Hanna-Barbera

Joseph Barbera, a co-founder of the Hanna-Barbera cartoon company that created memorable characters like the Flintstones and Scooby-Doo, died on Monday at age 95, Warner Bros. film studio said in a statement.

Barbera founded Hanna-Barbera with William Hanna nearly 50 years ago and it grew to become one of Hollywood’s best known brand names in the field of animation.

He died at his home in the Los Angeles suburb of Studio City with his wife, Sheila, by his side, Warner Bros. said. No further details were disclosed.

“The characters he created with his late partner, William Hanna, are not only animated superstars but also a very beloved part of American pop culture,” Warner Bros. Chairman Barry Meyer said in a statement. “While he will be missed by his family and friends, Joe will live on through his work.”

Barbera and Hanna, who died in 2001, met at the Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer film studio in the late 1930s and first collaborated on a cartoon called Puss Gets the Boot, which led to the creation of their famous cat and mouse characters, Tom and Jerry.

The pair of animators won wide acclaim in the 1940s when they were responsible for getting the animated Tom and Jerry to dance on movie screens alongside Gene Kelly in “Anchors Aweigh.”

Barbera and Hanna left MGM and formed Hanna-Barbera Studios in 1957, where over the years they created numerous characters like the Stone Age family in The Flintstones, the space age clan of The Jetsons and the ghost-hunting dog Scooby-Doo.

-tvnz.co.nz