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Original Cartoon Animation Differences


Guest DavAnthony

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Guest DavAnthony

Anyone ever noticed the difference in the animation during certain episodes of the original series. Take example the animation in Five Faces of Darkness and then Webworld. There is such an quality change, with Webworld in my opinion being the better animation. Five Faces of darkenss and quite a few of the other episodes in the third season almost had a GoBot level of quaility in the animation.

Does anyone have any information on why the style and look was so different.

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@optimus@ Yea in 5 Faces of Darkness it starts out where the movie ended with movie quality animation, lighting, etc., and by the end of FFOD the animation and all is substandard. That paticular series just seems to deteriorate as it goes one. But FFOD to me, as a story just rocks eventhough there are lots of errors in it. FFOD is kind of hard core for TFs cartoons because things just kept getting worse for all sides. The Quintisons just threw a whole new rench in the works.

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Probably because by the third season the production budget was so low that the series had to be farmed out to various service studios to get the shows laid-out and animated.

The various service studios make slight stylistic changes based on the main model-pack and also have different timing directors resulting in animation being done on 2's or 3's--or inbetweens done on straight halves.

 

Some studios have been known to ignore dope sheets and re-slug the sheets to make them easier to inbetween. Its often why alot of cartoons these days don't move as lushly as feature films move--the animation is sabotaged for the sake of expenses.

 

If the thrid season as hobbled together from previous episodes then the above would still apply as the number of episodes ( 26 is standard) are often too much for a single studio to animate in the production schedule of approx 9 months--so even early on in the series, they can farm the work out.

 

 

--Ken

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Guest DavAnthony

Thats interesting, why was the budget so low since TF was so popular?

As far as the season being pieced togeather from other seasons, I hadn't heard that, but I'm not sure if that was possilbe since most of the characters, Rodimus, Kup, Springer etc hadn't been in previous seasons?

Dave

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Initally, animated TV series budgets are quite handsome on the order of 3-5 million bucks--for anywhere from 7 to13 to 26 episodes for the given season.

This can work out to around $250,000 per episode.

 

After the first season though, usually a lot of the start up costs--stock model pack design, music and sond sound effects work can be considered paid for. Other costs can be amortized or reduced depending on the contract, for example post production or editing costs can be reduced if the show has a guaranteed renewal for a secnd or third season--the first season being the make-or-break one.

Its also symptomatic of why many cartoons only last for one season then disappear pretty much forever.

 

The source studio can also demand that money be axed from the budgets so they can make a profit--sometimes they take a loss-leader on a show in the hopes it takes an audience. IIRC, Batman the animated series did this--first season was very expensive because it was breaking new ground--second and subsequent seasons were cheaper to produce because the whole production knew what they were allowed to do--hence the whole process became more streamlined.

 

When I worked on Baby Huey, there was an initail budget of around 2-3 Million for 13 eps--I suspect $2 mil-- and when the time came for renewal, Harvey Toons demanded a millon bucks be axed off the top.

All kinds of tag-along studios that were to assist on the show were promised MORE money for the second season to get them to sign on in the first place--when it didn't happen, they walked and the feasability of doing that show collapsed for the studio I worked at.

 

Tranformers was likely animated at a Japanese or Korean studio(s)--with the former more likely being that it was produced in the 80's.

The shows were animated there because of cost concerns--and we done on pissant budgets for the kind of work it was.

When these shops get going they can crank out ( animate and inbetween)an episode in about 2-3 weeks, but they pay their animators a low wage.

 

--Ken

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Guest DavAnthony

Ken,

That was pretty interesting I didn't know about all of that. I've learned alot about the acting business with budgest and so on, but never really

looked into the making of cartoons and how they go about financing.

Thanks

Dave

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