||This article includes a list of references, related reading or external links, but its sources remain unclear because it lacks inline citations. (November 2009)|
|Woody Woodpecker series|
|Directed by||Don Patterson|
|Produced by||Walter Lantz|
|Story by||Hugh Harman|
|Voices by||Daws Butler
|Music by||Clarence Wheeler
|Animation by||Ray Abrams
|Studio||Walter Lantz Productions|
|Distributed by||Universal Pictures|
|Release date(s)||November 22, 1954 (U.S.)|
|Running time||6' 11"|
|Preceded by||A Fine Feathered Frenzy|
|Followed by||Helter Shelter|
Convict Concerto is the 58th animated cartoon short subject in the Woody Woodpecker series. Released theatrically on November 22, 1954, the film was produced by Walter Lantz Productions and distributed by Universal-International.
Woody is a shy piano tuner who is held at gunpoint by a bank robber named Mugsy (Dal McKennon) who is on the lam. Mugsy hides out inside the grand piano Woody is tuning, and directs him to start playing immediately. Mugsy plays part of Frédéric Chopin's Funeral March to threaten Woody, who replies with a rousing rendition of Franz Liszt's "Hungarian Rhapsody No. 2." He manages to play the entire piece while being harassed by the gun-wielding Mugsy as well as a bricks-for-brains policeman (Daws Butler) hot on the trail of the stolen loot.
- The normally red wood plank backdrop utilized during the opening theme when Woody bursts through a hole, announcing "Guess who?", is replaced with a light balsa-colored wood backdrop starting with this entry. Woody also appears a lot more smaller in this particular intro. This lighter background would be used until 1970, when the background reverts to a red wood plank for the remainder of the series.
- Mugsy refers to Russian composer Sergei Rachmaninoff when he quips to Woody "Keep up the good work, Rachmaninoff!"
- Convict Concerto was Don Patterson's final effort as director on a Woody short, although he would stay on at Lantz as an animator until 1960's Heap Big Hepcat. He does not receive on-screen credit as director.
- Convict Concerto borrows its plot heavily from the Tom and Jerry cartoon The Cat Concerto and the Bugs Bunny cartoon Rhapsody Rabbit, which were both Academy Award nominees.
- Cooke, Jon, Komorowski, Thad, Shakarian, Pietro, and Tatay, Jack. "1954". The Walter Lantz Cartune Encyclopedia.
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