Sunday, 1 April 2012

Mike Maltese and Friends, 1961

During its short life, this blog has been blessed with the help of former artists of the Hanna-Barbera studio. They’re always friendly and willing to share their knowledge.

Mark Christiansen is one of them. He’s patiently answered my e-mails and, on one of his own blogs, has posted a few great, sometimes unique, things that I’ve been tempted to purloin. Today, I’ve given in to temptation because he’s posted a picture of my favourite cartoon writer, Mike Maltese. And, as Maltese might have Pepé Le Pew say, “Quel belle de bon-us!” Warren Foster is there, too.

The photos come from a 1961 article in the TV-Radio Mirror, yet another one of those We-Got-Kicked-Out-By-MGM-But-Had-The-Last-Laugh stories. But it’s got pictures of some of the staff, and I was quite happy to see some people I’d never seen before.

Fernando Montealegre and Art Lozzi both worked for Bill Hanna and Joe Barbera at the MGM studio and came along (Dan Bessie, an assistant at MGM, notes in his autobiography there were two Fernandos at MGM, both from Costa Rica). Art is still living in Greece as far as I know, and I would love to hear from him some time.

Roberta Greutert, the head of ink and paint, worked under Art Goble at MGM. I’ve presumed as her married name was Marshall, she married Lew Marshall.

Frank Paiker (his name is misspelled in the caption) goes back to the silent era. He worked for the Bray Studio, then as an inker at the Fleischer Studio in the 1930s before he rose into management. He was an MGM refugee as well.

Alex Lovy’s career is pretty known. He worked in New York, came west to work at the Lantz studio, stopped for a time at Columbia before UPA took over its release schedule, then left Lantz a second time around the end of 1958 for a story director’s job at Hanna-Barbera.

The reposting of the full article is HERE.


  1. The timing of the story is good, because it catches the studio at the moment just before it began to stretch itself too thin with too many projects going at the same time. And it does offer up a little info on just how Carlo Vinci made the trip west from Terrytoons (though given the 2 1/2 years' worth of cartoons that came out of MGM with Hanna-Barbera credited as producers, Joe's timeframe from getting the job to MGM shutting down doesn't fit very well, but it is believable that Carlo would have arrived just prior to the decision to shut the studio).

  2. Carlo worked at MGM for 2 and a half years. When the MGM animation studio finally closed he thought maybe he made a mistake in moving to California. He worked for Paul Fennell animating TV commercials, and at Disney, who Joe gave him a personal reference to Walt that he was a talented animator. All the while holding out for the day for H-B to open its doors.

    And BTW Mike Maltese and my grandfather were best friends.

  3. Fernando Montealegre was born on June 23, 1926 and he went Home to be with the Lord on April 29, 1991 in Los Angeles County, California.

    May his memory be eternal!