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Trivia / Woody Woodpecker

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The shorts

  • Breakthrough Hit: Woody Woodpecker is this for the Walter Lantz studio; while they had enjoyed some mild success in the past, this series is unambiguously what put them on the map, and with Andy Panda, what pulled the studio out of its slump from the late 1930's and the decline of Oswald the Lucky Rabbit.
  • Cash Cow Franchise: Woody Woodpecker was this once upon a time, enough to have many comics and merchandising tie-ins. Nowadays, you'll be lucky to even see him outside of a mascot theme park costume or his DVD re-releases.
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  • Cross-Dressing Voices: Walter Lantz's wife, Grace Stafford Lantz, succeeded Mel Blanc and Ben Hardaway as Woody's voice actor. She claimed that she slipped in a recording of her own impression of Woody's voice around the time Walter Lantz was looking for Woody's new voice.
  • Descended Creator: Ben Hardaway, Woody's co-creator, provided the voice for Woody for the bulk of his 1940's cartoons.
  • Development Hell: The Illumination Woody Woodpecker feature was initially slated for a 2015 release, but as of late 2015, it hasn't even entered production yet.
  • Executive Meddling: Like many other Fox Kids series, the revival suffered heavy censorship- ie. Woody being unable to peck people on the head (he did do it on occasion, presumably when the censors were distracted). It wasn't the only show to suffer- the stuff they did to Spider-Man: The Animated Series is legendary.
  • Keep Circulating the Tapes: All of the original shorts from the 1940s to around the mid 1950s are available on DVD collections with some shorts from other Walter Lantz series sandwiched in, but there are currently no plans for a release of the remaining cartoons; and this is just the original cartoons as shown in theaters, not the versions with live action intermissions that aired on the original Woody Woodpecker Show (while both of the official DVD sets include several of these excerpts as extras, its not all of them). Likewise, there are no plans for a rerelease of The New Woody Woodpecker Show either (typical for Fox Kids series- The Spooktacular New Adventures of Casper is also another Universal/FK series that hasn't been released either), or any DVD releases of Walter Lantz's other animated properties.
    • While "Hypnotic Hick" is available on DVD, it's only a standard 2D print of the film—the original 3-D print of the cartoon remains in limbo.
    • As of now, only one episode of The New Woody Woodpecker Show ("Frankenwoody/The Meany Witch Project/Fright Movie Woody") has been released on DVD as as a bonus feature on Woody Woodpecker and Friends Halloween Favorites.
    • Averted as of May 2020; the 1999 series has been put onto the new NBCUniversal streaming service Peacock.
      • Once again played straight as the show is removed from Peacock on June 30, 2021.
  • Long Runner: Woody first appeared in 1940 and new cartoons with the character were being made until Lantz shut down his studio in 1972, with a 30 year run. (Note that there was a hiatus between 1948-1950)
  • The Other Darrin: As mentioned above, Woody has gone through several different voice actors, although voice clips from his original actor, Mel Blanc, were used up to the 1950's shorts.
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  • Recycled Script: The ending to "Daffy Duck and Egghead" was reused by Ben Hardaway (an ex-Warner Bros. writer/director) for the Andy Panda short "Knock Knock", Woody Woodpecker's debut.
  • Sequel Gap: After the end of The New Woody Woodpecker Show in 2002, it took the series a whopping 16 years to get a new webseries on Youtube in 2018.
  • Throw It In!: The Woody Woodpecker short Wet Blanket Policy originally didn't have "The Woody Woodpecker Song" in the opening, but it was added in at the last minute by Walter Lantz, when he discovered how much of a surprise hit the single had become.

The film

The 2018 YouTube series


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