Let's pretend for a moment, shall we?
Let's pretend that there's been this epiphanious experience of religiosity, and that a great rapture has taken all the animation executives in Los Angeles up to the sky. Let me ask you, who would miss them?
Now let's pretend that the same thing has happened to the animation artists and the executives and their management support staffs were left behind. What now? Are they all of a sudden going to pick up some pencils and start designing characters?
Are they going to get emergency training programs started to get production quality artists ready to take everyone's place? Of course not. They wouldn't have a single clue as to how to go about it. It would take a generation to get the kids of today prepared just to begin approaching what is going on now in American animation.
With us on the other hand, the industry would go on and would be the better for it.
Consider the following. When an industry traditionally goes out on strike, management rolls up their sleeves and jumps in to man the stations until enough scabs can be drummed up and trained to take the place of the union. American animation management would not be even remotely able to do any such thing. Being pseudo producers, their only course of action would be to send their pre-production drawings overseas and let a foreign studio work out the problems as has always been the case. Without American animation talent, what are you going to do about illustrating the script? Translate it and send it to a foreign country for design? Makes perfect sense, doesn't it? What a great method of preparation for the theme parks of tomorrow.
Let's imagine once again, that the rapture that has scooped up these sharp shooting geniuses has caught the attention of the highest levels of the entertainment and high finance industries? Would there be a panic? Would the economy come to a crashing halt?
Now let's imagine that the same has happened with our community. What do you think it would do to those companies who have international marketing and real estate empires based upon what goes on in little ol' Burbank, California?
An organ grinder's monkey can be trained to do what our animation executives do with such grand spectacle and preening, and probably do a better job.
This executive class that scours the animation landscape from their unapproachable ivory tower, erected to hide the truth about their lack of professionalism, their commitment to mediocrity, their ignorance of the subject, their creative confusion, their apathy, dishonesty and stupidity.
The American Animation Industry doesn't need to worship the ground these people walk on. In fact, our industry doesn't need them at all. Any one of us can do what these above the line, below the average MBAs can do.
We can do a much better job at production and studio management than they've been doing and it would be so natural for us. We don't need to enroll in night school or take a university course. All we have to do is go to a book store and read the very material they pass out in college. If these executives can learn how to do it, I'm sure it can't be that difficult.
Big budgets? Use the same software that they do. Techniques of business and production management? No problem. We'd wind up teaching them.
In fact, a creative age in animation would be initiated that would turn the Second Golden Age into a Renaissance for our country and our popular culture.
In order for the American Animation Industry to rise to the new heights that await us, to enter the new era, our community has to reach a mental level of seeing ourselves as equal to or better than any non-creative, non-artistic peudo-producer as far as our ability to do what he or she can do, and not be wooed into mental submission to them by the glittery gift wrap around their empty box.
Charles Zembillas © 1999
No commercial distribution of this material is permitted
without the expressed written consent of the author.