American Grizzly Bear
Yogi Bear's Big Break (1958)
Yogi Bear is a trouble making pic-a-nic basket loving bear.
Behind the ScenesEdit
Created by Hanna-Barbera Productions, he made his debut in 1958 as a supporting character in The Huckleberry Hound Show. Yogi Bear was the first breakout character created by Hanna-Barbera, and was eventually more popular than Huckleberry Hound. In January 1961 he was given his own show, The Yogi Bear Show, sponsored by Kellogg's, which included the segments Snagglepuss and Yakky Doodle. Hokey Wolf replaced his segment on The Huckleberry Hound Show. A musical animated feature film, Hey There, It's Yogi Bear!, was produced in 1964.
Yogi was one of several Hanna-Barbera characters to have a collar, which allowed the body to be kept static and to redraw just the head in each frame when he was speaking, thus reducing the number of drawings needed for a seven-minute cartoon from 14,000 to around 2,000.
In October 2008, it was announced that Warner Bros. will film a live-action/animated film similar to Fox and Bagdasarian's Alvin & the Chipmunks. It will star Dan Aykroyd as the voice of Yogi Bear and Justin Timberlake as the voice of Boo-Boo Bear. The movie's release date is December 17, 2010.
Like many Hanna-Barbera characters, Yogi's personality and mannerisms were based on a popular celebrity of the time. Art Carney's Ed Norton character on The Honeymooners was said to be Yogi's inspiration; his voice mannerisms broadly mimic Carney as Norton. Norton, in turn, received influence from Borscht Belt and comedians of vaudeville.
Yogi's name is commonly seen as a nod to the famed baseball star Yogi Berra, though Hanna and Barbera denied this intent. The plot of most of Yogi's cartoons centered on his antics in the fictional Jellystone Park, a takeoff on the famous Yellowstone National Park. Yogi, accompanied by his constant companion Boo-Boo Bear, would often try to steal picnic ("pick-a-nic") baskets from campers in the park, much to the displeasure of Park Ranger Smith. His girlfriend, Cindy Bear, sometimes appeared and usually disapproved of Yogi's antics.
The name "Jellystone Park" and the concept of a hungry bear who steals campers' food appear to have been lifted from an MGM animated short titled Barney's Hungry Cousin, a Barney Bear cartoon that debuted in 1953.
Besides often speaking in rhyme, Yogi Bear is well-known for a variety of different catchphrases, including his pet name for picnic baskets ("pic-a-nic basketsststss") and his favorite self-promotion ("I'm smarter than the average bear!"), although he often overestimates his own cleverness. Another trademark of his is the deep and silly voice that he uses. He often greets the ranger with a cordial, "Hello, Mr. Ranger, sir!" He also likes to say, "Hey there, Boo Boo!" as his preferred greeting to his humble sidekick, Boo Boo.
From the time of the character's debut until 1988, Yogi was voiced by voice legend Daws Butler. Butler died in 1988. After Butler's death, Greg Burson stepped in to perform the role (Butler had taught Burson personally how to voice Yogi as well as his other characters). Greg Burson died in 2008. In the upcoming film Yogi Bear, the character is being portrayed by Ghostbusters notable Dan Aykroyd. In the animated stop motion sketch comedy show Robot Chicken created by Seth Green, Dan Milano voiced Yogi Bear.
Yogi Bear has appeared in many series and one-off shows, including:
- The Yogi Bear Show (1961).
- Yogi Bear & Friends, a syndicated animated series by Hanna-Barbera Productions that aired between 1967 and 1968.
- Yogi's Gang (1973–1975)
- Yogi's Space Race (1978–1979)
- Galaxy Goof-Ups (1978–1979)
- Casper's First Christmas (1979 TV Special)
- Laff-A-Lympics, where he captained the Yogi Yahooeys team from 1977 to 1979 on ABC.
- Yogi Bear's All Star Comedy Christmas Caper, a 1982 television special starring Yogi Bear and company.
- Yogi's Treasure Hunt (1985–1986)
- Yogi Bear and the Magical Flight of the Spruce Goose, an animated movie for television in 1987.
- Yogi and the Invasion of the Space Bears, an animated television movie that premiered in 1988.
- The New Yogi Bear Show (1988–1989), a 30-minute weekday animated series which aired in first-run syndication in 1988.
- Wake, Rattle, and Roll (1990–1991) (Fender Bender 500 segment)
- Yo Yogi! (1991–1992)
- Yogi Bear and the Easter Bear (1994) (TV special)
- Hey There, It's Yogi Bear!, a 1964 animated feature released by Columbia Pictures.
- Yogi's First Christmas, a 1980 made-for-TV movie starring Yogi Bear and company.
- Yogi's Great Escape, a 1987 made-for-TV movie starring Yogi Bear and company.
- Yogi Bear (film), a live-action/animated film released in 3-D on December 17, 2010.
- Yogi Baer's Adventures Series is another all-new Hanna Barbera crossover film by TheCityMaker. It appeared on YouTube 1-3-2012.
- Adventures of Yogi Bear, a platform game released by Cybersoft on October 1, 1994 in North America.
- Yogi Bear (game)
- Yogi Bear and the Three Stooges Meet the Mad, Mad, Mad Dr. No-No, a 1966 comedy album.
Live action feature filmEdit
Spümcø Ranger Smith shortsEdit
In 1999, animator John Kricfalusi's Spümcø company created and directed two Yogi cartoons, "A Day in the Life of Ranger Smith" and "Boo Boo Runs Wild". Both shorts aired that year on the Cartoon Network as part of a Yogi Bear special. "Boo Boo Runs Wild" features a fight between Yogi and Ranger Smith, which was edited heavily for broadcast for both violence and torture situations. A third Yogi cartoon from Spümcø was planned and storyboarded, but was never finished.
In 2003, Spümcø created another Boo Boo cartoon, "Boo Boo the Man", which was made with Macromedia Flash and released on Cartoon Network's website. Hanna-Barbera produced an instructional comic book on earthquake preparedness called Yogi's Quakey Shakey Van.
Yogi Bear is currently aired by Cartoon Network's sister channel, Boomerang, worldwide.
There was also a Hanna-Barbera Personal Favorites video where William Hanna and Joseph Barbera picked their favorite Yogi Bear episodes, including the very first one, "Yogi Bear's Big Break", and Yogi meeting some storybook friends: The Three Little Pigs, Snow White and the Seven Dwarves and Little Red Riding Hood.
A music video (known as a Cartoon Groovie) for Yogi Bear airs on The Cartoon Network and Boomerang. It showcases clips of Yogi and Boo Boo stealing picnic baskets and annoying Ranger Smith.
Over the years, several publishers have released Yogi Bear comic books.
- Gold Key Comics was first, with a title that ran 33 issues from 1962–70.
- Charlton Comics then did a title for 35 issues from 1970–77.
- Marvel Comics did a title for 9 issues in 1977.
- Harvey Comics then did several titles for a total of 10 issues in 1992–94.
- Archie Comics regularly featured Yogi Bear stories in the anthology comics Hanna-Barbera All-Stars and Hanna-Barbera Presents. After the cancellation of both titles, Archie put out a separate Yogi Bear comic that got one issue.
- DC Comics semi-regularly featured Yogi in Cartoon Network Presents.
From 1961 until 1988, there was also a Yogi Bear comic strip, created by Gene Hazelton and distributed by the McNaught Syndicate.
On November 15, 2005, Warner Home Video released the complete series on DVD R1. Yogi appeared in every episode featured.
- Yogi's Frustration (Intellivision) (1983)
- Yogi Bear (Commodore 64) (1987)
- Yogi Bear & Friends in the Greed Monster (Commodore 64) (1989)
- Yogi's Great Escape (Amiga) (1990)
- Yogi Bear's Math Adventures (DOS) (1990)
- Yogi's Big Clean Up (Amiga) (1992)
- Adventures of Yogi Bear (Super NES), (1994)
- Yogi's Gold Rush (Game Boy) (1994)
- Yogi Bear: Great Balloon Blast (Game Boy Color) (2000)
- Yogi Bear: The Video Game (Wii, Nintendo DS), (2010)
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