From the LA Times’ Charles Solomon :
Joseph Barbera, who, with his longtime partner William “Bill” Hanna, created such beloved cartoon characters as Tom and Jerry, the Flintstones, the Jetsons, Yogi Bear, Scooby-Doo, Huckleberry Hound, Quick Draw McGraw and Jonny Quest, died of natural causes Monday at his Studio City home. He was 95.
During the 1940s, Barbera and Hanna were MGM’s blue-ribbon cartoon directors, winning seven Oscars for the “Tom and Jerry” shorts. After MGM closed its animation unit in 1957, they moved to television, where they created a series of hits in the 1960s, beginning with “The Flintstones,” the first animated series in prime time.
By the 1970s, Hanna-Barbera was the dominant studio in Saturday morning cartoons, making shows for the three major networks and accounting for as much as 70% of the so-called kid-vid programming in some seasons.
“The Huckleberry Hound Show,” their first half-hour program, premiered in syndication in 1958, starring a laconic blue dog who spoke in a Southern drawl. Huckleberry was quickly upstaged by “Yogi Bear,” which scored an even bigger hit when it debuted in 1961.
Yogi, who frequently proclaimed he was “smarter than the average bear,” used his devious intelligence to swipe food from campers’ “pic-a-nic baskets” in Jellystone National Park.
Sadly, Barbera had to live long enough to serve as executive producer of a film starring Stephen Baldwin as Barney Rubble.