How long does it take to make a South Park episode?

Discussion in 'TV Shows' started by Ric Easton, Apr 10, 2003.

  1. Ric Easton

    Ric Easton Cinematographer

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    Last night they had a very timely episode of pro war vs. peace protesters. Being that the war only started three weeks ago, this totally amazed me. I know it's animation on the cheap, but it's gotta take some time. Was this just incredibly good timing? They even mentioned that daylight savings time had just started, so they must have known when it was gonna run.

    Ric
     
  2. Jeff Kleist

    Jeff Kleist Executive Producer

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    They've done entire episodes on topics that happened as little as 4 days prior. Trey & Matt tend to get an idea and marathon it. I believe the last one was the Catholic Priest scandal
     
  3. Mark Schmitt

    Mark Schmitt Stunt Coordinator

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    I remember hearing that it takes only about a week to make a new show, and they've also been known to make changes up until the last minute. The process has been so refined that it's relatively easy to create new animation since it's all done on computers (they use Maya, I think). I'm always amazed by how topical the shows can be. I remember one episode, that dealt with Kenny as Elian Gonzales, where at the last minute they put in a shot that mimicks the now-famous photo of Elian in the closet with a rescuer pointing a gun towards him. The photo was published only a couple of days before the episode aired and in an interview Trey and Matt were talking about how they were able to include it.

    I've even seen one instance of them tweaking a show after the Wednesday airing, before the Saturday airing.
     
  4. Beau

    Beau Supporting Actor

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    I remember during the whole 2000 elections thing, the WEDNESDAY AFTER election day(THE NEXT DAY)they did the kindergarten episode where Ike and the other kid were nominated to run for class president and it turned out a tie and each side demanded a recount. That episode aired the DAY AFTER election day. BUT this was only a minor part of the show, the rest was about the Trapper Keeper.
     
  5. dave_brogli

    dave_brogli Screenwriter

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    I read in an article about them and another guy that will be helping them out later this season (dont remeber excactly who.... director from Mamas Family, Or in the family?? Some funny guy)
    Well anyways they said that the can put one out easily in a week.
     
  6. Ric Easton

    Ric Easton Cinematographer

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    I think you may be referring to Norman Lear. He created All in the Family, The Jeffersons, Maude, Mary Hatman, Mary Hartman along with a slew of others. I think he is being brought on as a writer.

    Ric
     
  7. Matthew Chmiel

    Matthew Chmiel Cinematographer

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    Norman Lear's first episode he helped Matt and Trey on was the 100th episode the other night. Look at the end credits of the episode and he as credited as being a co-writer.
     
  8. MickeS

    MickeS Producer

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    Wouldn't that go against what they were saying in that episode about Lucas, Coppola and others who make new versions of their old movies? [​IMG]

    (I'm not a SP fan, only watch it sporadically, so maybe that's been discussed before).
     
  9. Vince Maskeeper

    Vince Maskeeper Lead Actor

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    The best part about this one from the Onion is that I have had coffee in Crazee Espresso, have bought records at Rainy Day and have been to McCoy's Tavern. And Crazee always has cute girls working there.

    made me laugh at least!

    -vince
     
  10. Chris Lockwood

    Chris Lockwood Producer

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    > it's all done on computers

    Really? I thought it was construction paper.
     
  11. Jeff Kleist

    Jeff Kleist Executive Producer

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    It is construction paper, that has been scanned into a computer. SP:BLU was all hand animated however
     
  12. Keith Mickunas

    Keith Mickunas Cinematographer

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    I don't think they scanned the construction paper. The texture of the paper is rendered. I recall that they had to get a pretty powerful system because it was the only one that rendered it with that look. If it was just scanned images, they'd be simple 2D textures that should be easy to apply. Also, the original shorts and one of the earliest episodes (Anal Probe or Volcano) was done in construction paper, I think the movie was rendered though. In fact I recall reading an interview with their sysadmins and they talked about the size of each frame for the show vs. the movie and the time needed to render each.

    Micke, there was a prior discussion of SP changing things in a recent thread. You have to keep in mind that they are sometimes still working on an episode as they are uploading it to Comedy Central. Therefore you could consider it to not really be finished and the first airing is their "test screening".
     
  13. Graeme Clark

    Graeme Clark Cinematographer

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  14. Joel C

    Joel C Screenwriter

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