwriter for Old Crow
Medicine Show. Paving the way for other roots bands like Mumford and
Sons and the Lumineers, OCMS is best known for taking an unfinished Bob Dylan
song (“Wagon Wheel”) and turning it into a cult classic. Watson partook in the
historic “Railroad Revival Tour”, traveling to concerts throughout the Southwest
exclusively by vintage trains and capturing every moment for the “Big Easy
Express,” winner of the 2013 Grammy Award for Best Long Form Music Video.

“Worried Man” ranked as the highest debut album on American Songwriter
Magazine’s annual list of 50 Best Albums of the Year in 2012.  In their album review, American Songwriter
declared, “In a world full of pretenders, the
Texas bred, Nashville based Combs is the genuine article.”

Along with individual sets, the evening will feature an “in
the round” session, during which all three musicians and other special guests
will perform original compositions while discussing the songwriting process.

Tickets will go on sale Thursday, May 23rd at
10:00 AM PDT at

The Blackwing Foundation is a non-profit organization founded in 2012 by Charles and
Ginger Berolzheimer to develop and enhance arts and music programs at the K-12

“We have
dedicated ourselves to developing and supporting programs that have a
sustainable, positive impact on arts and music engagement for children who
might otherwise not have these opportunities,” said Charles Berolzheimer,
founder of Palomino and revivalist of the Blackwing pencil. “Money from this
show will help us continue to build strong partnerships in 2013 and beyond.”

For further
details and ticket information, visit

For more
information on the Blackwing Foundation, visit



Grant Christensen

(209) 932-5004

“Famishius Fantasticus” Premiers at Dakota High School

Michael Markowski, a composer and longtime fan of Chuck Jones, recently was commissioned by the Wind Ensemble of Dakota High School in Macomb, Michigan to create a musical work for them. The result was "Famishius Fantasticus" a four-minute "wild concert-closer" in the words of the composer. 


Mr. Markowski writes in a letter to Chuck Redux: "Thank you so much for allowing me to share my music with you. Chuck Jones has been a surprisingly big part of my creative life, from watching Looney Tunes as a kid to studying them in college as a film major. Famishius Fantasticus was so much fun to write, and I'm excited that I will be able to share my love for the original Looney Tunes cartoons with the current generation of high school and college music students who, in most cases, have never even seen one." 

In the foreword to the score, he's said, "When I was first asked to write a piece that "captured the energy of the students," I couldn't help but think that Wile E. Coyote was the man (or animal) for the job. The title, Famishius Fantasticus, is a direct allusion to the faux binomial (the scientific Latin name) of Wile E. Coyote, as shown in the opening freeze-frame of the 1956 Looney Tunes cartoon, There They Go-Go-Go

"…[Famishius Fantasticus] is dedicated to all my friends and colleagues who vehemently go after their dreams, who never give up, and who continue totry new things no matter how many crazy ideas might blow up in their faces."

And we agree! Here, then is the Dakota High School Wind Ensemble of Macomb, Michigan, performing Michael Markowski's Famishius Fantasticus. Enjoy! (Please pay close attention to the percussionists, they work overtime for this piece. You may also note that ping-pong balls, an air horn and the magnificent Mahler Hammer are utilized to produce some delightful sounds.)


Mike Peraza Explains It All to You

We were absolutely charmed by the paper sculptures created by artist Mike Peraza, but also baffled by how he was able to construct them so beautifully and elegantly. Each of them requires many hours of painstaking work; the detail is phenomenal. 

Celebrating the Chuck Jones Centennial, Peraza, one of the great Disney art directors of the past three decades ("The Little Mermaid", "Aladdin", "Beauty and the Beast"), also put in his time at Warner Bros. working with Chuck Jones on a Bugs Bunny television special. His credits are too numerous to elaborate upon, but suffice it say, he is one of the great treasures of feature, television, and theme park animation. The Chuck Jones Gallery is thrilled and delighted to represent his "Chuck Jones Homage" works* beginning with these wonderful hand-cut and constructed paper sculptures (exclusive to the Chuck Jones Gallery). Take a moment to watch the artist at work:

Here are the finished works:

"Free Bird Seed"

MPER003 AP1 copy

"Chuck Jones Portrait-Grey"

MPER002 AP1 copy

"Chuck Jones Portrait-Orange"

MPER001 AP1 copy

For more details and information about the works of art pictured in this post, please contact one of the Chuck Jones Gallery's art consultants in San Diego, Santa Fe, or Orange County (888-294-9880, 800-290-5999, or 800-660-7791 x 102 respectively.)

*There are plans afoot to create limited edition works on canvas from original paintings by Mike Peraza in the "Chuck Jones Homage" series. Stay tuned!


Painter Fabio Napoleoni Unveils an Exclusive Edition at the Chuck Jones Gallery–San Diego

Artist Fabio Napoleoni, in an appearance last Friday evening at the Chuck Jones Gallery in San Diego's famed Gaslamp Quarter, created quite a stir when he unveiled a recent painting that paid homage to the life and times of Chuck Jones. Titled "It Doesn't Bite", this charming and evocative image features Napoleoni's iconic everyman character, the rag doll Marcenivo, reaching out to a somewhat befuddled Bugs Bunny, with a heart of friendship. 

"It Doesn't Bite" has been created as a limited edition, signed and numbered, fine art reproduction on paper, exclusive to the Chuck Jones Gallery. There are only 57 examples with 17 hand-embellished Artist Proofs available. Contact your Chuck Jones Gallery art consultant for more information at 888-294-9880 or online at  

It doesnt bite 72 dpi copy


Looney Tunes: Chuck Jones, The Mouse Chronicles to Be Released this August


On 8/28/12, Warner Home Video will release "Looney Tunes: Chuck Jones Mouse Chronicles", a 2-disc Blu-ray set featuring 19 classic cartoons. There is no word yet on pricing or special features, but reportedly, it will have special material.

The included shorts: (all directed by Chuck Jones)
Naughty But Mice (1939) – Sniffles
– Little Brother Rat (1939) – Sniffles
– Sniffles and the Bookworm (1939) – Sniffles
– Sniffles Takes a Trip (1940) – Sniffles
– Egg Collector, The (1940) – Sniffles
– Bedtime For Sniffles (1940) – Sniffles
– Sniffles Bells the Cat (1941) – Sniffles
– Toy Trouble (1941) – Sniffles
– Brave Little Bat, The (1941) – Sniffles
– Unbearable Bear, The (1943) – Sniffles
– Lost and Foundling (1944) – Sniffles
– Hush, My Mouse (1946) – Sniffles
– Aristo Cat, The (1943) – Hubie & Bertie
– Trap Happy Porky (1945) – Porky Pig
– Roughly Squeaking (1946) – Hubie & Bertie ; Claude Cat
– House Hunting Mice (1948) – Hubie & Bertie
Mouse Wreckers (1948) – Hubie & Bertie ; Claude Cat
– Hypo-Chondri-Cat, The (1950) – Hubie & Bertie ; Claude Cat
Cheese Chasers (1951) – Hubie & Bertie ; Claude Cat

Many of these films can be seen at Chuck Jones Filmography.


Daffy Duck 75? Not Possible, Why He Doesn’t Look a Day Over…

On April 17, 1937, a star was born. Tex Avery's "Porky's Duck Hunt" premiered in theaters nationwide and audiences were introduced to a duck unlike any other duck in cartoon history. He was wacky and wild, some might even say crazy, but the germ of an idea was born, and the directors and animators at Warner Bros. took the nutty, black-feathered guy and made him into the star he is today, Daffy Aloysius Dumas Duck. 

Daffy Duck starred in 134 +/- cartoons and arguably reached his apogee in the hunting trilogy directed by Chuck Jones: "Rabbit Fire" 1951, "Rabbit Seasoning" 1952, and "Duck! Rabbit! Duck!" 1953. 

"I have watched with fascination his [Daffy's] growth from his earliest haphazard puerile personality, through adolescence, to the splendid bombast of his maturity in the fifties. Daffy has become the spokesman for the egoist in everyone, but he remains always undaunted by the inevitable requital: the fear of consequences that makes cowards of the rest of us." –Robert D. Tschirgi, M.D., PH.D., professor of Neurosciences, University of California, La Jolla, February 14, 1985

"The first surfacing of that part of my character that was later to show up in Daffy Duck occurred at the age of six. My sixth-birthday party, to be precise. I was immensely proud–it seems to me that all my life I have taken the most pride in things over which I have little or no control. Even though I had older sisters, it never occurred to me that anyone had ever become six years old before, and the splendid cake, candles bravely ablaze in salute to my maturity, was ample evidence that I had entered manhood.

"Having blown out the candles and, as a side benefit, managing to send most of the smoke up my little brother's nostrils, I was handed the knife, my first baton of any kind of authority in six misspent years, and was told to cut as large a piece as I liked. At this point Daffy Duck must have had, for me, his earliest beginnings, because I found to my surprise and pleasure that I had no desire to share my cake with anyone. I courteously returned the knife to my mother. I had no need for it, I explained; I would simplify the whole matter by taking the entire cake for myself. Not knowing she had an incipient duck on her hands, she laughed gently and tried to return the knife to my reluctant grasp. I again explained that the knife was superflous. It was impossible, I pointed out with incontrovertible logic, to cut a cake and still leave it entire for its rightful owner. I had no need and no desire to share.

"My father thereupon mounted the hustings (he was nine feet tall and looked like a moose without antlers) and escorted me to my room to contemplate in cakeless solitude the meaning of a word new to me: "selfish." To me then, and to Daffy Duck now, "selfish" means "honest but antisocial"; "unselfish" means "socially acceptable but often dishonest." We all want the whole cake, but, unlike Daffy and at least one six-year-old boy, the coward in the rest of us keeps the Daffy Duck, the small boy in us, under control." –Chuck Jones writing in his autobiography "Chuck Amuck" 1989

DDMI-01-001 copy
DDMI-01-003 copy
DDMI-01-010 copy
DDMI-01-012 copy
DDMI-01-077 copy
DDMI-01-084 copy
All drawings are by Chuck Jones, graphite on paper, circa 1950s through mid 1990s.

Chuck Jones Center for Creativity Welcomes Guest Film Curator

This just could not wait another minute…

The Guest Curator page on the soon-to-be-brand-new-exciting-and-thrilling Chuck Jones Center for Creativity website will be devoted to commentary provided by a variety of experts and fans of the art and films of Chuck Jones.  Throughout this series, we plan to bring you new insight and fresh perspectives on Jones's oeuvre.  Stay tuned!

Animation expert, author, and historian, Jerry Beck, graciously agreed to inaugurate the Guest Curator page on the Center's website, but due to a delay in launching that brand-new-exciting-and-thrilling-website, we've decided to share his insights with you today here at Chuck Redux.  Selecting three Chuck Jones cartoons to highlight proved a challenge, but one he met with his usual gusto, delight, and expertise.   Read on! 

ONE FROGGY EVENING – Chuck Jones probably never set out to create a classic when he began directing this one-shot cartoon (originally titled “It Hopped One Night”), but that’s exactly what he did. Michael Maltese’s premise, about a singing frog that performs only in view of its owner, must have appealed to Chuck for its witty use of popular tunes from an earlier generation, and a story told virtually through pantomime, poses and facial expressions.
But it turned out to be (in my humble opinion) his greatest piece of animation storytelling, where every subtle nuance conveys feelings we can all relate to, including happiness, greed, frustration and failure. One Froggy Evening plays upon our desire to achieve the American Dream of easy success, and finds humor in the realities of how that success may or may not be obtained. Jones’ animation unit at this time was at the height of its talents, producing cartoons as contemporary as the UPA shorts, as timeless as Disney, and utterly original on their own terms. A masterpiece!
Unfortunately, One Froggy Evening is only available by hyperlink, click on the title in this sentence to watch the cartoon.
OPERATION RABBIT – The best cartoon characters represent identifiable personalities that are either who we are – or who we want to be. Operation Rabbit presents the eternal battle between those two forces. Bugs Bunny has always been smarter than his various adversaries (think Elmer Fudd, Yosemite Sam and Taz), but here he encounters his brainest foe – a “genius” in fact – Wile E. Coyote.
Jones concocted the coyote as the personification of his own bewilderment with tools, machinery or simply building things. He knew how funny this sort of character could be up against the cool, calm and confident Bugs, just as he was in his debut film versus the Road Runner two years earlier.
Operation Rabbit is Wile E.’s second screen appearance and his first speaking role (not to mention the first time the character is named). I personally think its one of the best Bugs Bunny cartoons ever made and debatably the funniest. The scene of the coyote hanging on a rock ledge, having just been blown to bits by a train hitting his nitro glycerin shack, repeating his name “Wile E. Coyote, Super-Genius” – that never fails to make me laugh out loud. I know that guy. He’s me, he’s Chuck and he’s probably you.
Unlike the Coyote, Jones hit the Bullseye with this one!

SCAREDY CAT – Scaredy Cat is the first of several Porky Pig and Sylvester “Gothics”, three cartoons Jones made with a similarly eerie premise, and one of my all-time favorites. This one has the pair spending a hair raising night in an old dark house. The humor comes from Sylvester’s observations and actions to protect an oblivious Porky from a legion of killer mice.
Every director at Warners had their shot to work with Porky and Sylvester and each succeeded in creating an individual persona for the characters. Jones’ Porky is never more appealing than he is here – optimistic, self-assured and quite a strict pet owner. Sylvester is also tweaked in a Jonesian way: silent and scared, paranoid yet uncharacteristically brave. Oh, and I also believe this is the first cartoon where the cat (unnamed in previous screen appearances under Clampett, Davis and McKimson – and dubbed “Thomas” in Freleng’s Oscar winning “Tweetie Pie”) is given his proper name, Sylvester.
That sound like something Jones and Maltese would make up for this speech-impaired putty tat. “Sufferin’ Succotash!”


A Very Merry Cricket, 1973

Not much has changed in the nearly 40 years since Chuck Jones directed "A Very Merry Cricket".  There is still the mad rushing around from this store to that one, the short tempers, the car horns, and the endless mall parking lots ("…wherever did I park that car?" you very well could be asking yourself about right now.)  

But the perfect antidote to all that madness, is to take a 25 minute break, right now if you can, and enjoy this beautifully animated television special that was released late in 1973 after the success of Chuck's animated interpretation of George Selden's beloved "A Cricket in Times Square."  Merry Christmas!