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Futurama and Simpsons panels - Comic-Con Report

by Richard Keller, posted Jul 26th 2008 3:30PM

The Simpsons from the Futurama and Simpsons Panels at Comic-Con 2008

Day three of Comic-Con 2008 began with waiting in a line that streched the length of the convention center for the Futurama panel, which was followed by The Simpsons panel. Futurama featured the primary voice cast of Billy West, Katey Sagal, and John DiMaggio as well as creators Matt Groening and David X. Cohen.

Due to time limitations the panel when right into audience questions. One that was asked pertained to Matt and David's plans for the show. Both meant said that they had the entire story of Futurama planned even before the show began. They didn't know where the show would go, and they still have plenty of secrets to reveal in upcoming DVD releases.

Here are some more questions posed to the Futurama panel.

Another person asked how the time code was created for the first Futurama DVD. "If it wasn't obvious to you then you should be ashamed of yourself," said David. More seriously, he said that the code was the same in the mirror as it was when read properly on Bender's rear end.

  • The moderator for the panel asked the animators if it was tough to draw crowds. The animators agreed that it wasn't the best thing to animate, but it was done. On the fourth DVD, every character from Futurama, around 300, was placed into one scene. The animators made sure drawn so they are all recognizable.
  • When asked about the Fry-Leela relationship the panel revealed that it would be revisited during the 4th DVD and there may be some kissing. After that, Katey Sagal and Billy West kissed, to which Billy replied in his Fry voice, "I finally got lip."
  • There are three writers on the Futurama staff who have doctorates. There are also a number of people who have Master's degrees as well. According to Cohen, it allows them to write up the obscure jokes.
  • Guest appearances in the upcoming DVD will be George Takei and Rich Little in the third DVD, with Snoop Dogg and Penn Gillette for the 4th DVD.

In the next panel, Matt Groening joined Al Jean and a panel of producers and consulting producers to talk about The Simpsons. After a preview of Treehouse of Horror XIX (featuring a homage to Peanuts with the sketch "It's the Grand Pumpkin, Milhouse") the panel went to audience questions. One of the first was what guest stars would be appearing on the show's 20th season. In the second episode Dennis Leary will star as Bart ends up stealing his cell phone and getting him onto movies Leary wouldn't ever star in. Seth Rogan will also star and write an episode to air later in the season.

Other answers from the panel:

  • To the question of whether there will be another movie, Al Jean replied that the script would have to be really right in order to create another movie.
  • When asked about aging the characters outside of the flash-forwards or fantasy sequences, Al said it would probably be the death knell of the show.
  • Matt is amazed that none of the other major networks have stepped up like FOX to produce smart animated fare. He is very pleased that cable networks have picked up the slack.
  • When asked where the writers get their jokes, Matt Groening deadpanned "Family Guy". After the applause died down, Al Jean responded that some of the jokes come from the personal experiences that they have had.

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The script for the first movie wasn't right either and they did it anyway.

The Futurama-DVDs suck big time.

Let's just put it like this: if a 21 minute episode sucks you can just forget about it and wait for another one one week later. If you watch a movie or a DVD then you have to accept the fact that this won't get any better anytime soon and get angry about the money you spent.

I own Futurama as a whole on DVD, I saw the DVDs they did now and honestly I can't stand them. If I would've actually bought them I would be even more angry than I am already. Hopefully they can get their act together and put 4 episodes of Futurama in a row that will make a nice enough DVD-movie-whatever. You just can't have 20 minutes of an 80 minute movie suck.

July 26 2008 at 10:27 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Here's hoping to more Futurama past the DVD movies. Personally, the last movie left me cold, but Bender's Big Score was great, and I'm lookig forward to the next two movies. Another series would be great.

While I respect the Simpsons - a big fan for a decade - I don't watch it anymore and the movie bored me. But more Futurama would be ace!

July 26 2008 at 9:22 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Penn Jillette, Denis Leary, Seth Rogen FYI.

Nice post regardless - here's hoping Futurama will continue past the 4 DVD run.

July 26 2008 at 4:30 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

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