the Looniverse

The Belgian Cowboy
Lucky Luke

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Lucky Luke in the Movies
It seems to be inevitable that efforts will be made to turn a popular strip character into a movie star, and vice versa.
What has most probably been the first animated cartoon, Gertie the Dinosaur, was made by Little Nemo artist Windsor McKay.

Max und Moritz

It happened with Wilhelm Busch' Max und Moritz, who were first turned into the American strip
The Katzenjammer Kids, which was turned into a series of MGM cartoons.
It happened to Tintin and even to underground strip makers Victor Moscoso and Gilbert Shelton.
(His Fabulous Furry Freak Brothers even perform in a live-action porno movie.
Robert Crumb's Mr. Natural is in it as well...I hope both of them got paid for it.)

It's not so strange as it would seem at first sight that these efforts seldom really make it.
A strip's business often is to suggest movement, while a movie has it, which is exactly why it may be disappointing.
The other way 'round does not always work out well either. Sure, Carl Barks' Donald Duck strips are among the best ever
but those based on the Tom and Jerry cartoons are really inferior.
All of which goes to introduce my telling you there have been several efforts to turn Lucky Luke strips into movies and I never really liked any of them. I'll try to get information on them all, which is harder than it seems. Well, actually, mostly they're eminently forgettable, just like the Asterix movies—but then, I never liked that strip in the first place. The first Lucky Luke I saw, I don't even remember the title of. It was a Belgian animation feature. Later, even Hanna-Barbera had a fling at a series, which, again, did not make it (mind, it did make money!. Their Smurfs did better, but compare it with the Flintstones! And now, spaghetti-western actor Terence Hill is playing Lucky Luke. The mind boggles. But who knows? you may like Terence Hill better than I do. So, for the sake of completeness, here goes. Plus where you can get 'em.
Animated Features

Lucky Luke: Calamity Jane

Movies that inspired Lucky Luke

Shane (1953)
Western saga with Alan Ladd as a former gunfighter who defends homesteaders and is idolized by a young boy. Two-fisted action and a tearful finale mark this George Stevens classic. Van Heflin, Brandon De Wilde, Jack Palance, Jean Arthur. 118 min. Standard; Soundtracks: English Dolby Digital mono, French Dolby Digital mono; Subtitles: English; audio commentary; theatrical trailer; scene access.

Rio Bravo (1959)
Howard Hawks' western classic stars John Wayne as a sheriff whose town is under siege by the army of gunmen brought in by crooked cattle baron John Russell to free his brother, trigger-happy Claude Akins, from Wayne's jail. The Duke's only allies are elderly sidekick Walter Brennan, drunken ex-deputy Dean Martin, and fiery young gunslinger Ricky Nelson. Angie Dickinson, Ward Bond also star. 141 min. Widescreen; Soundtrack: English; Subtitles: English, French, Spanish, Portuguese; theatrical trailer; scene access.

Live-Action television series
starring Terence Hill

Lucky Luke (1991)
The famous cowboy of comic book fame comes to the screen in these whimsical sagebrushers starring Terence Hill of "They Call Me Trinity" fame. Join the amiable lawman as he romances Lotta (Nancy Morgan) and battles outlaws in Daisy Town. Roger Miller supplies the music. Each tape runs 60 min.

Lucky Luke: Caffe Ole [(1991)
A coffee shortage has the residents of Daisy Town upset, and prompts Lotta to take the sheriff's badge from Luke to get to the bottom of the problem. Rene Auberjonois guest stars. Standard; Soundtrack: English mono; scene access.

Lucky Luke: Grand Delusion (1991)
Luke rides into a deserted Daisy Town and witnesses his own funeral, but these are hallucinations caused by a snakebite. Can Lotta find him in time to rescue him? Standard; Soundtrack: English mono; scene access.

Lucky Luke: Luke's Fiancee (1991)
Luke gets a surprise when he learns that one of the women he's brought West to marry the local miners is actually a notorious outlaw. Standard; Soundtrack: English mono; scene access.

Lucky Luke: Ma Dalton (1991)
Luke befriends Ma Dalton, the mother of the notorious outlaw Joe Dalton. But when Joe hears that Ma has a new "son," he breaks out of prison to teach Luke a lesson. Ruth Buzzi guest stars. Standard; Soundtrack: English mono; scene access.

Lucky Luke: Midsummer (1991)
Luke gets into some girl trouble when Lotta brings a Shakespearean stage troupe to town and a gypsy love potion causes a rash of romances. Madeline Kahn and Julie Hagerty guest star. Standard; Soundtrack: English mono; scene access.

Lucky Luke: Who's Mr. Joseph (1991)
After getting involved in a battle between settlers and ranchers, Lucky Luke discovers who the mystery man in the middle really is: dreaded outlaw Joe Dalton, with a new secret weapon: gunpowder! Standard; Soundtrack: English mono; scene access.

The Smurf strip is really based on an awful and essential misconception. The first thing you do when you start designing a strip
(or writing a novel, or planning anything supposed to have a little bit of drama in it) is to try and develop at least one strong character.
The essential characteristic of the Smurf characters is that they have no character of their own—they're all the same.
Later the guys started to distinguish between different persons by giving them more character—
but then, of course, it was too late.
Actually, the strip was very successful, but that doesn't mean you or I have to like it.


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