WikiFur:This week's featured article/Week 35, 2009
Fritz the Cat is a 1972 animated film written and directed by Ralph Bakshi as his feature film debut. Based on the comic books by Robert Crumb, the film was the first animated feature film to receive an X rating in the United States. It focuses on Fritz (voiced by Skip Hinnant), a feline in mid-1960s New York City who explores the ideals of hedonism and sociopolitical consciousness. The film is a satire focusing on American college life of the era, race relations, the free love movement, and left- and right-wing politics. Fritz the Cat was the first independent animated film to gross more than $100 million at the box office.
Fritz the Cat had a troubled production history and controversial release. Creator Robert Crumb is known to have had disagreements with the filmmakers, claiming in interviews that his first wife signed over the film rights to the characters, and that he did not approve the production. Crumb was also critical of the film's approach to his material. Fritz the Cat was controversial for its rating and content, which viewers at the time found to be offensive. Its success led to a slew of other X-rated animated films, and a sequel, The Nine Lives of Fritz the Cat, was made without Crumb's or Bakshi's involvement. (more...)