Through my internship/junior membership at the Producers Guild of America (PGA), I’ve had a number of incredible opportunities. One I’d like to write about was a recent talk given by Fred Seibert, an animation producer and owner of Frederator studios, and moderated by long-time friend and industry giant Herb Scannell, who is currently the president of BBC Worldwide North America and former president of Nickelodeon. This event was part of the PGA’s New Media Council’s ‘Spark! The Conversation’ series.
Fred Seibert is a titan. On the official Frederator site, he gives a very good breakdown of what he himself has dubbed the five different lives he’s lead thus far, so I won’t redundantly give his backstory. A charismatic and gifted orator, it was entertaining to hear him tell his own story. His conversation was peppered with perfectly timed pauses, sideways glances to friend Herb, and a running jokes about his, to quote my friend Josh, “passionate ego-obsession.”
Though many of my non-animation major friends have not necessarily heard of him, or even Frederator, they’ve certainly heard this sound bite, and know the work that’s been put out. Titles include The Fairly Oddparents, ChalkZone, Fanboy & Chum Chum, My Life as a Teenage Robot, the recently kickstarted Bee and Puppycat, YouTube sensation Bravest Warriors, and golden child Adventure Time. He was one of the earliest in the business to jump on the teen/young adult wagon (MTV Networks), and more recently his ventures on the Internet (namely YouTube).
While Herb was president of Nickelodeon, he greenlit some of the channel’s most famous cartoons (Ren and Stimpy, Hey Arnold, Doug, Rugrats, The Fairly Oddparents, SpongeBob SquarePants, and even Dora the Explorer). His full bio can be found on the BBC’s site.
I figure I will share some of the notes I felt compelled to jot down throughout the evening: