On April 5th 1965, the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences bestowed an Oscar to Friz Freleng for Best Animated Short – for The Pink Phink (1964), the first Pink Panther cartoon. The next day, Friz’s former Looney Tunes colleague Bob Clampett wrote a congratualtory note to him in the form of a poem (or “pome” as written below). Click image to read enlarged version:

Some notes on the references in the poem: Clampett refers to “(Richard) Burton and Liz (Elizabeth Taylor)”, the famous show-biz couple of the time, though only Burton was nominated for Best Actor that year (and lost), Liz was not.

“Where there’s a LIL…” is a reference to Freleng’s wife, Lillian. “Nudnik” was, of course, a reference to Gene Deitch’s character, also nominated that year – in fact, Deitch had two nominees that year (the other being How To Avoid Friendship).

This cool little historical curio is now on ebay, apparently found among Freleng’s mementoes by the folks compiling the book, Animation: The Art of Friz Freleng (a great book, if you can afford it).

(Thanks, Charles Brubaker)