The Flintstones and the Bewitched opening credits came from the same animation studio
Did that opening broom ride look familiar to you, too? There's a good reason!
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If you’ve ever seen the show Bewitched, you know all about Samantha, Darrin and that little nose-wiggle that caused a whole lot of ruckus. You also probably know that opening credits sequence (in either of its iterations) pretty darn well. Does the animation style ring any bells?
You guessed it – that's some trademark Hanna-Barbara work that you're witnessing. The animation of The Flintstones and the opening sequence of Bewitched were both products of what used to be Screen Gems, Inc.
Screen Gems began as an animation studio, producing cartoon shorts for the big screen featuring characters like Krazy Kat, Flippity and Flop. In the late 1940s, Columbia Pictures acquired the name Screen Gems for its new television production subsidiary. The Screen Gems television studio crafted some of the great television shows of the 1950s, including Father Knows Best, Art Linkletter's House Party, The Adventures of Rin Tin Tin, Naked City and Dennis the Menace.
In the 1950s, Screen Gems also became the distributor for an upstart animation studio founded by William Hanna and Joseph Barbera. The first Hanna-Barbera title under the Screen Gems umbrella was The Ruff and Reddy Show in 1957. The Huckleberry Hound Show, The Quick Draw McGraw Show, The Flintstones and The Yogi Bear Show quickly followed, and a cartoon empire was born. (Today, Hanna-Barbera cartoons are owned by Warner Bros., while Sony controls Screen Gems.)
In 1964, Screen Gems premiered its latest brilliant hit, Bewitched. So perhaps it was no surprise when Samantha and Darrin turned up in Bedrock. Elizabeth Montgomery and Dick York both voiced their cartoon forms on The Flintstones in "Samantha," a 1965 episode.
No detail was spared when it came to combining the prehistoric fun of The Flintstones with the magical whimsy of the Stephens’ world. Take Samantha’s animation, for example. Notice anything specific about her look? Her swirling eyes remain the same.
If you take a peek at her neck, you’ll also see that the Flintstones animators even remembered to add the heart-shaped necklace that Samantha wears on Bewitched. She even has small, white stars stitched into her dress for some extra flair.
This wasn't the only time Bewitched would loan its talent to The Flintstones. Sandra Gould, the second actress to play Gladys Kravitz on the sitcom, contributed her voice to several characters in Bedrock in episodes like "The Missing Bus" and "The Little White Lie."