Felix the Cat could be nominated the founder of the Cat Cartoons history.
His name was created combining the Latin words Felis and Felix, cat and luck.
His creator was probably Pat Sullivan, an Australian cartoonist and the owner of the studio, however his lead animator Otto Messmer was credited as the Felix real creator.
His debut was almost a hundred years ago, in December 1919, starring in “The Adventures of Felix” silent film.
This start was quite unusual as in these early days newspapers used to publish comic strips, however Paramount Pictures took the chance to start with a silent movie; it was a success.
Felix’s great success also motivated the birth of imitators like Julius, Waffles and Krazy Kat.
He has also become a popular mascot and was featured in several places throughout the world (Italy, Japan, USA, etc.).
Felix is still with us, in dolls, NHL Felix Potvin’s helmet (Boston Bruins), as a cat food in Europe, and even in an episode of The Simpsons.
It is amazing how a black cat character with a big smile became an icon in the world culture.