Hold the Lion, Please
Merrie Melodies/Bugs Bunny series
Hold the Lion Please title card.png

Title card of Hold the Lion, Please.
Directed by Charles M. Jones
Produced by Leon Schlesinger
Story by Tedd Pierce
Voices by Mel Blanc (Bugs Bunny)
Tedd Pierce (Lion)
Tex Avery (all uncredited)
Music by Carl W. Stalling
Animation by Ken Harris
Studio Leon Schlesinger Productions
Distributed by Warner Bros. Pictures
Release date(s) June 13, 1942
Color process Technicolor
Running time 8:00
Language English

Hold the Lion, Please is a 1942 Merrie Melodies cartoon, first released on June 13, 1942, distributed by the Vitaphone Corporation and Warner Bros.. This is the first Bugs Bunny cartoon where the title does not refer "hare", "bunny", or "rabbit". This short is Bugs Bunny's tenth appearance and Chuck Jones' 39th Warner Bros. cartoon.

The short was directed by Chuck Jones, animated by Ken Harris and scripted by Tedd Pierce. Musical Direction was assigned to Carl Stalling.

The title is a play on the expression used by switchboard operators of the day, asking the caller to "hold the line." The Three Stooges made a short with a similar title, Hold That Lion, which also featured a renegade lion.


The short focuses on a lion named Leo who's trying to prove he's still "King of the Jungle" by hunting a small, defenseless animal. He chooses Bugs Bunny as his intended victim, but Leo soon finds out that, in a battle of wits, he's the defenseless one. However, Leo eventually gets Bugs under one paw while raising the other one, claws extended, and looking extremely angry; a truly frightened-looking Bugs could be facing his end.

Just then, Leo's wife, Hortense, calls him on Bugs' phone, and Leo immediately goes from ferocious to meek. After a brief conversation, Leo tells her that he's on his way home. After hanging up the phone, Leo apologizes to Bugs about not being able to "stay and kill him," and dashes home to Hortense. Initially, Bugs makes fun of Leo for his submissiveness to his wife, but it's quickly shown that Bugs is just as submissive to his own wife, Mrs. Bugs Bunny (according to a sign behind her)---Mrs. Bunny's presence sends her husband sheepishly slinking back into their rabbit hole. Mrs. Bunny then shows the audience that she "wears the pants the family."


  • Mel Blanc voiced Bugs Bunny, monkey, giraffe, Mrs. Bugs Bunny.
  • Tedd Pierce voiced Leo the Lion.
  • Tex Avery voiced the Hippo, having recorded his lines before he left the studio.

External links

Preceded by
The Wacky Wabbit
Bugs Bunny Cartoons
Succeeded by
Bugs Bunny Gets the Boid
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