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Airwalker writes...

You mentioned this in the comment room but I'm asking again here so that the answer will be a part of the Archives.

If you continued Gargoyles in comic book form, would you continue from where TGC left off or not?

Greg responds...

I won't be held to this, but....

I think I would skip all of TGC except "The Journey". In a comic book, I'd have the opportunity to include a Text Feature, where I could explain what I was doing and why. That Text Feature would also allow me to bring new readers up to speed on what they need to know. That would give me the freedom to limit cannon to the first 66 episodes as opposed to the whole 78.

Response recorded on August 17, 1999

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Airwalker writes...

How would you deal with the time gap that cancellation has given us?

(Let's say that the show came back after 5 years of cancellation, in 2002, would you start off in 2002 or would you pick up right where TGC left off in 1997 or would you just be in favor of skipping all of those problems and just going far enough in the future, 2158, so that a time gap wouldn't matter?)

Greg responds...

Honestly, I can't answer that without knowing the circumstances of our proposed ressurection.

Are we coming back on TV or in some form of print media or both?

If TV: Are we coming back as an hour show or a half-hour again? Are we coming back as a daily or weekly? As prime time or in kids?

To take your specific example, lets say we came back in 2002 as a kid's show. I'd probably just set things in 2002, and assume that most of my audience hasn't seen any of the old episodes. I would maintain continuity for my old audience, but I would clearly have to introduce the show and its characters anew. Some things would seem to pick up right where we left off. Others would be different, and we'd occasionally do flashback stories (both from the distant past and from the 1997-2002 gap) to bring both audiences up to speed.

Also keep in mind that although I had planned to do, for example, TimeDancer in 1996, I didn't get to. So there's nothing to stop me from introducing TimeDancer as a brand new concept in 2002.

As to doing 2158. I'd be happy to do that anytime. But it doesn't prevent or preclude me from doing stories in the present. In fact, I'd love to do BOTH.

Response recorded on August 17, 1999

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Derek! writes...

This is my first time too. But, I've read through the entire archive and these questions remain---
1.What exactly is a leica reel?
2.In RECKONING, Demona said she knew every surviving Gargoyle. When she said this, was she assuming Goliath's clan was the last, or did she know others?
3.I know there are a lot of questions for you to answer here, but could you please continue THREE BROTHERS soon? You left us at the most interesting part.
4.Are you constantly getting ideas for possible stories (For Gargs) and jotting them down?
5.If so, I was wondering if you've cracked that scarecrow story yet.
6.A few months ago, I E-Mailed the Editor of Gladstone comics about a Gargoyles comic book and he said that when they were done sorting out some leagal problems, some of Diney's newer properties would be considered for publication, including Gargoyles. but, he said a comic series would be more likely if Gargoyles was at the hight of it's media exposure and basically challenged us fans to get Gargoyles into the media eye again. Do you ahve any suggestions?
7.How did you feel when you learned Gargoyles was voted best animated series in USA Weekend's Toon TV showdon?
8.Would the new PACK member have been a full human like Dingo?
9.HOBGOBLINS OF LITTLE MINDS- care to devuldge any info?
10.Same deal on the Coldstone in the Himmilayas (sp?) comic book .
Okay, that's all I can remember. By the way, thank you for keeping in touch with the fans. It really helps to keep this series alive.

Greg responds...

Hi Derek,
1. A Leica Reel is a storyboard shot onto film or video (or into a computer) and cut to time. Dialogue, temp music and temp sound effect tracks are often added so that, you FEEL like you are watching a reel of actual footage. It's LIKE-A-REEL. (I'm told that's the real origin of the term, though I don't know if I believe that.)

The rest of your questions are on multiple different topics. So based on our new rules, you'll have to resubmit them as multiple separate posts. I welcome you to do just that.

Thanks.

Response recorded on August 17, 1999

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Blaise writes...

Greetings, Greg! It's great to have this thing up again!! I HAD a lot of questions, but most got lost in the limbo that is my mind. So I'll stick with the ones I did remember, all of which deal with behind the scenes work.

1) What exactly do "Story Editors" do?
1b) What do "Producers/Supervising Producers" do?
(I know you filled both these positions at one time or another, which is why I think you'd have the best idea about it).

2) Tim Curry--I'm something of a fan of his. What was it like working with him?
2b) Any interesting stories about him or suchlike you'd be willing to share?

As I said, I HAD more, but...well, they'll come back to me sooner or later. At least now this thing's back up again (let's PRAY it stays that way!).

Thanks!

Greg responds...

Once again, I'll attempt to recreate an answer I already typed up once.

First caveat: Keep in mind that every series, every studio, has
slightly different definitions for most of these terms. I'm describing
how we defined things, how we worked on Gargoyles.

1. Story Editors edit stories.

All right, I guess I can do better than that. Once a month, I met with
our story editors (Michael Reaves, Brynne Chandler Reaves, Gary Sperling
and Cary Bates) and we talked about stories. I'd usually start by
tossing out "springboards", i.e. notions for episodes that I had. The
Story Editors would each pick the ones that interested them and that fit
in with their delivery deadlines. We'd talk about the stories in the
conference room, and then the story editors would go off to work with
their stable of writers. (Some stables were bigger than others. Cary,
for example, personally wrote all the episodes that he story edited.
That decision is partially based on speed and financial issues. Cary
was a free-lance story editor who was very fast. He could make more
money by writing and editing his episodes. Gary Sperling, on the other
hand, was on staff. He made the same amount of money whether he wrote
the episodes or not. So he wrote the ones he had a personal affinity
for, and passed the others off to his free-lance writers.)

The editors would coach their writers through premise, outline and
script -- sometimes multiple drafts of each. (I would in turn coach the
editors.) Then the editors would take their pass on the work --
literally editing the stuff for content, quality, page count, spelling,
everything. Finally, they'd turn the documents over to me, and I'd do
my "Producer/Creator" pass. My job was to make sure that the show was
consistent. That four story editors and multiple writers all wrote with
one voice.

1b. Frank Paur and I were the original Producers on Gargoyles. I was
in charge of writing; Frank, of art. Both of us kibbitzed on the
other's guys territory. We were a real team. We both worked together
on voice and post-production. Basically, it was our job to follow
through on every single aspect of the show.

Later, Dennis Woodyard and Bob Kline were brought in to direct episodes,
and at some point they were "promoted" to Producer level. They were in
effect, "Line Producers", in charge of all the nuts and bolts of
production, making sure the individual episodes they directed were
completed. That freed Frank up to focus more on the big picture. When
Dennis and Bob got their "promotion", Frank and I were bumped up to
"Supervising Producers" to indicate that we still outranked the other
two, basically.

*Note: The reason "promotion" is in quotes is because the only thing
that changed for any of us was the credit we got at the end of the
show. It's not like we got a raise or anything. Nothing really
changed.

2. Tim was great fun. Professional, but he had a good time, and really
did a great job cutting loose on the bizarre (and hammy) Dr. S.
2b. Can't think of any off the top of my head. Sorry.

Now, let's pray this posts this time.

7-21-99

Response recorded on August 17, 1999

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Todd Jensen writes...

A few more questions I forgot to ask last time.

1. Some months ago, I saw a television documentary on gargoyles (the real-world architectural kind) and it said that there were more gargoyles per square foot in New York City than anywhere else in the United States (or something along those lines). Was this a factor in choosing New York as the main setting for the series, or just a coincidence? (I do know that I sat up and took notice at that particular comment when I heard it!)

2. Most of the mythological beings in "Gargoyles" were portrayed as being "Oberon's Children", i.e., members of the Third Race. However, the beings from Greek mythology were portrayed as being from a separate race, if of partly faerie origins: the New Olympians? Just out of curiosity, why did the production team take a different angle for the Greek mythology beings than the ones from Norse, Egyptian, Native American, etc. myth and legend?

3. I read somewhere that Eric Lewald was on the production team for the "X-Men" series on FOX before he worked on "The Goliath Chronicles". Do you think that this could have been a factor in why The Goliath Chronicles took a different angle on gargoyle-human relations (as in, it being taken for granted that the humans would know that the gargoyles were sentient beings); that is, that Eric was seeing "Gargoyles" in an "X-Men"-related light?

4. You've told us a bit about gargoyle religious beliefs; do the Third Race have any form of religion?

Greg responds...

1. I was aware that NYC had a ton of gargoyles. (I lived there for two plus years in my DC Comics days.) But I didn't have the stats. So I guess the answer is both.

2. We did and didn't, just for starters. What was revealed was not comprehensive, as I think I've mentioned. But the main behind-the-scenes reason was that we had this ready-made show NEW OLYMPIANS that I wanted to try and get on the air via a "back-door pilot" on Gargoyles. Didn't happen, but I'm glad we tried, and I felt the concept fit rather nicely into the Gargs Universe.

3. I haven't seen Eric in years, but he and his wife Julia Roberts Lewald are good people, who I like a lot. (I attended their wedding.) They're good writers too. And no, that doesn't mean I like what was done on Goliath Chronicles, but I don't think I COULD have liked anything that anyone else did. Anyway, any further speculation on my part is, I believe, inappropriate.

4. Plenty.


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Todd Jensen writes...

One thing that I forgot when I was posting my questions before, but thanks for persuading the people in charge of The Goliath Chronicles to not do that ending that they had originally wanted to do for it with the gargoyles and Elisa all running away from Manhattan. That would have been a dreadful way to end the series! Truth to tell, I'm amazed that the new production team even seriously considered it; I wouldn't need to be familiar with the series to realize that it would be an alarmingly downbeat means of concluding the series with the gargs just giving up and running away. At any rate, thanks for urging them to not have that happen.

Greg responds...

You are welcome. Believe my motivations were purely selfish. I was horrified.

7-9-99


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JEB writes...

Great to have Ask Greg back. :)

I've just got one little question for now: Have you ever gotten any ideas for stories from dreams?

That is all, and thanks for your time. :)

Greg responds...

Hey JEB,

Quick little answer for ya: Yes.

(7-9-99)


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Airwalker writes...

Glad to see AskGreg is back up.

1. Does Demona know about the Illuminati Society?
2. Does the Illuminati Society know about Demona?
3. Why exactly did you decide that Jackal and Hyena would become Cyborgs and that Wolf would become a Mutate? Why specifically that combination instead visa versa?
4. How long has Nokkar's intergalactic war been going on?
5. What happened to the helicopter Lexington fixed in HER BROTHERS KEEPER?
6. You said that New Olympians generally live for 13-250 years. So would any of the New Olympians we know be alive and around in 2158?
7. How does the Avalon Clan feel about Demona and Macbeth? (They must know those two weren't acting under their own will during the fight with the Archmage but to someone who they injured that little bit of information might not exactly displace anger at being injured.)
8. After all these years, does Macbeth know that Demona was listioning outside his window when Bodhe suggested betraying her clan to the English?
9. What are the Mutates feelings towards Alex Xanatos?
10. Why didn't Xanatos try to make Coldfire and Clodsteel look more "alive"; meaning why not slap some fake flesh on them like he did for Cyoti 1.0?
11. In POSSESSION, why wasn't Angela shocked at seeing Coldstone? After all when Goliath first saw him, he called him an abomination.
12. What was Goliath thinking in SANCTUARY and MARK OF THE PANTHER when he kept tellin Angela that she has many mothers and fathers? Who was he thinking of? There's only him, Hudson, Coldstone, Demona, and the Trio at that point. Did he seriously expect the Trio to think of Anglea as their daughter?
13. In 2158, how do you picture the world political status? Are there still seperate countries for example?
14. What is the legal status of Gargoyles in 2158?
15. What is Renard's opinion of Petros Xanatos?

Greg responds...

1. Yes.
2. Quite a bit.
3. A lot had to do with what felt right for the characters I guess. Wolf was very animalistic and hostile. Seemed perfect to make him a genetic werewolf. Jackal & Hyena were just nuts. A sociopath and a psychopath. It felt right that they would take things to the ultimate extreme.
4. Quite some time, young feller.
5. Kenner decided not to make a toy out of it.
6. That wasn't my plan.
7. Indiviuals all react differently. I'm not going to give you thirty-six individual responses.
8. I think he figured it out that night on Lunfanan Hill.
9. Which Mutate?
10. Fake gargoyle flesh? What would be the point?
11. Well, the truth here is that Angela had seen him already in the Himalayas. At least that had been my plan if the comic book hadn't been cancelled.
12. He was trying to instill in her the idea that her preoccupation with her biological parentage was an unhealthy human notion. (And since he knew Demona was her biological mother, you can see where his fear was coming from.) Of course, he lost the forest for the trees as Diane Maza pointed out in "Mark". He tried to make up for it later.
13. Yes and no.
14. Protected minority.
15. They barely know each other. And on some level, I think they'd get along, except for one thing... Renard hates David. And though Petros doesn't approve of much of his son's actions, I can't see him standing calmly by while someone else berates his son. Blood. Whatchagonnado?


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Todd Jensen writes...

Phew! Nice to have this thing back! Now for some questions that I've been waiting a long time to ask.

1. In "The Journey", during his recruitment speech, Castaway, while playing upon the fears of the citizens in his audience, lists two specific ones: that the gargoyles might attack them while they sleep and that they might kidnap their children. Recently, I found myself realizing something about these fears. Gargoyles obviously fear humans attacking them while they are in their stone sleep, and Demona believed in "The Reckoning" that Princess Katharine and the Magus had kidnapped the eggs. So, were you deliberately going for a notion of "humans and gargoyles fear each other for parallel reasons" when you wrote this scene, or am I just reading too much into it?

2. My new guesses for the 7 Arthurian survivors:

a. King Arthur
b. Merlin
c. The Lady of the Lake (so far, the obvious ones :)
d. Sir Percival
e. The Grail Damsel (since she's got a different name in practically every version of the Arthurian/Grail legends, I figured I'd better just put down her position to make it clearer whom I meant)
f. Morgan le Fay
g. Nimue

3. One of the most intriguing aspects of the gargoyles in the series, to me, was their initial lack of personal names, something that worked particularly well with me since it made them seem even more "their own unique culture" (I particularly liked the scene where Hudson was asking why humans have to name everything in "Awakening Part Three"). What inspired you and the other members of the production team to come up with this idea?

Greg responds...

Hey Todd,

1. I don't think you're reading too much in, but you need to keep in mind that I was breathing gargoyles at the time. It filled my thoughts. Whether I was conscious of those specifics parallels, doesn't answer whether they were intentional or not. Does that help?

2. We're up to eight now. Plus guesses need to be on their own post. Note: it's best to be as specific as possible. Bet hedging is no way to win a silly contest.

3. Originally, desperation. We had a hell of a time getting names approved. Coming up with a rationale for waiting until the twentieth century to name most of our characters was an inspiration I was grateful my boss went for. Fortunately, he saw that it solved all our problems. Gave us young characters with names that had a more contemporary, yet fun feel. Allowed Goliath to stand out from the crowd more. Made Demona's name less silly and more chilling. Etc. Making Gargoyles a unique culture was the solution to a difficult problem. One of the many things, that just made the show feel "right".


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Entity writes...

Glad you're back, Mr. Weisman! Here are a few questions I've pondered over:

1) If the series had ever shown Merlin, how do you envision his physical appearence? Would he have been along the lines of the white-bearded Disney version from "Sword in the Stone", or the younger, clean-shaven version from "Excalibur" or "Merlin" (the mini-series)?

2) I heard somewhere that you'd written an early screenplay for the GARGOYLES theatrical movie, which was basically "Awakenings" cleaned up around the edges, but that it was rejected on account of being "too cartoonish". Would you be able (and willing) to share with us that screenplay?

3) You mentioned that "Hunter's Moon" was originally going to be a video release (which would explain why so much of Part 1 seemed like a reintroduction to the series). If it had been released on video as planned, would it have been longer than only one hour (3 twenty-minute episodes)? I ask because that seems kind of short for a video, and because out of all the other chapters of the series, "Hunter's Moon" is the only one for which you've revealed full-fledged scenes that didn't make it into the final cut.

Greg responds...

Hi Entity,
1. Not telling this now. Had very specific plans though.

2. Michael Reaves and I wrote a pitch and then a treatment (actually two), not a screenplay. And it would be irresponsible to share it at this point, since the movie is still in development at Touchstone Pictures.

3. The decision not to make it a video came before the script (and maybe before the final draft outline) was written. It would have been at least a bit longer... we certainly wouldn't have had to cut the Jason/Elisa clock tower scene. But beyond that, it's too hypothetical a question for me to answer. We never were given the opportunity to explore that avenue in any real way.



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