The Walter Lantz Cartune Encyclopedia: 1944



The Greatest Man in Siam

The Greatest Man in Siam

Release Date: 3/27/44
Direction: James Culhane
Story: Ben Hardaway and Milt Schaffer
Animation: Pat Matthews and Emery Hawkins
Music: Darrell Calker
Animation Layout: Art Heinemann
Backgrounds: Phil DeGuard

Notes:
  • Production Number: D-3
  • A Swing Symphony cartoon
  • First onscreen credits for Art Heinemann and Phil DeGuard at Lantz
  • The first appearance of Pat Matthews' shapely dancing girl, referred to as "Miss X" by the model sheets for this cartoon.
  • Michael Fitzgerald incorrectly lists this cartoon as a February release.
    Video availability:
  • Woody Woodpecker and Friends Classic Cartoon Collection, Vol. 1 (DVD; Universal/MCA)

  • Screen Shots (click to enlarge):





    The Barber of Seville

    The Barber of Seville

    Release Date: 4/10/44
    Direction: James Culhane
    Story: Ben Hardaway and Milt Schaffer
    Animation: Verne Harding and Les Kline
    Music: Darrell Calker
    Animation Layout: Art Heinemann
    Backgrounds: Philip DeGuard

    Notes:
  • Production Number: D-4
  • A Woody Woodpecker cartoon
  • The first appearance of Ben Hardaway as the voice of Woody.
  • The first cartoon to use the famous opening where Woody pops out of a tree stump, animated by Emery Hawkins.
  • The first cartoon to feature a new streamlined version of Woody. He is now cuter and less rough and wild.
  • The last appearance of Woody with green eyes until Musical Moments from Chopin (1947).
  • This short was ranked #43 in the 1994 book The 50 Greatest Cartoons by Jerry Beck.
    Video availability:
  • Woody Woodpecker Favorites (DVD; Universal/MCA)
  • Woody Woodpecker and Friends Classic Cartoon Collection, Vol. 1 (DVD; Universal/MCA)
  • Woody Woodpecker and Friends, Vol. 1 (Edited; DVD; Columbia House)
  • Woody Woodpecker and His Friends, Vol. 3 (VHS; Universal/MCA)
  • Woody Woodpecker and His Friends, Vol. 3 (Laserdisc; Universal/MCA)

  • Screen Shots (click to enlarge):





    Jungle Jive

    Jungle Jive

    Release Date: 5/15/44
    Direction: James Culhane
    Story: Ben Hardaway and Milt Schaffer
    Animation Layout: Art Heinemann
    Animation: Paul Smith and Emery Hawkins
    Music: Darrell Calker
    Backgrounds: Philip DeGuard
    Pianist: Bob Zurke

    Notes:
  • Production Number: D-5
  • A Swing Symphony cartoon
  • This cartoon contains the last known recording by pianist, Bob Zurke. He died a month after recording the soundtrack for this cartoon in 1942.
    Video availability:
  • Woody Woodpecker and Friends, Vol. 6 (DVD; Columbia House)

  • Screen Shots (click to enlarge):





    Fish Fry

    Fish Fry

    Release Date: 6/19/44
    Direction: James Culhane
    Story: Ben Hardaway and Milt Schaffer
    Animation Layout: Art Heinemann
    Animation: Verne Harding and Emery Hawkins
    Music: Darrell Calker
    Backgrounds: Philip DeGuard

    Notes:
  • Production Number: D-6
  • An Andy Panda cartoon
  • Academy Award nominee
    Video availability:
  • Woody Woodpecker Favorites (DVD; Universal/MCA)
  • Woody Woodpecker and Friends Classic Cartoon Collection, Vol. 1 (DVD; Universal/MCA)
  • Woody Woodpecker and Friends, Vol. 4 (DVD; Columbia House)
  • Woody Woodpecker and His Friends: The Screwdriver (VHS; Goodtimes)
  • Woody Woodpecker and His Friends, Vol. 2 (VHS; Universal/MCA)
  • Woody Woodpecker and His Friends, Vol. 2 (Laserdisc; Universal/MCA)

  • Screen Shots (click to enlarge):





    Abou Ben Boogie

    Abou Ben Boogie

    Release Date: 9/18/44
    Direction: James Cullhane
    Story: Ben Hardaway and Milt Schaffer
    Animation Layout: Art Heinemann
    Animation: Paul Smith
    Musical Arrangement: Darrell Calker
    Backgrounds: Philip DeGuard
    Lyrics: Tot Seymour
    Music: Vee Lawnhurst
    Notes:
  • Production Number: D-7
  • A Swing Symphony cartoon
  • The second and final appearance of "Miss X."
  • Michael Fitzgerald incorrectly lists this cartoon as an August release.
  • Click here to see Abou Ben Boogie sheet music.
  • Some animation of "Miss X" by Pat Matthews, deemed "too sexy," was cropped out of Castle Films home use prints.
    Video availability:
  • Woody Woodpecker and Friends Classic Cartoon Collection, Vol. 1 (DVD; Universal/MCA)

  • Screen Shots (click to enlarge):





    The Beach Nut

    The Beach Nut

    Release Date: 10/16/44
    Direction: James Culhane
    Story: Ben Hardaway and Milt Schaffer
    Animation Layout: Art Heinemann
    Animation: Dick Lundy and Les Kline
    Music: Darrell Calker
    Backgrounds: Philip DeGuard

    Notes:
  • Production Number: D-8
  • A Woody Woodpecker cartoon
  • First onscreen credit for Dick Lundy at Lantz
  • The first appearance of Wally Walrus.
  • The first appearance of Woody with blue eyes. The eye color would revert to green in 1947.
  • Michael Fitzgerald incorrectly lists this cartoon as an August release.
    Video availability:
  • Woody Woodpecker and Friends Classic Cartoon Collection, Vol. 1 (DVD; Universal/MCA)
  • Woody Woodpecker and Friends, Vol. 5 (DVD; Columbia House)

  • Screen Shots (click to enlarge):





    Ski for Two

    Ski for Two

    Release Date: 11/13/44
    Direction: James Culhane
    Story: Ben Hardaway and Milt Schaffer
    Animation Layout: Art Heinemann
    Animation: Don Williams and Grim Natwick
    Music: Darrell Calker
    Backgrounds: Philip DeGuard

    Notes:
  • Production Number: D-9
  • A Woody Woodpecker cartoon
  • First onscreen credit for Grim Natwick at Lantz
  • First onscreen credit for Don Williams at Lantz since his depature in 1933.
  • Reissued as Woody Plays Santa Claus by Castle Films
  • Michael Fitzgerald incorrectly lists this cartoon as a September release.
  • This cartoon is perhaps best known for the sequence (animated by Dick Lundy) of Woody skiing and singing the melody The Sleigh (a la Russe) (written in 1926 by Richard Kountz and Ivor Tchervanow). According to the memoirs of director Shamus Culhane, the composition was used in the cartoon with the belief that it was in the public domain. However, near the short's completion, it was discovered that the tune was actually still under copyright. Instead of having the sequence re-edited to a new song, Lantz sent a fifty dollar offer to the publishing firm of The Sleigh for its use in the film. They sent a letter back stating that they would only accept nothing less than a hundred dollars, an amount that Lantz gladly paid.
    Video availability:
  • Woody Woodpecker Favorites (DVD; Universal/MCA)
  • Woody Woodpecker and Friends Classic Cartoon Collection, Vol. 1 (DVD; Universal/MCA)
  • Woody Woodpecker and Friends, Vol. 6 (DVD; Columbia House)
  • Woody Woodpecker and His Friends, Vol. 1 (VHS; Universal/MCA)
  • Woody Woodpecker and His Friends, Vol. 1 (Laserdisc; Universal/MCA)

  • Screen Shots (click to enlarge):





    The Painter and the Pointer

    The Painter and the Pointer

    Release Date: 12/18/44
    Direction: James Culhane
    Story: Ben Hardaway and Milt Schaffer
    Animation Layout: Art Heinemann
    Animation: Les Kline and Emery Hawkins
    Music: Darrell Calker
    Backgrounds: Philip DeGuard

    Notes:
  • Production Number: D-11
  • An Andy Panda cartoon
  • Michael Fitzgerald incorrectly lists this cartoon as a January 1945 release.
  • This cartoon features a very different design of Andy Panda. Apparently, it failed to gain favor with audiences and was never used again for any subsequent releases. Andy's usual happy-go-lucky personality seems to have changed here as well. By his behavior, the "new Andy" could easily pass as Andy's evil twin brother.
    Video availability:
  • Woody Woodpecker and Friends Classic Cartoon Collection, Vol. 2 (DVD; Universal/MCA)
  • Woody Woodpecker and Friends, Vol. 10 (DVD; Columbia House)

  • Screen Shots (click to enlarge):




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