William Hanna

  • Birth Name: William Denby Hanna
  • Birth Place: Melrose, New Mexico, United States
  • Died: March 22, 2001
  • Profession: Director, Producer, Executive producer, Lyricist, Composer
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Fast Facts

  • With partner Joseph Barbera, built an animation empire, creating such classic cartoons as Tom & Jerry, Scooby-Doo, Yogi Bear, the Jetsons, the Flintstones, Jonny Quest, the Smurfs, and many, many others.
  • In 1930, began working at the Harman-Ising cartoon studios, providing story ideas, music and lyrics for the Looney Tunes and Merrie Melodies series, and becoming an MGM story editor and director when Harman-Ising moved to that studio.
  • In 1937, MGM formed its own animation department led by Fred Quimby, who hired Hanna and teamed him with Barbera.
  • Melded animation with live-action films, such as when Jerry the mouse danced with Gene Kelly in Anchors Aweigh (1945) and swam with both cartoon co-star Tom and aquatic actress Esther Williams in Dangerous When Wet (1953).
  • Earned multiple Oscar awards and nominations, prompting a promotion to head of MGM's animation department; when that department was shuttered in 1957, Barbera and Hanna were free to build their company, Hanna-Barbera Productions, for animated TV series.
  • Developed a production technique called "limited animation" that made cartoons more efficient to produce on a larger scale, thereby facilitating the creation of their weekly series.
  • His Emmy-winning cartoon The Last of the Curlews (1972) became the first ABC Afterschool Special.


  • 1990, Emmy — Outstanding Children's Program: Nominee
  • 1957, Oscar — Best Short Subject (Cartoon): Nominee
  • 1983, Emmy — Outstanding Animated Program: Nominee
  • 1955, Oscar — Best Short Subject (Cartoon): Nominee
  • 1961, Golden Globe — Television Achievement: Winner
  • 1994, Emmy — Outstanding Animated Program (for programming one hour or less): Nominee
  • 1973, Emmy — Outstanding Achievement in Children's Programming - Informational/Factual: Winner
  • 1982, Emmy — Outstanding Animated Program: Nominee
  • 1984, Emmy — Outstanding Animated Program: Nominee


  • Avice Joyce Hanna — Mother
  • William John Hanna — Father
  • David William Hanna — Son
  • Violet Hanna — Wife
  • Bonnie Jean Hanna Williams — Daughter


  • Attended Compton Junior College, Compton, California, United States
Cord-Cutting Guide. Credit: Robert Rodriguez / TV Guide

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MIXED-ISH - In "mixed-ish," Rainbow Johnson recounts her experience growing up in a mixed-race family in the '80s and the constant dilemmas they had to face over whether to assimilate or stay true to themselves. Bow's parents Paul and Alicia decide to move from a hippie commune to the suburbs to better provide for their family. As her parents struggle with the challenges of their new life, Bow and her siblings navigate a mainstream school in which they're perceived as neither black nor white. This family's experiences illuminate the challenges of finding one's own identity when the rest of the world can't decide where you belong. (ABC/Kelsey McNeal)

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