Sometimes even the cartoon characters you thought were gone for good are brought back to life. And in a big way too.
Warner Bros. is currently developing a live-action/CGI movie (aren't they all?) based on the French animated skunk, Pepe Le Pew from Looney Tunes. Mike Myers (Austin Powers) is attached to voice our foul friend.
The studio is said to be incredibly high on bringing the giant cast of animated characters back to life considering how much money in licensing revenue is used for them each year. Bugs Bunny, Daffy Duck, Tweety Bird, Sylvester the Cat, Yosemite Sam, Porky Pig, and Foghorn Leghorn are just a few of the other icons on the Looney Tunes roster.
Jeff Sneider of thewrap.com says:
According to Vulture, only Pepe and his unrequited love interest, Penelope Pussycat, would be CGI characters, while the rest of the film will be live-action, just like "Garfield," "Alvin and the Chipmunks" and the upcoming "Yogi Bear."
Jaime Weisman of Macleans.com points out:
This does give me the opportunity to post this cartoon, which I think would be the only one that could serve as a template for a Pepe Le Pew feature. All the other Pepe cartoons have the stalker/attempted rape issue that Dave Chappelle and others have pointed out. But in this 1959 film, the girl cat is actually as interested in Pepe as he is in her. The problem is that they can’t get together because he smells so terrible that it makes her pass out (for which she’s taunted by June Foray as the narrator: “You are not going to let a little thing like breathing stand in your way?!”). It was written by the great Michael Maltese; oddly, the only cartoon that departs from the usual Pepe formula was not directed by the creator, Chuck Jones, but by one of his animators, Abe Levitow — leading many cartoon buffs to wonder if Jones would have accepted this change-of-pace script if he’d been in the director’s chair.
Weisman is wrong -- there's a similar twist in the Jones-directed "For Scent-imental Reasons," the Oscar-winning third Pepe Le Pew short.
The Macleans article concludes:
WB is planning these projects because their cartoon characters don’t make anywhere near the money in merchandising that the Disney characters do. There are a lot of reasons for this, but I will point out something I’ve pointed out elsewhere: Disney, for the most part, allows Mickey and Donald and Goofy cartoons to stay on YouTube. Some of them have been there for years. Meanwhile, Warner Brothers is constantly cracking down on YouTube uploads of Bugs, Daffy and Pepe cartoons. Do they not think Disney cartoons might get some extra merchandising value from the fact that they’re actually there, on the biggest video site in the world, where kids can see them?