After what feels like a decade off the air, The Venture Bros is returning August 5th to Adult Swim on Cartoon Network (midnight Sunday night/Monday morning). And the team behind animating the long in production latest season is Titmouse Animation, headed by Chris Prynoski, a man who has animated, directed, or produced his fair share of your favorite animated shows or movies over the past few decades along with a crew of dedicated creators who love working in animation.
While at San Diego Comic-Con, we got to speak to Chris P as we once again roamed around the city in the official Titmouse RV. While they work on a lot of different projects, one of the first questions we had to ask was about The Venture Bros, which is finally returning to Adult Swim on August 5th. Here’s just a snippet of our chat on what little he could say about The Venture Bros and the process that goes into making a new season of the massively popular cult hit series, now in its 7th season.
Forever Geek: When last we talked, you were telling me how you guys at Titmouse don’t even start animating anything for the Venture Bros until well after Jackson Publick and Doc Hammer even complete the scripts for the entire season.
Chris P: Yeah, because they wear a lot of hats. It’s essentially two guys who write every script. And the episodes are very cross-connected and they’re very self-referential in a good way. It’s very deep lore. And they not only reference previous seasons, they also cross-reference things within the same season, which means you might want to re-write scripts after written later ones to make sure that you see what’s happening. For that reason, to keep the quality up, it takes a while to write the scripts and they also do a lot of voices, contribute to the storyboards and the edits, so yeah it’s a long process, but I think it’s worth it.
Forever Geek: So considering what you’ve seen and done so far with season 7, which is coming in August, what do you think?
Chris P: It’s great. It’s better than ever. Every time it impresses me.
Forever Geek: You would figure that after 7 seasons, especially with so much time between seasons, you’d think that the quality would start to slack.
Chris P: They keep it fresh, but I’m biased. You be the judge when it airs.
But their projects don’t end with “The Venture Bros“. They’re still working on “Niko and the Sword of Light” on Amazon Prime, “Big Mouth” and “The Epic Tales of Captain Underpants” on Netflix, a movie with Natalie Portman called “Foxy Trotter“, and a number of Virtual Reality projects, including their own “Smash Party VR” game on the HTC Vive VR headset, which recreates the wild annual party the studio holds every year, where they smash actual items of their own with tools and weapons of their choosing.
And recently, they contributed all of the animated pieces to the debut episode of the new TRU TV series called “Bobcat Goldthwait’s Misfits & Monsters” that debuted earlier this month. The first episode of this anthology series stars Seth Green (Robot Chicken, Family Guy, Buffy the Vampire Slayer) as a voice over actor whose most popular character comes to life to take revenge on the very man who gave him a voice.
Odds are that if you’re a fan of animated shows or movies beyond just The Venture Bros, you’ve seen the work of Titmouse Studios just about anywhere. And to Chris P, that’s a very good thing.
Forever Geek: There is a lot of animated content out there these days. Are you finding the state of animation to be something that’s evolving for better or worse?
Chris P: Oh it’s great. It’s better than ever. There are more outlets than ever. There’s more places buying cartoons. There’s more cartoons being made than ever before. They’re taking more chances. There’s a projecte we’re doing that we can’t talk about yet that’s very, very unusual. It’s a science fiction drama that we’re doing for adults that’s not a comedy show at all. That’s very exciting. Those types of projects are more common today. I mean, in the past, it just wouldn’t happen in the US. Japan for sure, maybe France. In the US, if it’s adult, then it’s comedy for the last 30 years or so.
If you’re in the mood for some new animated shows, you can’t go wrong by checking out some of the big streaming services and Adult Swim to see some of the best cartoons out there, made by some of the most dedicated and enthusiastic creators in the business.
Watch for the new season of The Venture Bros this Sunday, August 5th on Adult Swim/Cartoon Network at midnight (check your local listings).