Monday, July 17, 2006

And the Interviews Just Keep On Coming

Platypus Comix just posted part 2 of its Tom Ruegger interview. This mostly deals in-depth with the development of "Tiny Toons," with a bit of "Batman" near the end. Even if you're no fond of this era of TV cartoonery, the interview is worth a read to get a sense of how "Tiny Toons," and the whole WB TV cartoon operation of the '90s, was built, and to hear the invocation of familiar tooniverse names like Eddie Fitzgerald, Paul Dini and Andrea Romano.

Some interesting quotes from the interview:

We had younger versions of other classic characters...Barky Marky was our junior version of Marc Anthony, and as you mentioned, he made it into very few cartoons. Chuck Jones was not particularly enthusiastic for us to use too much of the characters he felt that he had created. So there was never a lot of Little Beeper and Calamity, or Barky. We felt more justified using Fifi, since she was a girl character, as opposed to Pepe.

I've already written that Tiny Toons had the best gag credits ever, so this was good to read:

I loved gag/joke credits ever since seeing "Monty Python and the Holy Grail." My favorite joke credits -- and certainly the most elaborate set of them -- were contained in Tiny Toons' "How I Spent My Summer Vacation." I wrote all the joke credits on that and all the other shows. The end ring sign-offs were also something I planned from the outset to make the show special and keep everyone watching through the end titles. I wrote all those sign-offs, too. As well as the ones on "Animaniacs" and "Freakazoid." (Emmitt Nervend, in "Freak," was also my idea, sort of our "Where's Waldo" character, but his design was drawn by Mitch Schauer. Mitch made sure Emmitt showed a few times in each episode, at least through the first season).

On the famously inconsistent animation of Kennedy Cartoons:

This is the episode that, for a number of reasons, sent Glen Kennedy running for the hills. Before completing the animation, I believe Glen discovered that Steven wasn't crazy about some of Glen's animation, and it caused quite a riff. We had to get Dave Marshall, James Wang and the crew at Cuckoo's Nest to take over and redo tons of unusable footage. I remember sitting in the Sherman Oaks animation office on Saturday and Sunday, 12 days before the premiere, redrawing half of the show's storyboard and the corresponding layouts with Rich Arons, Alfred Gimeno and others. Somehow, we got those new layouts to Dave Marshall and his crew and got the new footage in record time. (This was back in '89, before digital fixes could be made at the last moment.) We scored and mixed the show a few days before the premiere with rough footage, and we were still cutting in retakes on air-date.

Lisez la chose entière.


Anonymous said...

"Chuck Jones was not particularly enthusiastic for us to use too much of the characters he felt that he had created"

I have always wondered what Chuck Jones feelings of Tiny Toons and other 1990's WB cartoons.

Anonymous said...

A famous liveaction director who knew Chuck well told me how he felt about TTA: "He HATES it". I was chagrined, but what can you do? nest to the Jones cartoons of the golden age, TTA was embarrassing. For the TV afternoon times it was made in, it was terrific.