Cartoon Hangover has hit it’s stride with some awesome animated comedy courtesy of all of our our excellent contributing artists like Dave Carter, Steve Stark, Mike Geiger and this week animator/writer/comedian Nick Gibbons! Read below to learn more about Nick’s work writing for animation and why girly drinks are just tops.
Cartoon Hangover:You’ve written for several ‘toons (Aqua Teen Hunger Force, Robot Boy, Jimmy Neutron) - in what capacity to you contribute (punch up, story, etc)?
Nick Gibbons: For Robotboy I wrote 4 full episodes, as well and an entire episode of Aqua Teen. For Jimmy I wrote several interstitials that were shown in conjunction with the release of the movie. During my stint at Blue Sky Studios I sat in on brainstorming punch-up meetings for Robots, Ice Age 2 and Horton. Punch-up work is a blessing and a curse. If your joke gets in it’s great, however you never get credit. My wife has a bruised rib from me elbowing her whenever one of my bits pops up.
I’ve done some punch up stuff for projects at Radical Axis Studios in Atlanta where I currently work. I got to write direct and star in a piece for the extras on the last Aqua Teen DVD. (here’s the wind up) Right now I’m project managing an animated show for FX called Archer, (and here’s the pitch) which premieres January 14th. I got to write a promo for it, right here.
I am a freelance writer, btw, and I’m always looking for projects to write for and places to pitch my shows. That was just for all the big time Hollywood agents and producers reading this interview.
CH: That’s good - this blog is right up there with Variety in regards to industry news.
What draws you to animation as a medium for comedy? No awful pun intended.
NG: I’ve always loved to draw and make people laugh, so I married the two. Of course growing up glued to the TV every Saturday morning as a kid certainly fueled my love of animation.
I’m a Tex Avery fanatic. Those were my favorite ‘toons growing up. Gag on top of gag, no matter how silly, they kept coming. That’s where I developed my penchant for the extreme and absurd. I always have crazy ideas that could never be fabricated in reality, so animation was the logical direction to take things.
CH: What gave you the idea for “Fetal Fury”?
NG: It’s been a while, but I think I misread a poster for a movie called “Fatal Fury”. Then it all started falling into place. The funniest thing about the film is that people used to seriously ask me when I was going to finish the whole thing. As if it was a real trailer for a movie I was animating. I would just tell them the backing fell through and I could use some money to help finish it. That’s how I paid for college.
CH: Who are your favorite comedians?
NG: My all time favorite stand-up comedian is Brian Regan. Why he isn’t a household name at this point is beyond me. He’s an amazing performer and one of the most genuine people I’ve ever met.
Will Ferrell has always made me laugh. He’s so committed to the characters he creates and that is so important in comedy. Steve Carell and Stephen Colbert are another couple of guys that have that level of commitment, which helps create real tangible moments of comedy.
Comedy has such a rich and full history. I love discovering new shows or movies and drinking in their magic.
CH: Who are your favorite artists?
NG: I’ve been lucky to work with so many amazing artists throughout my career. DNA Productions, Blue Sky Studios, and now at Radical Axis in Atlanta where full of top notch artists. The unsung heroes of Ice Age, Aqua Teen and now Archer are an incredibly talent bunch of folks. Take the time to read the credits and do a little stalking, you’ll be amazed at the caliber of work you uncover from the supporting cast.
CH: Weirdest thing you’ve heard onstage as an improviser?
NG: This is a hard one, I’ve done literally hundreds of improv shows and they all start to bleed together. Plus I don’t have the best memory when it comes to my own life. It’s really weird, but I have to strain to recall details of my own existence. Once the ball starts rolling I can usually piece things together. I’d be a horrible as a witness in a trail.
The space between this paragraph and the one above looks small, but it represents 20 minutes of me staring blankly at the screen trying to think of a crazy thing that I or someone else said. Nothing. My inability to come up with something really doesn’t give much validity to my improve skills does it? To be honest I’m usually the guy that says the weird stuff.
The other night, after a couple of scenes involving Oprah and her attempt to take over the world, I pantomimed kicking in a door holding a shot gun as I screamed, “I’m Steadman, remember me?!?” The rest is hazy.
CH: Favorite curse word?
I say the F word way more than I should. It has no weight anymore. It’s just a meaningless qualifier at this point. I knew I said it to much when it just started popping up when I would talk to my mom. Now she won’t stop saying it.
I like the word fart. It’s not really a curse word, but it still gets awkward looks when used correctly in the wrong situations.
CH: Favorite adult alcohol beverage?
NG: I’m a bit of a girl drink drunk. I like a good margarita and I’m a fan of a nice minty mojito. Pretty much anything with a tiny umbrella in it I’ll drink.
CH: Best crappy action movie ever?
That’s a hard one, and not just because of my bad memory. The question itself is very abstract. For instance, if you aren’t a fan of action films you would consider all of them crappy, thus rendering every action film a candidate. In which I would say any of the Bourne movies.
On the other hand, you might mean the best of the worst. That involves an arduous process, because It’s a list inside a list inside a list. If that’s the case I would say Rush Hour.
I’m going through my mental movie Rolodex and having a real brain fart to be honest!
CH: Nice callback. Thanks for the interview and the awesome ‘toon! Cartoon Hangover fans are naming the “Fetal Fury” baby as we type!
Check out “Fetal Fury” right here!