Wednesday, August 11, 2010

OLD SCHOOL HEAD SPLITTING


Once upon a time not long ago, when people wore pajamas and lived life slow (in 1995) I was working in the lofty tower of J.J. Sedelmaier Productions out in White Plains, NY.

We did a whole lot of commercials there, which for a time seemed to come in batches of three. This worked out well since there were three up-and-coming staff animators champing at the bit to prove themselves. Their names were:

David Wachtenheim
Dean Lennert
and the handsomest of the trio...

ME!

And it's a good thing I had the handsome thing going for me because Dean and Dave were (are) way better animators than I ever would or could be.

Still, it was cool how JJSP would get commercial orders in these 3 spot batches that would allow each of us to take one and run with it.

We each got spots for a line of Converse sneakers.
We each got our own episode of Schoolhouse Rock to direct.
And we each got a spot for Celebrity Cruise Lines designed by none other than the mighty Gary Baseman.

You know... the awesome illustrator who also created Disney's Teacher's Pet?


Now this was the thing about JJSP--

Mr. Sedelmaier (and the rest of us in turn) prided himself on taking an illustrator's style and being as faithful to it as possible.

And I think we did that with these Baseman spots.
See whatcha think of mine over HERE

Do you remember seeing that on TV?!
You do?

LIAR!

You couldn't have seen it because it never aired!!!
I think the guy that owned Celebrity Cruise Lines thought it was a little too creepy, what with all the head-splitting, devil horns and skull melting.

Oh well...

At least we had fun making it 15 years ago...

And just a couple days ago, totally out of the blue, Mr. Baseman posted the pic at the top of this page on Facebook. And imagine my surprise when I saw the soda can with a picture from that spot!!!
So now where do I gets me one of those?!

But while animating the commercial, I did get something way, way better than a soda can.

I got a drawing from Mr. Baseman in my sketchbook:


What? You thought I only recently started pestering folks for drawings?
Maaaaaaan, I been kickin' that for years!


5 comments:

BOB BOYLE said...

I actually had a couple of those Baseman Japanese soda cans but I gave them away a few months ago.
Doh!

Mike Rauch said...

Did somebody try to tell Celebrity Cruise Lines that the part that's actually creepy is the dude in sunglasses ;)

Nice work and fun story, Tom!

robstar1fan said...

I remember when I was young I used to watch Teacher's pet all the time :D

Brubaker said...

I met J.J. once few years ago at the San Diego Comic Con. We talked a little bit and he was gracious enough to autograph a copy of the studio's promotional booklet (made to look like a comic book featuring Ace and Gary).

Out of curiosity, which "Schoolhouse Rock" segments did you direct?

Ms. Krause said...

The…handsomest? OK… :)