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Dexter's Odyssey poster design without taglines by timbox129

I still don’t know if you’ve heard about this or not but I thought you might be interested.

Anyway, the 12 things as mandated by my edict for what I wanted and envisioned for Dexter’s Odyssey—my planned Genndy Tartakovsky/Dexter’s Laboratory Cartoon Network characters n’ dinosaurs epic—are as follows:

1) FOR THE DEXTER’S LABORATORY CARTOON CHARACTERS, YOU MUST STICK TO THE CHARACTER DESIGNS AND ANIMATION ART STYLE DONE FOR DEXTER’S LABORATORY’S ORIGINAL 1990s RUN

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I understand the fact that the last two seasons of Dexter’s Laboratory weren’t as good as the show’s original 1990s run, but for the character designs and 2D animation art style for the Dexter’s Laboratory characters to be included in Dexter’s Odyssey (like Dexter, Dee Dee, Mee Mee, Lee Lee, Mandark, Action Hank and Dexter and Dee Dee’s Mom and Dad), just stick to those from the 1990s run of Dexter’s Lab, not those from the 2001-2003 revival.

 2) NO OUTLINES FOR THE SAMURAI JACK-STYLE CHARACTERS, BUT RETAIN THE OUTLINES FOR THE DEXTER’S LAB-STYLE CHARACTERS

Even if the 2D traditional and largely hand drawn animated toon characters in Dexter’s Odyssey should be put in an otherwise live action world alongside mainly CGI dinosaurs and real life flesh and blood human performers, there must be a contrast between those from or in the character design and animation art style of Dexter’s Lab (the original 1990s run, at least) and those from in the character design and animation art style of Samurai Jack.

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I suggest no thick black surrounding outlines for the Samurai Jack-style toon characters, but retain the thick, black, surrounding outlines for the Dexter’s Laboratory-style toon characters.

3) ONLY ONE CHARACTER OR CREATURE SHOULD GET THE REALLY BIG CHARACTER PART AND/OR TAKE A REAL HERO’S JOURNEY THE MOST IN DEXTER’S ODYSSEY

Well, I suggest the Asian friend of Dexter’s sister Dee Dee: Lee Lee, to be exact.

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Even though Dexter’s Odyssey may be titled after Dexter the boy genius himself, Dexter’s Odyssey should focus for the most part on his sister Dee Dee’s Asian Friend Lee Lee and her mythic and epic ‘hero’s journey’ and not just Dexter and Dee Dee themselves feuding!

4) THE DINOSAURS IN DEXTER’S ODYSSEY SHOULD NOT LOOK OR SOUND LIKE THOSE FROM THE JURASSIC PARK FRANCHISE

For too long, all films and video games that have happened to feature dinosaurs, have, without exception, contained conscious nods to the Jurassic Park franchise—whether it’s visual or auditorial.

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Dexter’s Odyssey’s dinosaur scenes should contain little or no conscious nod—whether be they visual, auditory or narrative—to the Jurassic Park franchise.

Instead of the usual scaly reptilian and featherless representations of dinosaurs like the Velociraptors in Jurassic Park, there should be more bird-like and feathery dinosaur representations like this dinosaur:

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There should be beautifully rendered feathers, plus some recently discovered dinosaurs that we never see restored before, as well as a respect for dinosaurs that does not always treat them as mindless movie monsters or just kids stuff all the time, y’know what I’m saying?

Also, There should be no doubt that Dexter’s Odyssey would “reinvent big dinosaur adventure entirely”. Rather than getting bogged down in endless rewrites and development hell like what would become Jurassic World (coming in 2015, perhaps), it should provide a fresh new look at dinosaurs by doing something not done well since Who Framed Roger Rabbit (unless Space Jam and Looney Tunes Back In Action are counted) by combining live action and animation as well as dinosaurs.

But dinosaurs aren’t just seen, of course, they are heard, and one practice that has endured since the early days of sound movies is the use of real animal noises in the creation of the roars of fantasy creatures including dinosaurs, for example:

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Murray Spivack manipulated lion and tiger vocalizations for the original King Kong movie; The late Ray Harryhausen employed the sound of a slobbering camel for the Valley of Gwangi; And Gary Rydstrom incorporated a baby elephant trumpet into the mighty roar of the Tyrannosaurus Rex for Jurassic Park.

If I hire somebody who is a sound designer or sound editor to continue this time-proven technique on the big screen for Dexter’s Odyssey, I and that person should live within that world, but have to make sure that the dinosaur sounds should sound different than the dinosaur sounds of Jurassic Park.

But at least I wanted some of the larger theropod dinosaurs in the story such as the infamous T. Rex to stand-in for the dragons of myth, legend and lore. Just kidding!

5) THE MUSIC SCORE FOR DEXTER’S ODYSSEY SHOULD SOUND AS EPIC, CINEMATIC, AND ETHNIC AS POSSIBLE

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And I mean it.

The score for Dexter’s Odyssey should be this unusual and bizzare blend of epic and cinematic music, some bits of toon music (for Dexter’s Odyssey’s more comedic moments) and ethnic instrumental and ethnic vocal musical sounds from all around the world.

Sorta like the music for The Lion King, right?

6) NO FART OR EXCRETION JOKES!

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Since it is supposed to be an epic movie project, replete with raging epic battles, serious/controversial subject matter and all, you must leave the toilet humor to something else entirely.

7) HAVE A GREAT EPIC, CINEMATIC AND ETHNIC MUSICAL SENSE IN THE SCORE, AS LONG AS IT MUST HAVE APPROPRIATE MULTI-CULTURAL MUSICAL INFLUENCES AND MUSICAL CULTURAL ASSOCIATION

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Not every piece of music in Dexter’s Odyssey has to succumb to a bad hip hop tune. This isn’t a The Lonely Island sketch you’re producing. This is a live action/animated epic film project that contains a diverse network of cultures that are different than one another, despite being in an alternate world where toons, humans, and dinosaurs live, so be more appropriate and more subtle with the multi-cultural kinds of music you’re choosing—whether it’s from Europe, or from Africa or from the Far East.

8) ALLOW DEPTH IN THE CHARACTERS—HUMAN OR CARTOON; NO FLANDERIZATION NOR JUMPING THE SHARK 

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Let the characters have more colors to them than just pink or green or purple or blue or black or red. Subtlety is your friend.

9) POP-CULTURAL REFERENCES NEEDS CONTEXT, NOT RANDOMNESS

 

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Even if Dexter’s Odyssey is an epic film project with raging battles, sweeping camera movements, rousing rescues and intense close-ups, Do NOT put in pop-cultural references just for the sake of pop-cultural references. They need purpose other than selling out something.

10) USE FEW OR NO CELEBRITY VOICES FOR THE TOONS

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Seriously, I will not over-rely on using Hollywood celebrities for the voices of the toon characters in Dexter’s Odyssey, I mostly wanted Dexter’s Lab and Samurai Jack toon voices that should sound just like the originals but provided by actors who can go with the occasional comedy or drama.

11) THE LIVE ACTORS SHOULD CLEARLY INTERACT WITH THE HAND-DRAWN AND/OR CGI ANIMATION, ESTABLISH EYE LINES AND BE CONSISTENTLY INVOLVED WITH ACTION THAT ISN’T TAKING PLACE AT THE TIME OF LIVE ACTION FILMING

 

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These are the three conditions that Dexter’s Odyssey’s live actors—since they may especially be relative unknowns and non-professional no-names (some of them possibly from high school drama clubs and other youth programs) should follow under, but nonetheless I shall allow even those non-professional no name and relative unknown live actors to improvise their dialogue.

and finally,

12) DO NOT OVER-RELY ON CGI FOR ITS SPECIAL AND VISUAL EFFECTS AND/OR MOVIE-MAKING IN GENERAL

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I know debate is still raging over whether computer generated effects are better than those done practically or if you and I can truly beat the real thing, but Dexter’s Odyssey should provide room for all manner of special effects in the cinema. It should combine not only live action and traditional 2D hand drawn Genndy Tartakovsky-style animation but also cutting edge digital graphics, miniatures, animatronics, prosthetics and makeup and/or even plain old visual trickery. If it is magical, it should go in the movie, whether it shall spring from a hard-drive or from a 2D animator’s pencil, or shall take a team of dedicated artists months to create. Dexter’s Odyssey should be an equal opportunities live action/animation/special effects event.

Again, you and I don’t want to be too judgmental, but what do you think?

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Speaking of heroes and heroines whose origins are from farther east, I would like to share with you all this Asian heroine and this Asian hero, respectively:

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Mulan comforts Mushu at the end of her movie

 

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A) Mulan, or she who is as mighty, brave and noble as a warrior, as she is young, fair and beautiful as a maiden, and whose story—a story that is as much well known familiar to the peoples of all Asia (including the people of her indigenous China) as the story of Cinderella is much well known and familiar to the peoples of Europe and the United States—provided the basis for a hand drawn Disney movie from 16 years ago.

and

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B) Samurai Jack, or he who is my kind of guy, a time-displaced warrior swordsman prince of Medieval Japan, my cartoon hero, my favorite cartoon samurai as well as my main Asian man (if only AVATAR’s Jake Sully (Sam Worthington) counts as ‘my main blue man’) and he who wants to go back to his own time and place so he can do the killin’ blow to the evil shape shifting demon wizard Aku, the Master of Masters, Deliverer of Darkness, and Shogun or Sorrow, or whatever Aku’s self-proclaimed titles are…

Anyway, speaking of Samurai Jack:

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When he was a little kid, when Aku got his jailbreak thanks to an eclipse, he got send around the world by his mom and dad to train among all manner of warriors. And when he return to his home as a fully grown adult, after a battle between him and Aku’s taskmasters, Jack challenges Aku to an epic duel in the hope of undoing the damage Aku has wrought upon his home, but that was before Aku gave Jack the boot to the future that is AKU!

If we will never, ever possibly get a proper ending for Samurai Jack from Genndy Tartakovsky himself, then too bad, but just like Jack who swears to god not to give up on his quest to find the time portal and go back to his own time and place so he can finally do the killin’ blow to Aku and his future world, Genndy Tartakovsky will never, EVER give up on a big screen Samurai Jack movie that will possibly feature the long promised proper ending to the show.

And if the big screen Samurai Jack feature film project might ever become a reality, an actuality as well as a fact, I certainly  hope that even in its ultimate form, the big screen Samurai Jack feature film project might end up not only succeeding where non-Disney 2D hand drawn animated things such as The Powerpuff Girls Movie failed to do, but also fulfilling a rare, never-before-done wish for any animated movie of the non-Disney variety and especially of the hand-drawn variety: becoming hopefully one of the most popular and successful movies of all time (be it live action, animated, Disney, Not-Disney, Hand Drawn, CGI, or otherwise) , let alone drawing record crowds and hopefully eclipsing the likes of The Lion King, the Shrek and Toy Story films, or even Disney’s Frozen or so as one of, or if not, the animation industry’s biggest and most phenomenal financial success or so.

But for now, I am just kidding.

Anyway, as for the legendary Chinese female warrior Mulan…

The Two Destinys of Mulan

 

Most Americans will forever remember Mulan through Disney’s interpretation of her story.

I, for one, did not think a woman like—and such as—the legendary Mulan—could be THAT mighty, brave and noble as a warrior when she is THAT young, fair and beautiful as a maiden…

Again, I never, ever think a woman—especially one from farther east like the aforementioned Mulan—could be as mighty, brave and noble as a warrior as she is young, fair and beautiful as a maiden.

That, again, is just my two cents.

One more thing.

I would also quote from the Emperor of China whom Mulan saves from the villainous Shan-Yu and the Mongols (or Huns, as the Disney movie refer to them):

“I’ve heard a great deal about you, Fa Mulan.

You stole your father’s armor,

ran away from home,

impersonated a soldier,

deceived your commanding officer,

dishonored the Chinese Army,

destroyed my palace,

and you have saved us all.”

Anyway, I am asking you all this:

What are the differences between Mulan and Samurai Jack? And what are the similarities, or comparison and contrast , if you will, between Samurai Jack and Mulan?

My Favorite Female Dexter’s Laboratory Character:

Lee Lee (Voice of Kath Soucie), the Asian friend to Dexter’s sister Dee Dee, even though she’s a minor or background character from the first seasons of the show.

My Main Blue Man:

Jake Sully (Sam Worthington), the 10 foot tall blue alien/human hybrid hero of James Cameron’s AVATAR (2009), the visuals and colors of which I like the most out of Jim Cameron’s 2009 3-D epic space opera.

So, that’s my 20th post in this blog.

This is the real main reason why I like James Cameron’s AVATAR, the 2009 science fiction stereoscopic 3D epic space opera which is not to be confused, under penalty of death, with the Nickelodeon show of the same title.

You see, while the plot is predictable and despite the characters having one dimensional personality traits (though I like Jake Sully and his Avatar body and called him “My Main Blue Man”), out of all the recent movies, TV shows and animated cartoons that came out these days, especially all the recent big budget Hollywood blockbusters, James Cameron’s AVATAR, even in 3D (which is the very best way to see AVATAR the way it was meant to be seen even in the cinema), has the most amazing visuals imaginable as well as the prettiest colors imaginable.

So, besides me, what did you think of the amazing visuals and the pretty colors of James Cameron’s AVATAR?

I love Dexter’s Laboratory and The Powerpuff Girls and Samurai Jack, for they are my three most favorite TV shows and cartoons of all time, as much as James Cameron’s 2009 3D Sci-Fi action film AVATAR is my most favorite movie of all time (mainly because out of all the recent movies that came out these days, James Cameron’s AVATAR has, even in 3-D, the most amazing visuals and prettiest colors imaginable).

Now, if I were a filmmaker, film director and even animation artist, I would love to pay homage to Genndy Tartakovsky, creator of Dexter’s Lab and Samurai Jack, especially in ways best suited to the US-based, Russian-born animation director’s talents.

In the case of my own projects, while it might use and share the same cartoon characters as Dexter’s Lab and/or Craig McCracken’s Powerpuff Girls, I would also be clear in my intention that my own big screen hand drawn animated epic feature film project, which may be called “The Princess of Shangara”, would be unrelated to the rest of any of those already-established cartoon franchises from the 1990’s.

Now, there had been talk of somebody doing a theatrical big screen live action movie based on any of my three favorite TV shows, Dexter’s Lab, Powerpuff Girls and/or Samurai Jack-but it would take me, if I were to be an animation artist and filmmaker and film director, to cast my unique vision of a three-part theatrical big screen hand drawn animated epic inspired not only by Dexter’s Lab, PPG and/or Samurai Jack, and especially characters from any of the former two shows but also by, among other sources, the tale of the legendary Ancient Chinese female warrior Mulan (besides Disney’s 1998 animated interpretation of that ancient Chinese legend).

In fact, in my interpretation of the Ancient Chinese legend and folk fable of Mulan, I should take the more nonmusical route than Disney’s Mulan.

In the case of my movie, “The Princess of Shangara”, there would not only be characters from Dexter’s Lab and/or PPG, but also some slight DNA from Genndy Tartakovsky’s work, especially on Dexter, PPG, and Samurai Jack. Fans of Dexter’s Lab, PPG, Samurai Jack and even Classic Cartoon Network may notice some things, especially during the funnier moments, and especially during the more action-packed moments and especially imagery inspired by those of  Genndy Tartakovsky, Craig McCracken, and other people who used to work on the likes of Samurai Jack, Powerpuff Girls and Dexter’s Laboratory and the like.

It won’t be like any other animated feature on the big screen, for I’m gonna use music, sound design, cinematic and epic storytelling and very stylized 2D and 3D backgrounds to create mood, atmosphere and real emotional depth (though done almost entirely in pantomime) as the three main characters travels.

I’m gonna set out to make my animated three-part epic, The Princess of Shangara, not only epic and cinematic in scope, scale or even length, but to also incorporate everything I wanted in a action film like this: action, humor, intricate artistry, and minimal dialogue, some of it in an invented language.

If I combine these elements with my unique visual style and enthralling storylines, I may bring the kind of high energy to the three movies which together would made up the single story of Princess of Shangara  and give audiences on the big screen something they had never experience before in live action or animated form on the big screen.

Even if The Princess of Shangara part I through part III should be made in Cinemascope widescreen, and even if the unique visuals of Princess of Shangara would contain lush, painterly 3D and 2D backgrounds and hand drawn cartoon characters drawn as solid colors without any thick black lines, I wanted The Princess of Shangara to be flat and highly stylized-a lot of lighting and mood-it would be a theatrical big screen hand drawn animated epic with very little dialogue (some of it in a invented language) and more about the action, simple stories and the three main characters.

The three main characters in The Princess of Shangara in my case would be Lilimaia (Dee Dee’s Asian Friend Lee Lee, as well as The Princess of Shangara of the title), Daphne (Dexter’s Sister Dee Dee) and Mikaela (Dee Dee’s African American friend Mee Mee).

And while simple, the concept and back-story of The Princess of Shangara would leave room for much layering:

Lilimaia (Lee Lee) is a proud and pure warrior maiden of few words who is as mighty, brave and noble as she is young, fair and beautiful, and who is prophesized to be the one to bring about the downfall of the evil Dark Lord Mandark.

Many ages before, Mandark is warned that a newborn Princess of Shangara bearing a special mark would grow up to dispose him. 6 months from the birth of just such a child, Lilimaia’s father, The King of Shangara, had sent her away to be raised by a Shangaran-born book merchant named Taikiroh, and to also study with her world’s foremost scholars as well as to be trained in martial arts and stuff.

Along the way, Lilimaia (who looks physically just like Dee Dee’s Asian friend Lee Lee) befriends two girls, Daphne (a blonde girl who is physically just like Dee Dee from Dexter’s Lab) and Mikaela (a black girl who is physically just like Dee Dee’s black friend Mee Mee), and in the course of the three girls’ travels, they encounters exotic and mythical civilizations, living dinosaurs and other living Mesozoic fauna that are Triassic, Jurassic and/or Cretaceous by age, fire-breathing dragons and half-lion, half eagle griffins, rugged, beautiful landscapes and primeval forests, and modern urban cityscapes with fantastic trappings.

Eventually, with the help of Mikaela, Daphne and Daphne’s estranged boy genius brother Odysseus (Dexter) who has a fully equipped secret lab beneath the mountains, Lilimaia fully understood that she must accept the responsibility of her destiny. And so, with her mind and body sharply honed, Lilimaia returns home a woman as mighty, brave and noble a warrior as she is young, fair and beautiful a maiden (sort of like the legendary Mulan), and ready to vanquish Mandark and his evil forces and end Mandark’s attempts of conquest and enslavement of her world as well as to end Mandark’s evil reign. And with the help of Lilimaia’s friends and Daphne’s brother, Lilimaia finally managed to defeat Mandark and assume the throne that is rightfully hers.

The Princess of Shangara is going to be epic, awesome, good, great, and even cool, just like if not even more so than Dexter’s Laboratory: Ego Trip and Samurai Jack, or would it?

Ever since my childhood, I have always been thinking about, talking about, and even toying with the idea of casting animated cartoon characters (especially those from the 1990’s as well as those from Cartoon Network’s Dexter’s Laboratory such as Dexter, Dee Dee, her friends Lee Lee and Mee Mee, and Mandark, as well as The Powerpuff Girls’ Blossom, Bubbles and Buttercup, Professor Utonium and Mojo Jojo, or the like) in a vast canvas possibly on the scale and scope of especially Wagner’s Ring Cycle, an epic tale that may require no more or less than a dozen movies, done entirely back-to-back or more or less concurrently, to tell in full.
That’s my deepest desire.

I think Dexter’s sister Dee Dee’s Asian friend, Lee Lee, from the Cartoon Network Show, Dexter’s Laboratory, deserves an epic comeback role.

And I also think Lee Lee deserves her own epic vehicle as well as her own spectacular showcase.

How about “The Princess of Shangara”, a massive, elaborate, theatrical big screen Dexter’s Laboratory/The Powerpuff Girls-inspired animated cartoon epic tale of mythical, biblical and legendary proportions (and made in Panavision/Cinemascope) with Dee Dee’s Asian friend Lee Lee being the main central lead character as well as the title character: a heroic warrior princess from the land of Shangara (a Far Eastern Asian/Chinese/Japanese-influenced land, complete with its own language, culture, customs, art, and lore) who is as mighty, brave, and noble as she is young, fair, and beautiful, and who, according to an ancient prophecy, is destined to stop the evil Mandark from conquering and enslaving the world.

That’s my wish for Dee Dee’s Asian Friend Lee Lee.