Mark Zaslove – Talks Mighty Max and more!

Today Jeff sits down and chats with the brains behind a lot of things, specifically Mighty Max for this conversation, Mark Zaslove!

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Mark Zaslove – Interivew

 

[00:00:00] Jeff: hello listeners, a spoiler country today on the show we had the fantastic Mark. Zaslav. That’d be doing Mark.

Mark Zazlove: I’m doing well. Thanks for having me on.

Jeff: Oh, it’s definitely my pleasure. I’m a big fan of yours.

Mark Zazlove: Well, that’s good to know. Know,

Jeff: I’m sure. There’s, I’m sure there’s many. I, as I was doing some of the research on you actually, and I saw just how many shows you, you were a part of, it’s amazing to think of how many Facebook groups and other groups that I know of, of people who are fans of you.

Mark Zazlove: I it’s a funny thing. Cause I, I, I’m one of those people who, once it’s out of my hands, I never look at my old work. And so when I hear that people like it and watch it or have watched it, it’s, it’s always very flattering. Cause I it’s never on my mind. It’s always kind of amazing when I find out. Later that, Oh, Hey, I watched your show and I’m like, thank you.

Jeff: Yeah. Like I said, I mean, there’s [00:01:00] so much of what you did. I, and we’ll get, we’ll get to more details in, in a little bit and discuss it more. But when I was, initially wanting to talk to you, I want to discuss one of my favorite shows growing up, mighty max. but I decided, you know, as I do with all my interviews, I’m going to do some research into the gentlemen and learn more about him.

And the amount of shows that you were attached to it. Like I said, it was just a men’s. I mean, we’re, we’re going to talk about the guy go bots. You have, tailspin, eventually of Winnie the Pooh. I mean, you’ve you did it’s on a lot of

Mark Zazlove: stuff still doing it, hopefully.

Jeff: Oh yeah. How about your, your new show as well that you’re working on, Molly of Denali.

Mark Zazlove: Oh, no, that was three or four shows ago. yes, that was something I, I did some writing on. yeah, that’s, there’s more now some of which I can’t even speak on because legal I’ve been sworn to secrecy, which is really weird to me.

Jeff: even if you’re a sworn to secrecy, could you tell us the company which you’re writing

Mark Zazlove: for?

No, I am actually sworn to secrecy about that too.

Jeff: Holy crap. [00:02:00] Which is

Mark Zazlove: really weird. Yeah. But on the other hand, I am, I am doing pilot sitcom before a sit-com a live action. A sit-com I’m writing on a, a show, a international show called treasure trekkers really has wonderful animation. I came on board in the second season and they have some sort of game.

Animation platform that they work on. So it looks really, really wonderful. And, what else? Oh, I’m story editing something. Oh, there’s unicorns, which hasn’t come out yet.

Jeff: so when, like, when are the, ideal, release dates for these programs?

Mark Zazlove: Having a clue, it tells me anything, the Sitka, the sitcom.

Pandemic permitting. We’ll probably shot in the spring of next year. So I’m just doing the pilot, but one of the producers, just had a baby, so we’re sort of on hiatus.

Jeff: Oh, wow. Well, congratulations to the producer. [00:03:00] So, so did the pandemic, really put a stop to a lot of what you were doing at the time?

Did it kill the momentum?

Mark Zazlove: actually I have been busier now than in quite awhile. for whatever reason, live action took a little bit of a hit because they didn’t know what they were doing, but from a writing standpoint, you can stock by all. So a lot of companies are getting things in the works, and now they’re starting to figure out how to shoot even with the pandemic and animation just went crazy.

because you can, they figured out that you can do all that during a pandemic.

Jeff: So that must cost a fortune. I mean, I assume it’s the animators doing it from their home, but yeah, I would have guessed that equipment that’s necessary to do monitor animation is extremely expensive and unwilling to me, I’m just totally wrong.

Mark Zazlove: I mean, it really depends. I mean, nowadays much like how you can shoot a movie on an iPhone. I mean, technology and cut it on your home computer. I’ve edited a lot of stuff on granted. You, you have to get a somewhat higher end one, [00:04:00] but it’s surprising what can be done at home. although I’m not sure how many of the companies, I think the companies do bring people in because a lot of the places are like in India, that I’ve been working with lately.

And I think they have. Ways of, you know, safely bringing people in because it’s not like everybody’s mingling

Jeff: and it’s far safer in India right now for the coronavirus.

Mark Zazlove: you’d know better than I would if you’re down here hiding out and not letting anybody touch me so

Jeff: well, that’s, that’s the way to be.

I’m, I’m, I’m actually, I’m a high school teacher. I teach at a therapeutic high school and, It’s definitely a major concern with COVID, all around. And obviously we’re working with the students. You’re, in-person brought you in distance learning at this point. It is a, it’s a constant reminder of the situation right now.

Mark Zazlove: I’ll bet. And, and hats off to you because it it’s complicated. It’s easy for me, you know? Cause I stay at home all the time. Anyway, you know, I mean, granted, you know, when you’re shooting something or, you know, you’re [00:05:00] producing, but as the writer, part of me, which is where everything comes from. You know, I, except for the possible horrible death, this is kind of heaven for me,

Jeff: you know?

Well, so you’re working on now that, hopefully when, when you’re ready to discuss them again, you can definitely come back on. at least I hope you do. I know the shows that you have worked on in the past are mostly what looks like hand drawn animation or the current ones hand drawn or the computer.

I’m not that STG. I don’t know the computer graphic cartoon. They don’t know the term for the ones that are drawn

Mark Zazlove: on the computer. Well, pretty much everything is going computer, whether it’s 2d, which, you know, like flash, like Peppa pig or something like that, or it’s CG, which is, you know, the 3d kind of stuff, which, you know, started with Pixar and toy story and all that kind of stuff.

So everything’s pretty much that now I’m sure there are still some hand drawn, but not that I know of for TV, I guess some movies, but even then you’re doing your coloring on computer. You’re doing, I mean, it’s just [00:06:00] easier. You know, even if you’re hand drawing it, you’re still going to do it on your computer.

So it’s, it’s taken a lot out of it

Jeff: now, do you prefer the 2d animation that, like I said back when I grew up, I’m, I’m 40 now when I grew up also like with money, my one, not the nice, the beautiful hand, drawn art. Do you prefer that kind of art or what they’re doing now? Like I said, the Pixar 3d yard.

Mark Zazlove: I prefer good art.

Regardless of how it’s done and I’ve seen it done well both ways and I’ve seen it done and had it done to me horribly, both ways. So, the, the media changes things slightly for the medium. I always get them mixed up to me. You know, you would know better. it changes how you approach things. Be it live action or animation, CG and live action have kind of melded.

It’s surprising. It used to be, you’d be asked, why are we making a cartoon of this? You know, and, and it’s usually was, you know, obvious, like mighty max, you couldn’t have done live action cheaply, [00:07:00] you know, it just would’ve been too expensive and it probably wouldn’t have looked good if it were cheap. Yeah.

Nowadays you could probably do that live action. It would be more expensive, but surprisingly closer and it would look good. so now when you ask that question, why is it animation? It’s much more difficult to respond to, but the writing and the production, you just. You’re kind of, you know, aim it slightly differently depending on what you’re using, but anything can be good or bad

Jeff: now.

Debbie correctly, that your father was a famous animator on programs like Charlie Brown Christmas. And it was that where you initially got your love for animation storytelling.

Mark Zazlove: I dunno, famous. I don’t know if any of us were famous. He was by far the talent. He was, A animator director, producer. He started off when he was 15.

He lived across from Warner brothers or his grandparents or great aunts, I forget, but he’d worked with a termite terrace. He would clean brushes and stuff. And then [00:08:00] he got in with UPA, and he was sent to art school. He also, he eventually became, head of drawing at Otis. So he was a fine artist and an animator.

And my love for animation. My love for live action and novels came first. And then I was looking for work, you know, for money because I was getting a bunch of stuff, option in live action, but no big payment and novels. Yeah, of course. You know, or weird. And I went and mation, I can do that animated. She was like, drunk guys live, you know, on my living room floor Saturday night.

So what the heck? And so I walked into, Hanna-Barbera and my dad was working there and I, it was a tiny bit of nepotism, but really all that happened was, is. He went, go talk to these guys. They’re story editors, not on a show of his, by the way, on the go box. And, and, I walked in, I said, Hey, can I write?

And they go, can you write. And I handed them a live action script. They go, okay, you can write, do some [00:09:00] premises and we’ll see if anything sparks. And you know, that was Jeff Siegel and Kelly Ward, and they were nice enough to let me start doing it. And then I’ve been doing animation live action and novels ever since.

Jeff: That’s awesome. I will say though, I do think it’s a, it’s a great travesty that the Charlie Brown shows now are only on Apple, streaming. I used to watch them every season, the, the Charlie Brown specials.

Mark Zazlove: Yeah. You know, they’re getting such backlash, but it’ll, it lasts. It’ll be, I’ll be curious to see what happens moving forward.

you know, cause it’s one of those things, perennials are always weird, you know, Christmas things, you just think they’re going to be there and then suddenly they’re not, I, I don’t know. We’ll see how many people, you know, they can monetize it or people just go and forget it.

Jeff: I, I unfortunately think might be for you.

I mean, there’s so many streaming streaming options and I will say. Apple is one of the few that I don’t own a streaming service to a subscription to. And, yeah, it, it will be different, Halloween going by without, you know, the great pumpkin Charlie Brown and Christmas off that, you know, [00:10:00] that there’s huge parts of our lives.

It’s amazing when they’re not there anymore.

Mark Zazlove: Yeah. And, and it’s just kind of a shame because I think those, especially Christmas things, when they work year after year, they always hold up. And so people are just missing out. As simple as to try the band Christmas was I think that was maybe the best one for me.

Yeah. but, but it was just so simple and universal and I’m not sure much of it changed, you know, kids still acting like kids and. Whatever the peanuts kids are, still work. So add. I know,

Jeff: and I will say no matter how old I get the shows don’t lose anything, which is, which is kind of interesting, you know, even as a 40 year old, I can watch Charlie Brown and I have a very similar feeling about it as I did when I was like eight.

Mark Zazlove: Well that’s Rudolph for me.

Jeff: Well, we’ll say those were classics. I did love the Rudolph episodes then. what, what will the Rudolph in the toilet land one? The

Mark Zazlove: Island of misfit toys. I [00:11:00] actually did a dissertation on that for a philosophy class at college wants. Oh wow. And the theological meaning behind it.

And the professor just kind of looked at me and shook his head.

Jeff: So, so, so what was your ultimate thesis on that?

Mark Zazlove: I can’t remember completely, but it was, it was really how. King moon beam. I think his name was how that’s not actually his real job. So what is his real job and what kind of deity is he?

Because once they get all those toys off there, he really has nothing else to do. So that wouldn’t have been his job. So I think I got into, you know, trying to look at other. You know, you know, from Greek mythology to scam, you know, where would he have fit in and where did he come from and how did you fall into this trap?

And you know, all this kind of stuff. I don’t remember the final stuff of it, but I remember it was vaguely about that. What was his original job?

Jeff: That’s some deep thinking on the Island, Mr. .

Mark Zazlove: And [00:12:00] for some reason that one just caught me. I never quite got into the others quite that way.

Jeff: so since we’re talking about your time at college, so I read that, you attended Berkeley, with a major in astrophysics.

Something that I’ve always, I always loved astrophysics though. My math skills were always too shitty to actually do anything with that love of, of astrophysics. But what drew you to astrophysics?

Mark Zazlove: Well, well, for, I really loved amateur astronomy when I was a kid. You know, I had telescopes and stuff. Cause there were older kids that were into it as well.

And so we’d all do stuff. And then even though we were a creative family, like one of my sisters is a classical singer and a classical opera singer and others with photographer. We got all that, but I like science as well. And, and I never thought going to college for, you know, to learn to write or something was worthwhile.

So it was like, well, if we’re going to go, you know, let’s do something. And so I thought, well, let’s try astronomy now. [00:13:00] Regular astronomy wouldn’t have worked as well. Cause that’s, you know, like I started in physics, but it was like too much engineering. So. I ended up taking one astronomy course, cause I was like, Oh, you know, I like astronomy.

And we all went to have beer, the grad students, the professor, everybody, it was actually Dean of the astronomy department teaching it. And every Friday they’d have beer. And I went on changing my major and it was similar assets. It was almost the same classes except for plasma physics. Yeah. And applied math, you know, applied maths with, you know, the same for both.

And, so I got into theoretical astrophysics cause that was just like writing. He just made stuff up.

Jeff: That’s really, I mean, astrophysics, that’s one hell of a high IQ type, field.

Mark Zazlove: Well, actually not over the years, I figured it out. I’m actually not particularly smart, but I have no, no, no, but I have two talents that make me appear that way and are only useful for [00:14:00] theoretical science, particularly astrophysics and writing.

Okay. But they, but they work for those. I’m not sure they work for anything else, but one is, I assimilate things quickly so I can learn stuff very fast. I won’t necessarily retain it for years and years. Like really smart people. But like, if you give me almost anything, I can figure it out very, very quickly, which is useful when you’re getting data or you’re trying to design a new world, you know, writing wise.

And I’m a good pattern solver. You know, and so again, I can take disparate ideas and put them together, which works great in theoretical physics and it works. And neither of those things, actually, it makes me particularly smart, like real smart people, but it looks like I am, but it’s great for those two fields.

So I lucked into the two things. You know, my skill set actually worked for,

Jeff: and it’s a great major to say that you do. I’m an astrophysicist

Mark Zazlove: handy occasionally when, can you hear me?

[00:15:00] Jeff: Yeah, I can hear you.

Mark Zazlove: Okay. Yeah. Someone’s trying to call in, unfortunately, my manager, but I’m not going to go over there. But, it’s coming in meetings in Hollywood. It’s been useful because you can kind of beat people over the head when they try to spring science on your, like, where you wouldn’t understand this.

And it’d be like, really, really you and your soft sciences. You’re trying to bring, you know, sad, psychology and yeah. Yeah, I can do that.

Jeff: So, so how hardcore is the, was the math for, being D astrophysicist?

Mark Zazlove: Oh, it was, I love applied math. Theoretical math makes no sense to me. That’s like some other language can’t makes no sense.

I mean, that’s all proofs like how you, Oh, that stuff’s insane, but applied math. That’s perfect. And so, you know, calculus and, you know, linear algebra and you know, all that kind of stuff. And that, that stuff makes sense tense or, you know, calculus was great. Cause that’s all field space stuff, which I was interested in.

So it’s [00:16:00] okay. That all makes sense. The theoretical map, not a clue

Jeff: you see at school from time to time. even though I, I teach, English, at the school for an elective, I get to, dabble in astronomy. So I do, it’s kind of astronomy as an elective and I enjoy it and I get to pretend that I have a good idea of what I’m talking about.

So it’s, it’s kinda fun though. I get to live out my dream of, Being an astrophysicist or an astronomy astronomy astronomer from time to time.

Mark Zazlove: But I like amateur astronomy too. What happened was I got back into it about eight years ago. Didn’t realize it was kind of a childhood dream. And now I do ask her photography when I get the chance on, on, you know, new moon weekends.

So I go up to a place where you can see the Milky way and hanging out with a bunch of people who come from all around and take pictures. That’s been kind of a fun thing.

Jeff: That sounds so awesome. Did you, where do you publish the pictures?

Mark Zazlove: I they’re just for me and friends and stuff, like mostly for me. [00:17:00]

yeah. Cause it was all the things I couldn’t do as a kid. Cause we film you couldn’t do crap and you couldn’t track except by hand. Now you got, you know, computers will track for you with, you know, cameras or the mountain itself. And digital chips are fantastic for. You know, because you can just stack hours and hours of short exposures and suddenly you’ve got great stuff.

And then you go in and use, you know, computers to, to clean everything up. And it’s, it’s wonderful. So that’s my new hobby, my old new hobby.

Jeff: That does. That sounds absolutely awesome. Now, why did you, when did you decide, I don’t want to be this. I’m going to focus on writing.

Mark Zazlove: I was doing my first novel in college, the novel called travail.

And also I was writing live action feature scripts with a buddy during the summers, because he was down here going to UCLA. And at some point I [00:18:00] had a particular cosmological theory. You know about how space works, but I knew I need like five years more of math and, and it was like, do I really want to devote five more years just to do this thing?

Which still seems to be right. Which is the weird thing. They keep coming up with stuff and I go, God, I did that back then. This is really crazy. I should probably hook up with someone who can do the math, but I never got around to it. But, But it was just at a point where it was like, eh, let’s try writing it.

It seems like you make more money. And it was just what I would, it would have been interesting to go the other way too. So I no regrets, but it wasn’t, you know, it wasn’t my dad,

Jeff: this theory, the cosmological theory that you had, or if you can share it. Oh

Mark Zazlove: no, it’s, it’s just that, that space, all of spaces as seven dimensional, super planar.

And it means you have three dimensions that we know of [00:19:00] fourth dimension, which people call time. But you know, if you’re doing general relativity and then three other inverse dimensions, and if you work out. What Einstein was doing based on Minkowski space. It becomes a seven dimensional Minkowski space.

It just does. Everything comes out of it. Like all the constants of the universe fell out of it. Like they should, it was kind of like, well, this works. And I had talked to some grad students, you know, who I was friends with and they looked it over and they were kind of like, yeah, this kind of works. So the person who coined the term super planar was actually a grad student buddy went.

Yeah.

Jeff: So. like, as you said, there’s the three dimensions of that that we know under us space. we definitely, and there’s time in what form do these other three dimensions exist as

Mark Zazlove: well? They’re actually inverse, mathematically inverse. So, you know how you, one of the other things, aside from the seven dimensions and the, and the three extra being inverse mathematically, [00:20:00] you know how you say.

You know how you go cut things smaller and smaller and smaller until you get whatever, you know, it’s like game, everybody plays. Once you cut it down, then you get Adams. We get that, you get that. Well, there’s also a binding force, which is so I posited that there’s also inverse, you know, there’s the inverse square rule, where were things depose, you know, get all energies, all types of energies.

You get last at one over R squared. But I posited the reverse at that. At subatomic levels so that at some point they’re equal and that’s where energy and matter are. And so if you dig into that, it becomes this there’s this something called universe gravity that comes out of it mathematically. And so it’s the exact opposite of gravity.

When you try to pull it apart. It gets stronger.

Jeff: Okay. So there’s,

Mark Zazlove: there is a fight. And so between those two things, one, it’s a seven dimensional structure to the universe, unlike string theory, which suck from the beginning. [00:21:00] it, anyways, but this is all just be asked. We’re just talking. So, but, I had done all the math.

I still have my original pieces of paper, which is kind of funny. If I had a whiteboard, I could show you easier, but.

Jeff: Well, I’m sure if you showed it to me on a whiteboard, it would not make one lick of sense to me.

Mark Zazlove: No, actually did I, when I was working on lazy town in Iceland, for some reason, someone had asked me about it and I ended up spending a lunch, explaining it to a bunch of people and they were like, Oh, that makes sense.

And I went, yeah, doesn’t it. And now someone’s going to hear this, rip me off, call it something else and Nobel and that’s cool. I just wish they’d at least give a nod to me.

Jeff: Well, like I said, if we have any fans of the podcast, who’s also astrophysics astrophysicist. That’d be fantastic. In my opinion, I’m sure.

I’m sure they’re looking at something way more complicated than my podcast or podcasts. You

Mark Zazlove: never know, speaking of which we haven’t even gotten to anything yet, we’ve just been riffing editing.

[00:22:00] Jeff: I’m sure a lot of this will take place. I find it all fascinating, but, as we were about to move into some of what you’re writing until we eventually get you, might’ve actually will be the bulk of our conversation.

so your first screening screenwriting job was the challenge of the go

Mark Zazlove: box.

Jeff: Right. So this, as you said, this position, you basically, walked in and they were like, Hey yeah, give this one a shot. Or what stage was go bots at that time,

Mark Zazlove: they were just starting out some of the writing. And so I was just one of the writers they brought on.

They were nice enough to do that. And, and it’s just action. And, and I’d been doing live action type of stuff. I’d had some things option. The similarity between feature films and animation action stuff is, is almost one-to-one because you’re basically in both of them, you’re being very visual. It’s not like sitcoms, which is a whole different monster, you know, but if you think visually for a live action film and you’re thinking action and movement, it’s the same thing in something like go bots or I think I did some Johnny, you know, Johnny [00:23:00] quest, when there a revival I did there and, you know, it was one of those things where it’s like, Oh, I’m just writing action.

I’m just writing stuff that came naturally to me. So that was pretty easy. When

Jeff: boss came out, there’s also, I’ll say another well-known show called transformers. Was there, a, rivalry felt between on the team or was it just, we’re doing our thing? Hasbro’s doing its thing or, you know, did you guys feel kind of it or?

I think it was Phil man. I can’t remember who did, transformers, the art actually, but, did, did you guys feel like, you know, this, this is our thing and they’re ripping it off. I mean, what happened

Mark Zazlove: there? No, I, I think everybody knew it was just a toy. You know, they were both toy things. I mean, this was, I never felt there were other, I mean, I was just starting off.

What did I care? I was just getting gigs. I didn’t even think in those terms. And then it was all freelance work. So it wasn’t like I was on staff. When I went to Disney later, I had, I was much more aware of what competing shows were doing, you know, cause we’d get ratings and we’d see what we were up against.

But as a freelancer in the [00:24:00] beginning, I was just trying to get scripts. So I wasn’t, they may have been, but you know, I didn’t know.

Jeff: Well later with, as you said with Disney, you co-created tailspin as well, which is another fantastic show. what led you to reimagine the jungle book like that? Well,

Mark Zazlove: I was working on way who and the, and the person who hired me there was Jim Megan.

He was a story editor on gummy bears. And that was the first thing I did for Disney is I did a, a freelance, script, a Flint shrub would, it was, anyways it was an Eastwood, you know, rip off kind of thing, parody for, for the gummy bears. And then he hired me on staff. And, and it was funny, you mentioned the go bods.

Cause I think I sent it to go bot script as a spec, Annie. I mean, I remember him later going, she thought it was funny, you know, that doesn’t happen and you know, that sort of things I went. Oh, okay.

 

so I was doing, I was, I was working with Carl [00:25:00] gears. We were, we were doing Winnie the Pooh and Jim had gotten off of gummy bears and he was very tied in with the.

Head of a television animation who was head of all of television. I think at that time, Gary Crisal and they had needed something. They were DuckTales was already going. and they needed something for what would become the Disney afternoon. And they were looking for an original show and they said, you can use, All our people, but you can’t use any of the main ones like Mickey or, you know, that kind of stuff at that point in time.

So he, he, he had designed a show called B players, which was short forbid players that used all the sort of secondary Disney, Characters. And it was kind of like, they were like out of work actors, you know, working on the lot, trying to get gigs, that kind of a thing. And so he had pitched that to Eisner and Katzenberg and it didn’t fly, but he had liked.

You know, some of the [00:26:00] characters like Ballou and he had called me in and said, we’ve got three, I got three days to come up with a show to pitch. Can you help? So we have like a three-day weekend type of thing. And we came up with tailspin and we had been, you know, there’s Indiana Jones and tales of the gold monkey.

And there were a number of things, you know, it wasn’t like a completely original idea, but that sort of action adventure kind of thing. And those characters fit perfectly because it was, they were sort of, of that time that feel. So that’s where it came from.

Jeff: That’s very cool. Obama, just to go back to go buy, I guess, go bosses.

getting a, kind of like a Renaissance now is being published as a comic book through IDW publishing now. So I just thought that’s kind of a weird thing. but I guess I just never die in the cool thing about tailspin. when, when you made it, you didn’t set it in a modern age, you kind of set it back in the early days of aviation.

What, why was that? Why was that important?

Mark Zazlove: Again, we were, we were influenced by what was around us and, and part of it was, you know, Raiders [00:27:00] lost our part of it was tales of the gold monkey part of it. There was another show. There was that the revival of the pulp fiction kind of things, and that sort of late twenties, early thirties, which is that action adventure jungle.

And then of course, Miyazaki. Because Lapu to a castle in the sky had come out in that was 86 and there was a wonderful Japanese artist who would go back to visit his family. And he’d come back with a Miyazaki film, you know, in Japanese. And we’d all sit in one of the break rooms and we’d watch it. And I remember watching that I was working on the, The mini series for DuckTales.

It was me, Jim and Bruce Talkington and Bruce and Jim were doing every other one. We’d all done the outline together. And I was doing the even ones. They were doing the odd ones. And I had just finished my first draft of the second episode. And I saw my first Miyazaki thing, which was LA Luta. And I walked away going.

I got to. I got to destroy my [00:28:00] script and start over because someone’s actually doing really good cartoons,

Jeff: like

Mark Zazlove: really cinematic, because normally I’m just thinking in their cartoons and it was like, Oh my God, this is filmmaking. It was like, like that opening scene, it was so beautiful. And I was like, Oh my God, this is, and so I threw away, I, I deleted the whole script.

And I started from scratch and I’ve been that way ever since. So me as AKI, the flying stuff was always influential.

Jeff: And the voice cast you had on that show is tremendous. I mean, you had Jim Cummings, Sally Struthers, Tony, Jay, which eventually for mighty max, you have a parents, Frank Welker shows up.

I mean, you, you have the cast of voices is amazing for

Mark Zazlove: tailspin. Oh yeah, it was, it was, it was. The best of the voice actors before we get too much into. Actor actors for the sake of their celebrity. Yeah. Now some of them are superb when you can get them. A lot of times people would just go, Oh, that person was great in [00:29:00] that movie.

Let’s get them their big stars. And, you know, they never listened to it. The voice will work or not, but that was where I desperately wanted to get Tim Curry. Cause I’d always been a big fan of his. And that’s the first time Tim Curry had worked at Disney as well on the tailspin two-parter unfortunately was forced to do a German accent didn’t want, but, you know, so, but, yeah, no great casts.

And Jimmy, Jim Cummings, you know, I, he was like my good luck charm. I’d put him in everything, even, it was just. You know, for a minute, just cause you know, from poo on, he was just so wonderful to work with and, and Rob it’s,

Jeff: it’s kind of funny. I was talking to Billy West on Saturday, on know on the podcast, the voice actor from future almond field of things.

And he said the same thing about voice acting bad. I made the comment about the difference between the celebrity voice actors and the actual voice actors like Billy West, Jim Cummings and Rob Paulson, something like that. And it, and, and the value of having the true [00:30:00] actors as part of it.

Mark Zazlove: Oh yeah. And, and it, the nice thing about voice actors is you can get multiple voices, you know, you can call when you need some strange little voice in the middle of a show, you can get one, you know, also I’ve seen them do some miraculous things, you know, I had to do, I had to redo a line like nine months later.

And Jim Cummings remembered the line.

Jeff: Yeah.

Mark Zazlove: How he had done it the first time it’s like, Oh, okay. And I saw she’ll do something even more amazing when I was recording him for a pu episode. He did something amazing too. So yeah, they, they get pretty excited. Pre-installed they’re like half musician app actors, you know, in that way.

Jeff: And Jim Cummins is also do, we actually had him on the show. Oh, going back maybe four months ago and he’s tremendously nice. We also had a with Paulson and those are some incredible people. There’s something about voice actor. They just seem [00:31:00] to have that great personality. And for some reason, no ego.

Mark Zazlove: And, and that’s the wonderful part.

I mean, I mean, part of it is they don’t have to get dressed up at 5:00 AM. We get makeup on and stuff like that. And, and it’s, you know, it’s, it’s much more comfortable, you know, their craft is in their voice and, you know, their ability to act. So it’s, it’s just. There’s not a lot of how you look involved.

I’ve had a couple of people be weird, but they were live action.

Jeff: So am I guessing correctly that a lot of the casting from muddy Macs came from experiences in tailspin?

Mark Zazlove: I mean, again, Rob came on gummy bears at the end of the second season. He was, he became a gummy bear. So that’s the first time I heard Rob.

And Tony Jay, I had in mind as soon as I was developing mighty max. And, so he, [00:32:00] I had in mind, I had Rob, I had in mind, right from the beginning. I didn’t even audition anybody else. and then Tim, I had in mind, if I could get him. You know, and then Richard came out of the, casting, the woman, and I wish I could remember her name, but she was, you know, it, her job is to to say, Hey, what about this actor?

What about this actor? You know? And then give me, give me, you know, their reels and I could listen to them. And then she said, well, what about Richard? And I went. What a great idea. He’s great. You know, cause I’m thinking Nightcore, you know, and I never would have thought of him and he was such a sweetheart, what a good guy.

He was so much fun.

Jeff: Also. Also on tailspin. You had a Frank Welker too, who is also amazingly famous as well.

Mark Zazlove: Oh yeah. Yeah. I mean, we are so fortunate to have such great people to work with. I don’t know. I mean, they’re great people now. I mean, people have come up and [00:33:00] they’re all still there to Jim and Robin them.

And, and, but, you know, just a lot of talented people

Jeff: so that now we get to talk about the show that I really want to discuss, which is mighty max. how did that happen? cause my dad max started off my understanding as a toy line, was a Polly pocket or something along those lines. Yeah,

Mark Zazlove: it was Bluebird, which is a British company.

It was a father son who I met because they came into a LA a couple of times. They’re very tall.

Jeff: So, so how did that come up with when we looked at the Polly pocket line, decided to make a toy called mighty max, I guess from the Polly pocket language, I don’t know very much about Polly pocket, but it is what it is.

And then someone decided, Hey, this would were perfect on television.

Mark Zazlove: Well, I think every, well, there were two parts to it. it was brought in by, Rob Hudnut. Bob had worked at Mattel and I believe he’s been back at Mattel for awhile, but he [00:34:00] had, he had spun off from Mattel and he wanted to do some producing of things and, you know, got, got the itch to.

To come, you know, do Hollywood instead of just Mattel. And he knew the Bluebird people. And I think he kind of shepherded. I’m not sure if he went to them or they knew him or how it worked. Exactly. I forgotten, but Rob brought it and Phil, a film Roman, hooked into it. It was his production company. And, Phil’s great.

And another tall person, and so is Rob I’m like six, two, and I’ve played a lot of basketball, but I felt like a point guard around these guys. And I was like the littlest that never happens to me, but yeah, it was. But, so I believe that’s how it came there. And then it came to film Roman and I had done a previous series Crow.

With, film Roman. And, I think I wrote a Bobby’s room. I was sort of in between stuff. And Phil came to me and asked if I wanted to develop it. [00:35:00] And I sorta looked at it. And one of my shows growing up, I liked was Johnny quest. And I was kind of like, I’d like to do my Johnny quest, you know? And so when I looked at it, I went, can I make this kid be real?

Cause to me, Johnny quest was great. The kid, the kids were actually the stars, as opposed to, you know, how they, you know, Robin’s never the star, it’s always Batman, you know? So it’s, it’s like Kim, so can this kid be real? And so I said, can I design a kid that can be courageous, but not an idiot, you know, who would run away when the odds were again?

Yeah. Because isn’t that what you want, you know, no one would stand there and go, yes, I’m going to stay on and go up against this giant, you know, 70 foot tall villain. It’s like, no, I’m out of here. So that was, that was how I started to get into it. So

Jeff: this is I’m actually was not familiar with the original line mighty max.

I knew almost entirely from the TV show. Did [00:36:00] Norman and Virgil exist in the storyline at the time?

Mark Zazlove: Think Norman might. I I’m pretty sure Virgil was mine. And now again, it’s been a long time and I don’t remember much. I mean, I, I couldn’t use much of anything. From the toy line. I know he kinda went through portal kind of maybe, but why was he wearing a hat?

So I had to figure out how this hat was actually, you know, this metaphysical object that changed its form depending on the culture it was in. And it was a gateway to these portals that the librarians had designed, you know, 10,000 years ago. And you have access to them and you know, all that kind of stuff, but that wasn’t anything in the toys.

So, you know, I had to, sorry, go.

Jeff: So why can he, why, like, why can’t you use anything from the toilet line?

Mark Zazlove: No, I, I did. It was just, you know, how it is twice. Don’t always make sense. My job was to make sense of it. And so I needed some sort [00:37:00] of, you know, for lack of a better term Yoda character, you know, it’s a, it’s a mentor, it’s a sensei.

It’s whatever. But again, I didn’t want it to be Yoda. You know, cause a lot of people have done that. And I, you know, I’m not really into that. I mean, yes, he, he fills that hole, but he was also this very different personality. And then of course, since max himself he’s heroic, but he’s not necessarily a great fighter nor did I see him becoming one.

I needed some sort of guardian and that’s where Norman came from. And again, I don’t know. You’d have to look at the original toilet. I’m pretty sure Virgil Virgil was original. I think Norman may have been there. And then we came up with some new stuff too, as we went along and they, they sort of filtered that into the toilet.

Jeff: How about that? Let’s go master. Was he from the toilet line or is he yours?

Mark Zazlove: Stowmaster was, but again, I had to figure out what, what he was. And what his, his backstory was and what his goals were. And of course I had Tim in mind, you know, cause he’s got that great voice. And finally I could unleash [00:38:00] the Tim Curry.

I, I known all those

Jeff: years

Mark Zazlove: from Rocky horror to, what was it? What’s the Tom cruise one. That was terrible, but Tim was great. Legend

Jeff: legend. Yes. Yes. I’ve totally forgot about that. She was the devil.

Mark Zazlove: Oh, he was so good. He was good. The rest of the movies, just not good. He was, and they did a great job with the makeup and everything.

He was so good. And so I have to say I was influenced by that quite a bit. So just the role,

Jeff: I mean, w like I said, I mean, just the actors that you brought together for, I mean, even Richard Mola, as well as, I mean, it was, again, a phenomenal actor of as Norman. That that was some heavy talent that you got.

And I mean, how did you get, I mean, like Tim Curry, how did you convince him to do, a TV series like that cartoon? Because he was a movie star at that point.

Mark Zazlove: Yeah. And small, funny story, if you, if you [00:39:00] have time on that one, but it’s surprising how many people who are movie star movie stars will do animation.

Because again, like I was saying before, you don’t have to put makeup on, you don’t have to dress up. It’s a lot of fun, you know, I think if we tied someone down now, Tim was. About to work on the Disney three to musketeer movie, if that sounds right, I think that’s and he was in Italy getting fitted cause they were going to shoot some stuff over there.

And I had to record him over the phone lines, which I’ve done before. Fiedler, when I was, when I had him in his piglet on poo, sometimes he he’d be in New York the whole time. So we’d do it over the phone. The problem, what normally happens though, is. Your hooked right in to the booth. So you can direct like you normally would, you just can’t see your actor.

Right? Well, this was Fellini studio. I know that because Tim was very excited about that and they didn’t have it [00:40:00] tied in directly. So the engineers who did not speak English and Tim who spoke pigeon Italian, sort of, so he’s in the booth. They’d hold up the phone. So I talked to him through a phone to their microphone.

Then he tell them what I wanted them to do. It was this crazy thing where it was like, it was a literal game of telephone over the telephone, but it was, it was, it was, it was insane. But, yeah, I mean, but he was already into that. So he could do both at the same time. It’s not like he was dedicating, you know, weeks or months of his life, like you would on a movie.

And so you get a lot of people like that who just want to have some fun and. They have some downtime and they do it, or in Tim’s case, no downtime, but he had already committed.

Jeff: What did we think of a, a movie star, like Tim Curry doing a cartoon, you would assume that like your vision of what it would be like to be, what, you know, with someone like Tim Curry, that there’ll be a lot of ego involved that you would be difficult.

What, what kind of, what, what was he like on set?

[00:41:00] Mark Zazlove: Kim? Kim was lovely. Kim was always courteous and I’m sure he was the same way. In live action shoots. You know, I, he just, he was a pro’s pro the only time he ever pushed back at me and I respected him, you know, I mean, I was trying to get a certain scream out of him, a really loud thing.

And at one point he went, I’m not doing that. Okay. I got ya. Okay. That’s fair. That’s fair. He’s got to protect his voice and he knows more about where he is on that. but no lovely. Just a gentleman, easy to work with took direction. Well, not that there was much to direct with him, you know, he was usually spot on with everything.

So. But he took my explanations. Well, let’s say

Jeff: that’s awesome. And I, and I, and I think the one thing I, one of the things I love about mighty max as well, once again, are the characters that, that you created. I mean, the, especially the main three max virtual Norman, and I think as you were talking about money and [00:42:00] money max, and how, you focus on making them realistic.

I think what made him so extraordinary is that he did feel like a kid at the same time, though. You do put in enough elements to make him. At least to make it make sense that he’s going to be this chosen one, the mighty one. You know what I’m saying? And was, was that a hard line to walk to make sure that he is definitely a kid the same time you have this genius of Virgil and this super warrior from, you know, throughout history, you know, he has, you know, Beowulf and all this, all these other great heroes and you take an order from the kid.

Is it hard to bounce that, to make it work and make sense?

Mark Zazlove: Y you have to design characters. To be able to get to the goal you want. And at least I do. So if you want a certain type of character, you know, that can do those things. He certainly courageous. He’s not stupid. He’s a smart ass cause I like smart assets.

but he’s also [00:43:00] not mean-spirited about it. So you designed this character and then you just wind him up and let him go. Virgil has to. Has to help max cause he is the mighty one. He is the chosen one, but since max has a good heart it’s okay. And Norman respects him for his he’s heroic. Even if he doesn’t want to train hard, you know, or do any of that stuff, he at least recognizes Max’s courage.

And so once you create these characters, they just work with each other, just like humans, you know, you’re, you’re trying to design little human beings, shorthanded, you know, human beings. And so once you wind them up, it’s it’s like, well, yeah, Maxwell acts this way. And. You know, he, he can be a past, you know, but he’s not doing it because he’s an a-hole he’s doing it because that’s where he is.

You know, he’s not mean, so I, it’s not hard once you set up the characters to be who they are. And then you’re just like, so

Jeff: how far ahead in the, in the show had you [00:44:00] planned, like, did you, did you have a two, three, four year goal with mighty? Imagine how you’re going to develop him as a character?

Mark Zazlove: back then you didn’t do that.

It really was. Every episode was a standalone. You know, it was a little bit later or maybe around that time that animate well live action started to get into season arcs and multiple season arcs. She, you know, but then that filtered down it’s commonplace now, but it wasn’t there at that time. They wanted every episode to be able to be shown out of order.

nowadays it would be a different story. And, and I wish the only one we had planned and we screwed it up was the last episode of the first season. the magnificent seven and, and we screwed it up because we made the, I made the, I let the script be too long. Ken Pontac wrote it. We were together on figuring it out.

you know how it should go. It was a really good one and I just let it get too long. And then [00:45:00] it got cut afterwards. I should’ve cut earlier. But that was a beautiful script. The original,

Jeff: well, you were talking about that. Cause the next thing I was going to discuss is the magnificent seven, which I must’ve made personally.

I did love the episode. I thought it, how many Macs interacted with all the other great heroes was a great way of showing him how he does develop as a leader himself. And I think you did a great job of developing a world in which these characters can exist. And I thought it was a great script. I mean, I really did enjoy it.

Mark Zazlove: I appreciate it. And Ken did a wonderful job, but those there’s a story in tailspin that has not similar to that, but I like the thing with deep heart to it. Sometimes something that has a little sadness to it, it’s just, they’ve all those stories have always attracted me. You know, the thing where it’s not just loud, but there’s soft moments.

And, and that was one where it was like, You’re going to see these heroes of yours [00:46:00] die. You know, how do, how did that, that is going to grow you up kid to a certain extent, because up until that point, you know, and then the fact that butterfly comes back at the end, which is probably the reincarnation. You go okay.

That, that gives you that little smile, that little bit of, but you know, the poignant smile at the end when you go, okay. It’s not completely gone, but, but it should have been a two-parter. I just feel really awful because it was beautifully laid out and, and I didn’t recognize it quickly enough, what was going on, but yeah, it’s, it’s.

If you can bring some heart to it somewhere that to me always makes it the better piece.

Jeff: Was there any consideration, that it could have been a two-parter at some point?

Mark Zazlove: I think maybe if I had thought about it early enough, I could have brought it up, but at the time you’re going a million miles an hour on these, you know, everything’s happening at once.

You’re going along. And again, this is not the time period [00:47:00] where you were thinking in season arcs. And you were thinking in small, multiple episode arcs like we do now, if so I would have made it, you know, it would have been a two-parter automatically. Cause it was the final season thing. It would have been perfect.

But at that time it was just the last episode and I wanted to do something to end it. That was really, you know, strong. So, you know, it was already done by the time it was, there was no chance to make it a two-parter at that time.

Jeff: What’s interesting about that episode and, I’m part of a, on the Facebook, there’s a Facebook group dedicated to mighty max.

and I mentioned that I was going to be interviewing you and I, people, some people gave me some questions and it did connect to what you just mentioned. there’s a gentleman called. That is Zimmerman who asked a good question. So I wanted to use it. were there any concerns of facing censorship over the subject matter?

And when you look at magnificent seven, you do have a lot of, I mean, there’s dead, which seems to be shied away from, in a lot of modern, television where, you know, you have character being thrown off bridges, and then you just see them like somehow [00:48:00] surviving and moving around. I mean, was there any pushback to the fact that characters on mighty max often just died?

Mark Zazlove: I only heard about that later. I was not thinking about it. And I’m sure if we were on some network somewhere, I would have been a different series, but it was just, it was the type of show it was, that was a show I wanted to do. I wasn’t trying to be, I wasn’t trying to glorify it or anything like that.

It’s just. I believe, you know, evil people should die to a certain extent. It, you know, I mean, we’re humans, it’s a different story, you know, we’re we that, but, but true evil. Well, I don’t have a problem with that. You know, I’m not sure why the, you know, max would, you know, now someone, he knows something happens to him.

That’s going to hit him hard. But I also think some of those things are important to tell as well. You know, if you can. So I would have fought for some of them other shows [00:49:00] that yeah, I would have been axed on, but for whatever reason, we just didn’t get any problems

Jeff: kind of amazing is the idea or the view of violence in kids shows the reason, the thing that always surprises me is that I would think if you were a sensor, I’d be more nervous about a, seeing a character.

Let’s say, getting thrown off a bridge, like, or like a Batman animated series where you know, these massive accidents are happening and the characters kind of get up and walk away. Versus the repercussions of something actually dying. You would think that someone’s showing the actual repercussions of an action is something is a better message to show.

Then, you know, let’s throw a kid off, someone off a building there’s some out. So like bouncing off a weird thing on a bill, you know, and somehow surviving, you know what I’m saying? Oh, no,

Mark Zazlove: I I’ve fought that fight for years. I have multiple times in, particularly in, later I did a calamity Jane series.

And I wanted to do an anti-guns story, but they wouldn’t let me [00:50:00] use guns. I was trying to argue, you can’t do an anti-gun short story to show how awful things are. If you can’t show the thing, that’s awful, you know, so, and, and I’ve fought those battles before and I’m with you and, and although consultants don’t always agree with me.

I think psychologists do. You know that, that, although the, I think sometimes they, they do say that sometimes there’s possibility of becoming immune to violence if it’s too much, but I also believe right place right time. And what the reaction of a character is, is all important because how the characters react is how the audience will react.

If they’re horrified. Then the audience will learn to be horrified from it, but it’s a tough one.

Jeff: Yeah. I mean, I, I totally agree. I mean, I think the idea that kids get desensitized to violence on TV, I’m thinking they get desensitized to violence on TV. If there’s no repercussions for it, you know, when you see Max’s reaction to those heroes [00:51:00] dying, you get a sense of.

The, you know, you get a sense of the pain from it. You get a sense of this issue has real weight to it. And I think that has like gives it, you know, it’s, that’s an important, I think that’s the, and that makes it non desensitizing.

Mark Zazlove: I agree. Are there still, I always try to do it, you know, when, when possible, if it’s warranted, Yeah,

Jeff: well, and the other interesting about mighty max as well, that you also do deal with some of the themes, in, in the story, which also, I guess, nowadays would be, would have been probably frowned on.

And I do wonder, do you think mighty max could have been made at all now and at least in the same

Mark Zazlove: way? I’m not sure it could have been made then I just think it was a confluence of fortunate things where it was on how it was syndicate, whatever it was. No one bothered me. And, and I didn’t even think about it.

I, they questioned, the gentleman asked years later was pointed out to me and I [00:52:00] was like, boy, we got away with a lot of stuff. And again, I wasn’t trying to get away with anything. I know a lot of people try to get away with stuff. I’ll do whatever is required. You know, if someone says I can’t do something, I’m not going to try to be cute, but.

You know, but we never got bothered. And those were the stories I wanted to tell. I do think I could have done a much better job on, on some of the stories. I, I, I’ve learned to be better at things than I was then I, anyway, that’s why I never watch my stuff.

Jeff: Well, well, one thing, like I said, I mean, going back and watching the episodes that I, that I can, watch and find as an adult, it just feels like it holds up quite well.

I mean, not just in, I enjoyed the hell out of the opening theme too, which is. Just fantastic. But, I mean, it there’s enough gravity on the show that it does carry on, I think to adults. And I think you did a phenomenal job of

Mark Zazlove: doing that. Well, I, I hope so. We have good people like Gary Hardell, who directed them, at least my season.

he’s sensational. I had, done some [00:53:00] writing on Tasmania, before this. And, he was one of the four directors and my buddy art Catallo was, show runner on that and, and I’d go, I need to find a good director that can do this and this. He said, check out, Gary, you know, he did some Tasmania’s you did, you know, type of thing.

And I went, Oh, cool. And we became good friends too, from it. Gary is a really good guy, but he, he had a lot to do with that look and feel and making it work. so he should not be forgotten.

Jeff: Like I said, it’s just, I think everyone involved definitely raised their game to making a very quality program.

And there’s a lot of stuff on that show. I mean, unfortunately the show only lasted two seasons, but so did, I mean, so to tailspin and I, it feels like that’s kind of a kids cartoon thing where shows just don’t. Well stay, they keep, they seem to cut them after two, maybe three seasons. And I don’t know if that’s because of maybe the age group that they’re looking at for kids or, you know, they think after two or three years, they’ve aged out of their show.

But I mean, is there, is there a reason beyond that you think that these most, a lot of [00:54:00] cartoons, even, like I said, even the ones that are considered legendary now, like tailspin are just kept, so short-lived.

Mark Zazlove: Well, tailspin was built to be that way. in syndication blocks, it was 65 episodes you’re aiming for.

And if you look at bundle, you get, what is it? 13. Yeah, 13, five seasons. So 13 episodes would be like, you know, when you were on a Saturday morning cartoon, you get 13 episodes per season. You get five seasons, you get 65, you package that and you get a syndication block. Disney was really the first to do real syndication blocks with DuckTales, where they went away from the network and went straight to the syndicators, which is why the Disney afternoon was so big at that time.

It was, it was huge. and so they just did a 65 episode block and they said, that’s it, we’re doing 65. Cause that’s the number. So it really came from five seasons of 13 that you then [00:55:00] packaged and sold to the syndicators. So that’s why a lot of those things were like that. It has changed since,

Jeff: like I said, I, I do wish my name max had had lasted.

Other thing lasted 46

Mark Zazlove: episodes. Is that correct? I was an idiot. I bailed after the first season because I was stupid. I should’ve just stayed, but I was like, Oh, let’s go. Let me move on to something else. I mean, I was doing on the night I was doing, I was doing all these other things. And so I jumped from show to show I’d started off.

I do a season it’s so dumb, you know, but I was already moving on to something else which was, you know, so the rest of them I’ve never even seen or heard about this. Well, you know, I heard there was some nice stuff done that Gordon did, but I. You know, I was asked to write two by Phil of the new seasons independent, of course, but [00:56:00] I made a really firm.

I basically said, look, I don’t want to look over Gordon’s shoulders. It’s his show now? You know, story editing wise. I said, because I wouldn’t want someone to do that to me. Someone gets off the show and then they’re. Okay. But seeing on what I’m doing, it’s like you have no freedom. And so once I was done, it’s like, Hey man, that’s his show.

He can do whatever he wants to. And you’re never going to hear a peep from me. And that’s pretty much what happened, but I heard he did some night, you know, nice, nice episode.

Jeff: Oh, there’s some great episodes in season two and how he wrapped it up was kind of interesting. He wrapped it up, at least the last episode, season two, as a, restarting it back to where it was in the first episode of season one, it was kind of, it was kind of a very interesting circle, how it set up.

cool. Yeah. So, I mean, it was kind of, yeah, basically it ended up with mighty max going back to everything we said to the first episode of season one only with mighty max Virgil and Norman being the ones who remembered that it ever happened. Things are too. So it’s very interesting how it kind of came full circle.

[00:57:00] another thing that’s coming, I don’t know if this was on under, it’d been a while since I’ve watched a lot of the episode that we’ll go into a little bit that later. But, Virgil is, as a lull, Marian was introduced to being a mentor to skull master. Was that always part of the plan? for the character?

Mark Zazlove: I’m pretty sure there were hints of that, that he at least said there was some something between the two. I’m not sure how far I took it in the first season, as far as thinking it through, but they certainly knew each other. but as whether he was a mentor or not, that probably came later. I think there’s an advantage you have.

When you come into an already run show, you can actually look at everything and go, okay, how can I make that?

Jeff: So, I mean, how far are these characters, backgrounds, lights go master and Virgil. How deep did you dive into what they, where they came from in preparing the show?

Mark Zazlove: I knew I should have looked at it, but I’m sorry. I didn’t even think to, [00:58:00] I can send you the Bible. That’d be incredible. My original Bible. Yeah, yeah, yeah. let me, I’ll have to dig it up and provide it. I can find it, but it should be somewhere. It’s not so old that I can’t find it digitally. Usually I keep that stuff.

but yeah, I, you, you have to work out the world. You have to work out the characters. You have to work out their interaction. Because the world has these characters in them, there should be some backstories. certainly we knew Norman was sort of that, you know, Michael Marcak, internal champion type, you know, he, he had been these various incarnations and, and Virgil had been around, but he was probably Virgil.

obviously, you know, going back to Virgil from, It’s not Milton. It’s the other one.

Jeff: Oh, I’m a need

Mark Zazlove: paradise lost.

Jeff: Apparently

Mark Zazlove: one of them has Virgin and I always forget which

Jeff: one, but anyway,

Mark Zazlove: Donny’s infertile. That’s the other one.

Jeff: Yeah. So I was thinking, well, it’s one of my favorite all time stories are the vine comedy.

I absolutely love it. [00:59:00] Fantastic choice.

Mark Zazlove: Yeah. So there was, you know, there’s you try to set up some myths OPEC. Resonance, at least I try to, and then if I had worked on it more, I probably would have expanded, you know, in the second season, which was done anyways. But you have to give it some real grounding or, or you don’t know what you’re doing.

And the other thing I started off with that was very evident whether it worked or not was, I wanted to take stories. We knew of. Now that we did vampires, we did a werewolf, we did it other things. And I wanted to take myths and mythical creatures and retell them. Like we did a Cyclops, but it wasn’t like anybody would normally do a Cyclops.

You know, it was like, I wanted to take those stories and see if there was another way to tell that story. Now, some of them were just somewhat retakes, but there was always something, a twist to each. And, and that’s where mag magnificent [01:00:00] seven came from, because it was like, I know all these legends. If we put them together, what would the story be?

How would they interact? And that probably goes back to that original all star Trek, one where Spock and Kirk are. You know, they have like Abraham Lincoln.

Jeff: I always

Mark Zazlove: liked that one because it was like, yeah, what happens? And meet your heroes and fight with them, you know? Like how cool would that be? But also they’re you, they become humanized too, you know?

So there’s a little bit of that too, but, but yeah, you’re always trying to build a foundation.

Jeff: I did see the episode. My father was a big star Trek fan. And I did watch the episode and I always thought to myself, I mean, I get having Abraham Lincoln as a great leader. I don’t think I ever saw him as a great fighter.

I don’t think I ever thought to myself, I wonder what Abraham Lincoln is in, like in a boxing match or something like that. You know, that part is always a little surprising for me. Well, he’s

Mark Zazlove: a big guy and he was a woodsmen. So, you know, whoever wrote it probably went. Yeah, he probably was. Cause we he’s young, he looks like a pretty sturdy guy.

So [01:01:00] I’m not saying it was perfect, but I like the idea behind it.

Jeff: It, it works. It’s one of those things that it works well, as long as you don’t think too deeply and just enjoy it, it works just fine.

Mark Zazlove: Right.

Jeff: So with Norman, as he said, he knew Beowulf. He had been around for a long time. How were you planning on going into the why of it?

Like why was he able to live that long and be, you know, that history

Mark Zazlove: I haven’t wanting to delve in the first season into that, I, I assume both Virgil and Norman were some sort of eternal creatures for whatever reason. there’s. Whether it’s because they’re not quite of our realm, obviously Lemurian are different.

What Norman was hard to say, or maybe he was just a fluke. There was, I hate to say it’s, there’s a [01:02:00] wonderful, very, very quiet movie called the man from earth. I

Jeff: don’t

Mark Zazlove: know. It it’s I was surprised my kid liked it cause he usually, he and I usually don’t agree on anything, but it turned out he liked it. And I remember when I was first watching it, it’s about a college professor.

Who’s having a good, farewell party. He’s leaving, he’s been 10 years or something. And all of his friends who were professors and stuff are sitting around they’re drinking and he starts to tell the story that he’s been alive since like before Greece. Oh, wow. And all this stuff happens. And I remember watching it and it was, it’s a beautiful little movie and it’s got Wilford Brimley of all people in it.

And he does a good turn, but, but it’s really this, this quiet, beautiful science fiction thing, because it’s more about thoughts, but I remember watching it and going, that’s just like this old star Trek from the original that I really liked it. I looked at the writer, it turned out, it was the guy who wrote that original star Trek and he sort of modernized it.

[01:03:00] And then he died before it got produced, but he did sell it to the person, you know, you know, decades later and it all worked out. But you sort of that feeling of eternal characters, whether it’s just a tweak in the DNA or there’s something more, that’s how I felt about, you know, Norman. I don’t know if he was magical or he just was someone who didn’t die, you know, and it probably would have gotten into it more because there’s something.

There’s something vulnerable about not dying and being you’re the only one, because everybody, you know, dies except you. And there was always a hint of that for Norman, for me, although he had a goal, you know, he was a protector and he was a great warrior. But the times you see him reminisce with, with people from his past who knew him, you get that feeling.

There was some there’s more to him than that.

Jeff: Well, I think one of my favorite episodes that. on, on mighty max is the Norman conquest episode, which I thought was a brulee Weldon episode that she provided the story on. [01:04:00] and you revealed, you did reveal a great vulnerability to Norman that not only did you create, connection with his father, but you also created a villain that he actually is the only time you actually seem afraid of losing.

Mark Zazlove: Right.

Jeff: And I thought that was a brilliant way of making your, the character of Norman vulnerable. Because beyond, before that point, you do get a sense that he is basically invisible warrior. You don’t really get to know him as an individual.

Mark Zazlove: And that, that was the goal of it. And I think that was a Libby Hinson one.

It could be wrong.

Jeff: Be honest with you when I read it.

Mark Zazlove: Yeah. But, but yeah, it was, it was. It’s always, it’s always about putting an obstacle that someone can overcome, but just barely, you know, cause it’s like the problem with Superman originally to me is always like, well, if someone has, there’s no courage there, nothing hurts him.

That man’s farmer courageous because he might get killed. You know, there’s nothing. So you have to keep escalating, you know, [01:05:00] obstacles for Superman, if you really want it to work, you know, and that can be a problem. So would, you know, with Norma it was like, who can you find. That could beat him. And then what does that do to him?

What does he have to dig down to? And then we, I, if I recall correctly, we cast Brad Garrett early on before he went on, everyone loves Raymond and all that other stuff, but, and he was huge. So his voice was huge, too. It worked out beautifully from  standpoint is, is, I don’t know. I think I’ve rambled a little too much on that one.

Jeff: I find it fascinating. I love the episode and I do think Norman it’s one of those things, Norman and Virgil and max, is this what seems like one of those shows sort of like, like TV show, like Firefly or something where you’re like, there should have been so many more seasons in some, a bitch. It just stopped before you delve into the deeper stuff that I wanted to know about the characters.

Mark Zazlove: Yeah, it’s always a fine line. And, and the problem with science fiction, a lot of times in television form is the creators of the shows. It often looks like they have a great idea and they don’t know where they’re going. [01:06:00] Like they Peter out. You know, like whatever. And so you, you never get around or when they do finally get to the end and you are, I’m really, that’s your ending, you know, with movies, you gotta have a killer ending or it just won’t work at all.

And so usually the writer has at least some ending, I don’t know what I would have done if I had carried on, I would have found something, you know, but, but I think I would’ve, I might’ve done something about mad max older. I might’ve given a hint to what he would become. cause that’s more my way to see.

Cause I like to see what people turn into once they’ve learned things.

Jeff: Well, I mean, since you have probably thought about what, what a max became, like you said, you saw it and said you never saw him as a warrior. What did you see him becoming.

Mark Zazlove: Not a clue. I hadn’t thought about it. I know that sounds terrible.

And I, and I apologize, the people I, you know, I will occasionally run into people and get questions and they’ll be like the tailspin thing. Well, so what happened to kit? And, you know, did he ever, and I’m like, [01:07:00] if you pay me, I’ll, I’ll figure it out. But I was just working, you know, I wasn’t thinking that far ahead, but I never gave it a thought.

I just know me. And I know that those sorts of things intrigued me. So I probably would have wanted to figure figured out where he went to, but I think he would have been a cool adult. He had a great mom, which was important to me and I have a parent that was not just a wacky idiot.

Jeff: Well, I did like the episodes.

I can’t remember the name of it. The one where, Max gets his hat stolen. and the mother’s in that, and you did a great job once again, of creating a mother that does seem to be the mom of max. Like you don’t, it doesn’t seem like, well, how the hell did he come from her? It’s like, well, no, she did seem totally capable as well.

And I mean, you created a lot of characters around max, excluding a Jiffy, who did seem to be really intelligent characters.

Mark Zazlove: Yeah, I think that’s me watch things that have idiots. It’s just really hard for [01:08:00] me. I, and especially people who do what I call  moments, where they do something so stupid. You’re screaming at the screen, you know, it’s like human beings wouldn’t do that, but somehow the writers made them do that.

You know, but, but if you think about people they’re, they’re affected by their parents and either they’re pushing away from something they don’t like, or they’ve been taught by good parents, you know, and, and they’re, they’re slightly molded by the good parenting. So it’s, it seemed important to me, to, to give him someone who.

You know, w was, you know, in her own way, a teacher for how he should act, you know, as you, as you grew up,

Jeff: I don’t remember if they ever discussed what happened to the father. Am I correct in that?

Mark Zazlove: I can’t re I honestly can’t remember. I, yeah, I, I do apologize.

Jeff: No worries.

Mark Zazlove: Yeah. I, I I’d have to look it up. I, I don’t think he was dead.

I think it was just [01:09:00] kind of missing. One of those things. I think we brought it up in one episode, but I, I. Honestly, I’m terrible at this stuff, but, yeah,

Jeff: I mean, at least if we’re going back maybe 30 years, yeah. well, Hey, I, when I, when I watched it, I was a kid now like 40 years old. anyways, so another good crusher that, that, gentleman Thaddeus Zimmerman came up with, I wanted to ask you is, has to do with Tim Curry.

Did the character of schoolmaster grow and take. and or did the character change, with Tim Curry getting that role? Did he make it kind of his own thing or was it always fathered? Always all the original attentions of schoolmaster.

Mark Zazlove: That was always, I wrote the whole thing with Tim in mind. So it was, it was, it was from the very opening.

If you look at the opening script, you could see that he’s pained. He’s trying to dig to the surface. And of course, Tim does a great job. So of course made it all a million times better, but it was always [01:10:00] with his voice in mind. And this, this desperately powerful creature, you just wanted freedom. He may have been terrible and do awful things, but he also desired things, you know?

And so th the very opening of the very pilot, you know, bellwether in his cap or whatever it was. You open with school master and, and the, the, the tone of Tim’s voice to me says it all. That was what I was trying to get, you know, as he just wants out of here, he’s not just an evil guy, you know,  he like, he wants to get

Jeff: yeah.

Mark Zazlove: Essentially. And so, so it was kind of full-blown from the beginning now, right? If I had gone on with it, you know, and not been stupid, perhaps there would have been more to it, but I just can’t see a character that powerful having human nuance in the same way. We’d think about it, you know, certain driving forces, but I’m not sure nuance would have been, you know, really [01:11:00] strong in that one.

Jeff: Wow. Well, once you have a character like skull master, and you said it because you, he it to be free. I can’t help, but think that once he’s free, he would, he would just stop. I mean, he would be kind of a, what was it? The whole thing has given mouse a cookie is going to want a glass of milk kind of thing that he would have the Petrie gotten worse or would he have just been like, Hey, I got what I needed and he’s

Mark Zazlove: done.

No, no, no, but it’s, it’s his wants and the desires are on such a different scale. I mean, it really is more like Lucifer, you know, it’s, it’s, it’s. However you want to take it, not Satan, because that becomes more of a one-dimensional thing, but it’s really, he would wipe out humanity because it doesn’t mean they don’t mean anything to him.

He’s not trying to necessarily be mean about it. He just he’s, his world revolves around him and, and his powers and his desires and his wants. And he’s been trapped. And so if aunts come along, if someone’s caught in true in [01:12:00] prison and their aunt’s outside and he breaks out in the ant Hill was destroyed in the breakout, he’s not going to give it much thought he just wants to get out of prison.

That’s more how I saw him. It’s just, he’s not on the same level as humans. They’re just different things. So yeah, he might destroy the world when he gets out, but it’s not because he particularly hates everybody individually. It’s just in his way.

Jeff: Well, I think another great thing that you did on the show as well.

that I think it was important is that every episode ends with like, sort of like a history lesson given by max. how was that? Because it was, was that something you specifically wanted to make sure you’re educating the viewers or that? Cause I know at the same time, was there something about, if you needed to put some certain percentage of educational programming on.

To get a show on TV, something along those lines, or,

Mark Zazlove: yeah, it was something like that. And it wasn’t anything I would have wanted to have done. I mean, you know, I don’t mind it, but I, yeah, I think that was just part of how we sold it. That part of it was going to have that little educational part [01:13:00] because back then, Educate educational parts were easier to get funding for selling it or whatever.

So nowadays it’s about interpersonal stuff you gotta be good with.

Jeff: So did well when we were making the episodes. did you ever think, what did I want to like either show or what did the place of the history ever come before the story, or did you do it to come up with the concept first? And then where can this take place?

How did I want to work this into

Mark Zazlove: history? yeah, figure out something interesting afterwards, the story always comes first and then there’s always something interesting. Like if you’re in Scotland, then you do something about Scotland. If you’re under the ocean, then you can, you know, I mean, it’s, it’s easy to find something to do some historical or, you know, thing about, or geographical thing about.

So, yeah, it was always afterwards

Jeff: and, and it’s kind of looking back like all these years later. And one of the things I, I w when I was trying, when I wanted to do, some reshoots [01:14:00] for you and wash, and I was wanting to go back and watch all the episodes, the one thing I kind of bumped into, which was in my opinion, and absolute travesty, is that you can’t find the shows really anywhere, almost.

I mean, they’re not on DVD for us. I can tell or blue rain I’m trying to, I mean, is, do you know of like why that is? I mean, did it, is there an issue with copyright or

Mark Zazlove: having a clue, but some of these, sometimes things fall through the cracks. I’m not sure if this is my only show that that’s happened too.

It could just be me, people don’t like me, but yeah, it’s, it’s sometimes that, that just. You know, because it was maybe a British company and then who had the rights here and then, you know, sometimes that stuff happens and, you know, there, there are, I’ve seen numerous series that that’s happened to both live action and animation, and it’s a shame, but unless you’re part of like a Disney block or, you know, some people that have weight, then sometimes it’s just hard

[01:15:00] Jeff: now as the one who developed it for television, do you have part of ownership, rights of the show?

Mark Zazlove: Oh, God, no, this is information. We don’t even have the writer’s Guild for God’s sake. Be so wealthy. Nah, nah. Well, they, they, they, they, I can’t get into the politics of the screen car treater skill, but let’s just say nothing. No residuals. Holy crap. That sounds

Jeff: ridiculous. As a fucking absurd. Wow. I never, I always thought writers were writers and I figured they’d be, they’re always covered up under the same umbrella,

Mark Zazlove: not animation writers because they’re considered story people.

Now it’s slowly kind of maybe a little bit changing, but.

Jeff: Yeah, that’s a, that’s a fricking insole. Sounds like

Mark Zazlove: I buy and sell you.

Jeff: Wow. That’s that’s horrible.

Mark Zazlove: You know? I got paid. That would have been nice [01:16:00] because that’s what people in the entertainment business work for is royalties and residuals, because then you can retire on them.

If you, if you make a hit, you know, get a hit song or whatever, then you know, you can go quietly into the night now. W you know, but it’s not like I wasn’t paid good money. There are a lot of people who make a lot less money for doing much harder jobs. So I’m not, I don’t want to sound whiny in that respect.

I mean, I. I’m whiny, but I don’t want to, you know, I, I have good fortune to, you know, get, you know, a lot of money to do these things, which are fun to do so, you know, but yeah, it would have been nice.

Jeff: I would imagine so well, I mean the one place I was able to watch some of the episodes, even though I’m not associated with at all, there’s a, there’s a, apparently something I found on YouTube called the mighty max restoration project.

which apparently some guy, I don’t know, some years ago, I guess it was two or three years ago. kind of refurbished it’s eight of the episodes from mighty max and kind of gave it like a HD look to it and sound. [01:17:00] Wow. Yeah. I mean, yeah, it is under I’m you go to YouTube and look up the mighty max restoration project.

and I was very happy to find it because I w like I only felt because I found the mighty max was on YouTube and the old episodes. That they had on that they showed on YouTube or very grainy looking like you couldn’t quite see the images quite well. So it’s almost like straining your eyes to like look at it.

And then I found the restoration projects like, Oh shit, there’s at least eight episodes that look as good as they would have on DVD. And as someone who is the writer for that show, how does it feel to know that they’re are apparently fan so dedicated that they’re doing things like this for money max?

Mark Zazlove: It’s flattering. again, like I said, I don’t think in those terms. in that, Oh my God, people must watch my stuff. How, you know, how great am I? You know, I, it just, it doesn’t Dawn on you. I, I do what I like, you know, I try to do something that I think is going to be good first and foremost. [01:18:00] And I like something that I’m going to like, like what I want to watch this soap.

So, you know, so, so that’s it. And then the fact that people actually look at it and, you know, watch it and like it is, is just flattering it and it’s yeah, I think it’s great. But. That’s why, when someone, like you asked me to come on, it’s just more like, well, I got to thank everybody watches because I wouldn’t have a career.

So it’s, it’s, you know, seriously, it’s, it’s, it’s just cool, you know, to me and not something that’s usually in my brain.

Jeff: Well, I think you’d be surprised. Just how many fans of mighty max there are there’s multiple Facebook groups. There’s one. The main one is the mighty max one, the mighty max toy. Facebook could have just talks about the toy lines.

I mean, there’s definitely a very strong, families for a show that, like I said, been off the air for almost 30 years and has had no, way of. [01:19:00] Of being, or transporting to the current, fan base. Because once again, there’s no DVDs and Blu-rays no streaming. And the fact that they it’s all based on just pure memory of the show and with this on YouTube, I mean, it’s, it’s amazing.

Mark Zazlove: I, I remember seeing it wasn’t this time, but I think I was interviewed once many years ago for this. And I remember looking at the, I am DB page and I remember there were like, Good review. I didn’t like better reviews, like a better number, any other series of more famous series that I’ve worked on. It was like, and so I thought, well, the fans are cool.

You know, I, I dug that, you know, people really liked it, you know, at least there, because a lot of times you’re just get people who will be like, Oh, this sucks, you know, and all that kind of stuff. But it was like all the little things I think I kind of read a few and it was kind of like, Oh, this is, you know, tickles me that, that people liked it.

That’s that’s really. You know, it’s, it’s nice. It’s nice that people do because [01:20:00] that’s, you hope for that, but you never, you never know.

Jeff: And I think a lot of that has to do with the way you wrote and developed a show that it never feels like it’s talking down to you. There’s so many shows on TV that feel like they’re actually talking down to their audience or viewing their audience as well as simply just children.

And it’s just, you know, just. Crap happy, you know, silly humor, silly storylines. It felt like you literally took your audience and few then as intelligent and you challenge them a little bit with your story.

Mark Zazlove: Well, that’s the point? I mean, I, again, I want to do something I’d want to watch if possible.

Certainly if I’m running the show, you know, sometimes you’re just put on something and you don’t have a whole lot of choice, so you just make it as good as possible. But when you have a choice to put, you know, when you’re developing something, you have a chance to put something into it, of yourself. And, and so you’re, I don’t like stupid.

[01:21:00] Jeff: I just don’t

Mark Zazlove: and I, I don’t leave children or adults of any age, should be talked down to because it’s, it’s. You everybody thinks that kids are stupid. They’re not stupid. They’re just as smart as they’re going to be. When they’re adults, they just have a limited context. So they’re. You know, there are certain things you probably wouldn’t talk about.

Like, you know, for, for younger kids, you’re not going to talk about sex cause they won’t know what it is and if they do, they’ve been abused and that’s something else again, you know, but essentially, but you can still talk about smart things because they’re justice smart. Then as they’re going to be later, they don’t get smarter.

They just get more information and more context. So that’s how I always approach everything.

Jeff: Has there ever been any discussion, or did you ever at any point of. Re mighty max returning to television or in comic form, or, you know, did, did that ever, get discussed after the second seasons or looking back at it?

[01:22:00] I

Mark Zazlove: don’t know. And I can, I would almost bet my life savings that I wouldn’t be a part of it is that doesn’t seem to be the way I have never been asked back once on one show, on a version of CG version of, of Winnie the Pooh. They. Asked me to help write some because they were, I think it helped them to have the guy who was one of the showrunners on the new adventures of Winnie the Pooh to help them get started.

And then they dumped me yeah. After the first season. But I’ve never been asked back to do anything. We need to put a movie or anything, or any other series. If there is a tailspin remake, I will not be asking. And it’s, and I’m not, it sounds like I’m being bitter. I, I more just think that I can write better than anybody else.

So it’s kinda like. At least give me a chance. You know, it’s not even that it’s my baby. And I only see it one way now. I understand because they want other viewpoints. So I’m not, I, it’s not something I lose any sleep over, but I just think [01:23:00] they always go, well, it’s new. We want new people, but it always seemed like, but are you missing talent?

You know, it’s like, it’s not that I’m going to arm wrestle you to make it old. But it’s like, just I’ll use another name and see if my script is better than somebody else’s. So that’s just, but I’m just saying it’s not the way of the world usually to get, you know, like DuckTales big can go back to any of the ducktail people and that, and there were some great people on that.

And if they do rescue Rangers, they’re probably not going to go back to the original people. And that’s just the way it is. I just think you’re missing some talented people. When you do that, would

Jeff: you support a return to a mighty max?

Mark Zazlove: Of course. You know, I, if people like it, then, you know, it’s as good or better than anything else they can bring back, you know?

And I think it would hold up. Well, it’s certainly, you know, the type of thing that doesn’t date too much, [01:24:00] you know, it was, it was, it was of its time, but it was modern, you know? So if you did it nowadays, max, wouldn’t be much different. He’d have an iPhone,

Jeff: you know,

Mark Zazlove: but I don’t think he’d be different. You know, his musical tastes or his musical, you know what I mean?

It’s, it’s like, there’s not much to change. He’s not like, back to the future, you know, Marty McFly really was into the eighties.

Jeff: Right, right. Oh, I’ve got to hold them to do something. They never brought it back to be like money max, but it’s ever had, he uses his iPhone to port use portals. I’d be like, no, no, it’s the damn hat for God’s sakes.

Well, thank you. Thank you so much. sir, for talking with me, it was, it’s definitely a pleasure. Like I said, I love my new Mac throwing up. I enjoy going back and watching all the episodes again. They were phenomenal.

Mark Zazlove: Oh, thank you. And thank you for having me on this is, you know, it’s always eye opening that people like this stuff.

So I appreciate it.

Jeff: Well, I hope [01:25:00] when your new shows come, start airing. I hope you definitely choose to come back and talk about, especially the secret, confidential, thing that you mentioned. I definitely got to find out what that is.

Mark Zazlove: No, I, I I’ve signed contracts. I cannot talk about any of it. So I’m not going to say will come and get me.

Jeff: Well,

Mark Zazlove: let’s see if there’s something else you really like. How about we get back together when there’s something you see and go, Oh, okay. That’s I like that. Then you can come ask me rather than just something I did.

Jeff: All right. I, I definitely will keep that in mind. I look forward to seeing, what you work on next and, and viewing them all.

if you don’t mind, can you, the

Mark Zazlove: bumper for us? Absolutely. Why don’t we do that right now? Sure. Okay. Hi, this is Mark Zaslav writer, director, producer, and someone who doesn’t get royalties and you are listening to spoiler country.

Jeff: Let’s

Mark Zazlove: do another one.

Jeff: That was fantastic, but I want everyone to know.

And that’s fantastic too. But like I said, that, that, that was

Mark Zazlove: okay, then let’s leave it.

Jeff: Yeah, it definitely keep it. like I said, thank you so much, [01:26:00] sir. And if you, if I will, I’m not annoyed, but if you want to send me that Bible, that’d be fantastic.

Mark Zazlove: let me, let me go see if I can dig it up. I’m pretty sure I have that Bible, but I, I know I have the original script, the pilot script.

So we’re just, I’ll send you that

Jeff: actually, the other question I actually forgot to ask, and I’d probably sh should, I guess we can always edit this and make it sound like I didn’t forget to mention it. do you ever do, conventions or have you done conventions in the

Mark Zazlove: past? I’ve done a few. now with the pandemic, I don’t do any, I’ve done a few.

I, I usually for Disney stuff, cause occasionally people will nag me and say I did the long beach, Comic-Con or something a couple of times, because I was nagged and I, I, I avoided Comicon cause it was just a nightmare. I would do them more now. I just don’t usually like talking about. My old work.

This was rare. Cause mighty max, I like mighty max and usually people don’t ask about it. Yeah. But you know, now if they [01:27:00] want me on a panel to talk about writing, that’s something else. I will go anywhere to talk about writing and trying to help people writing, you know, that’s different. But when it’s like, Hey, wait, what about this?

And tailspin that. And, and it’s kind of like, I am flattered and sometimes I’ll do it, but generally it’s kind of like, I just think, I always point to the actors, you know, like I’ll be on a panel with an actor and go, he’s way more entertaining than I am asking my question and ask her a question you don’t want to hear from me.

You know, I’m just the writer, so,

Jeff: well, if you ever hit the convention circle again, anywhere near Rhode Island or Massachusetts or Connecticut, Please, let me know. I would love to see you get an autograph from you at a convention at some point. So definitely give me a heads up on that one.

Mark Zazlove: Absolutely.

and if you know anybody at a convention, when the pandemic is over, tell them they should get me over there. Cause I’ll go.

Jeff: I, I do. And I will, I’ll make a thing about it.

Mark Zazlove: All right.

Jeff: Thank you so much. Surgery are phenomenal. And, like I said, hopefully we’ll have you on when, sometime in the future.

[01:28:00] Cool.

Mark Zazlove: All

Jeff: right. Have a good one. You as well.

 

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