June 09, 2020


Rob Paulsen - Voice of Yakko! Pinky! Donatello! Raphael! Carl Wheezer! and hundreds more!

Hosted by

Kenric Regan John Horsley
Rob Paulsen - Voice of Yakko! Pinky! Donatello! Raphael! Carl Wheezer! and hundreds more!
Spoiler Country
Rob Paulsen - Voice of Yakko! Pinky! Donatello! Raphael! Carl Wheezer! and hundreds more!

Jun 09 2020 | 01:22:58


Show Notes

Today we are joined by one of the greatest voices in the cartoon world, Rob Paulson! The voice of so many characters, and such an amazing person to talk to! Who all did Rob voice? Take a look below! (Information provided by Wikipedia)



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Interview scheduled by Jeffery Haas

Theme music by Good Co Music:

Transcript by Steve, the recovering alcoholic robot.

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Rob Paulsen Interview
[00:01:00] [00:00:00]

Kenric: You're not of the first I'll come back to support a country. I in kindergarten, that's mr. Lee and today on the show. Well, if you're, I mean, he stretches back for a very long time doing voices in animation. And he really hit us. I don't want to say he hit his stride, but some of his most famous stuff is with the, the teenage mutant Ninja turtles of the, of the late eighties.
And I think he did it again here in the, in the, in, not too long ago in the two thousands. Uh, but also tiny tune ventures and the Animaniacs.
John: One of my favorite cartoons growing up.
Kenric: Yeah, well, the Animaniacs was brilliant. It was just brilliant.
John: Just the jokes on that show that the education. [00:02:00] Like I tell him the interview, but talking with this guy, My school used stuff from any maniacs in the teaching in
Kenric: yup. And we're talking about, of course, the amazing Rob Paulson, who did Yacko he played, he was pinky and pinky and the brain. And actually, you know this, because if you listen to the beginning of the show, you heard the bumper that he gave us, which was amazing. And.
John: I mean, so
Kenric: We have a plethora of bumpers from Rob.
Cause he was super nice and just, he just quick them out to us. Boom, boom, boom, boom, boom. How was that? Well, it was great Rob. And then you had to do it over again because spoiler alert, our name is spoiler country.
John: wasn't gonna say anything about that, but.
Kenric: It was funny, man. It was so funny and he was such a nice man about it. I would have kept it spoiler alert just because. How do you, you know what I mean? How do you, how do you tell the great Rob Paulson that, Hey, you got it wrong?
John: Right. It's like, Hey, like he didn't, he wouldn't do [00:03:00] it again.
Kenric: Yeah. Well, I said, Hey, it was wonderful. The only thing you got wrong was he was like, God, goddammit, such a great guy.
John: awesome. Talking with him was a lot of fun. He was such a pleasure, such a joy.
Kenric: do. What is your favorite? Moment of all the voices Rob Paulson does. I mean, you can't even begin to, to understand how many voices he's done in animation in the last 40 years.
John: I mean, if you want to know, I did so for the four. For him, because I was like, I was, I thought. Listing off his name to people whose voice. I was like, you know what? So I literally just copied the Wikipedia of his entire EV everybody's ever voiced and put it on the post. So down there, shit onto, you can see all the whiskey he's ever done.
Kenric: God dang. Dang.
John: It's a long list. I mean, he was, he plays PJ PTEN on goof troop and The goofy movie, which is one of my favorite movies from like the 90s, the cartoons at least.
Kenric: Oh, that's hilarious.
John: I mean, you want me to pick out my favorite character he's ever voiced, probably going to be yakka Warner. I don't know. I just.
[00:04:00] Kenric: Hello, nurse
John: great. And like, I mean, They're just there they're so, I mean, but also, you know, he was Raphael on their original turtles and
Kenric: Yeah. Which is basically his voice because that's the closest to his voice.
John: Yeah, I suppose it was natural voice. Yeah.
Kenric: Yeah. Well then you guys go well, China, what do you think? Think we should sit back and listen.
John: We should. Yeah. Yeah.
Kenric: all right guys, thanks for coming. And tuning in. Today is super special because, well, he's voiced over 250 different animated characters. He sung the countries of the world to us, and tonight he's taken over the world.
Rob Paulson. Thanks for coming on, buddy.
Rob Paulsen: Man, let me hear that. Let me hear that again. That was great. Oh man, I got to, I better watch myself going to my car. I'm going to get somebody going to take me out cause there's a, there's a younger, better NAR for [00:05:00] out there. Um, well I'll be hot with Brian and me. We both thank you very much for having the stupid one on.
Um, and um. C can I just tell you both right there, uh, right. What you both are just doing, and I presume some of your listeners are doing now, is you immediately were compelled to laugh, period. And the story, it wasn't even like you had to think about it. You had to cut. It's like boom. And, and isn't that interesting?
I, I, um, when I was a kid, I used to watch Johnny Carson like everybody else. And when Mel blank showed up, it was a. A remarkable thing to watch. And of course they're all of it on YouTube now. But at the moment, Mel walk down is very nondescript. Older gentlemen sits down, you know, bald, and it says, Ian, where's some doc?
And, and within, I mean, immediately Johnny was in his hand and the crowd and the country was in the Palm of his hand. Then it goes on. So you know, [00:06:00] and it, and, and I am by no way suggesting that I'm Mel blank. That's not for me to decide. What I'm saying is that once. The character becomes iconic and, and arguably pinky and Yacko are, are in that realm now, especially for almost two generations of fans.
All I have to do is start riffing his pinky and, and it happens everywhere I go. If somebody finds out why I'm, there was zero downside. So I am so happy to share this stuff with you, buddy. It's a gas.
Kenric: I love it. Did you, do you get the same type of reaction with Yacko.
Rob Paulsen: Especially if I'm nurses and nurses. Yeah. That and, uh, of course, I, I probably have to be a little careful nowadays with hashtag me too, or YouTube or S two or YouTube. I don't know. Okay. Hashtag YouTube, but, um, no, it's, um, but it still is, look, I, I am, uh, I'm older and I am the kind of guy who grew up.
[00:07:00] Calling young women, uh, and I still do, and I'm at full disclosure. I am trying, but it's something that's organic. Now. I like it. If you were, uh, one of you folks was a young woman, I would say, Oh, thank you sweetie. And I would not mean it. To be a pejorative. I would not mean it to be anything except the term of endearment, because that is the way I was reared.
However, I'm working really hard to say, well, thank you, or thank you. Name. Thank you, Patty, or thank you. You know? But I, that's just the way and so fast. It's so fascinating because I was, you know, until we had the kibosh port and everything, I, I traveled a lot and I had days where in the same day I would have five different young women. Say to me, Oh, there you go, honey. Can I help you through bag, sweetie? Oh, here, let me, let me punch your, where are you sitting? Darley all the time. And I, but I get that it's different coming from a guy. [00:08:00] So all that is to say that Yacoub, hopefully is immune from people thinking that he's anything but a smart ass hello nurse.
Deal with it. Yeah.
Kenric: Deal with it. I love it. So you started voice acting doing this over back in the early eighties on a cartoon show that I would grow up on GI Joe
Rob Paulsen: Yeah. Um, that was the first one I ever did. I came to LA. In the late seventies from a Motown. And the only other thing I wanted to be was a hockey player. And I learned pretty early on that I had not did the talent temperament nor dental insurance to make a nickel as a hockey player. So the only other thing that really Jones to me was performing, singing and acting.
And so I'd had a pretty solid background for my age. I was 22 but I'd been on the road for years doing theater and music and came to LA to do a. You know what the usual suspects do. Um, TV, movies, music, whatever. And the opportunity presented itself to do animation in the mid eighties. And you're correct.
The [00:09:00] first shows that I read for with GI Joe and transformers, and I got a job on each of them, but I gotta tell you guys while I, I grew up watching cartoons like everybody and being a huge fan of loony tunes and Rocky and Bullwinkle Flintstones and Johnny quest, all that, uh. When I got in the room with all these world class and many of whom are actors I recognize from television people.
I just seen it on Bob Newhart and Carol Burnett and you know, mash and all that. And uh, but nobody was limited by the way they looked. They weren't even limited by their sex. I mean, you see guys playing girls, girls playing guys. Uh, it's just, it's the purest form of acting that children do. From the time they're quite little and they play with their Tiesta or they play army or whatever.
It's exactly like that. And so I was utterly blown away. Not like I was surprised, but by this time I had already done a fair amount of television. [00:10:00] And a lot of on-camera commercials. And of course, when you're a non celebrity talent, you're always limited first and foremost as by the way you look. Do you fit the type that the casting is person is looking for it, but to go into a room with Jack angel and Michael Bell and BJ ward and Frank Welker and all those cats and, and um, watch what they're doing and go, Holy crap, this is the gig man.
And nobody knows what I look like, but nobody cares what I look like. I totally loved it because I was limited only by my creativity. And um, and so one thing led to another, and probably it was about another, I don't know, five years later that my wife and a couple of a veteran. On camera actors who are playing both sides of the card, you know, said to me, look, I don't know if your ego can handle it, but you might have a really solid career here doing animation because you can sing, you can sing in character, you can do dialects, you can do all that stuff.
I don't know [00:11:00] if you know, if you want to give up the other side, but you're starting to get more work here. Then the other way, and of course for my wife, it was a no brainer or no pinkier as their tastes may be. And she said, look, you know, it's not that I find it difficult to look at, but you're doing really well in this realm.
And my timing was excellent because animation exploded. Yeah, totally. And, um, so I did, and you know what? I'm really glad I did because, uh, I have this. Thank you. Um, I have to say, I. While I would be lying to you if I said I don't like it when nice people like you guys make a fuss over me that that's the truth.
However, it has never been my drive. Uh, everybody likes it when they're made a fuss over, but I'm in such a great spot now with my career because I stuck with it and get it, or at least two generations. So now. When I say, um, Hey, you guys, it's current Weezer are you going to finish their, [00:12:00] I, I get thousands of people who lose their minds because they love Carl Wheezer or Raphael or Donna Tella or mighty max or the tick or bump in the night, or biker mushroom, let alone all the big stuff.
Kenric: going. That's
Rob Paulsen: it's crazy. And so I'm glad I did it for obvious reasons. It paid the bills, but the, the. The rewards now are this type of fame in quotes that doesn't, it's not a type of fame like, Oh my God, it's Brad Pitt. It's a type of fame that just goes, Oh my God, that makes me so happy. Almost to the point of tears.
People actually get it and it's glorious. I just love it. So thank you for letting me explain.
Kenric: Oh no. Thanks for coming on and explaining. Cause it's, it's a weird thing when something hits you on a nostalgic level of reminding you of your childhood. know, it's a completely different feeling. It's a completely different, you [00:13:00] know, like, but you could meet Brad Pitt and, and, and he, he'll be cool and he might be cool or he might be a jerk to you or he might be.
You know, maybe never meet your heroes as they say, but
Rob Paulsen: Well for what it's worth, for what it's worth, he's very cool. He's a very
Kenric: I hear that. But I mean, but you, you know, as a, as a Fran, you might meet him and then you know, that initiation, but it's that you meet him 10 times, you know, after a couple of times you'd be like, Oh, well it's just Brad.
Rob Paulsen: sure. Of course. Of course.
Kenric: hear pinky, it doesn't matter how many times you hear it and you hear it like, like, what, how we're doing it right now? It just, you know, all those, uh, remembering all those times of watching it for the first time come flooding back and you
Rob Paulsen: Isn't that incredible. And, and what, remember one of the finest stones ever made by virtually any measure is citizen Kane. And. And you know, at the end of the movie, or he's talking about yes, and he was re, and we know what he's referring to. We know that he's referring to something that was so precious to [00:14:00] him, you know, in his childhood.
And here he is on his death bed. And, and I don't think it's unusual that people, you know, when years ago before, doctors would. And talk about dementia and, and, uh, uh, um, you know, all of the serious mental issues that happened with a lot of old people, um, that they would say you're going into your second childhood and you start to revert back to what was important to you in your formative, emotionally formative years.
It makes perfect sense. And the, uh, the things that are. Seared into your memory from when you were four or five, six, seven, eight, nine, 10, 11 years old, that form, whatever it is that allows you to move through your life, you know, and, and step-by-step the moment that you are so predisposed with the shit of life, dealing with it, whatever it is, work and [00:15:00] demic, divorce, money, cancer, everybody has stuff.
But then boom. You can be walking by a toy store, you're going be walking here a song from your childhood, or you can see, you can hear yap out and it just makes you go, Oh my God, I so remember that show. I'd forgotten about it. But yeah, you know that song with all the country. Holy crap, I remember that, dude.
Check this out. Remember this show, and before you know it. You're good. You're sharing all this online with people and you're both, and some people are crying, some people are going, Oh my God, my sister's gone now. But we lived for pinky and the brain, or my dad and I bonded. We couldn't get along at all.
But man, he sure loved Ninja turtles and I watched it with, that's happens all the time. So. It it, it is not a new phenomenon, but it is a powerful one. And I love exploring that because as I said, you know, there is zero and I mean zero [00:16:00] downside. I, I can, I could go on for a whole day about the anecdotal experiences I've had,
Kenric: That's
Rob Paulsen: maybe folks like you around the world, um, and their children.
Where both generations will come up with their thinking in the brain, whatever, or they're a GI Joe action figure or their Ninja turtles t-shirts that they wear in memory of their uncle. You know, bill who passed away from cancer, but he was a big turtle freak. I mean, it's stuff that you would never imagine and it is, it's the most, ah, it's so cool.
I can't, I just cannot get enough of it.
Kenric: You're talking about Mel blunt, but Mel blank. I was such a huge alluded tomb fans when I
Rob Paulsen: Oh, yeah.
Kenric: you know, seven, eight years old. It's still today, but I mean, but then I learned who Mel Blanc was and I saw him on TV and I was so fascinated by him doing all this stuff. When he came on, Johnny Carson, uh, my mom would wake me up
Rob Paulsen: Oh great.
Kenric: up and say, Hey, [00:17:00] goes, Mel Blanc is going to be on that night.
And she would literally come and get me so I could watch the interview with Mel blank. It was
Rob Paulsen: What a great mom. Good for her. Um, man. Well then, you know what I mean? And, um, and to your listeners, uh, to the extent that they're interested, man, ladies and gentlemen, please, uh, of course, don't turn off this show for, for even two seconds, but when the show is over, um, please do yourself a favor and just Google.
Go on YouTube rather, and just, uh, search Mel Blanc and, um, it will blow your mind. You know, the car starting and that. Know all the animals and stuff that, but every, every Looney tunes character. I worked with him once on, on, um, the Jetson. Yeah, I guess he was, he died at 81. It was probably about 80. Um, so this would have been 1987 88.
And I was, uh, working on adjustments project that Hanna-Barbera and Gordon hunt, the late great Gordon hunt, who is the director at Hannah Barbera in those days. And also Helen's father, [00:18:00] um, said, um, Hey, Robbie. Guess who's here today? And I said, well, I don't care as long as I am, we're, I'm just too glad to be here.
And he said, no, Mel blank shirts, the whole, my God. And I just thought, you know, he was old and he was on oxygen. Uh, and, and I mean, who was mentally fine? Um. I just assumed they would, and understandably, give him the, you know, the let him record by himself if he doesn't want to be bothered and all that tape.
He's an older man. And he said, well, you want to sit next to them? And I said, Oh my God. Yeah. Yeah. And so I thought, well, I'll never get this chance again, probably Saturday. So I introduced myself, cook. He was so delightful. And I said, mr blank, as, as you know, anybody with a pulse would say this. What a pleasure.
Um. If it's not too much trouble. And of course she knew exactly what I wanted, just like, just like I did at the beginning of your show, and I saw the reaction. I, I knew what was coming. So my [00:19:00] point is that it's the same for the biggest of the big. He knew it wasn't so much about meeting him, it was more about meeting bugs.
And so he just looked at me and said, Ian, what's up doc? And I, I lost my mind. And so now look, look what happened. Look what happened to you with me doing an impression of bugs. Okay, so it's the same. It is. It is this crazy, beautifully comedic chemical thing that happens to everybody. And so I, I now. Am starting to get to the part of my career where I, I know what's coming and I'll go into a, I don't know, an event or something and I'll be there as you know, as an invite or something clean by tea.
But once people find out who I am, the, the, the smiles and the joy spread like wildfire, it's [00:20:00] unbelievable to watch what happens. And again, not just, it's not me, I don't draw them, I don't write them. It's the characters, but it's just amazing to watch what happens. So.
Kenric: to life though, in a lot of
Rob Paulsen: Yeah, yeah. Oh, look, I'm good at my job.
Don't get me wrong. I, I, I, and, and I'm an integral part of the process, but no more than a storyboard artist or an animator. Um, it totally is and is a deeply collaborative effort. And I Maricel Marsh and, you know, Frank Welker and Peter, Collin, all the usual suspects, we always take time to remind people that, uh, that we are the grateful beneficiaries of incredible amounts of love.
And there's no question. That the voice, especially with a guy like Peter, and when he, when he says, uh, Autobots roll out, it's just Jesus Christ. It makes your head explode.
Kenric: happy were you to see the movies come out? And they, and they went back and got Peter to do the voice cause it felt like to me, I was like, when they announced the movie, I was like, they better [00:21:00] have Peter Collin be optimist prime because everything else is not worth it if you don't do it.
Rob Paulsen: Well, let me tell you a perfect example of that and what's, what's great about your question and my answer, the story I'm going to tell you is really important because, um, sometimes I think people think, like when it comes to comic cons and stuff that the actors are, by and large, they're to, you know, we're having a good time making a little money, but we get to meet people.
And that usually is the drive. Most of us don't go to Comicons. To earn our living, we we have to charge a little bit to offset the cost of bringing us there and the rank and file people like me and Maurice and trust McNeil and all that. We keep our prices, I think very reasonable. And again, our job is to meet the fans, make them happy, give them something I feel is valuable for a reasonable price and offset the costs of the promoter doesn't go broke.
Okay. But the fact is that we are also. Fans, nerds, geeks. And the reason that's [00:22:00] important is the following. Um, Maurice Lamar went to see the, uh, the, uh, you know, the transformers first transformers movie. And of course, we're all friends, Peter Frank, and we're all friends. And I, none of us had seen Peter for a while and we knew it was fine, but you know, people had their lives now.
And Maurice called me on his cell phone from the Chinese thing, or sent me a text from the Chinese theater on Hollywood Boulevard. And all he said was, they got Peter period and, and, and he had a giant heart, heart, heart, big exploding face, all that stuff. And so I talked to him afterwards. He said, Robbie, it was unbelievable.
He said the place was full naturally with a bunch of geeks like me and their shirts and old people, young people. And you could tell there was this palpable collective holding of breaths. And then when optimist prime says, you know, auto bot or whatever he says, place [00:23:00] lost their shit. They exploded. And that's why it's important to tell those stories because we love interacting with the crowd.
Either went from the traditional way that hopefully will come back or you know, via conventions. But the service that you guys are doing to people like me. And, um, the rest of our fan base around the country in the world by doing this podcast is a huge deal. You guys, you've got to know that. Um, you're very, no, you're, you're incredibly kind by having me on it and allowing me to ramble and all that.
But the, the, the main thrust of what you do is keep people connected. With things that they're very disappointed about. A lot of people save their money all year long to go to Comicon. And, um, this experience, uh, is so difficult on so many levels. And please don't ever sell yourself short on how important what you do is just for the emotional and geek health of the people who listen to you.
It's a big [00:24:00] deal.
Kenric: I appreciate it. It hits right in the fields. It really
Rob Paulsen: Yeah, it sure does. Not at all.
Kenric: We try. We really try and we're doing. We're doing interviews with creators and writers and actors and everything, and we try to, we are almost every day. I think we're booked out until mid June,
Rob Paulsen: How about that?
We're booked out for releases to mid June, but we're booked out to actually been doing interviews until early July.
Rob Paulsen: Yeah, that's great. That's wonderful. Yeah.
Kenric: and the people that are coming on, or it's, it's ridiculous. It's like, I can't believe I'm talking with these people.
Rob Paulsen: Well, like now, you know what I, and I appreciate that. I know what you're saying because, you know, I remember when I first moved to LA, I, uh, I would start going to auditions and that'd be auditioning with people that I'd seen on television. And it's quite, it was quite intimidating because that'd be going, on the one hand, I'm excited cause I'm here competing with people who've been doing this for a lot longer than [00:25:00] I, so I must be on the right track.
Because I'm, I'm here, but it's so, yeah. But it's like, wow, do I really deserve to be here? I mean, what if I can't deliver all that stuff now? I'm not saying that's what's going through your heads. What I'm saying is that you provide, you provide us an outlet. We can't do this without you. And you know, that's what I said about Donald drama.
I don't write them. Look, I realize you don't have to be an MIT grad to do a podcast. I understand that cause I did my own podcast. But you guys offer us a platform to talk about the things that connect us all. And um, I, it doesn't surprise me one bit that you're getting really, really good guests because we miss it too.
I had 15 con conventions booked this year, and at the end of them, I'd have had a nice chunk of change, but not enough. That's not how I make my living. I donated a lot of it. Anyway. [00:26:00] I do it because it keeps my, it feeds my soul. I come home from three solid days of any convention being exhausted from saying, thank you for.
Three solid days. You know what I mean? So go yo, totally. And, and you are helping us out. You are doing us the favor. We're the ones that should be grateful. If we don't have an audience, we ain't got shit. And the only way to cultivate that audience is to do whatever you can, whether it's theater or we have all this, you know, zoom meetings and podcasts.
Don't, you know, don't sell yourself short. You guys, you and the others who are allowing us on. Your shows are doing us the favor by giving us a chance to connect, and we're very grateful.
Kenric: It's very nice. Hey, I got to ask you, when you did countries of the world as Yacko. When you saw that come across your desk, what were you thinking? We, cause that is incredible. And you know, classes were using that to teach kids [00:27:00] geography
Rob Paulsen: and that's something.
Kenric: you know, it's, it's incredible. You know, and you can still use it.
It still holds up. I mean, I mean, you even talked about my Inmar in Burma, changing from Burma to Myenmar, you know, how long did it take you to learn it? And what'd you think when you saw it.
Rob Paulsen: I'm so glad you asked because that is a remarkable piece of American animation.
Kenric: amazing. It's, it's, I feel like it should go down and as American history, as, as this is an amazing point of time that captured it, captured everybody's attention.
Rob Paulsen: It did. And, and it's used by, I mean, I've seen it every year. I probably get half a dozen folks who send me clips from Stephen Colbert or Jimmy Kimmel, Jimmy Fallon. Look, they use pinky and the brain to compare Donald Trump. And, you know, uh, Putin or. Countries of the world on a, about every country that's got coven 19.
It was on Cobra, and it happens all the time. The truth is if Marysela Marsh and I walked into the writer's room of Saturday night live and started [00:28:00] riffing, they'd lose their minds. Not, not because we're geniuses, but because they all grew up on so many different, uh, types of American humor, including.
They're, you know, thinking the branded Animaniacs, which was about as good as it could get unless you're on the Simpsons. Very smart, incredible music. Just like Looney tunes. Okay. So I remember the very first song I recorded for Animaniacs was the echo swirled. And I knew that I'd gotten hired by and large for my comedy and seeing shops, and I was ready to deliver, but I didn't know what the first song was going to be.
And I got it. I got home and I. I remember I was sitting in bed learning and in my, my wife had headphones on and my wife said, what is that? I said, look at this, look at this. And so I sang it for, or I was reading the music and she said, Holy shit, that's, that's nuts. And I said, yeah, this is crazy. But, and you're right, it is.
And I'm so glad you [00:29:00] used that word because as I said earlier, this is not false modesty. Obviously I was athlete. Uh, cast as Yacko. I haven't shut up for a half an hour, but I'm good at my job, but I live in LA. You can throw a dark or in New York and hit a pretty good singer. Okay? You can't throw a dart and hit somebody to write that stuff.
And that is the genius. Randy Rogel. Uh, who wrote you Echo's rule. He also wrote the States and the capitals. He'd also wrote, it's a great big university and we're all really puny. We're just tiny little specs about the size of Mickey Rooney. And he just, he wrote, um, um, we're going to have to learn your talk back variety speak just everything multiplication or the presidents.
He wrote all that stuff. But here's the kicker. Not only was it my first song. And I, you know, worked on it very hard. But, [00:30:00] um, and by the way, what it didn't, it didn't intimidate me. I was ready to go. What it would do was inspire me because it made me go, Oh my God, I am on the ground level of something that is so fricking unbelievable.
This is where we're starting and we've got 40 piece orchestras and we've got Steven Spielberg. Are you effing kidding me? This is where we're, this is where we're starting. So, the story that is not told, that's important to be told. And I, I tell this when we do live shows, Randy Rogel and I now take animating action concert around the country.
And of course not at the moment. We had our shows all canceled for this year, but we do the music of Animaniacs around the country with orchestra. Isn't it incredibly fun and really remarkable. But I always tell the story about the Echo's world because it, it serves to do two things to the audience.
It will either inspire you to achieve whatever you can or make you feel like, nah, I'm not interested in being a songbird. I'm going to work somewhere else, whatever. but, Randy Rogel is [00:31:00] a West point graduate. Then he decided to get another degree and went to Boston university. Then he went to corporate America, started making a pile of money.
Okay. His background is musical theater, writing, dancing, singing, comedy. Very, very Renaissance man. I'm willing to go to West point and you're incredible dancer. Are you kidding me? so he's working in corporate America, but he says, you know what, goddammit, I'm a writer and a singer and a pan of, I.
Okay. Makes his way to LA bangs on the door at all the studios. For any writing gig. Finally gets hired at Warner brothers on Batman, the animated series, another show that makes everybody go, Oh my God, Batman with Mark and Kevin. Are you kidding? Okay. So you know that show and how powerful. Alright, so Randy gets a job on that show, starts writing and wins an Emmy then because his background is music and comedy and, and clever, clever lyrics.
He hears about this new show across the [00:32:00] way across the hall being made by the same folks that made tiny Toons on which we all work together. But Randy was not. Part of that is, Oh my God, now you're talking. This was really my, my wheelhouse. I mean, yeah, I can do drama and yeah, I'm not going to give the enemy back, but this is where it really where I want to be.
And the Warner brothers folks, you know, in comedy and music at Animaniacs. Oh dude, you just won an Emmy for Batman. Keep riding that this show is hot as hell. Keep writing that we got Luke Skywalker's, the joker. Keep going, you know? so he said, yeah, I can do both, but please, please, please listen to my music.
Listen to my song. So finally, you guys, they gave him a chance. He walks in and he and he plays, yeah. Echo's world. That's the song that he used to edition for Animaniacs. He had that song in his, he had that song in his back pocket. That is what he said. Maybe I'll find a place for this someday. he used it to say, well, this is, this is what I got.
[00:33:00] I got others, but how about this? And I can only imagine that Tom Ruger, the creator, heard that and stuck his head out the door and said, mr Spielberg, I think you should come and listen to this. You know? And that is how that song got made. It was not only the first song we did, it was the first song that Randy wrote for the show, and it was the song he auditioned with to plead to get the job.
Isn't that insane?
Kenric: that is insane.
Rob Paulsen: That's how good that son of a bitch is. Um, and, and, and it never stops. He's even better now. And you know, we've been fast friends for obviously over 25 years. So we talked to her and I spoke to him yesterday. We talked together every day and her saying, Hey, I wrote this. Oh my God. It's just, it's such a joy to be around people who are utterly devoted pretense.
But then they do what they're good at. And you sit there and you think, man, I don't know if there's a higher power, but. So this guy, if [00:34:00] there is really got to dose because this kid is, it's a kid, 66 year old man doing stuff that I still can't believe and that's, that's real genius. You are one of the plant.
Correct. And use. There are a lot of people that are really talented and really gifted, but genius is a term that's thrown around in our town really with way too much abandoned Randy as the real deal.
Kenric: Yeah. Not, I mean, I don't know. You sit back, you listen to that, and I, I put it on today before you came on, just so I can, you know, have a refresher course in, in, in the, cause the Animaniacs as a whole was just, it's just incredible, you know? And I don't know, it's, I know the announced a two season. Reboot, not reboot.
I dunno. It's house to put
Rob Paulsen: Yeah,
Kenric: on Hulu. Uh, I'm always confused because I don't know if you, you probably know by now, but Disney has purchased controlling
Rob Paulsen: Oh, I know Hulu. Yeah, I know
Kenric: in Animaniacs is so entrenched on being WB. I mean, they're, they [00:35:00] live in the WB tower for God's sakes.
Rob Paulsen: now it's an interesting question and don't trust me. We've all looked at each other going, how's this going to work? Um, because we, you're right, we're very excited cause and Randy has written some songs for the new show. We're doing a 26 half hours for. Hulu for this fall. and I truly don't know.
I mean, I don't know anything about the business side of it. I don't know. I put it, let me back up. I do know that HBO max has, um, I believe is going to have the Warner brothers catalog of Batman and all that other stuff. So I know that the Hulu deal between Amblin and Warner brothers was made, I don't know, probably a year and a half ago or a couple of years ago before Disney bought. Controlling. Interesting. Who, as far as I know, we're still going to be on Hulu. Um, I don't know. here's what I, this is all conjecture because I don't, I don't hang out with, you know, the, the bikers and the [00:36:00] Steven Spielberg's and guys like that. but Animaniacs and pinky and the brain are two shows that are, that are unique.
In their, not only in their iconic status, in my humble opinion, but they're unique in that they warrant a reboot and they are warranting a reboot with mr Spielberg again, and they've chosen to use the original, lead cast voice actors again, myself, trust McNeil, Jess Darnell and Maricel, Marcia Yacko, echo and dot.
And pinky and the brain respectively. But when you think about it in the context of how things get made, even reboots, um, that is a very unusual, unusual circumstance. most of the time, if there's a reboot, it's not with the original cast either because the producers are moved on or the cast, some of them might be dead.
You never know or not want to do it or can't do it. But here we have a very unique window [00:37:00] where the King of Hollywood. Who produced the original one wants to do it again. The original actors are everybody's capable and , and onboard. And the, we're not talking about a show that was like, Oh, that was cute.
We're talking about a show that influenced one and sometimes two generations of fans, , on a huge level that you can go almost anywhere in the world and say, pinky the brand around Animaniacs. And once the translation happens, you might get a few people, but virtually everybody would know that. Or I've heard of it, or at least they say, Oh yeah, that concludes of the world's town.
Seeing that. That's incredible. So it's a very unique circumstance, so I can only imagine that, you know, once the deal was made, Hulu wasn't going to let it go. I don't know what sort of deal they made to do some subsequent episodes, if it might go to another platform, who knows? But when you think about it, the opportunity to do the show again at the same level with.
Full orchestra with mr Spielberg. All that [00:38:00] again is so, so, so unique and um, and we're going to see, it's going to be a lot of fun. Remember, it's the first time, at least in my lifetime, that a fan will be able to watch a show that on which they grew up as literally a child, all of which are now on Hulu streaming 24, seven.
So you can literally this fall, you'll be able to watch your favorite episode of Animaniacs. And then five seconds later, watch a brand new 2020 episode of Animaniacs with the same yak of whack, one dot and pinky and the brain. And that is incredible to me that you will do it within five or 10 seconds of one another, but you literally transcend a quarter century.
And. And it's not, Hey, that guy who's done bugs bunny sounds really great. No, it's, it's bugs, man. It's like if Mel Blanc was doing Louis tones at, you know, 25 years later. It's [00:39:00] incredible. And I, and it's also a little not terrifying, cause COBIT is terrifying. It's just, it's kind of interesting to be in a circumstance where people can say, wow, I watched the original Animaniacs and I watched a new one and the new one socks.
I hope. I hope they don't. But that's the challenge, right? That's the bar's pretty goddamn high. And, and, um, and I love that challenge because I get to try it with my buddies. And then King of Hollywood, I mean, this, this is really unique in the context of American animation. so I, I'm really thrilled to be part of it.
It's so incredible. Incredible opportunity. Hello, Johnny.
Kenric: John, are you there?
I'm here. Yeah. So I, I apologize. I've got five kids here and they keep [00:40:00] walking into my office as I'm trying to talk and I have to mute
Rob Paulsen: Oh, bless your heart, Johnny.
my 17 or doesn't understand, Hey, I'm trying to talk,
Rob Paulsen: That's all right. I get it. Listen, I act like a two year old. I'm still learning to talk, so it's no problem.
Well, it's funny you said it about the generational thing because I grew up at Animaniacs and all those cartoons. I mean, I watched, I was in seventh grade and we learned the country song as our social studies assignment to learn all the countries of the world. Same with the state Capitol. That was our assignments in seventh grade.
And so I grew up on that. And then, and then my kids about my kids, I've actually already all, I'll watch them all because my, uh, my now 14 year old discovered, discovered it on. I don't know, some streaming platform or something like a couple years ago, and they're all, you know, they love it and they're all into it and they're waiting for the new one to come out too.
Rob Paulsen: Well, th then you've, you've absolutely, um, illustrated my point for me, Johnny, is that we have millions of folks around the world who have done this with their children. So I mean, you, there are shows, [00:41:00] SpongeBob Flintstones Looney tunes, the transcended generation. Then there are shows that remind you of your childhood and off you go. But when you have something that appeals to people on a personal level, to the extent that their children are as into it as yours aren't, John, that's very unique when you consider how much entertainment there has been over the years, and, and virtually all of us have memories of snippets of here and there, but there are a handful of shows that really change your life, mash, , or the cheers, you know, you can name them.
Uh, that are on a huge scale with respect to animation. there are several, and, um, obviously Flintstones, um, Looney tunes and 50 years from now, I won't be here, but I bet money that. There are many snippets of Animaniacs, which will have really done that. In particular. Yacko is world because that is a Seminole piece of [00:42:00] American art.
Um, it really is. It's two and a half minutes. I think it's obviously the song is speaks for itself or sings for itself, but the late great rusty mills directed that cartoon and the orchestration by Richard Stone, 40 piece orchestra. Uh, when Yacko says China, Korea, Japan, there's pop up, a bump, bump bump in the background.
You know, it was orchestra beautifully. Um, just like Looney tunes with, uh, with Carl stalling. We even used still to this day, the same studio. Um, it's now called the Clint Eastwood scoring stage, but, it was the studio to this day in which, you know, kill the web, kill the web and all that stuff. Was orchestrated, and all the Animaniacs and pinky and the brains and Batman and all that stuff was all orchestrated there.
And we're back again. I mean, the ghosts in that wall are incredible, but my point to you, Johnny, is, is you've made it for me. [00:43:00] There will never not be the time in which people 50 or a hundred years from now will say, Hey man, let's check this hologram out. Here's this song. I was, no, it's been, it was something done a hundred years before I was born.
But. This is the way the world used to be. Isn't this crazy? Listen to these names, these countries, and, and it's two and a half minutes are, it's just blows your mind. It's a, it's a seminal piece of American art and I'm so proud of it. It's really great. Um, so yeah. Thanks for, thanks for bringing your kids on board, my friend.
You know, I'll get free tickets to the water tower. As long as you don't get arrested and getting on the lap, then you're on your own.
Oh yeah. That's awesome. Yeah, it's, my kids love it. I, in fact, I was watching it the other day because this was happening. I said, Oh, I'm going to watch some, uh, some Animaniacs and it's, it still holds up to me. It's still, it's still great.
Kenric: well, the
Rob Paulsen: Well,
Kenric: so well done. You know,
Rob Paulsen: yeah, and, and it was no, when it was TV on a mission, again. [00:44:00] No TB animation by and large is, is, is not as sophisticated as feature animation. It's very expensive, but that's what you get when you get mr Spielberg. When you have somebody like running the show who, Natalie, you know, his pedigree, we don't even get to talk about it, but what it does when you're able to hit your wagon to his star, uh.
It allows you to say, Hey, this was producing this blend. You're going to get the best animators, the best you can have the money to spend on it. Those were two shows. Now listen, you're talking to 50% of the Ninja turtles, so I know all about merchandising, right? I'm Rafael. When you guys were little, and I was down at Tello on the 2012 Nickelodeon version, and I very proud of that whole franchise.
That is a franchise that is. Bulletproof. There will always be some version of Ninja turtles. However, the thing to me that is most prideful with respect to Animaniacs and pinky and the brain is those are two shows that were made for the sake of the art. [00:45:00] Um, yeah, there are some video games, you know, and there are some t-shirts.
But nothing, nothing compared to SpongeBob or the Simpsons or Ninja turtles. Nothing like that. Transformers and that. That's fine. And the shows hold up, you said it, the shows hold up beautifully and they're now being rebooted again with mr Spielberg at what? 72 or 73 years old. Precisely because it is art for the sake of the art.
There will be merchandised, and even if you go to. Hot topic or Spencer's gifts. So target now you're going to see automating act stuff. Great. I get that. But comparatively speaking, it's not about that. It's about what you just said. It's about the content. It's about the fact that they hold up that kids, your people your age now will go home.
My God, I never got that cultural reference when I was 11 I laughed like crazy at fingerprints, [00:46:00] but now when I see fingerprints or I don't think so. I mean.
I was just going to mention that one too.
Rob Paulsen: and there and that show and pinky and the brain are rife with cultural Kip references all I Rocky and Bullwinkle, and that's precisely the way it was designed to be written.
That was the edict from the top of Tom Ruger and Jean McCurdy and mr Spielberg all demanded was to not condescend to the audience because they had the foresight to know, not that we were going to do it again and all this brand new platforms, but they knew that. If there was a great explosion in the animation community in Hollywood, and we were all killed, that Animaniacs and pinky and the brain of Batman or freakazoid were at such a great level that they would last.
And they do. They're excellent. And
Kenric: it's interesting that you said the way you had it, because like I love GI Joe, but GI Joe at the end of the day is, it is a 22 minute long commercial [00:47:00] to
Rob Paulsen: for action figures, of course.
Kenric: transformers and the same thing we're Animaniacs and pinky and the brain and all of those.
Like you said, it's art for art's sake. Like Spielberg had a love for loony tunes and he wanted to do something that was in the same vein and, and. My God, he knocked, you guys just knocked it out of the park
Rob Paulsen: Well, thank you. And you are 100% correct, my friend. Um, and I've used that that, um, referenced many times. I said, look, I, I will never. Not be proud of Ninja turtles. Um, primarily because of the joy. It's brought so many children and their parents. Now we're grown up children. Um, and we could spend an hour talking about my anecdotal experience about sick kids and what Ninja turtles has meant to them and, and to me over the years.
But that's a whole, a totally different conversation with respect to.
Kenric: to do that.
Rob Paulsen: I would, I, I, I will tell you things that will make you weep. It'll just, it would blow your mind. But, um, but [00:48:00] with respect to, uh, Animaniacs and pinky and the brand, you are 100% correct. And I, uh, I, I cannot believe, um, how fortunate we are to be able to look back and, and see this.
Um, but I've used that Axiom that, look, we're basically making half hour commercials to sell action figures. So when you're doing something that you can go back and watch, and I watched them when they're on, they're on Netflix for about a year, a few years back. Uh, Animaniacs was, and, um, I remember saying, I haven't seen these shows in 20 years.
So I spent an afternoon watching five or six of them, and I was laughing out loud and forgot that I was part of the deal. And, and I, it was completely authentic. I was just going, and this is great. And then I really had a moment where I caught myself and said, dude, that's, that's you. And I say, Jesus Christ, this is [00:49:00] really good.
And I started calling all the people who work. Then I said, I don't know if you guys, I mean, we've all moved on, but. This was a really God damn good show. Listen to this music, listen to these orchestrations, listen to this, this script. If you could, if I read, just read the script by itself. And it's funny.
Um, so then, you know, you're really got something. And, um, I, and we do, and I am so profoundly grateful because I'm in the last act of my career. I'm 63 years old. I feel great. I'm going to be, you know, I'll hopefully live another few years anyway, but the fact that I can do that, do this again at this level and, and, you know, try to knock one over the center field bleachers again with mr Spielberg.
Are you kidding me? This is nuts, man. To give this a shot.
Kenric: Yeah. You know, Rob, one of the things I loved about you when I was, when I was reading up some of the stuff that you've done and some of the things is when you were doing live action [00:50:00] and you were in the movie, I want to call it body double.
Rob Paulsen: Yeah. Brian DePalma.
Kenric: yeah. And you said, but you said though, you loved being in the movie.
You didn't push it so much because you couldn't be proud of the fact that your kids couldn't watch it.
Rob Paulsen: Right?
Kenric: I
thought that was like, Oh,
Rob Paulsen: Well, thank you. And look, I, I don't want to be, uh, a hypocrite. I, I am proud and I am grateful for every job I've had. I've had people say, wow, I bet you didn't like this show. But, uh, but you know, this was a cartoon that really tanked. I bet you're embarrassed about that. Not one bit. I was paid well and I have no problem cashing the check.
No one, no one in our business starts out to take a million bucks of somebody else's money, or nowadays a hundred million plus of someone else's money and screw it up. This is, it's very tough to make something that is [00:51:00] worthy of the investment. And, uh, I'm not saying that about body double. I think body double, I guess it did.
Okay. It's grind to Palmer. He's Brian fricking DePalma, you know? Yeah, right. And, um, and no, you're talking about body double, which is a murder mystery set amidst the porn industry in, uh, in LA. And what happened was, um, when I was still doing on-camera, I got a call to go read for, uh, mr DePalma. And of course, any actor having grown up watching Carrie or, um, uh, you know, but like you said, Scarface, uh, um. Oh gosh. What's the one with Angie Dickinson? Um, and Michael Kane. Um,
Kenric: which
Rob Paulsen: you know, which one I'm talking some murder, another murder mystery. Um,
Kenric: what you're talking about. I mean, it's, it's Brian fricking diploma. The guy
Rob Paulsen: yeah. Okay. Right. Alright. I mean, his group, you know, the, his classmates were, were, um, Steven Spielberg and Martin Scorsese and, [00:52:00] and, uh, uh, Francis Coppola. They're all, they're all played pool together. All right. So. So that's the pedigree. Of course, you're going to go read for Brian fricking the Palma. So I went in and read.
I knew it was a murder mystery. No surprise. He does those. So I read a scene. I didn't get the whole script. No minor actor does. So I read my scene, I went home and there was a message on my machine already. Mr DePalma loved you. Wow. Holy shit. Great. So he's, he wants you not for the scene he hired you for, because we did the scene.
He liked it. Then he said, okay, throw it away. Just throw away the script, Rob. Let's just improvise. And I'm pretty good at that. So we did it. I was 28. Uh, it felt good. I went home and I said, well, if I don't get it, it won't be because I didn't give it my best shot. That's what you want as an actor, you, you, it's one thing not to get the job.
It's another thing to get in the car and go, shit. That's what I should have done. I didn't do that. I knew I'd given a good audition. I was right. I got a job three days work on [00:53:00] this new movie called body devil. So, um, you, the script will be there for you. Uh, you'll have plenty of time to learn it. You've got three days.
Who knows? It might turn into a week, but it's Brian DePalma. Wow. Plus his direct, his constant director of photography, Steven berm. Was with them. And anytime you get to work with a great DP, you know that, you know, you're going to be lit beautifully. So that whatever scenes you're going to be in are going to be lit.
And you are. And if your scene stays in the movie, you're going to be lit by a guy who's won an Oscar doing this. Man, this is the, this is the big time. I was thrilled. Um, went to work, set downtown. Is she building on Melrose? Um, and. I was, as I mentioned, it was a murder mystery in the porn industry. I was, uh, uh, so we were shooting a scene in which I [00:54:00] was the camera man in this integral scene to move the story along.
It was, I don't know, four or five scenes and my most, and I had a very infamous line, which was, where's the cum shot? And so it, yeah. Okay. And I read it and I thought, wow, that's a little bit, that's a little bit something that, you know, little Robbie Paulson from Flint, Michigan would never have probably said in his whole life.
Um, and, and the weird thing was that I was surrounded by extras. Uh, it was, I, and you guys remember Scarface, but remember the, the actor in Scarface who had the chainsaw and the shower scene. Okay. That actor was the director. And the scene in which I was the cameraman. So it was, it was doubly weird for me to meet this guy cause I'm like, Holy shit, I know that actors is frighteningly good.
Um, so we hit it off. We spent a week together and we did a bunch of scenes, but what ended up in the movie where that scene and a couple of other ones, but the extras [00:55:00] in our porno scene were real porn actors. So it was, let me tell you kids. When I was having my lunch and I walk on the closed set and it was just me and the gentlemen, you know, the director, mr DePalma and Steve Durham, and, um, Melanie Griffith, and then a bunch of extras who were getting themselves ready for the scene, if you know what I'm saying.
It was fricking bizarre and I thought, Oh my God, what am I doing? Did I leave? No, of course I didn't leave. I did. I did the job. So I went home and I told my wife and she look, honey, um, did you do anything illegal? I said, no, I nothing. And nobody forced me. I was just, it was weird. And yeah. Okay. So I went back to work and I finished the job.
And you know what, goddammit, I was a grownup. I was in the movie. Okay, but here's the deal. while I will [00:56:00] never denigrate it and I will never regret it because. It allowed me to work. It allowed me to give me a legitimate credit. My son was coming along and I got a nice chunk of dough to help pay the bills for my first and only new baby years later.
This is the kicker. Talk about the sins of the father, stands with a small S years later. Um. Uh, I was in bed at home and my son had a bunch of buddies over at our home in Los Angeles, and they were watching, I guess, HBO, whatever. And he was 16, 17, and, uh, I'm half asleep and my kid opens a door and he goes, Hey.
I said, yeah, he'll, okay, buddy. He goes, yeah. Um, were you in a movie called body double and, yep. And that's exactly what my wife did. She started laughing. I said, yeah, that's me. He goes, Oh my God, that's, that's crazy. We just heard you say, yeah, I know. I know, I know. I know what you're going to [00:57:00] say. Just
Kenric: I was there. I said it
Rob Paulsen: was there and my wife laughed and laughed.
And so the upshot is that it got a great laugh. It paid my bills, it appropriately embarrassed me. It taught me a lesson. But the, the main lesson is to not look. I could have said, I'm not interested. No one would have said to me, Hey dude, you're a Pollyanna because we have the right to do that. But I, what I believe is that once you decide to jump in, you have to figure out a way to say, you know what?
I did it. Um, I don't feel guilty because I didn't break any laws. There are people who would find that distasteful. All right, well that's your realm. But let me tell you something. Another thing I've learned that people can find anything distasteful once I, once, um, Ninja turtles became huge. I can't even tell you the number [00:58:00] of interviews I had where parents would get on like a show, like ours only be on the radio and somebody would say, Hey, we're taking some calls.
And of course you want some conflict. You want something to be. Interesting for the listener. So they, you know, that sometimes the DJs would line up calls with people who would have a problem, but then she turtles thinking it was too violent and I'm, I'm fine with that. I can handle myself. I can take a punch.
So, you know, most of the calls would be, Oh my God, we just did a child. You know, my kid's birthday love Ninja. Would you talk to him from the sewer? Hey Johnny, it's Raphael dude. Cowabunga okay. But then. You know, they, they throw a couple of ringers in there and say, hi, mr Paulson. My name is Karen. I live in Wapakoneta, Ohio, and we don't allow our children to Washington to turtles.
I'm sorry, but we just think it's too violent. And then there's a pause. And I said, well, thank you Karen for calling in and I really appreciate that you were straight up and, and good luck with your family. Well, I [00:59:00] just want you to know that, well, I get it and I absolutely respect your privilege. I am a parent myself.
And I knew what they wanted, they wanted me to bite. And I'm like, look, I, I, I have no problem with what you're talking about. You, you are clearly a woman who loves her children, just like, I love mine. And, and so what I would say is if you really want to engage, um, you know, we've read these articles about where.
Children will pick up a Baton and believe that, you know, they're a Ninja turtle and they will hit their brother and I say, well, or, or try to open the lid of a sewer. And I said, look, I understand utterly what you're talking about. Um, and if you have an eight year old who can lift up a sewer lid, you gotta get that kid into bodybuilding.
Cause that's remarkable.
Kenric: some boxing or something
Rob Paulsen: And of course, my God, Karen. Do [01:00:00] you think for one minute that anybody involved in the show would, would get a kick out of the fact that a nine year old found his way into a sewer and was injured? Of course not. That's part of, you know, the parenting thing, and with all due respect, Karen, if your child picks up a hockey stick and watch your kid, your other child over the head with it because he's imitating.
Looney tunes or Raphael and Donatella beating up shredder then. Then you got to get that kid some help
Kenric: yeah. Maybe some therapy.
Rob Paulsen: I, if I ever try to drop anything resembling an anvil on my sister's had, because it's something I saw on television. My parents would have gotten me out of that situation and into therapy right now.
It was very clear. It's very clear the delineation, look, I'm a hockey player. If somebody hits me over the head with a hockey stick, they're [01:01:00] thrown out of the game and hockey is a violent game. Okay, so please, I as much as I admire and respect you for being a good parent, if you're trying to engage because turtles is violent in that way, then you're, you're preaching to the wrong choir.
Because the good that turtles has done, irrespective of the money that people spend on action figures. If you really want me to tell you my anecdotal personal experience about the number of parents I speak to whose lovely children have left the hospital in a body bag, but they want to talk to me about the phone call that they received from Donna tallow or Raphael or whichever that got their children through their chemotherapy and they still died.
I'm happy to have that conversation, but I'm not going to engage the, of course they go and so, and it's not that I don't understand what they're talking about then. You know what? That's what I love about free [01:02:00] enterprise. Turn it off. Don't let them watch it,
Kenric: My mom didn't like me watching violent TV shows. Well, perceived violence. I mean, really, when you watch GI Joe, no one, no one gets hurt. You know, the playing class gets burnt and gets shot down. The plane gets shot down, but the, you know, then you see the parachute open and all that kind of stuff.
But she never, she, she left it up to me because obviously. You know, I didn't go and try to shoot somebody or hit somebody. Uh, she just said, you know, I, I don't like it, but she goes, you know, it's not doing anything wrong. You know, so, and sh,
Rob Paulsen: Well with me.
Kenric: conservative Christian lady you'll ever meet in your life.
Rob Paulsen: And look, we knew that, and frankly, look, I did 200 episodes of something, of an inch of a turtles. And the last season or two were literally half hour commercials or 22 minute commercials to sell action figures because often the fricking turtle's voices would come out of the wrong color.
You know? It was, it was ridiculous.
Kenric: cheap. They just
[01:03:00] Rob Paulsen: What was cheap. Right? And I, it was like a, an a, an album to fulfill a contract. Um, you know, and nobody's really writing good songs anymore, whatever. And I get that. I totally get it. But the strength of Ninja turtles is that that franchise and the, the ethos and the mythology of that show inspires new, really talented kids.
To do their own versions. And I got to live that to you guys. I mean, you're talking to a lottery winner. There are many people who will look at the 2012, 2016, um, CGI version of turtles on Nickelodeon and say, Oh my God, the original show blew my mind when I was a kid. But I gotta tell you that version when I was, you know, 28 or 30 years old.
That it was Seth green was Leo. Um, Sean asked him, is RAF, I'm Dani. And Michael Angelo is, um, uh, Greg sides to him. You guys [01:04:00] know as beast boy from teen Titans. Um, but that iteration of the show on Nickelodeon blew people's minds, including Kevin Eastman. Um, because Kevin said, wow. I got to tell you that if I'm looking at a version of the show of which their weapon a half a dozen, now, that iteration is the most authentic in terms of the ethos and the mythology of Ninja turtles.
Um, who only played the voice of master splinter, a world class actor, um, in so many things, and it's really good. So what that tells me is that it's not so much about which particular vehicle, it's the fact that the mythology and the comic. And the, uh, the idea that Kevin and Peter came up with all those years ago is so fricking solid that you really can't wreck it.
People may like it or not, but there are so, and trans by the mythology of Ninja turtles. I mean, you go to a, even, you [01:05:00] go to a. A tiny Comicon and you see all this original art inspired, but what by what Kevin and Peter did. That's the magic. That's what's cool. It's like Batman. It's it. There are going to be a million versions of Batman or Spiderman and the creators are long, long gone.
It's not about which one is good or bad, it's about how deeply inspiring Ninja turtles is. And dude, I got to be part of two of them. I'm an, I'm so lucky.
Kenric: I tell Johnny all the time, we talk about this kind of stuff all the time, and one of the things we, the anecdote, I always used, Hey, 3000 years from now and America is long gone as a country. Cause every country comes, you know, rises and falls. They will still be telling Superman stories, Spiderman stories, bat.
They're still going to be there. And, and, and they're going to look at Superman and all those, all these characters, they're going to look at it as part of historical significance of American culture, just like they do with GRA. You know, the great plays of, of, of [01:06:00] Greece. It's,
Rob Paulsen: totally, you're, you're 100% correct. And we know that's true because right now, if, if anyone were to say, who is the archetypal Hollywood producer guy of the zeitgeists Steven Spielberg. He just is. Of course, there are all sorts of great, we've discussed them, Billy Wilder, auto premature, you know, all of the, all the great Alfred Hitchcock, but for our time, Steven Spielberg and, and even in his eponymous documentary on HBO a couple of years ago, I don't you called it, it's called Spielberg
Kenric: I want to check that out. I haven't seen that yet.
Rob Paulsen: Oh, it's great.
Kenric: so I'll look it up.
Rob Paulsen: It's like two hours and. And the first thing he says as a young man is, I believe every film director should learn, uh, how to direct animation because it really forces you to think outside what is the realm of possibility and [01:07:00] really opened your mind to what is possible, um, visually and to tell your story.
And I'll be damned you guys during this two hour or whatever it is, two and a half hour journey through. The best of pop culture, and he admits himself. I mean, not everybody has hits, but, um, what's really cool is I'm watching it kind of entranced, having had the great pleasure of working with mr Spielberg on half a dozen projects, tiny Toons, amazing stories, ITI, um, um, Animaniacs pinky and bread.
Um. And here we are halfway through and I'll be damned. Here's it retired. He were, Tony were all a little loony and it's time for, and I mean, he asks and then pinky and the brain and all this stuff, and I called Maurice, I put I frozen. I've called Maurice. I said, dude, I don't know if you've seen this, but this might, this might really get you where you live.
We are included in [01:08:00] Steven's self titled documentary about his life. And it is awesome. Now, it was something that I wish I could have called my parents and said, you guys, check this out.
Kenric: Yeah,
Rob Paulsen: First I couldn't write, but moreover what it did was solidify. Exactly what you touched on just a few seconds ago, is that this is high quality American culture.
That the, the right, the go to guy, when you think of who's the man, Schindler's list jaws. Okay.
Kenric: saving private Ryan. I mean, it
Rob Paulsen: Right. All of it. And he is right. And he is just as proud of pinky and the brain Animaniacs tiny tunes. He's including that as well because that's, and. Um, if you indulge me, [01:09:00] um, this really gets me. Um, I still can't believe I get to say this, but here we are, all that stuff later. And when mr Spielberg went to pitch Animaniacs and pinky and the brain to Hulu, Apple, um, Amazon, you know, Netflix, all the usual play streaming platforms. It was made clear that not only is mr Spielberg gonna go to pitch to let the buyers know how serious he is to all those pitches, but he called, uh, Maurice's agent, Tresor's agent, his agent, and my agent and said, may we please have a two foot by three foot, eight by 10 of Rob tress, Jess and Maurice, because we're going to make it clear that this is so important and we're not going to stunt cast.
These actors or the actors have brought these characters to life. So Steven wants to make it sure that these [01:10:00] guys are in, and I cannot tell you folks what that means to a non-celebrity talent. To have a gentleman like mr Spielberg say, Oh, by the way, if we do this and you want to do this, you're in. That is.
So cool. Because you know, we live in an era of of the talking chicken being George Clooney, because it's going to get butts in the seats, and it may or may not. That's not the issue. It's about the square. But the fact that Steven Spielberg would go back to the, the folks who made these things live, and it was not even a question of maybe using celebrities.
His point was, look, I've seen Rob sing that crazy countries, the world song a zillion times on Hulu. I mean on, I'm on YouTube, it's got 25 or 30 or 40 million hits. Why would that go to somebody else? This guy can still knock it out of the park. Are you kidding me? And [01:11:00] that's what the audience wants. That's the authenticity that not whether or not they can buy a tee shirt with a new version of Yacko on it.
That's what drives the people to the, to watch the show. And lines them up out the door at New York Comicon. So of course we're going to hire them. But can you imagine what that means to a person who's worked his whole life to not only generate a good solid career, but I'm not a celebrity and I'm fine with that and I, the character is famous and Stephen knows that an integral part of a character is the soul.
And I am so, and w w what does that speak to? For the authenticity and the humanity of Steven Spielberg. That's, uh, that's really important that people understand. It's not me. It's not, you know, it's the guy who can make it all happen, is a fine man. And he moves through the life, through his life with grace and kindness, crazy skill and enormous power, [01:12:00] but a fine, thoughtful, caring man, which is how we should all behave.
Irrespective of what we cultivate in terms of celebrity. That's how you behave with kindness and grace and generosity. And he does. And I can tell you that because I'm living it.
Kenric: Yeah. That's awesome. That's a great message. That's a great way to think of, of Spielberg. Cause you know, it seems like he's more out there nowadays than he was back in the past. You know, you see more of him on, you know, I just watched a, uh. I just watched this awesome thing that who did the voice of the snowman on frozen?
What's his name? Oh God.
Josh GAD.
Kenric: GAD. Yeah.
Rob Paulsen: Jessica. Yeah, yeah.
Kenric: a YouTube channel and he's doing this reunited thing. Okay. And he brings, yeah, back classic movie casts. And then they, you know, they just talk about everything. And he did the Goonies and he had all the original [01:13:00] Goonies back in. And
Rob Paulsen: Sean was on that. Yeah.
Kenric: even had Richard Donner on, which was incredible.
Rob Paulsen: directed the first, who directed the first VR animate? I'm sorry, the first Superman movie.
Kenric: yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah. And he's in his nineties now, but he was on, and he was still just, you know, just right there, do talk about everything. It was amazing. But then near the end, he brought on Steven Spielberg and it was just awesome to sit there and listen to him to sort of talk about everything.
And he looks great. And he. He just, I don't know. I Spielberg, you know, built my childhood in a lot of ways, so,
Rob Paulsen: mine too. And I, I met him the first time working on E T I did a bunch of background voices on ITI, and at the time it was called a boy's life. And he was very gracious. Came in, I even nice to meet you and pleasure to meet you. Okay. I'll it. Then he hired me as a on them as Fernand camera roll on.
Um, amazing stories. Years later I worked on,
[01:14:00] it was the episode. It was the episode of, um, where they, uh, uh, they go back to the app there, go to the Alamo, and they go back in time. Um, and I played, I think, I don't know, a few scenes as a.
Kenric: Rob, I loved that show. I was
Rob Paulsen: That was a great show.
Kenric: Sad when they canceled it
Rob Paulsen: Yeah, it was a great show.
Kenric: famous one where there, they got to land the plane in world war II and the, and the artist is on and he draws the wheels and then the Halloween special with, with, uh, Christopher Lloyd
Rob Paulsen: Oh, yeah. Yes.
Kenric: cut his head off.
Rob Paulsen: Oh my God. No, it's great. And I,
Kenric: him the show in this
Rob Paulsen: yeah. And I, I, it's every time. Not only is it great work, but every, every example that I, or every time I've crossed paths with him, either by our work or at a, you know, a celebration of the work, a wrap party where he takes the time to talk. And it's not just me, everybody.
And, and what it does is [01:15:00] it totally shows you how, if you're lucky enough to cultivate anything resembling celebrity, and you guys have given me so much time, you've treated me like Steven Spielberg.
Kenric: man. We, we, we
Rob Paulsen: Well, thank you. I'm so grateful. But, but what it does is it, you know, that now how the biggest of the big behave so that no one in my mind has any right to behave like, you know, hot shit or smart ass or whatever.
Because I want to say to him, dude, I hope to save your money because, um, the people who could behave that way don't, they're easy to work with. They're kind, they're generous, they're thoughtful. Um, they don't. They don't settle. And if you're not cutting the mustard, you, you're, you know, you'll be let go. But it's not about their ego.
Kenric: I love that.
Rob Paulsen: it is all about making sure they get the best product done and they get the BA and Steven part of mr Spielberg's genius, I believe having seen him work is hiring the [01:16:00] people who are the best at their jobs and turning them loose. And. And, and he's done that on shows on which I've worked, and I, I have the Emmys to prove it.
And, and so, so does everybody else. So does everybody else. And the Oscars and they, the, the careers, he's allowed to flourish because he said, Oh yeah, you're ready for this. I'm going to get out of your way, but I'm going to give you the shot because Lou Wasserman did it for him. And that's how we pay it forward.
And it, all it serves to do is not only make people want to go to the mat for you to do good work. But then it allows those of us who have had that, uh, uh, generosity shown to us whenever we get the same opportunity in whatever realm we do it to, because we say this is how the best of the best would have done it.
And I want to be like that. And it doesn't have to be in show business. We can all live that way. Um. I just love these opportunities [01:17:00] because people will listen to you guys when you do your podcast, and then they hear a story from some knucklehead voice guy about how mr Spielberg moves through his life.
The next time you have a chance to be nice to somebody or to give someone a break or to go out of your way to give somebody who's just starting their home painting. Yeah. Like somebody who is just starting their home painting business and you go look at it and say, you know what? I'm going to give this kid a shot.
And that's important. And you never know. And you know, your house painting might've given Rob Paulson his house painting shot. And now that example can be in his portfolio. And now all of a sudden I've got to use you helped me. And it doesn't have to be in Hollywood. And so I love that you give me these opportunities to talk about it.
Cause it's, it's about life right?
Kenric: Yup, that's exactly it. When we started this podcast, we said, we concentrate a lot on comic books because we both love the medium and things, but then we really. Always want to just to hear [01:18:00] interesting stories, good stories, heartwarming stories. We don't concentrate on negative. We tell people when they come on all the time, Hey, you know, we're not here to teach.
We're not here to scoop you in any way. We're not here about that. We're here to put you in the best light possible because we're supremely interested in what you do.
Rob Paulsen: Well you have done just that and you guys put me,
Kenric: coming on. I mean, it's,
Rob Paulsen: Oh, please.
Kenric: a pleasure.
Rob Paulsen: been my great pleasure. And look, I have worked really hard for this privilege, and that's exactly what this is. There are many, many actors who wouldn't get this shot. And, um, it is a privilege when anyone takes the time to say, we want to make a fuss over you.
So, um. Thank you very much, fellows. I really appreciate it and thank you all of your listeners for sharing all these wonderful characters with your families. And, um, we really appreciate it. And I can tell you truthfully that, um, I'll just leave you with this. That laughter is the best medicine you guys on the cool things.
You can't Odie and the refills [01:19:00] are free. And, um, I am so grateful for the opportunity. Keep smiling, keep laughing, keep watching. And, um, I would love to chat with you again someday when you're. When you're ready for another crack at this, but in the meantime, I'll see a find a water tower this fall on Hulu.
Kenric: Hey, we're back.
John: We're back.
Kenric: We're back. What
John: thought voice, but I'm always like, we're back.
Kenric: what'd you say? Cause it's fun. What'd you? What'd you think
John: I mean, same as when we were on. I think he was amazing. He was a lot of fun. He was very humble and I actually ended up watching a few interviews with him after, um, ours. um, he's I liked that he had, if you look at the sh the graphic I made for the show notes for the show today, it says on it, you know, laughter's the best medicine you can't ODI. And the refills are free, which is something he says quite often. Which I think is a really, really good phrase. And it's, it's, it's, it's true. Cause I mean, when you start [01:20:00] laughing, you just, you feel better.
Kenric: Always, you can have, you could be depressed and start laughing about something. If something can hit that funny bone the right way. Um, it's, it's the greatest cure for depression.
John: had some, I got some bad news today, Docker and personal stuff, and,
Kenric: Yeah.
John: Finding something funny and just talking it out. You know, it, it doesn't take away the bad news stuff, but it makes it. Kind of helps you get out of it.
Kenric: Mix it a little bit more bearable.
John: Exactly. Exactly.
Kenric: Where do you guys go? I hope you really enjoyed that. Don't forget. Go check out. Spoiler verse.com. There's a ton of other podcasts, not just our own that we host there. Uh, and they're all wonderful shows and there's tons of articles for you to enjoy nothing behind a paywall.
So it's, it's a, it's a good time by all.
John: Is a good time by all. And you can show your support for us by going to that store, but in the middle of this page there, and pick you up a tee shirt or a hoodie or a mother or whatever, and just. You know, we get a couple dollars and helps us keep the lights on, keep things going.
Kenric: yup. There you guys go. All right. Don't [01:21:00] forget who the notions of podcasts
John: We are.
Kenric: as confusional compels you to do
John: Oh,
Kenric: and read more
Rob Paulsen: Hello.
Kenric: Hey Rob.
Rob Paulsen: Yeah,
Kenric: Hi. I'm Kenrick with spoiler the country. How are you doing today?
Rob Paulsen: I'm breathing and not in jail, but there's not over yet. So far so good.
Kenric: You could still get there.
Rob Paulsen: That's right.
Kenric: I got John on the line with me. Say hello, Johnny.
Rob Paulsen: Jack. Hello, Johnny. I can do that. Um, thank you guys. This is a real pleasure. Thank you so much for lowering your standards for the day. For an old cartoon knucklehead like myself. This is very kind of you. I appreciate it.
Kenric: see. I think if the other way around, why would you want to come on a a piddly little show like ours and [01:22:00] here
Rob Paulsen: The limited, let me tell you something, man. I, you're talking to a guy who's, Come from, you know, just probably, maybe, I don't know your gentlemen personally, but you know, very humble beginnings from a small town in Michigan, and I am daily. Well, I'd probably wear long sleeves in the middle of the summer because I have to hide my arms to show, to not show people how many times I've pinched myself.
Um, so I, I am, uh, no different than you guys. I may be playing a big, bigger sandbox maybe, but let me tell ya, it's, um, we all love what we love and, uh, and it's, uh, the Jones is no different. Whether you're in Bellevue or, or LA or it's just, you know, it's just a gas to be able to do something for a living or even for your application that brings you so much joy.
So you're preaching to the choir, but
Kenric: Nice. I love it. I love it. Well, are you ready to go? Should we just get
Rob Paulsen: sure. Fire it up.
Kenric: All right.


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