Today (July 28) marks the first ever appearance of Bugs Bunny in the 1940 Merrie Melodies Short "A Wild Hare." Seventy years later and the animated icons of Warner Brothers and Disney continue to fascinate collectors all over the world.
Paintings by long time Disney artist and creator of the character Uncle Scrooge, Carl Barks, hit the headlines recently with news of a special auction of his work.
The sale, taking place on Friday August 6, will feature 10 original Barks paintings up for auction without reserve, as part of a special collection belonging to Maryland radio executive Kerby Confer.
To date, few of these iconic Disney images have been available at public sale, and those that have often had six figure reserve prices attached.
According to Barry Sandoval, Director of Operations within the Comics category at Heritage:
"It's been common knowledge in the hobby for years that Kerby Confer owned most of the best Barks paintings, which is why they've been off the market so long,"
Barks died in 2000, but his work as artist and writer on the bestselling comics of Donald Duck and Uncle Scrooge McDuck in the 1950s and 1960s is said to have inspired the work of Steven Spielberg and George Lucas to name but a few.
Artwork relating to the popular cartoons, first came onto the market in the 1970s and has been setting world record comic art prices ever since.
Featured among the ten images going on sale is the lavish oil painting of Scrooge McDuck entitled "An Embarrassment of Riches." The painting depicts the famous duck swimming in a giant vault of money, an image made familiar to millions of younger fans through the highly popular "Ducktales" cartoon series of the 1990s.
With the demand for cartoon memorabilia growing every year, Paul Fraser Collectibles currently has two unique autographs from the creator of Mickey Mouse, Walt Disney.
The first is a signed photograph of Disney reading Alice's Adventures in Wonderland to two chimpanzees sitting on his desk, which is currently available to buy for £4,950.
Alternatively, for collectors and fans of Disney's unique characters, there is a photo-quality print of Mickey Mouse featuring a dedicated note and autograph by Walt Disney which is available for £2,950.
The card featured vintage versions of Mickey and Minnie Mouse, as well as a handwritten inscription from Disney himself, who would receive his first Oscar a month later.
While Disney was known to have sent numerous cards of this kind, the collectible represented the first of its kind to come onto the market and realised a final hammer price of £9,000 ($13,987).
Elsewhere, the work of Andy Warhol has also featured the world's most famous mouse.
Warhol's famous Pop Art portrayal of Walt Disney's iconic Mickey Mouse came up for auction at Christies in New York in April 26, 2010.
The 1981 screen-print, in colours with diamond dust, exceeded the £45,000 - 64,000 ($70,000-100,000) pre-sale estimate, fetching £71,000 ($110,500) at the auction.
With collectibles relating to classic cartoons continuing to come up for auction, it's unlikely that's we'll be saying "that's all folks" for some time to come.