ThunderCats - Interviews

Exclusive Audio Interviews

By Nick Mills
Additional material by Chris (He-Fan)

 

ThunderCats Secondary Character Designer Jim MeskimenJim Meskimen
Interview conducted: Sunday 12th October 2008

Comments: Besides the main characters of ThunderCats such as the Mutants and the ThunderCats themselves, there were other ‘secondary’ characters that provided much entertainment in the cartoon but were basically used as material for episodes. They proved almost as popular as the main characters themselves – from Pumm-Ra and Grune the Destroyer to Dr Dometone and Mandora the Evil Chaser, the writers would write the characters. But what’s the process after that? Who designs the character, artistically draws them, makes them who they are and finally sending the animation off to Japan?

Well, that man would be none other than Secondary Character Designer, Jim Meskimen! And we had the pleasure of talking to the man himself about his work on ThunderCats – including the fact that he was the only character designer on the show for a long period! Find out the process, from start to finish, of how a secondary character is made. What characters did he create? How many stages did the character go through? Or how about the hilarious characters that didn’t make it into the show – including the duck-billed samurai! Jim Meskimen has an extensive career in the art field, having worked for the popular cartoon studio Hanna-Barbera. Find out what got him into art, how he came to work for Rankin-Bass and eventually working on ThunderCats – find out, from another perspective, just what Jules Bass was like to work for. Was he really as big of a nightmare as some of our previous interviews told? This interview is just worthy of downloading just for the great tales and insightful information you’ll get.

Not only did he work as Secondary Character Designer, he’s also a very well known impressionist and voice-over artist, having worked for such famous franchises as Batman, Superman and Scooby Doo. He also worked with the very famous and talented voice actors Bob McFadden and Earl Hammond and tells us his memories of both talents – he witnessed some of the recording sessions and tells us a few things about his favourite voice-actors on the show and who he was inspired by when going into voice-acting. If that’s not enough to get you downloading, Jim also gives us a few impressions of famous persons including John McCain, Jack Nicholson, Arnold Schwartzneggar and a very brilliant impression of Morgan Freeman which he does for The Tonight Show. Jim’s amazing sense of humour makes this interview so worth the listening and, combined with his knowledge on ThunderCats and voice-acting on other shows such as Mini-Monsters and TigerSharks, can give the listener a sense of perspective on the experience of both character-designing and voice-acting from someone who was there. Having worked on some popular franchises, find out which is his favourite and what popular artists he’s worked with (including the late, great Isaac Hayes).

And he also tells us about his current projects including ‘Golden Age Stories’ which were written by the famous science fiction writer, L. Ron Hubbard (you can find all the links at the bottom of the page). Find out if he’s interested in voicing any characters for the new ThunderCats movie and more information on his work for JibJab where he voices his impressions for an internet parody website. Didn’t know about JibJab? This interview gives you the lowdown on it. All this and more in this very exclusive audio interview that Jim answers any question we throw at him – with that said, you need to download this interview. So what are you waiting for?

To download the interview, right click and save as to your computer.
To stream the interview via your browser, click the link as you would normally do.
Jim Meskimen Interview – MP3 (43.2 MB)

For all of Jim’s artwork and impressions, go to www.appliedsilliness.com.

For Jim Meskimen’s current project ‘Golden Age Stories’, go to www.goldenagestories.com.

For Jim’s voiceover website and information on other current projects, go to http://www.jimmeskimenvo.com.

For the internet video parody website that Jim provides voices for, go to www.jibjab.com.