Archives On The Air 145: Looney Tunes—Michael Maltese Papers

Apr 12, 2019

Cartoon writer Michael Maltese began his career with the Max Fleischer Cartoon Studio, but he is best known for his work with Warner Brothers in the 1940s and 50s. Maltese designed iconic Looney Tunes characters like Pepe Le Pew, Wiley Coyote and Yosemite Sam. 

In 1952 Maltese sent a letter to Charlie Chaplin asking for one of his fake character mustaches.

Chaplin's PR department responded that "It came off in bits and pieces. Mr. Chaplin asked me to tell you he, therefore, regrets there is no mustache to send."

Maltese worked for Hanna-Barbera later in his career. There he helped create The Flintstones and Huckleberry Hound. Maltese wrote over 200 cartoons during his career.

The Michael Maltese papers at UW's American Heritage Center contain storyboards, animation cels, and his correspondence.