gary squirrel

Andy Kindler and Gary The Squirrel join Jake for a special summer movie preview episode of THE FOGELNEST FILES and let’s be honest, it’s the single most important podcast ever released in the history of the medium.

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It’s no secret that Andy Kindler is my favorite comedian. This episode poses as a “Summer movie preview” but quickly devolves into a schticky vaudeville rehearsal with Jake endlessly giggling in the background.

This is one of my favorite things. I will be like Oprah and share it with you all. And it didn’t even cost me a dime.

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One of the shorts I boarded for Wabbit, “Wabbit’s Wild” premiered yesterday on Cartoon Network, so here’s some storyboard-to-final comparisons!

When we started this short, I was a bit concerned about the premise. How are we gonna make a fun-filled, engaging and slapstick-y cartoon about Bugs and a bunch of squirrels sitting around a table playing poker? Thankfully throughout the production, every time I went into the story room with doubts, I came out feeling both relief and excitement. With tons of help from my director Scott Bern, fellow director Sean Petrilak, our story editor Matt Craig and our fearless leader Gary Hartle, we were able to come up with a really solid show. In the morning we started with an iota of an inkling of a smidgen of an idea, and by the end of the day we had an exciting and funny cartoon ready to board. We came up with a TON of left field ideas and hilarious gags, many of which had to be cut either to condense the story or later for time when it was edited for air, but most of it stayed intact! Maybe one day I’ll post storyboard samples featuring some of the lost gags!

While some of our shows involve Bugs interacting with his classic nemeses like Yosemite Sam or Coyote, sometimes the stories allow us to have Bugs face an entirely new foe. In this case, we came up with Shifty, Squeaks’ conniving, crooked and cheating cousin. We played around with his design in the story room, and his design gradually changed as I became more comfortable drawing him during the 4 weeks I boarded the short. He was fun to draw and a lot of fun to beat up. And in some way, I had a small part in creating him and fleshing out his personality, so I’ve grown a sort of affinity towards him. Many of the board artists ended up gravitating towards certain characters and boarded them time and time again throughout the series, and for me Shifty was my go-to.

We originally had more squirrels at the game, but to make things simpler for the story and for the animators later down the road, we narrowed it down to 4. Squeaks unintelligibly names them in the short, so for clarification, their names are Cousin Gary, the cowboy squirrel (who’s based off our supervising director Gary Hartle), Cousin Jeffrey, the business squirrel, Cousin Arnold, the nerdy squirrel and finally the bug-eyed squirrel is named… the Bug-Eyed Squirrel. Eh, sometimes the description sounds more appropriate than the name.

Stay tuned for more shorts coming up! New ones will be airing all this week on Cartoon Network at 5pm, then after this week the show will exclusively be on Boomerang!

***UPDATE 10/8/15***

After looking through my old Wabbit notes and boards, I discovered that I DID originally give the Bug-Eyed Squirrel a name in the storyboard: Cousin Skeeter.