On a Pecking Woody

Ten Points about Woody Woodpecker

  • First appeared in an Andy Panda short (1940), but first appeared on television in October 3, 1957 on ABC.
  • Although best associated with Walter Lantz, Ben Hardaway helped created the prototype for Woody. Lantz got the cartoon idea from a noisy woodpecker keeping him and his wife awake during their honeymoon, and led this cartoon until 1972.
  • Woody’s trademark laugh is a Mel Blanc creation.
  • Woody was more insane during his early years.
  • Woody has a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.
  • Other stars in the show: Andy Panda, Papa Panda, Wally Walrus, Buzz Buzzard, Chilli Willie.
  • Knothead and Splinter were his nephews who eventually became his nephew and niece.
  • Woody nominated for an Academy Award in 1944, Best Short Subject (Cartoons), but lost to Tom and Jerry. The Woody Woodpecker Song received a Best Song nomination in 1948.
  • TV Guide’s Great Cartoon Character of All-time list: #46 (2002, 2003); #25 on Animal Planet’s list of The 50 Greatest Movie Animals (2004)
  • Appeared in Who Framed Roger Rabbit (1988).

Here is a 2+ minute segment of this zany, brash bird singing from the Barber of Seville with a classic slapstick routine of the times. Enjoy … and thank you Walter Lantz for being the visual spirit behind Woody Woodpecker.!