AMA stands for “Ask Me Anything,” a comment-driven interview format that’s common on the news aggregator website Reddit. This AMA took place on Reddit on November 26th, 2012. It was organized by Rusakov.
Q. Several years ago I wrote an (incomplete) fanfic from the point of view of a kat who was Jake/Razor’s cousin. In the show all we know of Jake and Chance is that they were friends who met during Enforcer training, but no mention is made of any of their families. What kind of backstory would you have envisioned for Jake and Chance, and/or their families? (submitted by wxkat)
A. We kept the back story as an arc for the future episodes when we did the series. When HB stopped the series, obviously it was not shown. BUT with what we plan to do now with SK, it will be part of it!
Q. You’ve said that you want to get the series back into production. Are there any other former SWAT Kats crew members that are working with you on this as well? (submitted by Ru1138)
A. Right now , no. We own the rights for new series of SK aas well as feature film rights. We will have a KICKSARTER project of SK very soon, for the plan we want to do to bring back the series
Q. Thank you for doing this, is there any chance of a Red Lynx reappearance in the new Swat Kats? One episode was not enough (submitted by FearofPunctuation)
A. Part of the plan, it is true that she was great! To answer a bit more precisely, we have a few ideas back then, but we will revisit them on the new plan we have for SK.
Q. Now there’s a cartoon around the same time when SWAT Kats debuted, it was called Sonic the Hedeghog (A.K.A. Sonic SatAM), it too was also cancelled for 2 seasons. The story continued and was brought back by Archie Comics and to this day the stories keep going.. So my question is, do you think in the future that SWAT Kats could get brought back in a form of a comic book or even a manga. If so, what company do you think could do all of the publishing? (submitted by JordanGenesis)
A. We want to bring SK in all transmedia form, Since Warner Bros have rights as well we will coordinate, but first, our focue is on Animated entertainment. For the comic, we dont know yet, but we will work with the best one out there!!
Q. Who will be/might be picking up the series from here? WB again? (submitted by April-SKS
A. I dont konw, they have already passed on the opportunity a few years avon. That being said , Tremblay Bros. Studios will produce and we will see who we can bring on board as well!
Q. Let me just start by saying thanks for creating one of the greatest cartoons of my childhood. SWAT Kats was very infuential to me, and I’ve been pursuing a career in art because of the impact it had on me. Anyways, would it be possible to try to get most of the original cast for a new series? I could easily see Charles Adler reprising his role as T-Bone. (submitted by Sheng_Long)
A. Thanks so much, it means the world to me if we did contribute a tiny part in your career as an artist, SO HAPPY to see that you decided to be an artist! We will, in due time look at the voice casting, and have some of the original cast for sure!
Q. i’ve always wondered… are cats (or in this case… “Kats”) the only sentient beings on the planet, or are there dogs, hyenas, humans, and so on, too? (submitted by RingtailedFox)
A. There is MEGAKAT CITY, that is the world they live in, could there be other world out there…..
Q. Do you envision the rebirthed SWAT Kats to be more (or all) CGI in nature? (submitted by wxkat)
A. We want to do an hybrid of 2D-3D, in essence, we want to use 3D as it most efficient, and 2D at it best. But we will do some test accordingly. There are some guy who did an amazing SK Hangar, jets etc in 3D, really cool11
Q. Do you know of any production materials that exist for any of the unfinished episodes, (storyboards, scripts, cast audio recordings, etc.) or any materials related to SWAT Kats that haven’t ever been released or seen by the public? If so, could you share any of them? (submitted by Puffertle)
A. there are, some we have in archive. We will in due time release for sure, there are also a lot of quick inspirational sketches i did for the unfinished episodes. We just need to get them all together.
Q. Hiya there. A lot of people are clamoring for a remake of the Swat Kats series, but I have another idea. How about a video game? There is a lot of potential to make a good Swat Kats game on the PS3 or other similar console, and its success would not necessarily hinge on the success of the show. In other words, while a remake of the show would likely only appeal to existing fans of the series, a video game could have its own market and draw in a lot of other people, especially if it were a really well-designed game and had a lot of action, comedy, and the like. It might even reboot the franchise in its own special way. What do you think? (submitted by km_2000) I also see potential in having another video game. Genres I think would be a great fit are shoot-‘em-ups like Gradius or a beat-‘em-up like Double Dragon. If a new game were considered, I’d recommend approaching WayForward as a developer. They have years of experience on games, and they’ve worked with the creators of TV series as consultants on games based on their work. Also, any chance you own the rights to the SWAT Kats game on Super Nintendo? I could see a rerelease happening for it on something like the Wii’s Virtual Console. (follow up submitted by Sheng_Long) I would just make a new one. Maybe a first or third person perspective, or one where the perspective can be switched about. Have some scenes where you’re on foot and some where you’re in the Turbokat or using other vehicles, but most of all have a storyline and gameplay style that is very dynamic and engages the player, and keeps them hooked. Have the game sometimes poke fun at other popular games, and most of all get a really good soundtrack. Could certainly be a breakthrough game if done right! (second follow up submitted by km_2000)
A. tHis is a great point we are not ignoring, but first we want to bring the Brand of SK today, meaning , being significant not only for the fans, but new generation as well. SK will be 20 yrs old soon, what a better way to celebrate in bringing the new SK, in games, TV feature film merchandise..
Q. I know that Swat Kats is primarily an American cartoon, having aired on Cartoon Network… but… is there any chance of a rebooted series being shown in other countries as well, for fans in say, the United Kingdom, or Canada? (submitted by RingtailedFox)
A. It will be worldwide. On the financial point of view, we can’t finance a show if it is not distribute worldwide.
Q. Do other cities have monster and villain problems as bad as MegaKat City? (submitted by EvilSonic)
A. I think there are so much that we have not seen in Megakat city yet, to do many many new seasons, that being said, there could be somehting out there, another city, maybe another planet…
This AMA took place on Reddit on November 29th, 2012. It was organized by Rusakov.
Q. For those of you who expect a response right away, he won’t be here until 10:00 PM EST. That said, the people at swatkats.us have a few questions. 1. How are the rights shared between you and Warner Brothers? 2. Considering that making even one episode of a cartoon series is expensive, what do you plan to do with a Kickstarter campaign? A pitch, full blown episodes, something in between? If it’s something in between, then what is it? (submitted by Ru1138))
A. Without getting too much into details, we owns rights to do the new series TV, and all movie rights animation, live action. For the Kickstarter project, we want to showcase what the new animated series will look like. We have ideas what to do, and these will be shared once we do the Kickstarter, so stay tuned for that!
Q. Any chance of seeing Felina Feral become an unofficial ‘third’ SWAT Kat? (submitted by StephenTStone)
A. Felina is great and it is a good idea. There are many plans on the drawing board, but felina add a great dynamic, specially with the relationship wth her uncle!
Q. If I may ask? will the character designs be similair to the older ones? I honestly liked the more cartoony designs for the cats better. Also, will there be a possible, steatlh insult to ted turner? Like blowing up a captain planet look alike sign or a “exteremist eviromentalist” villain? (submitted by reduser7)
A. We will be faithfull to the character DNA but we need to bring something more, and update BUT always be faithful to our characters. We have respect for Ted Turner, because of him, we got the show financed back in 1993, and i like the guy. The decision to stop the show was not his but more executives way below him…..so no blowing of Captain Planet ?
Q. Is it true that Ted Turner had the show cancelled because the cat-lady made him “feel weird”? (submitted by linklonk)
A. bot aware of that…..
Q. If a reboot where too happen how would you guys go about balancing the main plot with the whole monster of the week think? (submitted by Snaylor47)
A. we will go more deeply into the characters of Razor and T-Bone, but to all of the recurring villains as well. We want to furhter developping them vs bring new vilains every weeks. But that being said, creating new monsters and weirdos to mess up Megakat City is always fun!
Q. Hi! First time poster to reddit, a friend of mine referred me to this. It’s awesome for you to take the time to answer questions! Where did the idea of Swat Kats come from? Beyond being part of the “action talking animals” genre of cartoons, how generally did the characters and the world come to be? I’m currently watching the old series for a review I do for my blog (where I look at a variety of things, including old cartoons). I know this may be outside my parameters, but I was wondering if you’d be cool with an email interview for that very blog? I send you questions and you can answer them at your own leisure. I’d love to know the nitty-gritty of the show! Thanks! (submitted by kjohnson1585)
A. The original idea came from a design i did for a t-shirt company. When my brother Yvon looked at it, he said, He looks like a jet fighter pilot, refering to the use of hat in US aviation. YOU can send questions for your blog, and i will answer….KEEP remind though, as i dont want it to fall under the cracks of my busy schedule!
Q.I’m sure some of us may have wonder this. If the show gets back into production, would you try to retain the voice actors (Charlie Adler, Barry Gordon, etc.) from the original series? Though it may be a bit far-fetched, to me it would retain a welcome familiarity if the voice actors were able to be brought on-board (and also if the animation was in a similar style). Thanks! (submitted by nuktakupaya)
A. A possibility we will look into it for these actors that are still alive, for sure!
Q. Is there a specific reason you can state for why the show was cancelled? It’s a common question that has yet to have a really definitive answer. Does the show’s original cancellation present any special challenges for a new series or movie pitch? (submitted by Puffertle)
A. 1: The OFFICIAL reasons the show was cancel is that the timing between the merchandising being out late, affected the bottom line of the financial, i.e. the money HB was making. Remenber that the series cost many, many, many million $$ to produce, all financed by HB.
2: Now why the merchandising was out late, is because Ted Turner, announced in congress that waht his tv station are producing, there won’t be any violence ( this is in 1994 about, in a time where all the broadcaster were pointed about violence on TV.) At the same, here we were producing SK with helicopters crashing into walls exploding….! So the show, before it aired was some kind of a hot and sensible issue the executive had to navigate with…….which at the end result in being late in the coordination of the series coming out and the toys following way late after that.
3: No it does not affect anything we are doing now, because , YOU DEAR FANS, keeps it alive….! Thanks by the way you all!!
Q. If I may, Can we expect more expansion characters around Chance and Jake? Like family and friends, perhaps rivals? Thanks in advance! (submitted by FenrirAesir)
A. MOST definitively. We will reveal much more personality layers to ours guys, and to the vilains as well.
Q. Are you planning on doing story arcs that span multiple episodes? (submitted by Sheng_Long)
A. Maybe, a possibility!
Q. Will we see any other species or is it still going to be cats only? (submitted by chipped_teeth)
A. Would be interesting isn’t? or maybe not!! Megakat City is a world into itself…..but there could be other world….or a neighbourhood yet to be discovered!
Q. Are you surprised that after almost 20 years, there are still a lot of fans of SWAT Kats? Do you ever visit the online community at all? Are there any fan sites or fan works you’ve seen, maybe like this, http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JHRK9zb9Mmo that you’ve been surprised by? (submitted by Puffertle)
A. my brother and I are overwhelmed by it, and that is the reason we will bring it back, for you guys and for a whole new generation. We are very humble about it and touched…..
Q. what were your favorite and least favorite times while working on swat kats? (submitted by gclaw4444)
A. Favorite time: When Glen Leopold, who had his office not far from ours, came into our room , and we would brainstorm episodes idea. I would do sketched Yvon and i thought about, all kind of ideas for episode, new villains, situations etc. etc. , and Glen would go back to his office with copies of all of that, and go back to write something. Same as well with Lance Falk. THose guys were really receptive and sharing on what we did. Also, we loved to visit the background dept. and going to the final mix. but the most amazing moment, is when Mark Hamill was recording an episode…..can you imagine, the hero of my youth in Star Wars, now working on one of my own creation…..PRICELESS!! Least Favorite: When they stopped the series!
Q. I have three questions: First, do you have rights to decide who would make the toyline? Second, if you had those rights, who would you use? Playmates is currently doing some wonderful things with their TMNT line, or you could try Hasbro if you wanted to focus more on vehicles. Bandai of America is also an option, but I dislike their action figures outside their Power Ranger toyline. Thirdly, would you try and space out stories more? I love the episode where T-Bone interacts with Turmoil, but the plot felt rushed, and we never really got to feel that he’d betrayed Razor. (submitted by grimmkey)
A. Fro toys and merchandising: iT is a complicated questions i would rather not answer, but be assured it will be a great one….. For stories, yes we want to bring way more layers of personalities, their psychology, etc. while keeping the same tone , humor and kick ass action like never before!
Q. It is great to have another chance to speak with one of the creators of one of my top favorite animated shows. What were some of your favorite cartoons growing up and did they inspire you to get into the animation business? (submitted by FelonyKat)
A. ATOM ANT gave me goosebumps as a kid. The Banana splits were AWESOME. We grew up in a remote place in Quebec in the city of Sept-Iles, back in the 70’s , there was not a lot of tv program available, but we watched a lot of Hanna-Barbera stuff, and MAN WE LOVED IT, they were in french, so i don’t know their name in english, but name it, we watched them all. Now you can imagine the first time i set up foot at Hanna barbara studio……….MESMERIZING!! and seeing mr. Hanna, and Barbera often time daily……UNRREAL. I will post you guys a picture.
Q. Another question, Why kind of reboot are going to see? A hard reboot where everything will start over? or A soft reboot, where there is some kind of continuity with where the previous series left off? (submitted by FenrirAesir)
A. a continuity and further understanding of where the character came from, their inner motivations….
Q. Are you planning to broadcast on Cartoon Network or aiming for a different network (or maybe online only)? (submitted by chipped_teeth)
A. too early to say
Q. Last January, several fans organized a letter-writing campaign to Warner Bros. Did you happen to hear any news regarding that? Also, were you involved at all with getting SWAT Kats (finally) released on DVD? (submitted by Puffertle)
A. i was aware of the letter, but have not heard any feed back from the studio. We were not involved in the DVD release
Q. I just started watching this on Boomerang recently and it’s honestly one of the best cartoons I’ve ever seen. Is a reboot possible/in the works? (submitted by starfox22)
A. Stay tuned……it will!
Q. A couple more questions to pile up here. LOL Will there be a place on your website with information on the kickstarter and where fans can donate? Also are there any other of your past projects you wish to get going again besides SWAT Kats? (submitted by FelonyKat)
A. We will set thing up accordingly. Other project we are doing………i SO WANT TO TELL….but not yet!
Q. Now that you pointed out the Congress and TV violence, I feel I need to ask this question and may be uncomfortable. How is the design of MegaKat be affected after 9/11? I mean, it’s a fighter on a city full of skyscrapers. May this have any impact on the series? (Chance and Jake were kick out for crashing in the Enforcers brand new tower). (submitted by FenrirAesir)
A. This is a good question we are addressing and being sensitive about, for sure.
Q. How has the animation industry changed since you started? Are there any works or artists you admire today? (submitted by Sheng_Long)
A. There great things being done today, and we like a lot the artist coming from France and Europe. I am not particularly fond on any kind of project that do actions and VFX for the sole purpose of impressing us. We need to go back about storytelling, and emotion, being moved, then you put the spectacular stuff on it, and you have something great.
Q. Who made the bitchin intro song? It’s SO RAD (submitted by Jonnycocksville)
A. a secret…!
Q. How sexy do you guys plan on making the new Callie? (submitted by chipped_teeth)
A. She will be in fashion ….sexy but also the one you want to protect!
Q. Do you guys plan on introducing any other vigilantes? Is there a target date for the test/preview material? (submitted by chipped_teeth)
A. More vigilantes, yes, but we want to dig more deeper in the one we have: Metallikats, viper, pastmaster, Dark Kat, ghost pilot. Those vilains are alive, why they become the way they are , waht made them tick to the dark side? These are so interesting questions and will make great new stories….imagine we unveil that the Metallikats have a son!!!! by the way i am not saying thay have or not, but yoiu can see the layers it adds to characters And there’s a character named Cougar……He is the one who trained Jake and Chance…a little scoop for you dear fans!!
Q. Do you have plans to SEND MORE CHOPPER SUPPORT?! (submitted by Puzzles_McFuzzles)
A. a lot!!
Q. I don’t think there was enough chopper backup. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=N5a7n_wIERU (submitted by Puffertle)
Q. Are you guys still aiming for a rock/metal OST? (submitted by chipped_teeth)
A. There are a lot of new music out there that embrace the genre, yet being innovative, i am very interested about all the new sounds out there. that e being said, fresh and new yet faithful to our brand.
Q. Did Callie ever know who the SWAT Kats really were? Do you have any plans of maybe having her find out at some point, if she didn’t/doesn’t already? (submitted by wxkat)
A. Your answer is somewhere in the 23 episodes we did….;)
Q. Will the new series include some of the changes in modern military technology since the 80s? Namely the advancements in drone warfare? (submitted by Palletable)
A. YOU BET!
Q. What are your plans regarding the feeling of the universe, particularly the gadgets. Some of theme were…distinctly 90’s (dual chainsaw missile). Do you have plans to modernize the Swat Kats arsenal, put a new spin on it, or totally revamp the entire thing? In particular, do you plan to totally update their jet (What looked to be an F-14 Tomcat), or just put a new coat of paint on the old design? (submitted by Puzzles_McFuzzles)
A. we are in 2013 soon, our philosophy is the following: We need to carry on the legacy of the Swat-Kats, but bringing a new experience, that means visually, in their personalities, etc. etc. IT WILL BE SWAT-KATS for the new millennium.
Q. Is there a website or place we can sign up to, to keep track of when the Kickstarter goes live? (submitted by merryjest)
A. not yet, but we will keep you guys informed as soon as it is set up.
Q. Is Megakat City based off of a real location or just a little bit of well known cities made into its own? And also, does it snow there in the winters? (submitted by FelonyKat)
A. it is a mad up world…..and yes it snows in MegaKat city….one of the unfinished episode was in the snow! oups! i meant : it is a MADE UP world!!
Q. Whatever happened to Burke and Murray? (submitted by Sheng_Long)
A. Ah! those two….you bring me back good memories!!
Q. What was it that drove you to pursue bringing back Swat Kats over doing other series? How much effort have you had to put into getting the rights to do this? Was it hard convincing people that it was a financially sound idea? (submitted by Puzzles_McFuzzles)
A. one more answer to a good question: SK is part of a classic in some ways, we want to bring it to a new generation. The rights were part of our original agreement. Thanks all and my best to you all!!
Dear all, unfortunately, i have to go, but please understand that is it a GENUINE privilege to talk to all of you, we are touched by it and follow us, follow your friends the Swat-Kats….we will not disappoint you!
on bealf on my brother Yvon and Mayself, THANKS VERY MUCH! SK WILL BE BACK! -Christian