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After more than nine seasons at NBC,America's favorite animated feline and all of his cartoon pals switched networks,this time over to ABC-TV in an all-new format titled "The All-New Pink Panther Show". The new format also had a different opening from the original show which aired with the Pink Panther doing John Travolta disco moves and other new formations. "The Pink Panther" was based on a 1964 comedy starring Peter Sellers and produced by Blake Edwards that spawned several theatrical sequels,not to mention two remakes,the last of which came out around 2006. The title originally referred to the "pantherlike" image seen in a diamond when light hit the gem at a certain angle. The animated cartoons,produced by Friz Freleng was about a mute walking cat who outwitted his enemies,sometimes unintentionally with hilarious results. The cartoons(which were animated theatrical shorts)were huge box office winners for United Artists. These "Pink Panther" cartoons made the transition to Saturday Mornings for NBC from 1969 until 1978. In September of 1978,the animated cat moved from NBC to ABC.
His new friends,besides bringing along for this installment "The Ant and the Aardvark" were the characters of "Crazylegs Crane and Son" who was always after the "Dragonfly". This segment was on the same ground as "Sylvester and Tweety",and "The Road Runner",but in this one some segments were funny and some were not. Depending on the outcome. The newer cartoons,which some were shown on television and also released theatrically,provided the same hilarious outcome featuring the Pink Panther in one difficult situation after another.
The only thing that was the same were the silly cartoon sounds,and dialogue(in which the Pink Panther rarely said a word,but in some episodes had one hint of dialogue),and the only thing that was different was the music.....yes,the music....Henry Mancini's theme stayed the same by all means,but gone were the musical variations of William Lava,Walter Greene and Doug Goodwin only to be given a upbeat tempo featuring different variations of jazz,and not to mention a disco beat and funky undertones in some of the animated shorts even though they lasted no more than eight minutes in length,compact into a half-hour program. Since these all-new cartoons were seen both on television and in the theatres(some in re-release)a total of 16 of these animated cartoons were produced,under the executive producers David H. DePatie and Friz Freleng under their production company DFE Films(DePatie-Freleng Productions).
"The All-New Pink Panther Show" lasted one season as part of ABC's Sunshine Saturday Morning line-up that ran from September 9, 1978 until May 26, 1979. Only the original episodes ran for one season. Then ABC put this in repeats from June 2, 1979 until September 1, 1979. The reasons to why this failed with viewers in new adventures was obvious.....ABC put the show opposite the Saturday Morning blockbuster "The Bugs Bunny and Road Runner Show" which toppled it in the ratings. The last theatrical "Pink Panther" animated short also was released that same year in 1979...the same year DFE Enterprises folded its production studio. It wouldn't be until five years later in 1984,when the animated cat made a Saturday Morning comeback(in a quite different form under the title "Pink Panther and Sons",which was a television comeback at NBC),and again in 1993 in a syndicated format.
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