The People
Behind the Gags!

Hidden Gags in Looney Tunes
and Merrie Melodies Cartoons

Caricature of Melvin Millar from
Russian Rhapsody (Clampett, 1944).
Other Stuff
Hidden Gags
Melvin "Tubby" Millar
Cartoon Writer - 1937-1945
Biographical info:
Born: May 6, 1900 (Portis, Kansas)
Died: December 1980 (Burbank, Ca)
Imdb history

More about Millar:

Melvin Millar was born in Portis Kansas and graduated from Portis High School in 1918. After going to the Kansas City Art School he went out to Hollywood where he became a story writer for Leon Schlesinger's Looney Tunes and Merrie Melodies cartoons. This lasted from approximately 1937-1945. Note that Melvin Millar was actually born with the last name "Miller" - he changed his name when he went west.

After starting his career at WB, Millar began to slip little references to his hometown into the cartoons by hiding it's name in the background or even using it for a character name. Among these were Bingo Crosbyana (Freleng, 1936), Porky's Pet (King, 1936) , Porky of the North Woods (Tashlin, 1936) , Porky's Road Race (Tash, 1937) , "Sniffles and the Bookworm" and "The Case of the Stuttering Pig".

The town of Portis was proud enough of him to create a special memorial. A picture of it is shown here. Because Millar worked on Porky Pig cartoons so often, the monument includes a picture of the famous pig.

In addition to the "Portis" gags, Millar's name also appeared in cartoon backgrounds from time to time. For example, one sees a bottle of "Three Star Millar" in "Billboard Frolics". Visitors are encouraged to visit "Millar Manor" in Porky's Pet (King, 1936) , and a local business is named "Millar's Dry Goods" in Porky the Fireman (Tashlin, 1938) . And finally, in Russian Rhapsody (Clampett, 1944) there is a gremlin caricature of him (the one with a tack on his head).

You can see "Millar's Dry Goods"
on one building behind Porky in
Porky the Fireman (Tashlin, 1938)


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