Saturday, December 5, 2015

Literary Toons: The Cat in the Hat (1971)

In 1971, DePatie-Freleng took over the license to adapt the works of Dr. Seuss (Ted Geisel) for television. Their first project was also the studio's first sale to CBS, The Cat in the Hat, which also marked the end of Chuck Jones' association with the franchise.

Jones, who would have a hand in ABC's Curiosity Shop that year, served as co-executive producer with Geisel, David DePatie, and Friz Freleng. Comedian Allan Sherman was cast in the title role of the Cat, and doubled as narrator. Additional voices include Daws Butler and Pamelyn Ferdin (who would also appear on Curiosity Shop). Universal owns the rights now, likely by virtue of having done a live-action version 12 years ago with Mike Myers (ex-Saturday Night Live) as the Cat.

To this day, the Cat and Things 1 & 2 have been used for merchandising. Like, every so often, you'll see someone wearing a Thing 1 or 2 shirt, for example.

Rating: A.


Steven Dolce said...

Way better than that shitty 2003 movie with Mike Myers in it.

hobbyfan said...

I saw that movie, Steve. Not as bad as people claim it was, but then, I have a different sense of good & bad when it comes to movies than most folks. Should've went with CGI and save money on makeup.

The only downside I saw was a cameo by talent-challenged Paris Hilton.

Steven Dolce said...

Mike Myers is a great comedian/actor, but that movie wasn't really one of his best. Sorry.

hobbyfan said...

It was also the last time they tried a live-action adaptation of a Seuss story.

Pokey said...

Goldilocks and the Three Bears (1970, around same time as Jones's Horton) with the Bing Crosby family and Paul Winchell as a crazed bobcat who leads an anti-human war, 1970 style (given the recent Trump/Clinton divison, just showing what a prophetic special that was). Songs by the SHerman Brothers, in maybe their only teaming with a Looney Tunes director. Avery Schrieber, and as GOldie, Mary Frances Crosgy was heard (one could consider Winchell's wildcat Freleng's answer to Jones's own Henry from the WB shorts0:)