Brush your teeth twice a day. Take the doors off your old refrigerator. Stay away from blasting caps. How many times have you heard those phrases emanating from your television set? These public service messages were produced so that the world would be a nicer one to exist in.
Here now is a selection of classic animated public service commercials.
American Cancer Society – Yogi Bear
During the late sixties and early seventies, the Hanna-Barbera studio had a commercial unit headed by Art Babbitt. They produced some of the most lavish commercials of that time. This spot was animated by the great Irven Spence.
Anti Drug PSA
Another spot from Hanna-Barbera. Babbitt himself animates.
American Heart Association – Tin Woodsman
Directed and animated by former Fleischer animator Myron Waldman. From 1974.
Action – B. C.
One of a series of PSA’s featuring the characters from Johnny Hart’s famous comic strip. Produced by Levitow-Hanson Films.
Highway Users Federation – Chicken Little
Sorry for the poor picture quality, but this was too good too leave out. The ubiquitous Paul Frees narrates and also provides the voice of Chicken Little.
Navy – Rock and Roll
Playhouse pictures produced many spots for the US Navy. This one is from 1960, with Peter Leeds narrating. Animation by Bill Littlejohn.
Forestry Service – Jack the Flipper
Third in a series of fire prevention spots produced by Playhouse pictures in 1955. Jerry Hausner is the voice of Jack. A large stack of letters pertaining to these spots still exists, and they would indicate that the Forestry Service was a particularly difficult client. The oldest letters are from 1953, nearly two years before the spots were actually on the air.
Here is the recording script for spot above:
The spots went through a lot of re-writes. Here Daws Butler takes a stab at writing the first of these spots. Daws was one of the regular writers at Playhouse.
Here is a telegram from the forestry service rep to Playhouse producer Ade Woolery. The date is about two months before the actual completion date of the spot.