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David X. Cohen of Futurama Talks About the Movie 141

Joel Keller writes "I conducted a brief interview with David X. Cohen, EP and show-runner for Futurama, about the release of the new DVD, "Futurama: Bender's Big Score," as well as the return of his show to TV. The interview was posted to TV Squad this morning. In it, Cohen talks about how the movies will be split up into episodes, some of the inside references that they inserted for the die-hards, and a quick preview of what the second Futurama movie is going to be about."
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David X. Cohen of Futurama Talks About the Movie

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  • by X43B ( 577258 ) on Monday November 26, 2007 @12:27PM (#21480075) Journal
    I've got a fever....and the only prescription is more Hypnotoad.
  • Comedy Central? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by morgan_greywolf ( 835522 ) on Monday November 26, 2007 @12:28PM (#21480093) Homepage Journal
    Ick. Comedy Central is famous for getting shows like this and then killing them off quick. MST3K anyone?
    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      I'll take what I can get; better that we have any new Futurama than no new Futurama at all.
      • Re:Comedy Central? (Score:5, Informative)

        by AmaDaden ( 794446 ) on Monday November 26, 2007 @12:44PM (#21480297)
        It's worth noting that both Adult Swim and Comedy Central both put in bids for the new eps of Futurama and Comedy Central won. Since Adult Swim more or less resurrected Futurama by playing it almost every night for the last few years it was kind of a dirty move on CCs part. So if Adult Swim got it the new eps would still happen and would be in, what some would consider, more capable hands. The same exact thing happened with Family Guy but the other guy was Fox and not CC.
        • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

          Wha? Fox made new episodes and aired them, but Adult Swim got the episodes one Week after they aired on Fox. It was an arrangement that helped both of them. The Futurama situation is a little different.
          • Your right. I was thinking about the events leading up to it, not the details of the conclusion.
    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by PoitNarf ( 160194 )
      I think Futurama has a slightly larger audience than MST3K ever did... so I'm not all that worried ;)
    • Oh come on man! You're telling me that Crank Yankers, Reno 911, Upright Citizens Brigade, and Mind of Mencia are worse shows than MST3K and Futurama. What next huh?! You're probably gonna tell me that the Sci-Fi channel sucks and kills off all their good sci-fi programming as well and replaces it with wrestling... oh wait...

      In all seriousness, I agree. With the exception of South Park, Comedy Central really doesn't have a whole lot going for it. With Sci-fi, well they had Dead Like Me for a while but they g
      • by elrous0 ( 869638 ) *
        Hey, I like Reno 911 you insensitive clod!
      • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

        by cthulu_mt ( 1124113 )
        I think "Dead Like Me" was originally on ABC and didn't last a full season. Sci-fi ran the episodes a few times and then moved on. They do that alot with cancelled series.
        • DLM had a few good soundbites ("Life sucks, then you die, then it still sucks" springs to mind) but the programme was pretty terrible to watch - poor script writing I think. It's not surprising it didn't last.
          • Dead Like Me had two seasons on showtime and has a DVD movie coming this spring. Sci-Fi was doing basically the same thing they did with Firefly. / I personally liked DLM.
        • "Dead Like Me" was on Showtime originally, which is why the show had to be somewhat censored before it was on the Sci-Fi channel.
      • by Hatta ( 162192 )
        Most of those shows suck, but UCB is one of the best american sketch comedy shows ever. It's easily up there with Mr Show and the early years of SNL.
      • Reno 911 is a hilarious show and UCB was even better. I like MST3k a whole lot (every single episode downloaded and watched over and over), but with that show it's more than just ratings. The licensing issue with the movies was a big deal with CC and the reason SciFi finally called it quits.
      • With the exception of South Park, Comedy Central really doesn't have a whole lot going for it.

        If only for their decade of supporting South Park, even during times when there was great pressure to take it off the air, and for giving Parker and Stone sufficient freedom and control of the show to really make it something special, Comedy Central will always have a place in the Satellite TV of my Mind. I don't happen to subscribe to cable orsatellite, and I won't watch network television, but I've watched ever

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by starwed ( 735423 )
      Wait, how does carrying a show for seven years constitue "killing it off quick?"
      • Re:Comedy Central? (Score:4, Informative)

        by 0100010001010011 ( 652467 ) on Monday November 26, 2007 @01:30PM (#21480999)
        Comedy Central != Cartoon Network.

        The show's been on Cartoon Network for the last 7 years not Comedy Central
        • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

          by Tetsujin ( 103070 )

          Comedy Central != Cartoon Network.

          The show's been on Cartoon Network for the last 7 years not Comedy Central

          He was talking about MST3K.

          MST3K was on Comedy Central/Comedy Channel for seven years. It's the only show to survive from the network's launch that survived that long. So it's hard to understand how someone could use MST3K as an example of Comedy Central killing off good shows quickly...

          Granted, as the show went its timeslot got shifted around, it got split up into "MST Hour" format, etc. - and then the seventh season was remarkably short... But still, it ran seven seasons. It even survived major cast

    • "Ick. Comedy Central is famous for getting shows like this and then killing them off quick. MST3K anyone?"

      Oh yeah, five years is real quick. BTW, that's longer than they had under Fox's reign.
    • I, for one, could stand more re-airing of that show. However, IMHO, Comedy Central gave it a decent run.
    • You're confusing MST3K's run on comedy central with its run on SciFi. Scifi finally killed off MST3k, though in their defense it was a mercy killing at that point. The show had had its run and needed to end. The fan support kept it limping along.
    • That's not even the worst part. Instead of humorous off-the-wall [AS] bumps I have to gnash my teeth to Mind of Mencia promos. Ugh.
    • Re:Comedy Central? (Score:4, Informative)

      by poot_rootbeer ( 188613 ) on Monday November 26, 2007 @01:28PM (#21480975)
      Comedy Central is famous for getting shows like this and then killing them off quick. MST3K anyone?


      The Comedy Channel/Comedy Central picked up a quirky little program from a Minneapolis UHF station, and turned it into a national sensation (turning itself one of the top-tier cable networks at the same time). MST3K ran on CC for seven seasons.

      Honestly, Futurama would be more at risk returning to Fox -- the network that already short-sightedly cancelled the program once -- than to a cable network like Comedy Central, which has typically taken very good care of its cash cows.
    • WTF? Didn't Comedy Central fund MST3K for like a decade? Or almost a decade? Didn't Comedy Central buy this MST3K from a teeny local broadcaster in the first place? WTF?
    • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

      by owlnation ( 858981 )
      Ultimately, you need to really blame the brainless drones at the Box Network...
    • IIRC, MST3K lasted quite a while on Comedy Central. (6 seasons I believe) Thats not 'quickly killed off' by any stretch. Especially for a series with 2-hour episodes.
  • AdultSwim saved Futurama,and I believe it's still one of the most popular shows, even with it being a constant rerun over the past year or so. Can't wait for the new season (?) movie (?).
    • AdultSwim saved Futurama

      just like Family Guy right? It was all [AS] and had nothing to do with DVD sales?
      • Thought the DVD's didnt come about till after it was on [AS] for a year or so. That the DVD sales were sparked by the following on AdultSwim.
      • Channel 10 in Australia still runs Futurama every single night.
        Sure its filler material but its damn good filler.

        Its still insanely popular. I dont think DVD sales would completely demonstrate that.
    • Further I think Futurama creators would be well served to release this _to_ AS regardless of whether it single-handedly brought them back from the depths! Simple matter is, the best market for them on television is likely on AS. Fiercely loyal and fairly consumerist. Comedy Central for what its worth, is the next best option, IMO.
    • AdultSwim saved Futurama,and I believe it's still one of the most popular shows, even with it being a constant rerun over the past year or so. Can't wait for the new season (?) movie (?).

      I think it worked both ways, meaning Futurama (and Family Guy) also saved Adult Swim.

      It was the mass appeal of Futurama that allowed AS to experiment with alternative shows. I believe Futurama and Family Guy would be considered lead-in shows, which all the remaining shows benefited from anyone who decided not to change th

      • Agree after reading the article it seems Comedy Central bought the rights to Futurama, so no more 11 Futurama on Adult Swim. Kinda sad too, the new shows have sucked the past years. I really miss Sealab 2021, Harvey Birdman, The Brak Show, and countless others that modernized remakes of classic based shows. The new shows seem centered on being weird but not in a funny way. Mole people!?
        • Re:AdultSwim (Score:5, Insightful)

          by chrismcdirty ( 677039 ) on Monday November 26, 2007 @01:53PM (#21481343) Homepage
          I liked the early years of AS up until Sealab, Home Movies, Brak, and Harvey Birdman stopped making new episodes and ATHF got really bad (somewhere around the 3rd or 4th season). The only "new" shows I like are Robot Chicken, Venture Bros., and Lucy, Daughter of the Devil, and I haven't noticed my MythTV recording Lucy recently, so I hope it hasn't been canceled already. Everything else (especially Saul, Tim & Eric, and Xavier) is trash.
          • Call me what you will but I still like the DethAlbum. Some Metalocalypse [] episodes where bad... Real bad... But the ones that where good where really good and the music is pretty solid.

            Besides where else would we get Dr. Rockzo the Rock and Roll clown?
          • I agree. [AS] needs to get back to their roots. Bring back the shows like Harvey, Sealab, and Home Movies. The live action stuff they show right now is just crap. TGGTM/Tim & Eric Show must be their bid for the homosexual demographic. I don't know many people who actually enjoy Saul either.
          • At first I didn't like Venture Brothers that much, but I caught a marathon of it about a year ago and got hooked. It really is a lot of fun to watch back to back. Unfortunately I haven't gotten around to seeing them all yet.

            As a fellow venture fan, I'd recommend Stroker and Hoop to you.
      • by Altus ( 1034 )

        honestly they might have done more harm than good given some of the crap thats hitting AS these days. I dont think AS was ever in any real danger honestly. Its not like cartoon network was going to make big money running any of their regular fare in the late night time slot. Using that space for anime and off the wall cartoons was probably a pretty easy choice. Admittedly the success of Futurama and Family Guy helped them bring in more shows but to some degree I wish they would get back to their roots a
    • the ONLY show Adult Swim has that is worthwhile is Robot Chicken, both Family Guy and Futurama are not manufactured in-house are good editions though...
      • Have to agree.. a lot of AS is pretty crappy. I found Moral Orel quite amusing (now cancelled, alas), and Sealab has its moments, but most of the stuff I switch off after about 10 seconds as it's unwatchable.
    • I think it's clever how AS has practically been running Futurama non stop ever since they lost the bid to Comedy Central. Maybe part of their plan is to dilute its rerun value when the contract switches hands.
  • Professor Farnsworth: (Staring at blank movie screen) They don't make movies like these anymore...(blows nose)


    Calculon: I've seen better acting from extras in Godzilla movies.
  • His show? (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward on Monday November 26, 2007 @12:33PM (#21480163)

    ...return of his show to TV...

    Didn't some guy named Matt Groening [] have something to do with it?

    • Re:His show? (Score:5, Informative)

      by AmaDaden ( 794446 ) on Monday November 26, 2007 @12:51PM (#21480425)
      I thought that too at first but he seems to stick mostly to the Simpsons. David X. Cohen is the main guy behind Futurama but as I understand it he still has to answer to Groening.
      • Re:His show? (Score:5, Interesting)

        by Xiaran ( 836924 ) on Monday November 26, 2007 @02:21PM (#21481733)
        If you listen to the DVD commentaries(yes I am a futurama fan... one of those that DXC thanks in TFA... no problem Dave) I get the distinct impression you are correct. Cohen seems to be the head day to day management of the show guy and Groening comes in time to time with advice and suggestions... Greoning seems to be the one that deals with the boneheads at Fox(prolly cause he has the showbiz clout)
    • Re:His show? (Score:4, Informative)

      by joelkeller ( 1194509 ) on Monday November 26, 2007 @03:10PM (#21482405)
      Groening is the creator, but Cohen runs the show. I talked to Groening in January about the show [], and, believe me, he's pretty involved with it, as well.
      • by Xiaran ( 836924 )
        Mod this guy up. I just got a +4 and all I was basing it on was my listening to the DVD commentary(which is prolly one of the best commentaries on a DVD Ive heard[other than spinal tap]). "That guy" has talked to Groening :) All hail the return of futurama. The only TV show(other than Dr Who) I really watch.
  • I've seen it (Score:5, Insightful)

    by astrotek ( 132325 ) on Monday November 26, 2007 @12:34PM (#21480181) Homepage
    If you like Futurama you will like this movie. The movie dragged on for about 45 minutes to long because the ending was obvious through the last 60 minutes or so.
    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by Selfbain ( 624722 )
      I thought the movie was decent but not as good as I had been hoping for. Some of the old episodes had more funny moments in 22 minutes than the entire movie had (Roswell That Ends Well anyone?).
      • by putch ( 469506 )
        i'd say it breaks down to be about 1 really good ep (think roswell that ends well or time keeps on slipping). 2 so-so episodes (think how hermes got his groove back or obsoletely fabulous) and 1 really bad episode (think bend-her).

        i thought it was great. though. can't wait to buy the real version. i hope it has commentary!

    • by neoform ( 551705 )

      I thought it was obvious as soon as i noticed their voices were the same.
      • by darien ( 180561 )
        I thought that too, but then Billy West does lots of voices - Fry, the Professor, Zoidberg and Zapp Brannigan, TO NAME BUT FOUR... so it wasn't exactly a foregone conclusion.
        • by neoform ( 551705 )
          I thought that too, but they're voices were too similar and so were their faces. Like, on the simpsons you can tell the voice of martin is reused by a lot of child characters, but they're always very different looking kids, that way you don't confuse them. Fry and Lars both looked very similar minus the hair.
    • I liked it well enough, however my viewing enjoyment came with neither Blackjack nor Hookers. To my great disappointment...
    • Here I am sitting at the computer while it's still playing in the other room. I found it dead boring, not funny and with no coherent plot. This is coming from a huge Futurama fan who has bought the DVD box sets of all 4 seasons.

      I guess this is going to be yet another series that I will have to forget was ever continued after it was "over". Careful what you wish for, huh?

  • My favorite part (Score:4, Interesting)

    by Brazilian Geek ( 25299 ) * on Monday November 26, 2007 @12:35PM (#21480191) Journal
    I loved the movie and I loved the nods and goodies they gave the fans such as Seymour.

    My favorite part was during the opening graphics - the "old" cartoon showing before the Planet Express ship crashes into the billboard. I had to stop the movie and jerk back a few tears, it was the most intense feeling of nostalgia I've felt in a very long time.
  • Oblig. (Score:5, Funny)

    by Rob T Firefly ( 844560 ) on Monday November 26, 2007 @12:37PM (#21480211) Homepage Journal
    Good news, everyone!
  • My glorious metal ass.
  • by itsdapead ( 734413 ) on Monday November 26, 2007 @01:51PM (#21481319)

    Speaking of Futurama, a week or two back, the BBC's intellectual quiz show "University Challenge []" had a whole round (3 questions) on "Science References in Futurama"!

    If I remember the questions were along the lines of:

    1. Which quantum physicist was referred to via a parody of Schroedinger's Cat
    2. What is Bender's serial number, also the smallest number that can be written as the sum of two cubes in two different ways?
    3. What was the symbol, representing the the cardinality of the set of all natural numbers, used in the name of the local cinema?

    (I.e. the contestants could conceivably have got the answers without knowing the show - more detail was given for q1 than I can remember - although they didn't do too well and Paxo looked a bit bemused).

    I think that this confirms the sad truth that "Futurama" must be the most intellectual TV show of recent years (excluding University Challenge).

    • 1. Witten's Dog (I think it was the neutrino that tasted like grape, right?)
      2. (Hermes) Look it up, ya lazy bum!: [] (read down a bit; further info at [] )
      3. Aleph naught
    • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

      by RealGrouchy ( 943109 )

      I think that this confirms the sad truth that "Futurama" must be the most intellectual TV show of recent years (excluding University Challenge).
      Why is this a sad thing? Because it is animated instead of with real characters? Because it makes people laugh? Because it has an extremely talented and capable production team? Because it speaks to current events with amusing analogies instead of directly?

      Something should not have to be boring to be intellectual.

      - RG>
      • by kmac06 ( 608921 )
        I think the GP was saying that it's sad that there aren't other shows that are as intellectual as Futurama, not that it was sad how intellectual Futurama was.
      • Why is this a sad thing? Because it is animated instead of with real characters? Because it makes people laugh? Because it has an extremely talented and capable production team? Because it speaks to current events with amusing analogies instead of directly?

        No, its not Futurama that's sad. Futurama deserves to be very happy. Its all those other shows (and that includes the CSI genre as well as SF) with less intelligent references to science (and more glaring scientific errors) in an entire season than Fut

  • Seen it. (Score:3, Interesting)

    by ErikZ ( 55491 ) * on Monday November 26, 2007 @01:54PM (#21481371)
    Overall they put a lot more work into the quality of the show when you compare it to previous episodes.

    The only parts I didn't like were the song and dance routines. They were really poor when compared to the opera piece they did.

    They really went nuts with the time travel. Which I liked. Sure it got confusing, but it was cheap and easy TIME TRAVEL. Chaos just comes with it.

    I plan on buying the DVD when it comes out to show my support. :)
    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by Tony Hoyle ( 11698 )
      Oh god singing.

      Is it an american thing? Turn every half decent programme into a musical?

      There's no *way* I'd watch it in a cinema now. Wait for the DVD when you can fast forward the singing bits.
      • Re: (Score:2, Funny)

        "So jump back, Jack, 'cause I'm Jewish and I'm undead!"

        Wait 'till you hear Mark Hamil as the Chanukah Zombie.

        As for the film, on the downside, no full frontal Amy Wong or Leela nudity.

        On the plus side No Zapp Brannigan nudity of any kind whatsoever! (Oh, thank you, sweet Jeebus!)
    • I've seen it as well.. it seemed as though it dragged out a bit, but i am 90% sure it is because:
      1) I was a "little" intoxicated
      2) I'm used to watching it in 20 min episodes (i hate commercials)
  • I checked Comedy Central and they have nothing about it being on Nov 27th, 2007.

    Or is it Nov 27th, 2008? If it is, then those people could have said so. I mean, today being Nov 26th, when you here it will be on Nov 27th, you think tomorrow.

  • OB Reference (Score:3, Insightful)

    by notnAP ( 846325 ) on Monday November 26, 2007 @02:01PM (#21481475) "epic" film involving everyone's favorite characters from the show that ran on Fox from 1999-2003.

    ...Also Zoidberg...

  • WAAAAARGH (Score:2, Flamebait)

    by polar red ( 215081 )
    WHERE the F@CK is the region 2 release ? I want to BUY it NOW! If they wait too long : I'll download it.
    • I'm region 1 and I'm still thinking of downloading for now. Don't get me wrong... I bought and own the TV DVDs but I'll wait for the box set of the movies. I've been screwed too many times by buying things as they became available only to be pissed off when a box set comes out later with "never before seen extras."

      Fool me 50 or so times... shame on me!

      My only concern is how bad it looks for the future of the series if everyone thinks like me. So... erm... forget I mentioned it.

    • by Fyz ( 581804 )
      Then download it. And then buy the dvd for the reviewability and the 22 minute episode of Everybody Loves Hypnotoad.
  • by VeteranNoob ( 1160115 ) on Monday November 26, 2007 @07:06PM (#21485477)

    Am I the only one that found the movie to be completely bland and devoid of any of the uniqueness that made the show what it was?

    Don't get me wrong, though! I am a HUGE Futurama fan. I watched the show from the beginning and thought it was going to best new thing since sliced bread. And to be canceled ... Part of me believes that this was the most ignorant decision ever made in television history. But I also understand that Futurama is NOT geared towards the bottom of the IQ barrel like the rest of today's television, and it wasn't going to last knowing that intelligent audiences don't make "good little consumers."

    I honestly got the impression that they just bought the movie's script from an unrelated writer and stamped the good ol' Futurama cast on the project. This wasn't the Futurama I knew and loved.

    One of the things I loved about the show was its witty references to technology and how the 1,000 years of advancement had only resulted in backwards-thinking and useless gadgets. Indeed, this concept is enshrined in the name of the show, Futurama, which is a reference to the now-cheesy, B-ish displays at World Fairs that attempted to predict technology of the next era (e.g. today). Those goofy gizmos never materialized in our own time, but they seem to thrive in the year 3000.

    So I didn't find any connection to the series besides the unsettling number of previous characters they decided to throw in for nostalgia. Most of them were out of place, but some of them were just down right degrading to the movie and .. believe it or not .. even the show. For instance, just why exactly did they feel the need to utterly ruin the emotions we all felt in Jurassic Bark's story of Seymour?!?! I won't apologize for the punctuation. It's a mystery to me what was going through their heads when they decided to event put Seymour in the movie, let alone killing him in the most lame, unexpected, and unimaginative manner. Wasn't the idea that Seymour lived out his years missing Fry? So all of a sudden we have him getting to see Fry right before he gets burnt to death? SERIOUSLY! WHAT THE FUCK!?

    I could have lived with a mediocre movie, but they had to go and screw up part of my love of the series too!

    Try harder! Try again!

When you are working hard, get up and retch every so often.