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The Cat Concerto (1947) Poster

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Was the focus of a short and bitter flurry of allegations between Warner Brothers and MGM of plagiarism over similarities between this film and WB's Rhapsody Rabbit (1946). The controversy began when raw film from "Rhapsody Rabbit" was sent to be processed at a central film lab which serviced both Warners and MGM. By accident, the finished negatives were sent to MGM, who eventually returned them, but Friz Freleng (the director on "Rhapsody Rabbit") suspected that Hanna and Barbera or others at MGM may have viewed the film before sending it on to Warner Bros. Hanna and Barbera counter-charged that Freleng had somehow overheard their ideas for "The Cat Concerto" and acted on it.
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The piano playing of Tom the cat was dubbed by Scott Bradley (the Musical Director of MGM's Animation Department) who also made the special arrangement of Liszt's 2nd Hungarian Rhapsody. In some passages, to make it sound extra difficult and impossible for the cat to play while dealing with Jerry, it is arranged for 4 hand piano duet, and this is played by Bradley and John Crown, Head of Piano at University of Southern California in the 1940s and '50s.
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This Tom & Jerry short is included as a bonus on the Warner DVD of The Yearling (1946).
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Fred Quimby produced of this short, which is centered around the musical piece "Hungarian Rhapsody No. 2" by Franz Liszt. Quimby was born on the very same day that Liszt died: July 31, 1886.
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Similarities between this film and Rhapsody Rabbit (1946): Main character wears a formal tailcoat, sits at a piano, plays Franz Liszt's "2nd Hungarian Rhapsody" and is bothered by a mouse.
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Co-directors William Hanna and Joseph Barbera won seven Best Short of the Year Oscars. In order: The Yankee Doodle Mouse (1943), Mouse Trouble (1944), Quiet Please! (1945), The Cat Concerto (1947), The Little Orphan (1948), The Two Mouseketeers (1952), and Johann Mouse (1953).
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