Happiness Is a Warm Blanket, Charlie Brown

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Happiness Is a Warm Blanket, Charlie Brown
Genre Animation
Format Cartoon
Created by Charles M. Schulz
Written by Charles M. Schulz
Craig Schulz
Stephan Pastis
Directed by Andrew Beall
Frank Molieri
Presented by Charles M. Schulz Creative Associates
Cookie Jar Group
Voices of Austin Lux (Linus van Pelt)
Amanda Pace (Sally Brown)
Trenton Rogers (Charlie Brown, Schroeder)
Grace Rolek (Lucy van Pelt)
Shane Baumel (Pig-Pen)
Blesst Bowden (Violet)
Ciara Bravo (Patty)
Andy Pessoa (Shermy)
Andrew Beall (Snoopy and Woodstock)
Bill Melendez (Snoopy and Woodstock's archival audio)
Composer(s) Mark Mothersbaugh
Country of origin USA
Original language(s) English
Production
Executive producer(s) Charles M. Schulz
Running time 46 minutes
Production company(s) Peanuts Worldwide
Warner Premiere
Distributor Warner Bros. Pictures
Broadcast
Original channel Fox (US)
Teletoon (Canada)
Original airing October 1, 2011
Chronology
Preceded by He's a Bully, Charlie Brown

Happiness Is a Warm Blanket, Charlie Brown is a Peanuts television special animated by Cookie Jar Group (subsidiary of DHX Media) that was released in 2011. The special is the 45th Peanuts special and the first produced without Bill Melendez on the production team. It is also the first special without the direct involvement of Peanuts creator Charles Schulz, Lee Mendelson Productions or Bill Melendez Productions (it is unknown, though, if Lee Mendelson also worked on this special).[1] In addition, it is the first Peanuts special produced in part under Warner Bros. Television, which holds the home media distribution rights to the Peanuts specials.

The special was released on DVD on March 29, 2011, and first aired on television on October 1, 2011, on Teletoon in Canada. The special premiered in the United States on Thanksgiving Day, November 24, 2011 at 8:30PM ET/PT on Fox, the first Peanuts special to air on the network; with this airing, Peanuts specials have aired on all four major networks. Coincidentally, the first half of the film's original Fox broadcast in 2011 competed directly with a Peanuts special that aired at the same time on ABC ("The Mayflower Voyagers" from This Is America, Charlie Brown).[2][3] The special aired again in 2012 - this time on November 23 (the day after Thanksgiving, so as not to directly compete with the other Peanuts specials) and December 17 - and 2013.

This special is particularly notable in that the characters/animation are done in an early-1960s style, and uses only characters from that time period (including Violet, Shermy, and the original Patty), except for the inclusion of one later character, Woodstock, and intermediate-era characters Frieda, Faron, 5, 4, and 3 appearing briefly as extras; and even pays homage to the very first Peanuts strip, from October 2, 1950 (when Charlie Brown has a flashback sequence).

The title recalls the 1960s Peanuts phrase "Happiness Is A Warm Puppy," which became a cultural reference.

Production[edit]

It was announced by one of the hosts at the 2010 84th annual Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade when a Snoopy balloon (in his flying ace outfit) passed by. As quoted: "Snoopy fans will be happy to know that next year, a new Peanuts animation will be flying your way."[4]

The last Peanuts special had been in 2006. Craig Schulz, son of the strip's creator, said the intention was to use 1960s style animation. Cookie Jar Entertainment found a Korean company to do the work. Schulz also said the majority of the script used the actual strips, supplemented by work by Pearls Before Swine creator Stephan Pastis. Pastis had the idea to focus on Linus' blanket.[5]

After the death of Bill Melendez, the voices of Snoopy and Woodstock were provided by director Andrew Beall, though Melendez's Snoopy and Woodstock voice was used from archival sources.

The movie was scored by Devo frontman Mark Mothersbaugh.[6]

Some scenes come from It's an Adventure, Charlie Brown, The Charlie Brown and Snoopy Show, and A Charlie Brown Celebration.

Plot[edit]

Linus is pushed to his limits when he learns his grandmother is coming to visit and plans on ridding him of his childish security blanket. As Grandma’s arrival looms closer, the Peanuts gang tries to help Linus learn to cope without his fuzzy crutch. Linus' sister Lucy is particularly eager to cure Linus' dependency using her own psychiatric techniques. Charlie Brown tries to help; he just doesn't have the heart to see Linus suffer. Snoopy constantly agitates matters, because he wants the blanket for himself. In the end, insightful Linus points out that everyone has their own type of “security blanket” and in life a little security is a valuable thing.

Voices[edit]

  • Austin Lux - Linus Van Pelt
  • Amanda Pace - Sally Brown
  • Trenton Rogers - Charlie Brown
  • Grace Rolek - Lucy Van Pelt

Voices (continued)[edit]

Frieda, Faron, 5, 3 and 4 have cameo appearances, but are silent.

Crew[edit]

Blu-ray and DVD release[edit]

Happiness Is a Warm Blanket, Charlie Brown was released on Blu-ray and DVD March 29, 2011 by Warner Home Video and includes the following special features:

References[edit]

External links[edit]