LOS ANGELES — Academy Award-winning animator Chuck Jones, best known for making Bugs Bunny, Daffy Duck, Elmer Fudd, Porky Pig and other beloved characters come to life, died Friday of congestive heart failure. He was 89.
Jones worked on more than 300 animated films in a career that spanned more than 60 years. Three of his films won Academy Awards and he was awarded an honorary Oscar in 1996 for lifetime achievement. He also received an honorary life membership from the Directors Guild of America.
Jones also produced, directed and wrote the screenplay for the animated television classic “Dr. Seuss’ How the Grinch Stole Christmas.”
One of Jones’ most popular films, “What’s Opera, Doc?” was inducted into the National Film Registry in 1992 for being “among the most culturally, historically and aesthetically significant films of our time.”
Three of Jones’ films won Academy Awards: “For Scent-imental Reasons,” “So Much for So Little” and “The Dot and the Line.”
After graduating from Chouinard Art Institute (now the California Institute of Arts), he began making a living drawing pencil portraits at a Los Angeles marketplace. He landed his first job washing animation cels in 1932, working for legendary Disney animator Ub Iwerks.
A few years later, he became an animator at the Leon Schlesinger Studio, which was later sold to Warner Bros. He headed his own unit at the Warner Bros. Animation Dept. until it closed in 1962.