Thursday, January 05, 2006

Before Family Guy There Was All Dogs. Now Futurama May Join Them!

John Cawley is a Line Producer at Cartoon Network (you may know his work from such shows as Bobby's World, Dexter's Lab, Harvey Birdman: Attorney At Law and Hi Hi Puffy AmiYumi among others), and has volunteered to act as our occasional Animation Consultant. He saw our recent news about All Dogs Go To Heaven, and has written this guest blog topic for us to ponder about how similar on VHS this film was to the DVD effect of Family Guy. Here's what he had to say:

    Before FAMILY GUY, there was ALL DOGS GO TO HEAVEN.

    I am always amused by the post-release history of ALL DOGS GO TO HEAVEN. When the film came out, it was lambasted by critics. The box office was somewhere around $25 million (when other animated features were doing around $70-100 million). In fact, after around two months, the film was declared a flop. There is even a great story of Don flying back to Ireland after the debut due to the film's reception... which made him a no show on several major US TV shows (like TODAY).

    However, on home video (VHS in those days) ALL DOGS did really well. In fact, so well, it caused execs to re-consider the property and develop a direct-to-video sequel and TV series. ALL DOGS was one of the first "failed" productions "revived" by home video for sequels. Others include FERN GULLY and BALTO. Again, both box-office "duds" that did well enough on home video to warrant additional productions. (And one cannot ignore the beginning of the direct to video horror/live action sequels - THE HOWLING III.)

    Of course today it is not uncommon for less-than-smash films to find a new life on home video. The good video sales of Disney's EMPEROR NEW GROOVE has brought us a sequel and series... just like ALL DOGS GO TO HEAVEN.

Interesting, John. Thank you. Readers should note that John sent this to us before finding a new online article today, based on a Variety report, discussing how "...Following the hugely successful resurrection of Family Guy, Fox execs are reportedly in talks to bring Futurama back from the dead. The studio has begun talks to revive the Emmy-winning animated series and produce a limited number of new episodes, thanks to a resurgence in the show's popularity on DVD and in reruns..."

Of course, as the Yahoo story states, " For Futurama to return, the studio would need to re-sign the show's production team, as well as voice stars Billy West, Katey Sagal and John DiMaggio." Exactly. But if the return of that show can be pulled off, there will be a lot of fans who will be happy to watch the show when it returns to the airwaves...AND buy the DVDs of those episodes, when they eventually come out!


At January 05, 2006 11:49 PM, Blogger J.D. said...

I wish a lot of other shows could be resurrected this way. "Reunion," for instance. And a third season of "Dark Angel" would've been nice.

At January 06, 2006 10:51 AM, Blogger Kaitlin said...

I was very excited when I heard about this. I think that Futurama is a much better show than Family guy and I think there is potential for a lot of funny good stuff with its comeback. It is an interesting idea to bring back dead shows. As much as I deeply love cancled shows I really don't think that its a good idea out side of cartoons.

At January 06, 2006 11:18 PM, Blogger J.D. said...

Why would cartoons make the difference? That's the silliest thing I've ever heard.

At January 07, 2006 1:03 AM, Blogger Gord Lacey said...

It's because the time it takes talent (the actors) to participate in cartoons is minimal, so the cast members are more likely to return to it. When a live-action show is cancelled the cast members turn to other jobs; movies, or other shows. It would be impossible for them to return to a live-action show.

At January 08, 2006 3:31 AM, Blogger Michael Coleman said...

Now if only Fox would renew Arrested Development, all would be good in the world.

At January 08, 2006 4:31 AM, Blogger Dave Lambert said...

SitcomsOnline says that Arrested Development could move to either Showtime or ABC, so don't count it out just yet. Great news for fans of the show, eh?

At January 14, 2006 1:14 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

didn't know where to post this, so sorry if i about a M.I.A. section of shows that mysteriously haven't been released on dvd...can think of one off the top of my head.."son the the beach volume 2"...and where's "mad about you" beyond season 2? great news about Futurama by the way...


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