tweetiepie tweetiepie

Tweety’s lost titles

Here’s something I’ve never seen before – and you won’t be seeing it on DVD (or in color) anytime soon yourself. Cartoon historian David Gerstein is one of several animation archaeologists (along with colleagues Steve Stanchfield, Tom Stathes and Thad Komorowski) determined to hunt down lost Hollywood cartoons the major studios have long abandoned or forgotten. This includes missing bits and pieces – like title sequences and cut footage – and all have succeeded in recent years by locating such footage, both important and obscure, found collecting dust in private collections or neglected at major archives.

Gerstein’s latest find is the original opening titles and credits (albeit in black and white) to Warner Bros. Oscar winning 1947 short, Tweetie Pie. Even Warners doesn’t have this opening – having been cut from the original negative long ago, for a 1955 Blue Ribbon reissue. Let David tell you about it (and see it and hear it) on his blog. And keep his page book marked – David’s found several more which he’ll post in later weeks.

  • swac

    Amazing find! Maybe WB could colourize it and include it on future reissues (and get rid of that weird brick wall that hides the Technicolor credit).

    • Chris Sobieniak

      Interesting how that brick wall bit was used. Looks like they took a frame of something from a particular cartoon and simply had that optically inserted as such. Certainly a step up from the Sharpie-scribbles MGM would do to their prints.

      • hernandez2014

        The way MGM would censor the “in Technicolor” byline, as well as the phrase “If you buy a stamp or bond, we’ll skin that skunk across the pond” at the end of “Blitz Wolf” (in low-quality copies) reminds me of NTA censoring Paramount bylines in their cartoons. Funny thing is, unlike MGM, the NTA black bars would stay still (although when the original credits scroll or pan, the bars move very uneasily to hide the naughty studio name).

  • Scott Jeralds

    i have the same experience with a lot of tv animation…long lost bumpers…titles…etc that i have in my collection….when i was helping out warner home video back in the day i would provide them with these lost elements… but they would usually ignore it and put out what they called “the complete series” which were far from it….then officials would call me and ask why they were getting so many complaints about how incomplete the series were….but jerry…i’m sure you’ve had this problem in the past….and it does look like it’s improving slightly…

  • David

    Amazing! While I understand the admonition not to expect this on DVD any time soon, I do hope that this and other rediscovered treasures (such as those early T&J titles Mr. Gerstein found a while back) do find their way back into general release so everyone can enjoy them.

    Any chance of Mr. Gerstein being brought on board as another WHV consultant?

    • Yeah, I’ve been thinking the same thing:) WHV had better use the original Tom & Jerry title cards he found to restore the cartoons on their upcoming T&J Golden Collection!

  • Funkybat

    I have great admiration for the dedication and investigative work people like this put into finding lost film and animation history. Rifling through old acetate film, dusty logbooks, and following up ancient rumors ain’t easy by any stretch.

    There is undoubtedly lots more stuff “out there” in storage lockers, closets, warehouses and attics, which will hopefully be found before they are blindly thrown in a landfill or destroyed in a fire, flood or earthquake. When I was first learning about animation history, I was alarmed to learn how much cutting and rejiggering went on decades ago, often with all copies (let alone negs) of the original sent to the dumpster. It’s as big a tragedy as the “wiping” of all the cels from classic cartoons.

    My hat’s off to these and all the other “animation archeologists!”

  • now if they could only find the original titles to “A Tale of Two Kitties”.

  • ColumbiaCartoons

    Warner Bros have got to find more original titles to the other Looney Tunes and Merrie Melodies shorts as quickly as they can, let’s hope for the time is right.