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An Interview With Vince Waller

March 9th, 2007

Episode 70
whataboutlunch.jpg

Peter Patrick and Persian Puss battle the evil Dr. No who is attempting the unthinkable: Stealing Peter Patrick’s LUNCH!! This short was featured as part of Frederator’s “Oh Yeah! Cartoons” shorts program, and like many creators, Vince Waller has gone on to do some pretty neat things since then.

MELISSA: What is your background?

VINCENT: Grew up in Texas.

MELISSA: Where did you study?

VINCENT: Most of my study has been on the job. I was very lucky to be surrounded by talented people the likes of Larry Hama, Gary Halgren, Bob Camp, and John Kricfalusi just to name a few.

MELISSA: What are you up to now?

VINCENT: I’m currently Creative Director on SpongeBob SquarePants.

MELISSA: What path did your career take to get you to where you’re at now?

VINCENT: Wow, so many twists and turns to get here. Farm Hand, Paperboy, Dishwasher, Waiter, Telemarketer, Construction worker, Limo Driver(For Saturday Night Live no less), Photographer’s assistant, comic artist (Savage Tales, Savage Sword of Conan),Storyboard Revision on The Real Ghostbusters, Slimer, Captain Planet, then I pitched a Storyboard (Which in this case means I read an existing George Liquor board out loud) to John, and about a week later John called to see if I wanted to work on Ren and Stimpy.
There are a quite a few more twists and turns but I’ve got to get back to work soon.

MELISSA: How did you come up with the idea for this short?

VINCENT: When I get an Idea it usually drops into my head almost fully formed. In this case, I was just doodling when this little kid wearing a Fedora popped out of my pencil . He had a look that seemed wise beyond his years and perfect for a little film noir adventure. Persian Puss soon introduced himself to me as Pete’s pal, driver, and man Friday .

MELISSA: If you could make P.P.P.I all over again knowing what you know now, what would you do differently?

VINCENT: I think I wasted a lot of valuable screen time explaining that Pete had a Mom and a regular home. Now I would trust my gut, and not worry so much about back story. I felt then and still feel, you don’t have to show a character’s entire world in his first Six minutes forty seconds of screen time. To keep Pete’s mom in, I sacrificed a lot of funny bits that thinking back, did a better job showing who Pete Patrick and his pal Persian Puss were and how they fit into their world.

MELISSA: How did making this short help prepare you for where you’re at now?

VINCENT: I had a pretty good grasp of all the aspects of making an animated show from working on Ren & Stimpy. But it does change your point of view when at the end of the day, the buck stops with you. If there is a mistake it’s yours, you own it for all time.

MELISSA: If you weren’t making cartoons, what would you be doing?

VINCENT: I’m going with being Congressman. They have an amazing health plan.

MELISSA: What’s your favorite part of making cartoons?

VINCENT: My absolute favorite part is standing in the back of a screening and watching the crowd. If you’ve done your job properly, it is a real joy.

MELISSA: Least favorite part?

VINCENT: Exposure sheets. So boring, but so necessary.

MELISSA: What artists come to mind when you think of people in this industry who you respect, or who have inspired you?

VINCENT: Man there have been so many. Clampett, Jones,Pal,Scribner, Owen Fitzgerald, John K., Bob Camp, Aaron Springer, Paul Tibbitt, there are so many funny and talented people I could sit and type names all day long. Hopefully they will all get a chance to show everyone exactly how funny and how talented they are.

Vince, Thanks so much for the film. We’re looking forward to seeing what you come up with next.

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Great short! I love how Slap T. Pooch makes an appearance.

 

this is just great! I remember this when it aired. The in and out was what really made me laugh. In cartoons the bars are usually so wide you can jump right threw them, yet they never do! ;D

 
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