Tuesday, February 5, 2008

Goblet, Gopher, Slap and Tickle

Dick one day gave me the assignment to animate Zig Zag's sidekicks , the four courtiers.Apart from their appearance in ZigZag's big entrance, where they were animated by Alex Williams, I got to draw them throughout the picture.Voiced by British comedians Kenneth Williams and Stanley Baxter, he described Goblet as the pompous leader of the group,Slap as a little Thug ,Gopher as the eager Brownnose and Tickle as rather silly with a corkscrew nose and a heavy overbite..Dick gave me a rough sketch and I tried to work out how I could turn these highly eccentric designs.For Goblet, I found inspiration from German gay comic artist Ralf Koenig, who's big nosed characters had a similar look.
The guys were great fun to work on, even though they never rose much above moving background.Dick always held a 'carrot. sequence' in front of my face. After Zig Zag's downfall, Goblet would finally step out of the shadows to take the title of vizier for himself. I listened to the already recorded dialogue and looked forward to trying my hand at a bit more acting than I otherwise could hope for.Unfortunately, that didn't come to pass.The movie was shut down before we got to it.
I did,however, get quite a few fun scenes with them. Running around, trying to recover the golden balls,swinging around on a hidden brick-wall door,getting tortured by ZigZag with a particularly nasty nose impaling instrument and many more.
One scene had them stealing the golden balls under their robes, sneaking behind the backs of the army while King Nod addressed the crowd.Dick had great fun coming up with very rude ideas of where they might hide the balls, probably knowing full well i would blush... and i did.
These characters had an enormous amount of pencil mileage.Apart from the gold-lined robes, they had very elaborate hands and fingernails, several rings and pearl stringed turbans.No ruff indication for clean -up here...since the cels were inked directly from the animation drawings. Even today, I find it hard to draw very rough and my 'rough-inbetweens' are pretty close to cleanups, much to the delight of the clean-up artist following me and much to the chagrin of my right wrist.


Mike Rauch said...

Wow! What gorgeous designs for "background" characters. Thanks for documenting and sharing all this. It's such a valuable resource.

sAkora1 said...

This is very well done these guys don't do much in the movie but I oved them regardless. I wonder if Tickle is a girl and if hat is the case she is a pretty ugly looking girl. Oh well I say this because the picture of Gopher putting the balls in tickles robe he is puting them in His/Her's butt and Tickle is holding hem up to the chest area. Anyway love the designs and these BG characters I just love it when bad guys have weird and funny cronies.

sAkpra1 said...

Opps I mean slap putting the balls in Ticles butt. My mistake.

Andreas said...

thanks, they were fun to do, even if I never got to animate a scene that Dick promised me where Goblet takes over as new Grand Vizier. all three are male as far as I know. the voice of Kenneth Williams surely influenced the very camp characters. I remember when Dick briefed me on the scene where they carry the balls behind the wall of soldiers and he demonstrated what he wanted them to do...it was very rude, but very funny

Anonymous said...

If you were to animate for a fan project, would you animate these 4?