Officially created on July 27, 1940, the most famous rabbit in film and television turned 80 this week. Having gone through different versions over the years, one thing has never changed: his personality. Sarcastic, playful, teasing and very sure of himself, Bugs Bunny has conquered several generations with his charisma and his creativity. Due to the anniversary of “Toelho”, CinePOP separated some curiosities about him that you may not know. Check out!
He was originally white
Despite being born in 1940, Bugs Bunny had a “prototype” launched in 1938. In this version, he was a white rabbit with a personality very similar to that of Pica-Pau. With a heavy hick accent, the rabbit, nicknamed Happy Rabbit, starred in two shorts until he underwent an important change in the third: he would be represented as a gray rabbit. In the early 1940s, under production by the legendary Chuck Jones, Happy Rabbit would give its air of grace for the last time. In the short Elmer’s Candid Camera, the rabbit would find its archenemy, Hortelino Troca-Letras, for the first time.
Its name is in honor of one of the creators
Hardaway passed away in 2017
In July 1940, Happy Rabbit evolved into Coelho, Lenda, the one and only Bugs Bunny, or Bugs Bunny here for us. The idea was to keep the old name, but Charlie Thorson saw the sheets with animation models of the character drawn by Ben “Bugs” Hardaway and decided to write “Bug’s Bunny” on the back of the sheet to indicate that those it was Ben’s leaves. However, when the drawings went to the press to make posters for the promotion of the new short film, they decided to adopt this name as a form and to honor the artist. Not to mention that it ends up working as a pun in English for “annoying rabbit”. Well, right on his first appearance, he already utters his first “What’s up, old man?” for Hortelino. The redneck accent is still present, but less strong than before. Later, Mel Blanc would adopt a Brooklyn accent, which would be marked as the “official”. The short film “A Lebre Selvagem” was so successful that it received an Oscar nomination, but did not win.
He influenced the Woodpecker
While Happy Rabbit, the rabbit, which was played by Mel Blanc, boasted a very characteristic laugh from another character. He followed her to the short Elmer’s Candid Camera, released in the early 1940s. Months later, Mel Blanc would begin to voice a wild bird created by Walter Lantz. Taking advantage of the naughty personality of Pica-Pau, Blanc – who followed as the voice of Bugs Bunny – decided to reuse the discarded laughter of the rabbit in Pica-Pau. The public loved it and the Happy Rabbit heritage ended up being the trademark of the most beloved bird of Brazilian children.
Bugs Bunny was once Sergeant of the Navy
During World War II, Bugs Bunny was already the chief character of Merrie Melodies and Warner was the most profitable animation studio in the USA. His clash with Mickey comes from that time and has only intensified over the years. During this period, Coelho started to annoy representatives of the Axis, such as Hitler, Mussolini and Japanese squadrons. This irritating attitude made him the official mascot of the bombing training camp in Arizona. He also received the honorary title of Sergeant Major from the American Navy.
He was a bit of a “star” in A Snare for Roger Rabbit
The condition for his participation in the classic One Trick for Roger Rabbit was that he had the same screen time as his rival, Mickey Mouse. So Robert Zemeckis chose to use it in conjunction with Mickey. An interesting detail is that Mickey calls him by name (Bugs), but Bugs Bunny himself never says his rival’s name, just calling him “Old Man”. The scene was immortalized as the only time that the two greatest icons of animation officially interacted in the history of audiovisual.
It was already seal
In 1997, Bugs Bunny became the first animated character in history to stamp an American postage stamp. At the time, the measure suffered much criticism from the American mail, but was eventually approved to move the stamp market. The result was quite positive, becoming the seventh most popular label in the country’s history.
The most popular
In 2002, TV Guide magazine elected the 50 most famous cartoon characters in history. Bugs Bunny came first.
Despite being the great hero of the Looney Tunes, Bugs Bunny has already inferred the lives of several main characters, such as Daffy Duck, Gaguinho, Frajola, Taz, Coyote, Hortelino, Marvin and Eufrazino.
Box office record holder
Sharing a screen with Chicago Bulls star Michael Jordan, Bugs Bunny stars in the fun Space Jam: Game of the Century. Although the criticisms were mixed, the box office was very good, raising more than 230 million dollars. With this fundraiser, Space Jam became the most profitable basketball film of all time.
Bugs Bunny accumulates three Oscar nominations, having won in 1958, when he won the award for best short animated by Knighty Knight Bugs.
Congratulations, Bugs Bunny! Let another 80 years come!
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