Bugs Bunny, the beloved cartoon rabbit of Looney Tunes fame, turns 80 today and as it goes with celebrity birthdays, there are plenty of folks on social media taking a moment to honor the animated icon on his big day and that includes filmmaker Kevin Smith. Smith took to Twitter on Monday to wish Bugs a happy birthday, noting the many lessons that Bugs Bunny has given fans over his lengthy time as part of popular culture.
"80 years ago today, the first Bugs Bunny short (not pictured) introduced a lifelong lesson plan for kids on how to win arguments, handle frienimies, best or beat bullies with both aplomb and a sense of humor, and always be the smartest wabbbit in the room," Smith wrote. "Happy Boithday, Doc!"
80 years ago today, the first Bugs Bunny short (not pictured) introduced a lifelong lesson plan for kids on how to win arguments, handle frienimies, best or beat bullies with both aplomb and a sense of humor, and always be the smartest wabbbit in the room. Happy Boithday, Doc! pic.twitter.com/YECGS0FWAV— KevinSmith (@ThatKevinSmith) July 27, 2020
While the Warner Bros. Looney Tune animated short Porky's Hare Hunt was the very first Bugs Bunny-like rabbit in 1938, the first official Bugs Bunny cartoon, A Wild Hare, was released on July 27, 1940. That cartoon saw Elmer Fudd "hunting wabbits", though Fudd is quickly and hilariously outsmarted by Bugs in a series of hilarious schemes and hijinks. The cartoon was a massive success and even received an Academy Award nomination for Best Cartoon Short Subject. Bugs soon became a regular character in Looney Toons cartoons and by 1942 was the main star of the Merrie Melodies series and was especially popular during World War 2, appearing in various U.S. war bonds commercials and propaganda films as well as topical films for the time, such as Herr Meets Hare in which not only his classic line about missing a left turn at Albuquerque was born but also saw Bugs face off with Hitler.
After World War 2, Bugs continued to be popular and appeared in numerous classic cartoons and even had his own, prime-time television program in the 1960s, The Bugs Bunny Show, though the series eventually moved to Saturday mornings where it was a fixture until 2000. Bugs has also appeared in a number of more modern films. Bugs appeared as one of the inhabitants of Toontown in 1988's Who Framed Roger Rabbit and was a major character in the cult-classic 1996 films Space Jam. He's also been the star of several direct-to-video films and has appeared in numerous video games. Suffice it to say, if it can be done, Bugs Bunny has done it over the course of his 80 years.
What do you think of Smith's honoring Bugs Bunny for his 80th birthday? Let us know in the comments below.