Thursday, February 17, 2011


I don't need to tell you Mr. Warburton trivia experts...
(all two of you)
(Hi Mom!)
but the pilot I did before Codename: Kids Next Door was called
Kenny and the Chimp.

Yeah, you've seen it.
But what about those who haven't?
So this is for them:

After spending three months in Los Angeles making this pilot, I came back to NYC and quickly drew a comic describing my adventures for the ASIFA-EAST newsletter.
Check it out:

Allow me a couple clarifications:

"For Hanna Barbera at Warner Brothers, for Cartoon Network, did I miss any mergers?"
This is in reference to Kenny and the Chimp being the first cartoon to be made after the merger between Turner and Warner Brothers. Hanna Barbera was already working under the aegis of Cartoon Network, which was under Turner, and then Warner Brothers came along. Confused? You should be. There are people there now that still have no idea who they work for.

"To seven minutes it had to go, could have been a 3 hour show"
I had never storyboarded a 7 minute cartoon before. So when we timed it out for animation, it ended up being something like 14 minutes long. SO I had to do a LOT of editing.

"To auditions by car and not by camel"
Being a New Yorker, I never drove anywhere. I didn't even have a car. So it was kind of weird having to drive everywhere in LA. Re: the camel-- I just needed something to rhyme with Hamill. Speaking of which:

"I had to reject 'Luke Skywalker' Hamill"
This refers to the fact that while I really wanted to hire Mark Hamill (aka Luke Skywalker) to play Professor Triple Extra Large, he just wasn't right for the part. The mighty Frank Welker got the gig. But Mr. Hamill eventually landed the role of Stickybeard in KND so it all worked out.

"Why does no one animate"
Coming from the world of commercial animation (where we did everything from script to screen) I found it fascinating that no one animated anything-- and some people had never ever ever animated EVER! Since everything for cable TV animation was shipped overseas, no one needed to. You either designed, storyboarded, directed, colored, checked or worked in production... and people rarely switched into other jobs. If you were a character designer... that's what you did. So why would you need to know how to animate anything? Weird.

"Sleeping in a Murphy Bed"
Cartoon Network put me up in a corporate housing complex called the Oakwood Apartments. It wasn't awesome, but it wasn't awful either. It had a nice pool, it's own deli, and other assorted amenities. But I had to pull my bed down from the wall every night. Here's a picture from their website:

"Drawn for 2 Bucks in Korea"
Obviously alluding to the cheaper cost of overseas labor.

And there you go.

Man, I wish I had more time to make comics these days!


Gemma said...

Being one of the few people that hadn't seen that pilot, it was neat to finally get to do so. Can definitely see the quirkiness which was also present in KND. =D

Ahh, I know how it is to make long shorts, so to speak. The thing about working for a company is having to cram your work into a specific timeslot. But it certainly makes for an interesting challenge.

As for people not doing their own animation, I have mixed feelings about that. Animation is a painstaking, often frustrating thing, but at the end of all the masochism there's something very rewarding about having worked on it yourself. It's just a shame that schedules don't really allow for that sort of thing these days..

__Mariana__=] said...

I remember that i watched to this pilot several times on the TV when i was little and I always loved to watch it because i always thought it was really funny.
Good times... =]
PS. I loved the poetry x)

Anonymous said...

I guess I am the second Mr. Warburton trivia genius (Besides your mom), because I actually know about the entire story of KND's origin. (Kenny and the Chimp, CN's Big Pick Weekend, that deal.) As for your poem, nice.

Angela Entzminger said...

I remember this clip - you showed it at a Women in Animation meeting when you were talking about show bibles and pitching I believe. Very cool to be in the club of four Trivia Geniuses. It's weird that animation doesn't happen in LA - good to know though that there are still great jobs to be had.

yougotburned said...

LOL i liked Kenny and the Chimp :)