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You Ought to Be in Pictures

You Ought to Be in Pictures is a 1940 Warner Bros. Looney Tunes short film featuring Porky Pig and Daffy Duck. The film combined live-action and animation, and features live-action appearances by Leon Schlesinger, writer Michael Maltese, and other Schlesinger Productions staff members. In 1994 it was voted #34 of the 50 Greatest Cartoons of all time by members of the animation field.The title comes from the popular song "You Ought to Be in Pictures" by Dana Suesse and Edward Heyman.


Daffy wants to be the top star in the studio. To this end, he persuades Porky to resign from the Schlesinger studios to pursue a career in feature films as Bette Davis' leading man. Porky goes to Leon Schlesinger and asks to have his contract torn up. Schlesinger reluctantly agrees, and wishes Porky the best of luck. "He'll be back!" chuckles Schlesinger after Porky is out of earshot.

The rest of the short involves Porky trying to get into the lots and sets of various un-named studios, all with the same degree of success (none, that is). After several failures, he decides to see if Schlesinger will take him back. He returns to Schlesinger's office after frantically dodging his cartooned car in and out of "actual" Los Angeles traffic, a situation mirrored in Who Framed Roger Rabbit five decades later, only to see Daffy doing a wild audition to become the new star of Warner Bros. cartoons. He invites Daffy out to have a "talk" with him, but he actually beats Daffy up. After Porky gets his revenge on Daffy, he hurriedly runs into Schlesinger's office to beg for his job back. Schlesinger, laughing heartily and saying "I knew you'd be back!", reveals that he didn't really rip up Porky's contract, and tells him to get back to work. Porky gladly runs back into the animation paper that he was in when the short started. Daffy, still not quite having learned his lesson after being beaten by Porky, again attempts to persuade Porky to resign and work with Greta Garbo, only to get splattered with a tomato.


  • In a real-life parallel of the storyline, the short was Friz Freleng's first since returning to Schlesinger after a stint as a director at MGM's cartoon division.
  • As noted, many staff members have cameos in this short:
    • Leon Schlesinger — appears as himself
    • Chuck Jones — one of the crowd rushing out during the lunch break
    • Bob Clampett — another one of the Termite Terrace employees rushing frantically off to lunch
    • Michael Maltese — the studio security guard (voiced by Mel Blanc)
    • Gerry Chiniquy — studio director calling for quiet
    • Henry Binder, Paul Marin — stagehands also calling for quiet. Binder is also the stagehand throwing Porky off the set
  • Because the animation unit did not have access to location sound recording equipment, all of the live-action footage was shot silent. The voices had to be dubbed in later (which is why most of them were dubbed by Mel Blanc).
  • To keep the short on-budget, relatively few special effects were used to marry the animation and live action. Where possible, the crew simply took still pictures of the office background and had them enlarged and placed directly on the animation stand.
  • Despite being in black and white, this short was shown regularly on Looney Tunes on Nickelodeon especially during the Nick at Nite version.
  • In 1995, the film was computer colorized and became a regular part of the Cartoon Network rotation. The film could also be seen in its original black and white form on the short-lived "Golden Jubilee" video collection of the mid-1980s, Cartoon Network's installment show Late Night Black and White, and Nick at Nite's Looney Tunes on Nickelodeon.




  • Beck, Jerry and Friedwald, Will (1989): Looney Tunes and Merrie Melodies: A Complete Illustrated Guide to the Warner Bros. Cartoons. Henry Holt and Company.

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