"So, there was this one time...when a Bat, a Rhino, a Ferret and an old man...all got together and played a card game."
"There Was This One Time" has been fully storyboarded and most of the dialogue, voiced by the talented likes of TeamFourStar, has been recorded so that I can start cutting the audio together. "THAT MONGOOSE!!" was also kind enough to provide musical arrangement for the BGM, which was awesome. I can't wait to start working on this cartoon, though this one will require patience. I'll be doing an animatic for it by the end of 2008 and will be working on the actual animation up until when it's due at the end of the school year in late April-early May. Either case, I hope this one will impress some of my peers who're used to a lot of the same typical crap from me. There's a higher chance of it NOT impressing anyone, but since it's a school project anyway, I have "nothing to lose" in that respect. It's been really fun putting this together, even at such an early stage. If anything, this probably won't even get front page, which I'm actually fine with.
Other news, been taking a slight break from any Rangers work, but I'll be getting back to it and hopefully getting a lot done over Christmas vacation. The beginning of "Part 2" is actually one of my favorite scenes in the movie. $00pah NiN10Doh!'s still coming along; I'm waiting for about four more segments, two of which are long enough to be spread across the movie and the other two are very detailed in animation. Richie did some sexilicious menu design, but the actionscript can't quite be worked on until I get everything else that I need, so I'm back to playin' the waiting game a little.
So I'm curious on others' thoughts on I guess what would be considered two types of "indulgence"...as "bad" as they can get on a community as small-scale as a bunch of people on the internet doing flash animation. Specifically: Fandom & Money.
I've grown to be bitter towards fandom and what it represents in all aspects, through a bunch of different things. People, for whatever reason, seem to have this idea that "ever since [I] got a fanbase" of some kind that now suddenly I think I'm "hot shit", when the reality is I hate the very concept of a fanbase for anything. Anime fans in particular will be familiar with how often an annoying fanbase for a good show, or at least a half-decent show that gets more flack than it may deserve, will completely "ruin" the experience for them. For myself, I try to NOT let factors such as that destroy the enjoyment I get out of something, despite it being REALLY difficult in some cases...and that in itself proves the point of it being something that spoils the enjoyment. People seem to have a low tolerance for that and soon the fun is dead.
Yet, this applies much differently to "the little guys" like all of us on Newgrounds who submit cartoons. Thanks to the magical interbutt, ANYONE can garner people who enjoy what they do, because now a billion people can see it. Outside of just flash animation, friends of mine who create other mediums such as video parodies, after gaining some amount of success, will bring up "their fans" as a factor of some kind, positively or negatively depending on the subject. When I met Erin Fitzgerald at SDCC, she described Danny Antonucci creating Ed, Edd & Eddy COMPLETELY for himself. The cast will often suggest such-and-such ideas to give something to the fans, but his mentality is that, for instance, if all of the VAs were to come back and do another season of the show for Cartoon Network, it would be because he genuinely WANTS to do it and for no other reason. Period. A lot of people would consider this an "assholish" thing to do, but at the same time, it's respectable.
Everyone seems to assume that when you "get a fanbase", your head swells to the size of a fucking planet and suddenly it becomes all about that and that alone. For those who see past this and disregard fandom as a big deal, what's the next not-so-good thing that becomes a motive? Deniro.
Now THIS one coming from me is obviously going to look extremely hypocritical, so bear with me. EmRat made a VERY good point to me that I agreed with whole-heartedly...yet I have no ROOM to agree with it. That being, outright parody cartoons shouldn't be eligable for cash prizes or sponsorships, if anything the purely original animation works of people on NG should be the ones in the limelight for that. Thankfully, this goes both ways anyhow since some of the best purely original flashes on here have gotten their dues. However, since this applies to me too, a ton of the NON-original stuff brings people to NG front page because of their pure "dumb" entertainment value, like Parody Rangers and what not. Logically it makes sense, but it's also not entirely fair either.
But despite how I agree with it, again, I have no room to say anything because I AM one of those people getting paid for making parody cartoons and am locked into finishing them until probably next Summer. I can comfort myself with my future original projects, plus that WHAT I'm using the "earnings" for what I'd consider just causes like paying for tuition and funding original cartoons instead of doing crap like Rangers until the end of time...but I can't help but be bothered by it. I think a lot of people on NG from all over the spectrum may have thought about this at some point. A lot of people I've spoken to hate how it's become, if not about a fanbase, the possibly more so about the money. Then at the same time, a few OTHER people I've spoken to about this; people who generally look down upon things like video game parodies, have even told me outright that if they were in my position, offered a good sum of dough to produce a "crappy" unoriginal movie, they wouldn't pass it up in a million years.
The biggest instance where that hit me was when I had gotten an idea a month ago or so, JUST an idea mind you, of making a "TTA OVA" that was essentially the first three episodes of my old TTA series, redone, fully animated and voice acted, much better dialogue and overall concepts, almost like as if it were a pilot episode (since I think in SOME aspects TTA could be done as a real cartoon, but I don't see myself doing it). The problem is, it would be a TON of work to do for an unseeable amount of time and probably wouldn't be sponsorship-worthy, so with no "profit" to come of it, it's a project that wouldn't be worth doing, no matter how much fun it would be...and that's just it. The fact that now "profit" HAS become something important to me is actually a bit unsettling. It's like I can't have outright fun with doing a cartoon no matter what the case. Do a parody and you get looked down upon, do an original cartoon and you'll feel creatively satisfied, but will be taking risks with it after all of your hard work.
Even with GameSavers as a project I'm looking forward to the most, I'm still even taking a risk with that. Like what if I DO end up producing a full pilot that I work on for a full year with everyone on board, it ends up being really impressive...but nothing comes of it? Since it's such a long way's off, I can't worry about it for now, but it's still something worth considering.
For any of you guys who've ever wondered about these two specific things, or even had any experiences such as this or otherwise, please let me know your thoughts here.