We've now finally made it to the premiere day of Be Cool Scooby-Doo, and I'm really excited! However, I am worried about people's close-mindedness towards the show already. I'm really hoping that this doesn't affect how the show does in the long run, but I guess all we can do is wait and see.
I got the wonderful chance to interview Jon Colton Barry, one of the writers of Be Cool Scooby-Doo. I loved reading all of his interesting responses to my questions! (It also makes sense now why the Ghost of Elias Kingston was re-used in the first episode :) ! )
Before we get on to the interview, I want to thank Jon Colton Barry for taking the time out of his busy schedule to answer all of my questions. I already said this on the ScoobyAddicts forum on Saturday, but I also want to thank Jon for all the info he's given us and the questions he's answered over at the ScoobyAddicts forum. It's very much appreciated!
Here is the interview:
ScoobySnax.com: How did you get into animation writing?
Jon Colton Barry: My old friend Dan Povenmire had seen a recent stage comedy I had written, which he liked. He had just sold “Phineas & Ferb” to Disney around that time. I was looking for work, so he offered me a writing job on the show. I had no plans to get into animation, but since I had a background in art, writing and music, “Phineas” ended up being a good fit.
ScoobySnax.com: You've worked on multiple different shows, such as Phineas and Ferb and of course Be Cool Scooby-Doo. Do you have a favorite show to write?
Jon Colton Barry: Every show, in fact, virtually every individual episode of every series, presents its own, unique creative challenges and that’s what I enjoy. I don’t have a favorite (yet).
ScoobySnax.com: Before you began work on Be Cool Scooby-Doo, were you a fan of Scooby? If so, do you have a favorite episode, movie or villain?
Jon Colton Barry: I am a fan of Scooby. It’s been on the air, in some form or another, for 45 years. I grew up watching reruns of the classic, original series the most. I've always kind of liked the first season episode "What the Hex Going On?" with the Ghost of Elias Kingston. It's a strange episode. Watching the original series as we were developing the new series made me see the odd choices the gang would make sometimes in the past. Sharon's Uncle Stuart has been suddenly turned into a decrepit, elderly man by a ghost and they decide to "watch" him overnight instead of rushing the poor guy to a hospital? Who knows how much damage is done to someone when they're magically aged 40 years? And exactly where did this guy learn such remarkable make-up skills that he could fool them even up close. I've never even seen a big Hollywood movie where "old age" make-up looks very convincing. Haha.
ScoobySnax.com: What is your process for writing an episode of Be Cool Scooby-Doo?
Jon Colton Barry: Well, in general, the process is fairly typical for a scripted animated show: come up with an idea for an episode, write an outline, then a script, etc. It takes a few weeks. This is probably the most sit-com, character-driven Scooby Doo series yet and the main five Scooby gang characters are more fleshed-out, fully formed “people” than ever. For me, personally, the “process” is getting Fred, Daphne, Velma, Shaggy and Scooby up on the page and letting them start talking to each other. That’s the fun part – just trying to get out of the way and see what they say.
ScoobySnax.com: Do you have a favorite episode that you've written of Be Cool Scooby-Doo?
Jon Colton Barry: I have a few personal favorites, but I can’t really talk about them - yet ;)
ScoobySnax.com: You've redesigned the whole gang for Be Cool Scooby-Doo. Do you have a favorite character in the show?
Jon Colton Barry: I like them all for different reasons, but I think I like writing Daphne the most. She’s probably the most transformed of the main characters and getting into her eccentricities is fun.
ScoobySnax.com: What made you want to replace Mindy Cohn with Kate Miccuci for the voice of Velma?
Jon Colton Barry: I didn’t have anything to do with that, so I can’t really comment on it. I’ve only worked with Kate, who's brilliant and hilarious. People are going to be floored by Velma.
ScoobySnax.com: If you could work on any show in the world, what would it be?
Jon Colton Barry: I always thought “Mystery Science Theater 3000” would have been fun to write.
ScoobySnax.com: After Be Cool Scooby-Doo is finished, do you plan to keep working on future Scooby-Doo series/movies?
Jon Colton Barry: I have no idea. Our show is really different and unique in tone and style than other Scooby projects currently going on. I really love the characters and what we’ve done with them, so I’d be pleased if our approach was embraced in the future, wider world of Scoobydom. If it was, I’d always be happy writing them.
ScoobySnax.com: Thank you again for taking the time to answer these questions. I am very much looking forward to the new series!!!
Jon Colton Barry: Thank you! I hope you enjoy it.
Be sure to tune into Cartoon Network tonight at 6pm (central) for the premiere episode of Be Cool, Scooby-Doo!