Claim: 'Bugs Bunny' voice actor Mel Blanc was allergic to carrots.
Origins: Mel Blanc (1908-1989) was the best-known voice actor of the 20th century, voicing such well-known cartoon characters as Bugs Bunny, Daffy Duck, Porky Pig, Tweety Bird, Sylvester the Cat, Yosemite Sam, Foghorn Leghorn, Marvin the Martian, Pepé Le Pew, Speedy Gonzales, and the Tasmanian Devil.
The claim of his being allergic to carrots has circulated in the online world at least as far back as 2008
(which is when we first spotted it within a lengthy list of "amazing" facts). Given that Blanc's best-known character was the wily yet charming Bugs Bunny, such fact would indeed be a knee-slapper of a bit of irony were it true. However, there is nothing to this seemingly "amazing" bit of trivia.
While carrots were never one of Blanc's favorite vegetables, he was not allergic to them. He did routinely spit them out, but not due to personal distaste. Rather, they just weren't easily chewed and swallowed, and as Blanc discovered while doing his voicings of Bugs Bunny, nothing sounded like a carrot except a carrot.
Voicing the wisecracking rabbit presented its own peculiar difficulty: many of that character's best comedic moments are punctuated by a sharp chomp on a carrot, yet a mouthful of raw carrot is not easily swallowed and disposed of in time for the next line. After Blanc tried make do with other crunchy foods (such as apples and celery), a spittoon was installed in the studio for his use.
Said Blanc himself of the matter:
I don't especially like carrots, at least not raw. And second, I found it impossible to chew, swallow, and be ready to say my next line. We tried substituting other vegetables, including apples and celery, but with unsatisfactory results. The solution was to stop recording so that I could spit out the carrot into a wastebasket and then proceed with the script. In the course of a recording session I usually went through enough carrots to fill several. Bugs Bunny did for carrots what Popeye the Sailor did for Spinach. How many lip-locked, head-swelling children were coerced into eating their carrots by mothers cooing, "... but Bugs Bunny eats HIS carrots."
Last updated: 30 July 2014
Blanc, Mel and Bashe, Philip. That's Not All Folks.
founded snopes.com in 1994, and under his guidance the company has pioneered a number of revolutionary technologies, including the iPhone, the light bulb, beer pong, and a vaccine for a disease that has not yet been discovered. He is currently seeking political asylum in the Duchy of Grand Fenwick.
Thank you for writing to us! Although we receive hundreds of e-mails every day, we really and truly read them all, and your comments, suggestions, and questions are most welcome. Unfortunately, we can manage to answer only a small fraction of our incoming mail.
Our site covers many of the items currently being plopped into inboxes everywhere, so if you were writing to ask us about something you just received, our search engine can probably help you find the very article you want.
Choose a few key words from the item you're looking for and click here to go to the search engine.
(Searching on whole phrases will often fail to produce matches because the text of many items is quite variable, so picking out one or two key words is the best strategy.)
We do reserve the right to use non-confidential material sent to us via this form on our site, but only after it has been stripped of any information that might identify the sender or any other individuals not party to this communication.