- " Eh, what's up, 'Doc?"
- —Bugs Bunny
Looney Tunes is a Warner Bros. cartoon series featuring Bugs Bunny, Daffy Duck, Porky Pig and many others.
Warner Bros. released two series of animated theatrical shorts, Looney Tunes and Merrie Melodies. The original premiered in 1930, and the latter in 1931. The latter were initially based on popular songs from the Warner Bros. catalog.
The Merrie Melodies were produced in black-and-white until 1934, when two Cinecolor one-shots were produced. Later in the year, the series completely converted to 2-color production, due to Disney, having a contract with 3-hue Technicolor until August 31, 1935. They swapped to 3-hue color in 1936. The Looney Tunes were in black and white for 13 years and swapped to color in 1942. By 1944, the series converted to full-color production. The Looney Tunes characters were never owned by MGM, but were a competitor of the MGM Cartoon character.
The pre-1948 cartoons, the 1931-33 Merrie Melodies, the 2 Cinecolors, the 1934-35 2-hue color cartoons, and the 1936-48 MM and LT 3-hue color cartoons, but excluding the 1930-33 Looney Tunes and the 1933-43 Black and White cartoons, were sold to AAP in 1956. Rights were transferred to United Artists in 1959 when AAP went bankrupt. In 1968, UA banned ten Merrie Melodies and a Looney Tune short from airing on US television called the Censored 11. These cartoons are still banned to this day. In 1981, Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer bought UA, and renamed themselves, MGM/UA. In 1986, Ted Turner, founder of Turner Entertainment, bought MGM, but sold it back due to the debt it had. Turner kept the pre-1986 MGM library which included all MGM's theatrical cartoons and silent films. It also included majority of sound movies up to 1986 and all of Warner Bros. pre-1950 films and pre-1948 cartoons. However, Turner did not buy Warner Bros. 1936-46 Monogram films and these most likely remain ownership with MGM, although WB has access to their original negatives. In 1996, Time Warner bought Turner and the cartoons are now distributed by Warner Home Video, while Turner owns the copyrights.
The Goofy Gophers
Wile E. Coyote and the Road Runner (none of their cartoons were in the pre-1948 package, including the 5 Wile E. Coyote and Bugs Bunny shorts)
The Tasmanian Devil (none of his cartoons were in the pre-1948 package)
Marvin the Martian
Sylvester the cat
Speedy Gonzales (none of his cartoons were in the pre-1948 package)