Genndy Tartakovsky Takes on Giant Robots
RD: What do you think has made the network more willing to do something episodic?
GT: I think it's the state of television. Every single TV show that comes out now has continuity on it. Lost is the one that's more responsible for it. Even something like The Office has continuity. So when you have sitcoms doing it, it's kind of hard to say no. I think the face of television has changed.
RD: What's the biggest challenge of the new series?
GT: The biggest challenge is that it's television. The budget, the time constraints are overwhelming. We bit off so much more than we can chew. It was huge aspirations to do a show like this for TV on this time and schedule that we had. The more drawn, volumetric designs through the action to the character stuff through the backgrounds. Every step of the way through this show everything was extremely difficult. A lot of people struggled through it more than they did in the past. Even as complex as something like Star Wars this show seemed so much harder. So that was the biggest challenge to get it to 70% or 80% of what we wanted. We said, "If we get 70% there, it will be great." We also involved lighting, which is extremely difficult in television. I have two jobs on this show. I had my morning job and my night job just to get it to the level we wanted it to be. Because this is the fifth show we've done together are expectations are much higher. We didn't want any B episodes. We wanted them all to be great.
RD: Is there anything you want people to know about the series?
GT: I think the people who watch it will be surprised that no two episodes are the same. It's not like there is a formula where a monster shows up and they have to fight it. We have stories that are much more character based. Once we hit episode six, the story starts arching about the characters history and all the mythology and everything starts to really unravel. We were just warming up through the first five episodes. With episode six, it really kicks into gear. What we found is that each episode was better than the previous, which is really exciting.
Rick DeMott is the director of content for Animation World Network, VFXWorld and AWNtv. Additionally, he's the creator of the movie review site, Rick's Flicks Picks, which was named one of the 100 best movie blogs by The Daily Reviewer. He has written for TV series, such as Discovery Kids' Growing Up Creepie and Cartoon Network's Pet Alien, the animation history book Animation Art, and the humor, absurdist and surrealist website Unloosen. Previously, he held various production and management positions in the entertainment industry.