Hello, people of the internet!!! On today’s ‘Monday Memos’ we’re going to talk about one of the past times that we all enjoy…binge-watching! Let’s face it, one of the big things we look for when we’re looking at cox internet plans, as well as all the providers in our area, is that the internet is going to be fast and reliable so we’re able to stream movies and TV shows. No-one wants to be waiting for something to buffer right in the middle of the most important part – it just ruins the tension and the drama of the moment. Whether you like Netflix, Hulu, DVDs, or if you have one of the best android boxes, you know that we love spending hours getting lost in our favorite shows. It really doesn’t matter what they are as long as they are binge worthy of course! You may also want to check out the DMG Facebook page to see if they have anything that you may wish to see!. So if you want to know what shows you should watch this winter please keep reading. Ready? Ok, let’s go!!!
5) Beverly Hills 90210 (Hulu):
This classic 90s teen drama is definitely one that all music fans should check out (if you’re not already a fan of it) because this is the show that is given the credit of creating the teen drama genre that brought us other favorites such as Dawson’s Creek, Gossip Girl and so many others. If you think Rosewood has drama just wait until you see what happens in Beverly Hills.
4) Star Trek (Netflix):
If you’re into sci-fi then I’m sure you’re already in love with this groundbreaking franchise, with a new highly anticipated movie coming out next year this is the perfect time to get familiar with Star Trek. This show has great, complex characters, incredible action, and because there have been A LOT of movies, spin-offs, and even an aminated show then you know that this is a franchise that knows what its’ viewers want to see.
I will admit that I am a big anime fan. I love watching the shows no matter how ridiculous they are. I’m even thinking about getting some chibi Nendoroid figures because I love cute collectibles like that. Whether you watched these shows as a kid, love anime, or just love amazing shows then you have to rewatch these shows this winter break. If you haven’t revisited the Digital World lately then you need to catch up before this franchise releases it’s newest movie next year (btw if you haven’t seen the 1st movie in the Digimon Adventure Tri series then you need to RIGHT NOW because it’s amazing). 2016 will also bring us a new movie that will follows the King of Games Yugi as he saves the world from evil…again (poor kid can’t get break). Even though we don’t know a lot about this new movie yet, we do know that it takes place 6 months after the original Yu-Gi-Oh manga ends so now is a good time to dust off your deck and getting ready to duel.
2) Pretty Little Liars (Netflix):
Ok if you’ve ever seen this show then you know that you have to binge watch this show at least every other season to keep up with everything that has happened. Last season we found out who “A” was and honestly were left with even more unanswered questions. When we visit Rosewood again in 2016 we will time jump 5 years in the future, so needless to say you may need a few days to catch up again on all the romance, drama, and suspense (I don’t know if my feels can handle this again y’all).
1) Gilmore Girls (Netflix):
Needless to say the internet went into a frenzy when we found out that we were going back to Stars Hollow. Gilmore Girls had drama, romance, amazing characters, witty writing, and basically made everyone want to move to a small town. If you’ve never seen Gilmore Girls then you are missing a VERY important part of TV history and you need to hop over to Netflix right now and check it out (c’mon you’re on there all day anyway so go on and check it out).
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Hello people of the internet!!! On today’s ‘Monday Memos’ I am very excited to bring you an interview I recently did with Eric Stuart. If you don’t already know, Eric is a voice actor, voice director, and musician who has entertained us for years. He has had prominent roles in cartoons and anime such as: ‘Pokémon’, ‘Yu-Gi-Oh!’, ‘One Piece’, ‘Slayers’, ‘Viva Pinata’, and so many more. Eric is also an extremely talented singer/songwriter who has released 9 albums with The Eric Stuart Band. In this interview Eric and I discuss the voice acting industry, which characters are the most memorable to him, what he wished he had known before getting into the entertainment industry, and so much more! So if you are a fan of great show/music then please read on. Ready? Ok, let’s go!!!
Celinda: So how did you first get into the entertainment industry?
Eric: I’d always been a musician and I loved performing, but I never did much theater or acting. When I got out of school I really wanted to pursue music. I was offered a job at a recording studio, which I thought worked on music stuff, but it turned out that they produced radio and TV commercials, voice-overs specifically. So I was introduced to that whole other world, and I ended up working at that studio for 10 years, and then I ran that studio for a little bit. During that time I learned all about voice-overs, I ended up being a casting director and producer, and I started doing some of the voices myself during casting sessions when I had a two character spot and one of the guys didn’t show up. So I would read with one of the women that were waiting to read with a partner and the clients would end up picking me after hearing the tape. So it started to make sense to me that maybe using my voice as a voice actor would allow me the anonymity to continue pursing my music career and be taken seriously as a musician, while still using the same instrument I use a singer to make a living as an actor. So I kind of stumbled into the entertainment world especially with the voice acting side.
Celinda: Wow that’s a really interesting story, so you basically began on the other side of the acting industry.
Eric: Right, I think we learn a lot by watching. I also used to play tennis and I was a good tennis player. I would find my tennis rating and it would be pretty good. But I could watch somebody’s form and explain to them what they were doing wrong, and make them a better tennis player than I was. There rating would be even higher than mine. What I mean is I think you learn a lot from listening and watching, which made it easier for me when I stood behind the mic, because I knew what it took to produce and assemble the commercials.
Celinda: So, what’s one thing you wish you had known about the entertainment industry, whether it be acting, music, or both, before entering it?
Eric: The biggest lesson I learned later, which could have been helpful earlier, is that the decision making really isn’t personal. You may do an audition and really feel like you nailed it, and then you don’t get the job. Of course, in film, there’s a lot of speculation about how the bigger films select their cast. Some people believe that there are auditions, whilst others assume it’s a word of mouth process. Due to this, a lot of people ask themselves is backstage a scam or is it worth trying to make some connections within the film industry? Of course, making some connections with people in the industry is always beneficial. However, there are still auditions that may have to be done. When auditioning, being able to not take it so seriously and put that pressure on yourself every time you get up to bat for a job is something that I wish I had known going in because it would have saved me a little bit of that disappointment and frustration.
Celinda: That’s a really interesting answer I’ve never gotten that one before, but I think that’s really true. You’ve done a lot of voice over roles in both anime and western cartoons, which role was the most memorable to you and why?
Eric: Well Brock and James from Pokémon are very much apart of my personality. I was playing a show at a venue and the person running the event told me about an hour after meeting me “You probably hear this a lot, but I’m a huge fan of yours I actually grew up watching you”, and I said “No, I’m very flattered”, because it’s kind of an honor to be apart of a pop culture phenomenon that kids who are 6 years old, and grandparents who are 60 years old know the word Pokémon. To be part of a show like that is a big deal and I’m honored to be apart of that. So Brock and James stand out because I like comedy, specifically comedic bad guys. James to me is so much fun to play because Team Rocket is not truly evil just a little misguided, and we still root for them even though we know their the “bad guys”. I also have to say that Kaiba from Yu-Gi-Oh is one of my favorites because there’s a big challenge in playing a character that many people dislike but he is also not really a villain, he’s a rival. I approached that idea with you can’t be the champ if there’s no one around to push you to be the best you can be. So without Kaiba, Yugi would just sit around and probably watch movies on Netflix.
Celinda: Very true, those characters are some of my favorites as well and definitely hold a special place in the hearts of fan everywhere.
Eric: I think that one of the reasons why Pokémon caught on so well is that there are characters, stories, friendships, and morals that people can relate to. Recently, a friend of mine who knows How to get pokemon Platinum ROM so he can play on his computer was talking to me about the game and how the world of Pokémon is such a good escape from the troubles of modern life. More often than not people tell me “When I was in school I didn’t have any friends, and I’d come home or watch on Saturday morning and I felt like those were my friends”. It’s because these were people that everyone could connect to whether you liked Ash, Brock, or James, there was someone redeeming on the show. With Team Rocket you also see the relationship and friendship that they have with each other, and how they protect each other so that’s very redeeming as well.
Celinda: Elaborating on the legacy of both ‘Pokemon’ and ‘Yu-Gi-Oh!’ among their respective fans, what is it like knowing that the characters that you helped create on these shows are still so popular so many years later, and how do you feel about Kaiba’s prominent role in the new ‘Yu-Gi-Oh! The Dark Side of Dimensions’ movie?
Eric: Well I gotta say that I was very excited when I saw the Japanese promo, and of course the minute that came out, a lot of my fans wrote to me and asked if I would be in it. I would love to be in it, we don’t know nay of the details yet, that’s something that we have to wait for everyone on the production side to decide what their doing. I would love to come back and play Kaiba. I’ve made appearances at the Yu-Gi-Oh tournaments around the country as Kaiba, so I know Konami considers me Seto Kaiba but there are no guarantees. Hopefully I get the opportunity to play that role and if they go another way I’ll be disappointed, but that’s part of the letting go thing. It’s exciting to know that that story arc is the most popular among the Yu-Gi-Oh fans, so its’ nice to see that the creators and the people who are behind all of this recognize that as well. It will be interesting too, because it seems like the characters are a little bit older, so it would be great to do that.
Celinda: Yes, and Kaiba was definitely another non-villainous villain that was interesting because his backstory was so complex.
Eric: There’s definitely two schools of thought with Kaiba. I have fans who love to hate him, and I have fans who want to be just like him. I think when you dig deeper into his story you see where he’s coming from. Also I think when you see the Egyptian story arc and you realize that Kaiba was really Yugi’s sparring partner, that also shows that he’s there to push Yugi to be the best. I use the Rocky and Apollo Creed reference from the Rocky movies, because he needed someone like Apollo to push him, but also to be his friend. I think Yugi and Kaiba have a mutual respect for each other, I wouldn’t call then best friends, but I think that if they had a common enemy they would work together, as they’ve done. I think Yugi is a lot more of a pure hearted character than Kaiba is, but I think that Kaiba would still throw himself in front of the train tracks to save Yugi, unless he had to save Mokuba instead.
Celinda: So moving on I know that on shows such as a Pokemon and Yugioh you not only did voice over work, but you also directed, what was that process like for you?
Eric: It’s funny because it’s great to get the notoriety and the fun of acting as he characters, but what’s really very satisfying is when you’re the director you’re basically the cook, you’re baking the cake, you’re putting each piece together and creating the show. It was also a way for me to become friendly with the other actors on the show. Most of the time we recorded by ourselves so one person would walk in the room while the other was leaving, but I got to direct them so I got to spend hours and hours with them, and develop those friendships. It’s interesting the production side has always been satisfying for me, I like to be in the spotlight obviously I’m a performer and I enjoy that, but it’s also great to be able to take these pieces and turn them into hopefully a masterpiece. Another show that I directed that I’m very proud of was ‘Viva Pinata’ which was a very funny show. Unlike ‘Yu-Gi-Oh!’ and Pokémon where we had to match existing animation and match lip flap which requires 50% acting and 50% technical skills, ‘Viva Pinata’ is a pre-lay show which means that we record the voices first, and then I would assemble the passing of the dialogue line by line and then send that to the animators to animate, so I was really creating the timing of the jokes. So that was really very satisfying. There’s a lot of fun to being on that side of the glass which a lot of people don’t really know unless you’ve been in production. Because you don’t know what goes into the making of these shows sometimes, so it can be very satisfying seeing it on air or on the big screen knowing the hours and days you put into creating that show.
Celinda: It sounds like such a meticulous process, but the effort definitely shines through. I really love the musical numbers that you did for Pokémon as Team Rocket and Brock, ‘Two Perfect Girls’ from the ‘Totally Pokémon’ soundtrack has always been a personal favorite of mine. How does singing on a soundtrack as these characters differ from performing your own music in terms of difficulty?
Eric: Well one of the things that I had to make sure, especially with ‘Two Perfect Girls’ was that I couldn’t sing to well. I couldn’t be this great singer and then be the funny Brock on the show. I had to really focus on being a little bit pitchy, and quirky and funny rather than singing every note right. Whereas when I did ‘Double Trouble’ [which is off of the ‘Pokémon: 2 B.A. Master’ soundtrack] with James I wanted to be a better singer because I thought there’s something in James’s voice that made me think that he could be a better singer. The hardest thing about singing in the episodes is that we would rescore a lot of the music so when we would write a song sometime the lip flap wouldn’t move in time with the music so I had to sing slightly out of rhythm with that song. That was really hard to do because I play I’m rhythmic, I almost had to keep the music really low in my headphones so I wouldn’t lock in.
Celinda: So switching gears, lets discuss your own music, which artists have influenced your sound the most?
Eric: When I was a young man my mother gave me a radio that only got a local AM station that played oldies, so I grew up going to sleep listening to the oldies like Elvis Presley, Buddy Holly, and The Everly Brothers while my friends were listening to more mainstream Rock n’ Roll. So when I started to sing, I could sing like Buddy Holly so he was a huge influence in the beginning. As I got a little older so many people were comparing me to Cat Stevens, and once I started playing with a band it was the whole Bruce Springsteen thing, I sang along with people I could sound like, so I think my list goes Buddy Holly, Elvis Presley, Cat Stevens, and then Bruce Springsteen.
Celinda: I can definitely hear those influences in your music, so are there any artists who have influenced your music that may surprise your fans?
Eric: Yeah, I’m a songwriter so I listen to a lot of music just based off of the song, which can be in any style of music. I’m primarily drawn to a good lyric I listen to a lot of more folk rock guys, but people like Elvis Costello are a huge influence for me in terms of songwriting, as a lyricist I just think he’s a genius. It’s funny a fan asked me the other day what my favorite Rock n’ Roll band is and they were surprised to when I said AC/DC, I probably play AC/DC more than any band when I’m getting psyched up. Which is surprising because they say, “I don’t hear any AC/DC in hat you do”, and I say “Of course not, but that doesn’t meant that they can’t be a favorite band of mine”. I also like beautiful melodic instrumental stuff, to sort of clear my brain. Sometimes you want to out on music that has nothing to do with what you do so that you’re not analyzing it, you’re just enjoying it. My playlists would surprise you because I like old disco stuff too, and old R&B and old Hip-Hop because I like to dance even though I don’t play that stuff.
Celinda: So, I’ve really enjoyed your latest EP Character, honestly I’ve had it on repeat for the longest time, what inspired the EP’s name?
Eric: Well the art was the reason. I went to a convention and one of the staff members had drawn individual badges for all of the VIP guests as caricatures of the actors, and I really liked the style of the picture. As we were putting the EP together I was thinking I play characters, I am a character, and your character is your honor, so I thought that this word means so many things, it kind of fits with who I am.
Celinda: So what was your songwriting process like for ‘Character’?
Eric: Well we had been playing the song ‘One Last Dance’, which was something that I really liked but wasn’t on any album yet, and the fans kept asking when I was going to record that one. So the idea was to go into the studio and record a single, but of course when you do that and put that much pressure on one song, you might go in and the magic might not be there. So I thought let’s go in and do four songs so if it comes out great, then it comes out great, if not maybe the other songs are better. So with that I decided to sit down and start writing so that I really liked the four songs that we were going to do. The way that I write songs is I sit down with the guitar and come up with a chord progression and I sign nonsense words and find melodies. I know that everyone is different and different things work for different people, but when people ask me how to write songs I always recommend this method. Visit somewhere like The Sound Junky, buy yourself a guitar (or any instrument for that matter) that you will love and just start to play it. Enjoy it. The rest will come. Sometimes, words form in what I’m singing just by the shapes of the vowels and continuants and the syncopation. Also, I write what I know whether everything is autobiographical or not, I think why people gravitate towards what I do is because I sing about stuff from the heart that I’ve either experienced or witnessed.
Celinda: Wow that’s such an interesting process, so what effect has living in cities with such famous yet unique music scenes such as New York and Nashville had on your music?
Eric: Well when I lived in New York and I played around town I was sort of two Country for a lot of the rock clubs, which is funny to me because I’m so not Country. When I would come down to Nashville before I moved here, I was told that I was too Rock for the Country places, so I sort of fell in between these two cities. I will say that in New York my songs were longer, then when I came down to Nashville, I realized that the songs were shorter and followed more of a formula. So what was great is that I took the stuff from the Rock n’ Roll stuff I had been doing, and the stuff form the Country stuff I started doing, and found a happy medium. If anything coming to Nashville ahs helped me tighten up my songwriting to be able to say more with less, and in New York I got away with saying more with more.
Celinda: Lastly are there any upcoming projects that your fans should look out for?
Eric: Well I’ve been doing a lot of audio books, if you go to audible.com I mostly work for one particular writer named J.R. Rain, who’s got a great sense of humor, thriller, horror, sarcasm thing going on in most of the books he writes. I just finished up a book that I’m editing right now which is called ‘Ghost Crypt’, which is part of a series that he does, it’s a ghost story that takes place in the tubes of London which is fun. I do a lot of industrial and corporate stuff, I’m also doing a lot of international promos for American sitcoms that air in India. There might be some cartoon stuff coming down the line so people should definitely keep their eyes open for that. As I said there are things that I can’t really discuss whether their going to happen or not, but I would keep my eyes watching some of the stuff that you might be hoping to see me in.
Celinda: Is there anything that you would like to say to any of your fans who are reading this interview?
Eric: My anime fans have been very loyal to everything that I’ve done in the voice-over world which is great, and they’ve actually crossed over to be music fans, which is also great. The thing that I want to say to them is thank you for the support, and those who haven’t really experienced the other side of who I am with the music, I ask them to go check that out.
Celinda: Thank you for taking the time to speak with me today Eric.
Eric: Thank you for asking me.
*You can check out The Eric Stuart Band’s music video for their song ‘My Love Can Change That’ here:
All photos and information used in this blog belong to Eric Stuart, Eric Stuart Band, Pokémon, Yu-Gi-Oh!, One Piece, Slayers, Viva Pinata, Satoshi Tajiri, Ken Sugimori, Game Freak, Koch Records, John Loeffler, Rachael Lillis, Adam Blaustein, Ted Lewis, Louis Cortelezzi, Bob Mayo, Pokemon 2.B.A Master, Totally Pokemon, Yu-Gi-Oh! Kazuki Takahashi, Shueisha Inc., Viz Media, Hiroyuki Toshiki Inoue, BMF, Toei Animation, 4Kids Entertainment, 4K Media Inc., Takashi Watanabe, Takao Koyama, E.G Films, J.C. Staff Co., Ltd., Funimation, TV Tokyo, Konosuke Uda, Junji Shimizu, Muehisa Sakai, Hiroaki Miyamoto, Toshinori Fukazawa, Junki Takegami, Hirohiko Uesaka, Toei Animation, FOX, Rare, Krome Studios, Climax Group, THQ, Microsoft Game Studios, Netflix, Yu-Gi-Oh! The Dark Side of Dimensions, Studio Gallop, Nihon Ad Systems, Satoshi Kuwabara, Konami, Rocky, Apollo Creed, Sylvester Stallone, John G. Avildsen, Irwin Winkler, Robert Chartoff, United Artists, Carl Weathers, Cat Stevens, Bruce Springsteen, Elvis Presley, Buddy Holly, The Everly Brothers, AC/DC, Deram Records, Island Records, A&M Records, Mountain of Light, Jamal , YA, Atlantic Records, Legacy Recordings, Columbia Records, Sun Records, RCA (Victor) Records, HMV, Decca Records, Brunswick Records, Coral Records, Cadence Records, London Records, Warner Bros. Records, Razor & Tie, Mercury Records, Albert Productions, EMInR cords, Columbia Records, Epic Records, Atlantic Records, Atco Records, Elektra Records, East West Records, Audible, J.R. Rain, Ghost Crypt, Nasville, New York, One Last Dance, Character, London, India, ericstuart.com, YouTube, Twitter, Favebook, iTunes, and all other original owners. I do not own anything in this blog. If any people, corporations, businesses, companies, etc, were not previously given credit for their work, they are given credit now and their previous absence was unintentional. All opinions expressed in this blog are my own. I wrote this blog for entertainment purposes and no copyright infringement is intended.
Hello people of the internet!!! On today’s ‘Monday Memos’ I am very excited to bring you an interview with voice actress Lara Jill Miller. You may know her best as ‘Kari’ on Digimon, ‘Clifford’ on Clifford’s Puppy Days, ‘Lambie’ on Doc McStuffins, and many other memorable roles. In this interview we talk about Lara’s career as a stage, on-camera, and voice actress, how she feels about reprising her Digimon Adventure Tri (let’s cross our fingers that the movies get a U.S. dub!), what to look out for from her next, and so much more! So now let’s get to the part that y’all came here for…the interview. Ready? Ok, let’s go!!!
Celinda: Hi Lara, first of all I want to thank you for taking the time out of your busy schedule to do this interview.
Lara: Thank you for asking me, Celinda.
Celinda: So I want to begin by asking you about your role as Amaryllis in the Broadway production of The Music Man, which starred Dick Van Dyke. What was it like to work with such an iconic actor at such an early stage in your career, and how do you think this experience shaped you as an entertainer?
Lara: Dick Van Dyke was amazing. So funny, so talented. I was so thrilled to meet him at my audition for the show, I couldn’t believe I was actually meeting the guy from CHITTY CHITTY BANG BANG and MARY POPPINS! I was really little when I met him and I remember shaking his hand and seeing his really long feet in white sneakers, and then looking all the way up to his head, WAYYY up there.
Touring in the show, and then performing on Broadway was a spectacular experience overall. Traveling all over the US for the first time was really exciting. I love performing live and had a lot of experience in the years prior at a local dinner theatre in my hometown. Dancing and singing is a great joy of mine, and that made me realize I was born to do this.
Celinda: That sounds like such a cool experience! So, you’re widely known for your role as Samantha on the 6 seasons of the television show Gimme A Break. When the show ended Samantha was beginning her new life as a college student, and you also later earned a college degree yourself, so there was a very cool life imitating art aspect there. Were there any other similarities between you and Samantha, and how do you think growing up on the set of a sitcom shaped you as a person?
Lara: Well, I’m the youngest of 3 daughters, so there’s that. And I was pretty much a tomboy, but I certainly didn’t wear overalls like my character Samantha, NOR play with WORMS! I loved Nell as much as Samantha did. And well, when I got my braces off and got my hair cut, so did my character on TV!
Growing up on a set really made me – well – grow up. I learned a lot about responsibility, being professional, a great work ethic. And also I became a better performer over the years, comic timing and such. I also learned that when you’re a celebrity, people treat you differently, but that it can all change in an instant, so one should never take anything for granted. I loved and appreciated all the years on the show. Unlike many child stars, I really loved my life and came out unscathed, no drugs, no alcohol, nothing. My parents were wonderful and supportive and not pushy. I learned a lot about ‘show business’ – both parts: the show AND the business!
Celinda: Wow that is such a profound answer, and so true, many people forget about the business part of the industry. Well, a lot of your fans (myself included) might know you best from your role as Kari on Digimon. When it was announced that Digimon was coming back to continue the story of the 8 original characters, the internet went into a frenzy. How does it feel to have fans still get really excited about a project you did 15 years ago?
Lara: Love hearing from you and all the fans! Digimon was my first animated gig. Lots of great memories. And well, yah! It feels GREAT to hear that people love the project and love Kari. If the show comes back to the US for a US dub, I’d love to be the grown up Kari.
Celinda: I think I can speak for all of your fans when I say that we would love to hear you voice adult Kari. So, another voice-over role that a lot of fans know you from is Clifford’s Puppy Days, how did this experience differ from your experiences working on Anime?
Lara: Anime is dubbed after the fact. Clifford’s Puppy Days (and some of my other shows like Juniper Lee, Wubbzy, Curious George, SciGirls, Hugglemonsters, Doc, etc…oh, and also the new Nick show I’m working on…) are original animation. We record first and then they draw the character TO US… We CREATE the roles. And for most of these shows, we record together as a cast. That’s fun.
Celinda: That does sound really fun. One of the many shows that you’re working on at the moment is Doc McStuffins on Disney Junior. This show has been widely praised for it’s educational aspects, how does it feel to know that shows you’ve worked on such as Doc McStuffins and SciGirls are influencing your audience to become more interested in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics) subjects?
Lara: I’m so honored and thrilled to be a part of these shows. Doc McStuffins is changing the world! Really! What a concept to be a part of such a big thing, right? I love playing Lambie. And Izzie on SciGirls – what a brilliant show! I hope that with both shows, we make a difference!
Celinda: I’m sure both shows will have a huge positive influence on your audience. So what are some of the major differences between preparing for a recording session for a voice-over project, versus an on-camera job?
Lara: Make-up…or lack thereof! And wardrobe. Although sometimes I like picking out cute outfits to record in… although they must be quiet clothes. You know, mic-worthy.
The thing with animation, we don’t have to memorize lines, but I do read the scripts, and prepare ad libs, etc, ahead of time. Also each week for Doc and Hugglemonsters we have to learn songs, harmonies. There’s a lot of preparation for that.
Celinda: Wow, I never would have thought about a lot of that, particularly the mic-worthy clothes. Lastly are there any upcoming projects that your fans should look out for, and is there anything that you would like to say to any of your fans who are reading this interview?
Lara: Oh yah! There’s a new Nickelodeon show! And… that’s about all I’m allowed to say right now! Go to my FB Page and/or follow me on Twitter for updates. I’m not THAT active on those social media pages, but I’m trying! And I love hearing from fans! The nice ones (which I’m SURE the ones reading this are!) And well, thanks for reading this. I feel very lucky that I get to do what I love to do and that so many people love what I do, too. Thank you for that.
Celinda: Thank you again for taking the time to speak with me Lara.
Lara: Thank YOU Celinda! And thanks again to all your readers for reading this!
Check out these clips to see a couple of the AWESOME characters Lara has voiced! (you can check out more clips on Lara’s official website, which is linked above):
‘Kari’ – Digimon (You can hear Lara’s voice beginning at 0:04)
‘Lambie’ – Doc McStuffins (You can hear Lara’s voice beginning at 1:04)
All credit goes to YouTube, Twitter, Facebook, Lara Jill Miller, Digimon, Clifford’s Puppy Days, Doc McStuffins, Digimon Adventure Tri, Digimon Adventure, Digimon Adventure 02, The Music Man, Dick Van Dyke, Chitty Chitty Bang Bang, Mary Poppins, Gimme A Break!, The Life and Times of Juniper Lee, Wow! Wow! Wubbzy!, Curious George, SciGirls, Henry Hugglemonster, Digimon: Digital Monsters, Hiroyuki Kakudo, Keisuke Okuda, Satoru Nishizono, Saban Entertainment, Fox Kids, Fox Family, Toon Disney, Nicktoons, Toei Animation, Atsushi Maekawa, Genki Yoshimura, Keitaro Motonaga, Takagi Katsuhiro, Yuuko Kakihara, Jeff Nimoy, Shuki Levy, Wendee Lee, Michael Sorich, David Walsh, Scholastic Corporation, PBS, PBS Kids, Norman Bridwell, Chris Nee, Mike Himelstein, Kay Hanley, Michelle Lewis, Brown Bag Films, Avamar, EMC Corporation, Disney-ABC Domestic Television, Disney Junior, Jared Faber, Emily Kapnek, Takanori Arisawa, Meredith Willson, Franklin Lacey, Ken Hughes, Albert R. Broccoli, John Stears, Irwin Kostal, Marc Breaux, Dee Dee Wood, Roald Dahl, Ian Fleming, Richard M. Sherman, Robert B. Sherman, Irwin Kostal, Christopher Challis, John Shirley, Warfield Productions, United Artists, Robert Stevenson, Walt Disney, Bill Walsh, Don DaGradi, P.L. Travers, Richard M. Sherman, Robert B. Sherman, Edward Colman, Cotton Warburton, Walt Disney Productions, Buena Vista Distribution, Nell Carter, Mort Lachman, Sy Rosen, John Bowab, Hal Cooper, Jim Drake, Linda Day, Dick Harwood, Jules Lichtman, Will Mackenzie, Patrick Maloney, Phil Ramuno, Tony Singletary, Oz, Scott, Howard Storm, Jay Graydon, Bob Christianson, Rod Parker, Arthur Julian, Coleman Mitchell, Geoffrey Neigher, Alan Landsburg Productions, Reeves Entertainment Group, MCA TV, Universal Television Enterprises, Universal Worldwide Television, Studios USA, Universal Domestic Television, NBC Universal Television Distribution, The Program Exchange, NBC, Judd Winick, Marsha F. Griffin, Tim McKeon, Eric Kentoff, Adam Pava, Kevin Seccia, Tom Franck, Michael Jelenic, Frank Squillace, Stewart Copeland, Judd Winick, Janet Dimon, Shareena Carlson, Frank Squillacem, Cartoon Network Studios, Cartoon Network, Bob Boyle, Doug Hadders, Adam Rotstein, They Might Be Giants, Brad Mossman, Bob Boyle, Fred Seibert, Phil Roman, Jay Fukuto, Susan Miller, Brendan Burch, Bolder Media, Film Roman, CBS Teeson Distribution, Starz Media, Nickelodeon, Margret Rey, H.A. Rey, Joe Fallon, Scott Heming, Frank Marino, Cathy Malkasian, William H. Macy, Rino Romano, Dr. John, Ron Howard, Brian Grazer, David Kirchner, Jon Shapiro, Imagine Entertainment, Universal Animation Studios, WGBH-TV, NBCUniversal Television Distribution, PBS Kids, TPT Productions, Marc du Pontavice, Olivier Jean-Marie, Soup2Nuts, Saban Brands, Saban Capital Group, Niamh Sharkey, Wild Bright Entertainment, larajillmiller.net, and any and all companies, individuals, and/or businesses that should receive credit for anything mentioned in this blog post, and all other original owners. I do not own anything in this blog. If any people, corporations, businesses, companies, etc, were not previously given credit for their work, they are given credit now and their previous absence was unintentional. All opinions expressed in this blog are my own. I wrote this blog for entertainment purposes and no copyright infringement is intended.
Hello people of the internet!!! On today’s ‘Monday Memos’ we are going to talk about something that I think we can all relate to. Now I know that you all remember getting up early on Saturday mornings and watching your favorite cartoons (this was probably the only time any of us ever voluntary woke up early). So with the recent trend of popular shows receiving spin-offs/continuations (such as ‘Digimon’, ‘Boy Meets World’, and ‘Full House’), I thought that this would be a good time to talk about a few cartoons that also deserve a spin-off/continuation. As much as I am aware that there are a wide variety of cartoons out there that are aimed towards adults on websites such as cartoonporno xxx, today I want to talk about some classic child friendly throwbacks! For the sake of time, I only chose 5 shows for this list (even though there are SOOO many more), so if y’all have any suggestions please comment below. Ok, are you ready? Let’s go!
Ok honestly how could you not like this show? I mean it’s about the awesome adventures that Scrooge McDuck and his nephews Huey, Dewey, and Louie (haha those names always crack me up) go on. This show is based off of the ‘Uncle Scrooge’ comics, and featured really awesome villains and additional characters such as Donald Duck. Now technically ‘DuckTails’ has already gotten two spin-offs (‘Darkwing Duck’ and ‘Quack Pack’), but these spin-offs featured some of the characters from ‘DuckTails’, not all of the characters. It’s also been 19 years since ‘Quack Pack’ (the last spin-off) aired, so I think it’s time for the ducks to return. I mean the ‘DuckTails’ theme song along should be enough proof of this show’s awesomeness.
4) Rocket Power
Ok now this is a show that I’m surprised hasn’t already gotten a spin-off. This show had an awesome mix of fun, life lessons, and kids doing awesome extreme sports. Anybody who watched ‘Rocket Power’ definitely wanted to be just like Otto and his friends (the characters on the show just in case you didn’t know). Another thing that really made this show awesome was the fact that we finally got a really cool female character in Reggie (Otto’s sister). Of course she dealt with boy/friend problems just like any girl, but she could also beat a lot of the guy characters on the show, and proved that being a tomboy can be very cool. Exciting adventures, cool characters, and awesome extreme sports, remind me again why this show hasn’t gotten a spin-off?
3) Hey Arnold!
Ok now you gotta love ‘Hey Arnold!’. What I liked best about this show is that the characters were super relatable, and seemed like real kids so the plot lines of the show were believable. Whether you were cool like Gerald, slightly crazy but actually misunderstood like Helga, or completely average like Arnold, you found a character that could represent you on the show. Even though we love shows that have cool, crazy characters, in awesome situations, it definitely shows talent and courage for a network to make a show that’s just about regular kids dealing with regular life stuff. With not a lot of cartoons like this currently on air, it seems like the perfect time to shout out ‘Hey Arnold!’.
Now this was a show that was wacky, fun, and a little weird at times, but honestly we loved every minute of it! This show was about three siblings named Yakko, Wakko, and Dot who were fictional 1930s cartoon stars, who were locked away in the Warner Bros. water tower until they escaped in the 1990s. Once the three escape they wreck havoc on the Warner Bros. lot. Yakko, Wakko, and Dot got into really hilarious situations by interacting with “studio employees” and other cartoon characters on the lot. What I liked most about this show is it had a cool mix of wacky humor, pop culture references, and more mature jokes that we probably didn’t get as kids. This show has had spin-offs but it was so unique that I think it deserves to entertain us again.
Lastly, but definitely not least, we have ‘Recess’ (aka the show about the BFFs you wished you had). This show was about a group of 6 fourth graders, who had adventures and dealt with life problems during everyone’s favorite time of the day…recess! The characters playground is a mini-world environment that has the stereotypical cliques, and a “government” complete with unwritten laws, and even a king. This was another show that had a wide range of characters that just about everyone could relate to. Whether you fit in more with T.J. the class clown, Spinelli the tomboy, Gretchen the nerd, or even Randall the snitch, you’ll definitely see yourself within this series. Even though ‘Recess’ had a few movies after the show ended, we only got to see the characters make it to the 5th grade. I say we need at least 1 more season so they can go to 6th grade, and then move on to middle school.
All credit goes to YouTube, Digimon, Boy Meets World, Full House, Akiyoshi Hongo, Toei Animation, Bandai, Hiroyui Kakudo, Keisuke Okuda, Satoru Nishizono, Saban Entertainment, Fuji TV, Spacetoon, Michael Jacobs, April Kelly, David Kendall, Bob Young, Howard Busgang, Mark Blutman, Bob Tischler, ABC, Jeff Franklin, Thomas L. Miller, Robert L. Boyett, Dennis Rinsler, Marc Warren, Don Van Atta, Jams O’Keefe, Bonnie Bogard Maier, Jeff Franklin Productions, Miller-Boyett Productions, Lorimar-Telepictures, Lorimar Television, Warner Bros. Television, Warner Bros. Television Distribution, DuckTales, Carl Banks, Jymn Maon, Bob Hathcock, Alan Zaslove, Fred Wolf, Ken Koonce, David Weimers, Alan Burnett, Walt Disney Television Animation, Buena Vista Television, Dell Comics, Gold Key Comics/Whitman, Gladstone Publishing, Disney Comics, Gemstone Publishing, Boom Kids!, Boom! Studios, Tony Strobl, Vic Lockman, Phil DeLara, Jack Manning, Pete Alvarado, Daan Jippes, Don Rosa, William Van Horn, Gutenberghus/Egmont Group, John Lustig, Pat McGreal, Dave Rawson, Michael T. Gilbert, Romano Scarpa, Darkwing Duck, Quack Pack, Tad Stones, The Disney Channel, Kurt Anderson, Toby Shelton, Kevin Crosby Hopps, Arlene Klasky, Gabor Csupo, Vic Wilson, Eryk Casemiro, Anivison, Klasky Csupo. Nickelodeon, Craig Bartlett, Joe Ansolabehere, Steve Viksten, Tuck TUcker, Snee-Oosh Inc, Nickelodeon Animation Studios, Tom Ruegger, Steven Spielberg, Tom Ruegger, Rich Arons, Sherri Stoner, Rusty Mills, Peter Hastings, Amblin Entertainment, Warner Bros. Animation, Warner Bros. Television, Fox Kids, The WB, Hey Arnold!, Rocket Power, Animaniacs, Recess, Paul Germain, Joe Ansolabehere, Paul & Joe Productions, One Saturday Morning, ABC Kids, UPN, Disney’s One Too, all of the businesses, companies, people, stores, and any other original owners involved and/or mentioned in any of these videos, any and all companies, individuals, and/or businesses that should receive credit for anything mentioned in this blog post, and all original owners. I do not own anything in this blog. If any people, corporations, businesses, companies, etc, were not previously given credit for their work, they are given credit now and their previous absence was unintentional. All opinions expressed in this blog are my own. I wrote this blog for entertainment purposes and no copyright infringement is intended.
Hello people of the internet!!! On today’s ‘Monday Memos’ I have an awesome new interview with actor Ben Diskin for y’all to check out. If you’re a fan of shows such as: Naruto, Bleach, Codename: Kids Next Door, Hey Arnold, Zoey 101, and Digimon Fusion then you probably already know who Ben is (he’s done A LOT of other films/anime/other projects., it just would take too long to list them all). I had the amazing opportunity to ask Ben a few questions about his background, the acting industry, and his roles as Shoutmon and Cutemon on Digimon Fusion. So if y’all are ready, let’s jump into the interview!
Celinda: Hi Ben! So first of all, how did you first get into the entertainment industry? Ben: I got into the entertainment industry while I was still a fetus. People think I’m joking when I say that, but it’s honestly true. Both of my parents are actors and while I was developing in my Mom’s womb, their agent told them he’d like to represent me when I was born. They signed the paperwork and I had representation before I’d taken my first breath. Celinda: Wow that is such a cool story. So what do you wish you would have known about being an actor before getting into the business? Ben: I really wish I’d known to keep my mouth shut. When you’re a kid and you don’t know any better, you want to tell all your friends about jobs you’re working on because you’re so excited about what you’ve just done. The trouble with that is it makes you look like a braggart and people make some pretty unfair judgements about your personality. As a kid, I told anyone who’d listen that I was in Kindergarten Cop with Arnold Schwarzenegger. This got out to the whole school and suddenly I’d made a bunch of new “friends.” These kids thought I was a movie star, rich, and really cool. Once it dawned on them that I was none of those things, they called me a liar, a brat, and a fake. I went from being popular to being teased mercilessly and it made me want to quit acting. To this day, I tend to keep my mouth shut about projects I’m working on because a part of me fears the same thing will happen. Celinda: So how did you transition into voice acting? Ben: I was with the CED (now CESD) Talent Agency since I was a baby and they’ve been one of the top dogs for VO work for several decades. One day I was approached by one of the voice over agents to do a radio spot audition. I didn’t know how to read very well at the time, so he had to dictate my dialogue to me and have me repeat it. My first major moment in voice over was doing an animated series called Problem Child (based on the movies with John Ritter.) When I realized that no one, not even my closest friends, recognized my voice coming from the cartoon character, I knew what I wanted to do for the rest of my life. Being able to act without dealing with any of the “fame” was exactly what I was looking for.
Celinda: Very cool. So in your opinion, what’s the biggest difference between on-camera acting & voice acting? Ben: Focus. When you’re acting on camera, there are several tools at your disposal. You have your expressions, your gestures, your body language, your blocking, and your voice to properly convey the emotions of your character. In voice over, you’re forced to focus on just one aspect of acting: the voice. With an on-camera character, I can subtly raise an eyebrow to convey suspicion. In voice over, you have to vocally convey that same subtle eyebrow raise. When everything is filtered through the voice, it can be like a blind man trying to understand the world using only touch and smell.
Celinda: So moving on to Digimon (which is currently airing its’ second season on Nicktoons), were you a fan before working on the franchise? Ben: I was ABSOLUTELY a big fan of Digimon! I loved those shows!
Celinda: Since you were already a fan of Digimon, what was it like to work on a show that you had previously enjoyed as a viewer? Ben: It was a major honor to get to work on this show. I’d been hoping Xros Wars would get a dub ever since it came out in Japan, but after a couple of years went by, I’d lost hope of that ever happening. When I got the audition, I freaked out. XD The show is a lot of fun to work on for me, since my major anime influence is Dragonball Z. I play a character who yells like crazy and it reminds me of why I wanted to do this in the first place.
Celinda: I just want to say that you do a terrific job voicing Shoutmon & Cutemon. Do you record their scenes in different sessions? (y’all can check out a clip of Shoutmon & Cutemon in Digimon Fusion below)
Ben: Thank you! We typically record all of one character’s lines and then go back to the beginning of the episode for a second pass to record the other.
Celinda: So Shoutmon & Cutemon’s voices sound so distinct, what process do you go through to prepare your voice so you can give each character a unique personality? Ben: It depends on when we record the episode. The Cutemon voice is extremely finicky. I can’t do it too early in the morning or too late in the day. If it’s an early morning session, Shoutmon has to go first. Because he’s such a loud, scratchy-voiced character, his voice warms up my vocal cords so I can do Cutemon. If the session is in the afternoon, my voice is already warmed up from being awake all day and I’ll have to do Cutemon first before it gets too late. Doing Shoutmon at this point will actually stress my vocal cords too much and Cutemon will sound really scratchy and weird. As for giving them unique personalities, I feel like they’re written differently enough that it comes out naturally.
Celinda: Wow, that’s so interesting! So I know that you’ve voiced a lot of great characters throughout your career, is there a specific character that you haven’t already voiced that you would like to someday? Ben: Ummm….……. You know, I never know how to answer this question. I look at each role I get as a small victory in and of itself. I don’t really lust after particular roles; I just see what life brings my way.
Celinda: Ok, so what advice do you have for anyone who wants to get into voice acting? Ben: The voice acting industry is full of opportunities but it’s also very tricky to get started in. My best advice would be to make sure you understand what you’re getting involved in. If you want this to be your career, you’ll have to move to where the work is, take lessons, make connections, and struggle for years to get people to give you a chance even if you’re already very good. Making a career out of voice acting alone isn’t very common, so make sure you don’t overestimate your abilities. Just because your friends or family tell you you’re good at doing cartoon voices isn’t an indication that this is your future. Remember, if you’re going to be a voice actor, you have to be an actor. This isn’t “doing voices” or “doing impressions;” it’s acting. Can’t act? Don’t waste your time. It’s as simple as that.
Celinda: Lastly, is there anything you would like to tell your fans who are reading this interview? Ben: Thanks a lot for watching Digimon Fusion!! Season 2 is airing right now on NickToons; go watch it!!!
All credit goes to Ben Diskin, CESD talent agency, Nicktoons, Digimon, Digimon Xros Wars, Digimon Fusion, Twitter, Facebook, Tomoharu Matsuhisa, Hiroyuki Sakurada, TV Asahi, Toei Animation, Yuki Nakashima, Tetsuya Endo, Riku Sanjo, Kousuke Yamashita, Noam Kaniel, Saban Brands, ABC, NBN, QAB, Kidz TV, GO!, YTV, Disney XD, Kix, CITV, Nickelodeon, The CW (Vortexx), Namco Bandai, Colleen O’Shaughnessy, all companies, individuals, corporations, and/or businesses that should recieve credit for anything mentioned in this blog post, and all original owners. I do not own anything in this blog. If any people, corporations, businesses, companies, etc, were not previously given credit for their work, they are given credit now and their previous absence was unintentional. All opinions expressed in this blog are my own. I wrote this blog for entertainment purposes and no copyright infringement is intended.
Hello people of the internet!!! On today’s ‘Monday Memos’ we are going back in time. This is a special blog post for all my fellow 90s kids who either grew up in the 90s, or just love the TV shows that were on-air during this decade. Of course, today’s generation has video sharing platforms like YouTube and will show up with completely different types of kind programs which aren’t even on TV – check it out here – but it’s nice to go back in time and look at what we grew up with before the digital age took over. Now I think we can all agree that there were a lot of AMAZING cartoons, sitcoms, and other TV shows that we just loved to tune into every week (now I know that there was a lot of great shows in other decades too but since I was a kid in this decade, I’m a bit biased. Y’all know that were all a little biased too the time we grew up in). Now we all know that there are some shows that came out during this time that we can’t forget, but there are others that we love, but may have forgotten how much we love them. So here goes a small list of some of the Top 6 TV shows of the 90s (know I know that there are SOOOO many more shows that deserve to be on this list, so if y’all like this blog post then I will definitely post another with YOUR fav 90s TV shows. Just comment below with your suggestions). Ok, let’s jump into the list! Now these shows aren’t in any particular order, because it’s really difficult to say that one of these shows is better than another (honestly they’re all equally AWESOME!). I also tried to include a wide variety of shows so there’s something for everyone!
Bill Nye The Science Guy:
Now everybody remembers this guy as one of their first science teachers. Bill Nye was able to make science fun and interesting. This show really had a cool formula of keeping our attention by fusing Bill Nye’s funny banter and knowledge of science into an unforgettable show that is truly showed us that being nerdy is always cool (and who could forget that theme song…Bill! Bill! Bill)
Boy Meets World:
Now this isn’t really a show that was easy to forget because it has always lived on in syndication, but I think that a lot of people really forget just how much they love this show. It was really awesome to be able to sit down with your family and watch a show that everyone enjoyed. Boy Meets World was a show where everyone could relate to a character, whether you were a Cory, Shawn, Topanga, Mr. Feeny, Eric, or Minkus. Through his show we learned about how to deal with everyday problems, and that the most important things in life are friends and family. We also all fell in love with the love story of Cory and Topanga (there still our example of the perfect OTP). When Girl Meets World was announced, everyone was really anxious to see the story continue, because these characters became our best friends over the 7 seasons they were on air. What was the best thing we got out of Boy Meets World though? The Feeny Call of course!
In the 90s there wasn’t a show that was much cooler than All That. The sketches were cool, the characters were funny, it was truly a kids’ version of SNL (Saturday Night Live). This show also brought us actors that we fell in love with such as: Kenan Thompson, Kel Mitchell, Nick Cannon, and of course, Amanda Bynes. It was fun to see a kid’s show that didn’t talk down to kids, and had jokes that were actually funny and memorable. We also got a lot of cool spin-off shows that stared members of the All That cast, and a sketch from the show even got turned into a movie. Does the phrase “Welcome to Good Burger” ring a bell? If it doesn’t congratulations, you’re a 90s K
Now this is a show that only gets better the more times you watch it. Honestly who would have thought that seeing the world through the eyes of a baby would be so much fun? We laughed, we cried, and we actually learned some lessons about friendship and family. One thing that I really love about this franchise, is when the characters entered their preteen/teen years, the show was brought back with a new show that had our fav characters learning new life lessons. Now whether or not you liked the sequel, Rugrats: All Grown Up (personally I loved it), you have to admit that it was cool that the creators of the show aged the characters with the fans, so we got to enter those all too important/slightly awkward years with our favorite cartoon friends.
Digimon & Pokémon:
Now if you were a kid in the 90s, this was a serious debate. I mean for a lot of us this was our first experience being a part of a fandom, so you had to choose wisely. Personally I was a fan of both, but a lot of people said you had to take a side (I’m telling y’all this was serious business). Looking back it’s sort of funny that the world was divided into people who like Digimon & people who liked Pokémon, just like pop culture was divided into people who liked the Backstreet Boys & people who like NSync. This was the decade were shipping wars really became a big deal (and if you look on YouTube we still ship all the various characters from these shows). With both shows still going strong (and the recent announcement of a sequel to the first 2 seasons of Digimon…yay Digimon Adventure Tri!), we get to continue wishing we were digidestined & Pokémon masters.
All photos and information used in this blog belong to YouTube, William Sanford “Bill” Nye, Bill Nye The Science Guy, Boy Meets World, Lee Norris, Ben Savage, William Daniels, Rider Strong, Danielle Fishel, Will Friedle, James McKenna, Erren Gottileb, Elizabeth Brock, James McKenna, KCTS Seattle, Rabbit Ears Productions, Walt Disney Television, Buena Vista Television, PBS, Michael Jacobs, April Kelly, Michaels Jacobs Productions, Touchstone Television, ABC, All That, Kenan Thompson, Kel Mitchell, Nick Cannon, Amanda Bynes, Brian Robbins, Mike Tollin, Joe Davola, Dan Schneider, Kevin Kopelow, Heath Seifert, Toll in/Robbins Productions, Schnidier’s Bakery, Nickelodeon, Arlene Klasky, Gabor Csupo, Paul Germain, Vanessa Coffey, Anivision, Klasky Csupo, Nickelodeon Productions, Viacom International, Nickelodeon Animation Studios, Kunihiko Yuyama, Satosh Tajiri, Junichi Masuda, Ken Sugimori, OLM, In., Team Ota, Team Iguchi, Team Kato, , 4Kids Entertainment, The Pokémon Company, Kids’ WB, Cartoon Network, Boomerang, TV Tokyo, Akiyoshi Hongo, Rugrats, Digimon, Pokémon, Toei Animation, Bandai, Saban Entertainment, Fuji TV, Spacetoon, Fox Kids, Fox Family, Toon DIsney, Nicktoons, and all products, people, corporations, individuals, businesses, and/or any and all other copyrighted material, and all original owners. I do not own anything in this blog. If any people, corporations, businesses, companies, etc, were not previously given credit for their work, they are given credit now and their previous absence was unintentional. All opinions expressed in this blog are my own. I wrote this blog for entertainment purposes and no copyright infringement is intended.