Chuck Jones - Rivalry With Bob Clampett: Jones-Avery Letter

Rivalry With Bob Clampett: Jones-Avery Letter

On December 11, 1975, shortly after the release of Bugs Bunny Superstar, which prominently featured Bob Clampett, Jones wrote a letter to Tex Avery, accusing Clampett of taking credit for ideas that were not his. Their correspondence was never published in the media, nonetheless it was sent to Michael Barrier, who had conducted the interview with Clampett and was distributed by Jones to multiple people concerned with animation over the years. Animator Milt Gray described this as a smear campaign by Chuck Jones. Michael Barrier claims that Clampett had given himself too much credit, but also that Jones had had ill feelings towards him ever since their days at Termite Terrace, due to the fact that Bob Clampett was made an animation director before Chuck Jones. Nonetheless most of his claims in his interview, mainly those that he was the originator of Bugs Bunny have been proven overly exaggerated and false (his claim of participation on the making of A Wild Hare, on which he isn't credited). Robert McKimson claimed in an interview that many animators but mostly Clampett contributed to the crazy personality of Bugs, while others like Chuck Jones concentrated more on the more calmed down gags. As far as plagiarism is concerned, McKimson cited that the animators would always be looking at each other's sheets to see if they could borrow some punchlines and cracks.

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