Feb. 13, 2013 | 2:42 p.m.
In the massively popular Cartoon Network series “Adventure Time,” veteran voice actor Tom Kenny plays Ice King, a curmudgeonly wizard who lives in a snow fortress with a legion of penguins and whichever princess he has most recently kidnapped. For Kenny, the Ice King is the latest in a long line of zany characters; during his 20-plus years in the industry, he has lent his voice to more than 200 productions, including such landmark series as “Rocko’s Modern Life,” “Dexter’s Laboratory,” “The Powerpuff Girls” and “SpongeBob SquarePants,” in which he played SpongeBob. Like those groundbreaking predecessors, “Adventure Time” has earned a loyal audience by defying the tropes typical to children’s television shows. The series, created by Pendleton Ward, follows Finn, a human boy, and Jake, his magical shape-shifting dog, as they fight monsters and rescue princesses in a whimsical, post-apocalyptic […]
Nov. 18, 2012 | 7:00 a.m.
The Emmy-nominated cartoon “Adventure Time” follows 14-year-old hero Finn and his pal Jake, a shape-shifting dog, as they face off against evildoers in the magical Land of Ooo. The show has become one of Cartoon Network‘s most popular programs, attracting both kids and adults to the whimsical and darkly funny world created by animator Pendleton Ward. The show, which kicked off its fifth season last week, continues Monday. Hero Complex caught up with Jeremy Shada, the 15-year-old actor who voices Finn, to talk about “Adventure Time” and more. HC: How did you land the role? JS: I got a call from my agent whenever this started way back three years ago, or something like that. We recognized it and it sounded familiar, and we realized that my older brother Zack [Shada] had done the pilot for it three years prior […]
Nov. 14, 2012 | 11:20 a.m.
“Adventure Time” at first glance is a typical kids’ show. Finn, a 14-year-old boy, and his buddy Jake, a magical dog with super stretching powers, battle candy zombies, evil gnomes and their arch-nemesis Ice King in a shiny world called the Land of Ooo. In the show’s Season 5 premiere Monday, Finn fights a gang of neon-colored, village-burning hoodlums while Jake goes hot-tubbing with Cosmic Owl and a pink, wish-granting being named Prismo. Hot-tubbing? “If somebody pitched me verbally an episode plot of an ‘Adventure Time’ cartoon, I’d probably think, ‘That’s the dumbest thing ever,’ ” said Cartoon Network chief content officer Rob Sorcher. “But somehow in the hands of ['Adventure Time' creator Pendleton Ward], the nuance with which this is executed, it’s perfect.” The Emmy-nominated cartoon is one of the Cartoon Network‘s most popular shows, consistently ranking No. 1 […]
Sept. 28, 2012 | 3:15 p.m.
When animator Dave Filoni was handed the reins of George Lucas’ computer animated series “Star Wars: The Clone Wars” back in 2006, he thought he knew what to expect. Lucas, the creator and mastermind of the entire multibillion-dollar “Star Wars” operation, would give some initial guidance, notes and feedback and quickly fade away, moving on to tend to other aspects of his Lucasfilm empire. After all, it was a cartoon series aimed a kids, airing on Cartoon Network and regarded by many of the franchise’s older hardcore fans as a nice, but hardly essential, extension of the “Star Wars” experience. “As he saw the first footage coming back, and I think he could sense our excitement levels through the whole thing, he got more and more engaged and excited,” Filoni said. “He just kept coming in. He wouldn’t go away. […]
July 14, 2012 | 9:23 p.m.
Flashy footage from the upcoming fifth season of “Star Wars: The Clone Wars” on Cartoon Network made a convert out of one fan during the show’s Saturday afternoon panel. During the question-and-answer session a guy in a baseball cap got up to inform supervising director Dave Filoni and writer Matt Michnovetz that he’d never seen the show and was just hanging out in the ballroom for the “Halo 4” presentation that was to follow, but after seeing the footage, he’d become a fan. He planned to go out and watch every episode right away. The jovial Filoni and Michnovetz fielded all kinds of questions from audience members more familiar with the show during the hour-long panel, which featured the two men and the panel moderator flanked by four clone soldiers in full armor. While Filoni could only tease certain developments […]
March 15, 2012 | 1:13 p.m.
Unless you have a young boy at home, it’s possible that Ben 10, the shape-shifting teen superhero, has flown completely under your radar. Unlike the other costumed heroes in the Cartoon Network stable — Batman, Green Lantern, Teen Titans — Ben 10 launched without an existing fan base or brand awareness, the Jeremy Lin of the superhero set. Just seven years after the animated series first aired on Cartoon Network, “Ben 10” is now the network’s top-selling franchise, setting ratings records and selling billions of dollars’ worth of show-related merchandise. At a time when studios struggle to relaunch and reboot long-running comic book properties, Ben 10 is the first new superhero in recent memory to have this sort of breakout success. On Monday, Cartoon Network kicks off “Ben 10 Week,” culminating next Friday with the premiere of the new CGI […]