When we heard that Warner Bros. was kicking off their new Loony Tunes Cartoons project with plans to distribute on pretty much everything with a screen, we were admittedly skeptical. Would they follow the trend of redesigning their beloved characters with goofy, loopy lines and bulbous eyes? Would they trample their own legacy as other studios have done?

The answer to the question appears, thankfully, to be “no”.

The new Bugs Bunny short, Dynamite Dance,, looks like an old classic animated short from the Warner Bros. Animation vaults, but it’s brand new. Preface and plot setup are essentially dispensed with, and we go right to the action: Bugs Bunny letting the hapless hunter Elmer Fudd have it, over and over. And over.

Pause the Krypton Radio stream using the player at the upper right before watching.

The short was directed by David Gemmill and animated to the tune of Dance of the Hours. It was presented yesterday as part of a batch of finished shorts from the upcoming Warner Bros. Animation series Looney Tunes Cartoons, shown to a standing-room only crowd at the Annecy International Animation Film Festival.

It’s just in time to celebrate Bugs Bunny’s 80th anniversary. A Wild Hare made its debut on July 27, 1940.

It’s all there. The characters are on model. They move and interact the way they did in the classic WBA animated shorts. This is truly a return to their roots. Warner Bros. was one of two animation studios that defined the art for the generations, and they are embracing that legacy. Only the speed of the pacing and the partial use of depth in character motion gives away that it was not made in the 40’s or 50’s.

About Looney Tunes Cartoons

Looney Tunes Cartoons is a series of new short form cartoons starring the iconic and beloved Looney Tunes characters. With a crew of some of the premier artists working in animation today, each “season” will produce 200+ shorts, with 20-30 of them already completely finished. The “season” will consist of 1,000 minutes of all-new Looney Tunes animation that will be distributed across multiple platforms — including digital, mobile and broadcast.

Warner Bros. Animation describes it this way:

Looney Tunes Cartoons echoes the high production value and process of the original Looney Tunes theatrical shorts, with a cartoonist-driven approach to storytelling. Bugs Bunny, Daffy Duck, Porky Pig and other marquee Looney Tunes characters will be featured in their classic pairings in simple, gag-driven and visually vibrant stories. Each cartoon will vary from one to six minutes in length and, from the premise on through to the jokes, will be “written” and drawn by the cartoonists, allowing their own personality and style to come through in each cartoon.

In other words, they’re going to let the animators loose to do what they do best. From an animator’s perspective, this is the holy grail, the meaning and purpose to life: pure expression of the art of animation. It will be pure joy for the animators working on the series, and may inspire a new genesis in the animation arts.

Looney Tunes Cartoons is produced by Warner Bros. Animation and features veteran Looney Tunes voice cast members, including Eric Bauza, Jeff Bergman and Bob Bergen. Sam Register (Teen Titans Go!) and Peter Browngardt (Uncle Grandpa) serve as executive producers.

This is going to be SO MUCH FUN!!

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