Foghorn Leghorn is a fictional cartoon rooster that appeared in the Looney Tunes films - the Looney Tunes short films were created by Warner Bros. Pictures in America from 1930 to 1969.
As well as Foghorn Leghorn, other famous cartoon characters to come out of the Looney Tunes shows included Bugs Bunny, Tweety, Daffy Duck, Road Runner and Speedy Gonzales.
Warner Bros. Pictures also created a cartoon series called Merrie Melodies, and Foghorn Leghorn appeared in these as well as Looney Tunes.
It was Robert McKimson and Warren Foster who conceived the idea for the character, Foghorn Leghorn. The name stems from a breed of chicken (Leghorn), with the inclusion of foghorn to reflect the fact that the character had a booming, loud voice, like a ship's warning signal.
It was a popular 1940s radio character who was the inspiration behind Foghorn Leghorn. Senator Claghorn, a politician from the Deep South, was a regular fixture on The Fred Allen Show, and was played by Kenny Delmar. It's believed that Foghorn Leghorn's voice was also patterned from a 1930s radio character called The Sheriff.
Voice actor Mel Blanc created Foghorn Leghorn's southern drawl, but his voice was also performed by a number of other actors over the years, including Jeff Bergman, Greg Burson and Jeff Bennett.
The rowdy rooster appeared in 29 cartoons, spanning from 1946 until 1963, all of which were directed by McKimson. The first cartoon Foghorn Leghorn appeared in was a Henery Hawk film called Walky Talky Hawky.
As well as being boisterous and loud, Foghorn Leghorn was known for his mischievous streak. Many of the rooster's pranks involved his canine sidekick, The Barnyard Dawg. Although Foghorn Leghorn often instigated many of the pranks, he was often the one who ended up the butt of the joke. Most of his gags centred on teasing The Barnyard Dawg when he was tied up with a rope, so the canine wouldn't be able to chase after the rooster. A weasel named Bill also joined ranks with Foghorn Leghorn to outwit the hound.
At times, Foghorn Leghorn tried to show his romantic persona, which saw him regularly caught trying to win the affections of a widowed hen named Miss Prissy.
Foghorn Leghorn was also famous for his recurring catchphrases, such as 'that's a joke, ah say, that's a joke, son', 'some days, it don't pay to get outta bed', 'go, I say, go away, boy, ya bother me', and 'don't, I say, don't bother me Dog. Can't you see I'm thinkin?' Some of these phrases were frequently said by Senator Claghorn.
The iconic rooster also enjoyed cameo appearances in a number of more recent films, including ‘Who Framed Roger Rabbit?’, Chuck Jones short films and The Family Guy. He has also featured in adverts for Kentucky Fried Chicken and Oscar Mayer.
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