Jeric

Please no questions or references about spoilers or leaks. Thanks all. 

Jeric

Message added by Jeric

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Well everypony, it looks like our time with Ms. Dubuc is just about at an end.  On behalf of the entire MLP Forums and Poniverse community, I just want to thank @NicoleDubuc one more time for taking the time out of her schedule to chat with all of us.  This has been a real pleasure for us all, and it's been very fun and informative getting to hear from one of MLP:FiM's very own creative minds.  In case Nicole was unable to get to one or more of your questions, fear not, she will be able to answer them after tonight if she wants to or is able to make the time.  Thanks for joining us this evening, everypony, and to Ms. Dubuc, our staff and members all wish you a very Merry Christmas and Happy New Year! :muffins:

P.S. One more question for the road.  What is your personal favorite holiday TV special/film, that one (or more) holiday classic that you just HAVE to catch every Christmas season?

OK everypony, we've had our fun, now get back to your holiday shopping and prepping.  Those presents aren't gonna wrap themselves, ya know?  Here, I'll even provide some holiday tunes for ya'll to set the mood. :applecutehat:

 

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49 minutes ago, Theanimationfanatic said:

What shows/movies have the biggest influence on your writing. Not just for Friendship is Magic, but for your work as a whole?

Great question, thanks.  The Disney Afternoon was tremendously influential for me.  I like the storytelling structure of Darkwing or TaleSpin.  Also a huge fan of the DC stuff -- many Batman iterations and Justice League.  Live-action-wise, I love the patter of Gilmore Girls and the West Wing.  

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What @Batbrony said.

Thank you for taking this time, Ms. Dubuc.

Edited by A.V.
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1 minute ago, NicoleDubuc said:

Favorite of all time?  Ugh, so many!  Like, I love the character animation of the Beast.  And Peter/Gorbash in Flight of Dragons is wonderful.  And Judy Hopps is fantastic.  Basically, I could write pages and pages on this question... :)

The Beast? As in the 1991 Disney Animated Beast? I love him and Belle. It was the first Disney Movie I remember seeing and it showed me animation can be as important as real-life.

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Thanks for answering my questions, Mrs. Dubuc. Keep up the good work and happy holidays!

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51 minutes ago, ChB said:

Hi Mrs. Dubuc! :) 

Thank you for taking the time to speak with us! :D 

Were there any specific episodes that helped you decide to become a part of Friendship is Magic?

Also, considering that you graduated Pre-Med, what made you decide to pursue writing, rather than medicine?

Hi there!  Thanks for having me here!

I always had a great respect for FiM; it started the same time I did at The Hub (only I was on Transformers: Prime), so there was no specific episode.  Meghan asked me to be story editor/EP, and I said yes!

When I was in premed, we had to operate on mice.  Mine died on the operating table.  I was devastated.  That's when I knew I probably shouldn't be pursuing this career with humans in place of mice. So I finished the pre-med courses because I'm Twily-nanas about completing things, and then went on to use my English major professionally. :) 

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I won't add another question (you have plenty already lol) but I just wanted to say thank you so much for doing this!! This is the coolest event we've ever had :mlp_proud:

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I would also like to say thanks for your time on behalf of myself since I am a staff member of these forums. I'm also very sure all other staff on here are very grateful of your prescense!

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Hi again everyone!  I'm sorry to say that I have to sign off for now - BUT!  The forum staff has graciously offered to let me come back and answer the questions I didn't yet get to, so rest assured, I'll be able to cover everyone's asks! :)

Thank you again for having me here!  I love this show very much and working on it has been a highlight of my career.  It's always a delight to be able to talk Pony with people who really care.  I wish you wonderful holidays and a healthy, happy new year!  Oh...And Bernie does too. :P 

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Hello @NicoleDubuc! I just wanted to jump in and say thank you so much for taking time out from your busy schedule and choosing to join us for this Q&A! All of us within the community are incredibly grateful for it. :D

Sorry I didn't get to ask a question of my own this time around, but maybe I can leave a quick one for you upon your return? :adorkable:

I think it's fair to say that one of the biggest things to come out of FiM is the amount of fan-created content and creativity that we've all come to know and love since the show's inception. Do you or the rest of the team ever find yourselves taking inspiration from any fan-works that you've perhaps stumbled across from time to time? Any background ponies or subtle production jokes that have crept in as a result of community engagements?

Oh, and a close friend of mine also wants to know if you'll consider hiding his OC in a scene? :muffins:

Spoiler

eu2FbeM.jpg

Once again; thank you so much for your time!

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Thank you to everyone that asked questions. As I said before we wanted to do something special this year after all the great years of  generosity and charity all of you have show. :darling:

 

Thank you to Nicole for her humor and grace and for giving us some wonderful moments on FiM. Also thank you to Bernie!

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Thanks for your patience, everypony!  I just got back from a trekking trip in Nepal for the last three weeks or so (left the day after the Q&A!), and I’m back online to catch up on those questions I missed. :). Thanks again for having me! 

On 12/16/2018 at 5:08 AM, Dark Horse said:

Hello @NicoleDubuc! I just wanted to jump in and say thank you so much for taking time out from your busy schedule and choosing to join us for this Q&A! All of us within the community are incredibly grateful for it. :D

Sorry I didn't get to ask a question of my own this time around, but maybe I can leave a quick one for you upon your return? :adorkable:

I think it's fair to say that one of the biggest things to come out of FiM is the amount of fan-created content and creativity that we've all come to know and love since the show's inception. Do you or the rest of the team ever find yourselves taking inspiration from any fan-works that you've perhaps stumbled across from time to time? Any background ponies or subtle production jokes that have crept in as a result of community engagements?

Oh, and a close friend of mine also wants to know if you'll consider hiding his OC in a scene? :muffins:

  Reveal hidden contents

eu2FbeM.jpg

Once again; thank you so much for your time!

Hey there!  Thanks, it was a lot of fun!

We’re actually not legally allowed to take inspiration / read any fan works.  In fact, we have to fill out paperwork whenever someone sends us an unsolicited idea!  So unfortunately, no, the creative team can’t co-opt fan content for the show. :(. 

Thanks for the ask, and for watching! :)

 

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On 12/16/2018 at 4:58 AM, Frostgage said:

I won't add another question (you have plenty already lol) but I just wanted to say thank you so much for doing this!! This is the coolest event we've ever had :mlp_proud:

Thank you so much!!! :) 

On 12/16/2018 at 4:54 AM, Batbrony said:

Well everypony, it looks like our time with Ms. Dubuc is just about at an end.  On behalf of the entire MLP Forums and Poniverse community, I just want to thank @NicoleDubuc one more time for taking the time out of her schedule to chat with all of us.  This has been a real pleasure for us all, and it's been very fun and informative getting to hear from one of MLP:FiM's very own creative minds.  In case Nicole was unable to get to one or more of your questions, fear not, she will be able to answer them after tonight if she wants to or is able to make the time.  Thanks for joining us this evening, everypony, and to Ms. Dubuc, our staff and members all wish you a very Merry Christmas and Happy New Year! :muffins:

P.S. One more question for the road.  What is your personal favorite holiday TV special/film, that one (or more) holiday classic that you just HAVE to catch every Christmas season?

 

Thanks again for the invitation!  We watch Mr. Magoo’s Christmas Carol every year.  But at work this year, we all wrote down our favorite specials and drew them from a (Hearthswarming Helper) hat, then watched each others’ favorites. 

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On 12/16/2018 at 4:24 AM, Twilight Luna said:

The Best Gift Ever is full of cultural references to Charlie Brown and GI Joe. Were these put in at the request of Hasbro or did the writers decide to put them in? If it was your own decision, what was your favorite one? Mine was the reference to the Charlie Brown Christmas.

GI Joe was Michael Vogel all the way - we had other references in there that we had to cut for time/design concerns.  But they’re always fun to spot!  A lot of the other excellent references and touches are all Big Jim and his team. They never fail to amaze me with the talent and love they pour into this show.  My favorite reference was a Jurassic Park one that got cut. :)

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On 12/16/2018 at 4:31 AM, Them's Seeing Ponies said:

Thanks for the insightful reply. Here's round 2 (fortunately the last set of questions I have), including a few more 'technical' questions (feel free to take your time answering):

Of the shows you've worked on previously, which would you liken the general storytelling and comedic style of FiM to the most?

What initially influenced you to co-author the Ponyville Mysteries books?

What role does Jim Miller play in production as supervising director? Does he oversee only an episode's visual/storyboarding aspects, or does he have some input on story development as well? 

What role did Meghan McCarthy play in the production of season 8 (after her return from developing the MLP movie)? 

From the perspective of one of the show's lead writers, what is the most unique aspect of writing for FiM as a whole (which facets of its creative landscape do you find cause it to stand out from other series of its genre/demographic)?

Tackling these one at a time...

1. First off, I love the pace and style of FiM.  It’s a realm I really enjoy writing in.  I think it’s close to Rescue Bots, with that great balance of character, comedy and plot.

2. Michael Vogel knew I wanted to write books, and he invited me to be his writing partner (after the appropriate publisher and Hasbro okays).  Writing those books was an absolute blast.

3. Jim is part of every facet of the process.  On FiM, all our initial story pitch sessions start with Josh and I traveling to Vancouver (or Jim and the directors/line producer coming down to LA).  We spend about three days together working on seasonal story arcs, jokes and character bits we’d like to use, and general story.  Then from there, Jim and his team give notes along with the Hasbro executives on our scripts.  Jim helps oversee the records, as well as the whole animation process. He’s the backbone, heart and soul of the show.

4. Meghan reads scripts and weighs in on stories. She’s busy on lots of productions at once, so Eliza Hart was our day-to-day Hasbro exec.

5. I think there’s a lot of heart and well-developed characters in FiM. That’s the joy of writing in the world; you know who the characters are, and you try to set up plots that will allow them to shine comedically or explore new facets of their character.  Fantasy storytelling is another thing I love in general, and FiM is a safe world where friendship always wins, no matter how tough things get. It’s very reassuring.

On 12/16/2018 at 4:36 AM, Quinch said:

Also, what did you think of the MLP: The Movie? Did you have any influence over its story, and if not, did it do anything that surprised you, both story-wise or regarding what it meant for MLP's overall worldbuilding?

I enjoyed the movie very much; it was going on at the same time as we were working on the end of S7/beginning of S8, so we got to see early animatics to make sure we were able to synchronize our storytelling with the world-building in the film. I didn’t have any influence over the story, but I knew a lot about it from working with Michael Vogel.  I think I was most excited about getting to bring Silverstream into our show as a result of the movie.

On 12/16/2018 at 4:36 AM, Sparklefan1234 said:

Hello, Ms. Dubuc!

Welcome to MLPForums!

 

I was wondering: 

 

"Were there any specific episodes that helped you decide to become a part of Friendship is Magic?" 

 

Thank You *so* much for answering my question! :-D

Thanks for the welcome!  While there are specific episodes of FiM I love, I didn’t need any convincing to decide to be a part of the show - I was invited by Meghan and I said yes!

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On 12/16/2018 at 4:39 AM, A.V. said:

On a more-random note, Ms. Dubuc -- if you could have any single Infinity Stone (from the Marvel Cinematic Universe), which would it be, and what would you use it for?

Time stone, no question.  And I’d use it for sooooo many things.  

On 12/16/2018 at 4:41 AM, Ganaram Inukshuk said:

Couldn't tell if this was asked, but what's your favourite non-pony creature(s)? (I'm personally torn between griffon, hippogriff, kirin, and changeling because Gallus, Silverstream, kirin_list.Random(), and Ocellus.)

And another thing: what advice would you impart to aspiring artists/writers who have only ever been in the technical fields (computer science for example)?

I love griffons.  I always have.  But Yona and Silverstream have won my heart too, so... It’s a toughie. :)

I think the most important thing for aspiring artists and writers to do is create!  If you want to be a writer, you have to write!  And finish your project.  A lot of people say they want to write but never sit down and do the tough slog of finishing a first draft.  Remember, a draft is just that - you can revise from there and it just gets easier.  Aside from that, I’d say, read and study the things you like to watch.  Analyze TV shows and script choices - why did a character do this, what would have happened if they did that... And gain an “ear” for dialog to listening to the world around you. I believe Dean Koontz started out as a computer scientist; writers and artists come from all fields and all walks of life. :)

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On 12/16/2018 at 4:46 AM, PathfinderCS said:

Sooo...any possible chance that more sentient/sapient deer will show up? :D

Also; THANK YOU for taking the time to come here and answer questions! You Rock! :)

That’s a question for Alice, LOL.  Thank YOU! :)

 

On 12/16/2018 at 4:48 AM, Quinch said:

Ooooh! Okay, question, then - what would be your advice for aspiring amateur voice actors for improving? I.e. not ones looking to make a living off it, but for quality, versatility and consistency?

I think the most important part about voice acting is being a good actor, first and foremost.  It’s not just about doing silly voices, that stuff can come later - it’s about not being able to emote with your face and putting all of that feeling into your voice, so someone with their eyes closed can draw your expression.  Does that make sense?  So a good improv class, or any acting basics are an excellent start.  Also, audio-record yourself to hear what you sound like. Being able to reproduce a take, or give a totally different read if asked, is very important.  Recordings are a great way to hone your consistency and learn the musicality of your own voice.  Hope that helps! :)

On 12/16/2018 at 4:51 AM, shyabetes3939 said:

Welcome to MLP Forums, Ms. Dubuc! A couple of questions for you:

Which character is your favorite and why?

What's your favorite episode of the show?

 

Current favorite character is Yona, with AJ being my fave of the M6.  And you haven’t seen my favorite episode yet. :) 

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On 12/16/2018 at 4:52 AM, Adderbane said:

Does that happen often?

Oh yes.  Especially when Tabitha is recording.  She has hilarious ad libs.

On 12/16/2018 at 4:53 AM, Jeric said:

Okay, here is a question for you. Growing up as a child of the 80’s, did you have any favorite cartoons that you would jump at helping to resurrect for the current generation of kids and kids-at-heart? There are a few of us 40-somethings here that would probably love to hear your thoughts on that. 

Great question!  I adored Thundercats, but haven’t been involved in any of the reboots.  I loved My Little Pony, so this has been pretty much a dream come true.  And I was a huge fan of the Real Ghostbusters.  I know that came back as Extreme Ghostbusters, but I’d love a crack at that property.  OH!  And the Disney Afternoon was HUGE in my life growing up.  If there’s ever a Tale Spin reboot, I’d be down for that!

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On 12/16/2018 at 4:24 AM, Quinch said:

Since you were involved with the creation of the Student Six {is it Young six officially?}, I have to ask... what would happen if Silverstream encountered an escalator?

We call ‘em the Young Six because SS can also mean Silverstream, Sunset Shimmer, etc. 

And if Silverstream saw an elevator...

MIND. BLOWN!

On 12/16/2018 at 4:03 AM, Bas said:

How did you come up with the design of Cozy Glow as a villain?


Is it set in stone that the upcoming season will be the last of FiM?

(Prob aren't allowed to reply for 2nd question, I assume)

 

Cozy Glow was my pet project, I don’t know, I just sorta pitched her in the room and everyone was on board.  All I said was that she had Shirley Temple curls and was an adorable little Pegasus filly (we had fun choosing her cutie mark).  Jim and his team of artists at DHX tackled her actual design.

Second question... No comment. (Sorry!)

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On 12/16/2018 at 4:06 AM, A.V. said:

Another question: What's the most-hilarious outtake you've ever heard during a recording-session?

Oh man.  I don’t think they’re fit for print.  BUT!  One time John DiMaggio went off on a whole “Drakken Sings” ad lib tangent at a Kim Possible record, and it was both hilarious and amazing!

On 12/16/2018 at 4:11 AM, Twilight Luna said:

Have you ever written a character based on someone that you know? If so, who was that character?

I think we all borrow parts of people we know for different things - it makes characters more realistic when you imbue them with personality traits you know well!  But I don’t usually tell people if they’ve influenced a character - you don’t wanna admit to your pal they make a great villain, LOL.

On 12/16/2018 at 4:14 AM, Lord Valtasar said:

with the Kirin being in the fan-made content for so long,did it influence the decision on adding them, or was it an idea of its own?

An idea all on its own.  A previous DHX artist had designed a Kirin character several seasons back, and she was never used.  Jim showed me the design, and I decided we HAD to use the Kirin this season. :)

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On 12/16/2018 at 4:14 AM, Batbrony said:

Got another "Best Gift Ever" question for ya.  What holiday specials and films, if any, particularly influenced you and the creative team?  It seems that one of the biggest aspects of "Best Gift Ever" that sets it apart from previous Hearth's Warming Eve episodes is how well the ensemble cast is utilized, truly painting a very true-to-life picture of how hectic the holiday season can get for people and all of the varying, individual narratives that go into making these celebrations happen and as special as they are.  I can think of a number of holiday classics that similarly capture these elements of the season, but I'm curious to hear from you if any in particular inspired the creative team.

This is a better question for Michael Vogel, the writer of the special.  But I will say that both he and I grew up on the Rankin Bass specials, Emmet Otter, Miracle on 34th Street, as well as many, many others.  So I’m sure Christmas content is in our subconscious at all times, LOL. I think Vogel did a FANTASTIC job on this episode, I was very excited to work on it with him.  And the first draft was almost 20 pages more than we could use, so we had to work hard to trim it all down, yet still fit in all the fun, plot, and character moments!

On 12/16/2018 at 4:19 AM, Mesme Rize said:

Good evening Mrs. Dubuc,

First off all, thank you for joining us here for this Q&A, as i know that you most likely have a busy schedule.

To my question now. As we have discovered over the course of now 9 seasons of My Little Pony, that there are a wide variety of Pony creatures and not just the traditional earth, Pegasus and Unicorn ponies.
We also have species like Batponies, Breezies (which kinda are ponies) hippogriffponies and seaponies (or both like silverstream and Terramar).

My question is, What do you think of other pony hybrids that the fandom has created? Hybrids really fascinate me and concepts like Snakeponies or Deerponies really are interesting for me.

Thank you. :)

Thanks for having me in the Q&A!  I don’t know about any pony hybrids the fandom has created, but I love fantasty novels, so I’m pretty familiar with a lot of the hybrids that exist. Had Vogel and I continued our book series, we might have had a chance to explore this topic more. 

On 12/16/2018 at 4:20 AM, TwilySparky said:

I have a good question I just came up with.

Will bat ponies ever have a bigger prescense in the show? They are very popular fanmade creation but also have some appearenace in the show.

Can’t answer any spoiler questions, but I will say, I like batponies too!

On 12/16/2018 at 4:20 AM, ggg-2 said:

It's so great to meet you, Nicole! :yay: Do you have a favorite pop culture reference the show has done?

Good to meet you too!  I really liked getting to use the Steve Buscemi reference with Discord.  But there are so many fun ones throughout the series!  Sometimes they’re not in the scripts, either, DHX adds them in, and we crack up when we see them for the first time in the animatic.

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