Comic Con 2011: Interviews with World Events Productions (VOLTRON) Creative Director Bob Koplar and VOLTRON FORCE Story Editor Todd Garfield

     July 27, 2011

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Anyone who visited San Diego this year would’ve been hard pressed to miss the fact that Voltron is poised for a comeback.  Toys from Mattel, merchandizing galore, and a new animated series: Voltron Force all stand ready to descend once again on the nation’s youth and nostalgic generation xers. World Events Productions took part in the Voltron pressroom interviews at Comic Con, and I got the chance to interview WEP Creative Director Bob Koplar and Voltron Force Story Editor Todd Garfield. Check out both video interviews after the jump.

NEW-VOLTRONIf you’re between the ages of 25 and 35, chances are high that you know what Voltron is.  If you fall within this age range, chances will also be high that you’re about to become incredibly jealous of Bob Koplar.  When Koplar’s father: Ted Koplar brought Voltron to the US in the mid eighties he helped usher in an age of Japanese Animation repackaged for children.  He also turned the Giant robot comprised of five robotic lions and their pilots into a marketing juggernaut.  As the younger Koplar takes the reigns and prepares to re-introduce the Defender of the Universe to a new Generation, he talks to Collider in a one on one interview where he discusses the importance of fan involvement, teases the return of a “long lost character”, and brags about having all the best Voltron toys as a child, even the castle.  Jealous yet?

Probably the most interesting tidbit from Koplar involves the potential spoiler:

“We even have a ‘long lost character’ that might be coming back.”

Here’s the full interview with Koplar:

  • :20 – Koplar talks about growing up with Voltron
  • 1:00 – Koplar goes into the history of turning the Anime Go Lion into Voltron: Defender of the Universe.
  • 1:50 – Koplar talks about having “all the best Voltron toys”.
  • 2:45 – Koplar talks about the new Nicktoons series: Voltron Force.
  • 3:30 – Koplar talks about how the CGI rendered lions will allow for different levels of action.
  • 4:15 – Koplar talks about the advice he received on handling the iconic property.  He continually hits on the fan involvement in the current incarnations of Voltron.
  • 5:10 – Koplar teases about a “long lost character” returning.

Much has been made of the overwhelmingly positive fan reaction to the new Voltron Force official trailer. Those wanting to know what to expect from the new animated series will be interested to check out my interview with Story Editor Todd Garfield.  Unfortunately, anyone expecting spoilers will be sorely disappointed.  Garfield referred to himself as decidedly “anti spoiler”.  Still, he did have plenty to say about what to expect from the new series.

According to Garfield:

“It’s a lot more character driven, and less formulaic.”

Here’s the full interview with Garfield:

  • :15 – Garfield begins by admitting to not being a Voltron fanboy.
  • 1:25 – Garfield suggests this newest incarnation will be more character driven, including having actual reasons to form Voltron.
  • 2:30 – Garfield stresses that though the focus of the new series is on character and action, there will a lot of elements that will indeed make “cool toys”.
  • 3:15 – Garfield shies away from confirming the tease offered by Koplar and refers to himself as “anti-spoiler”.
  • 4:00 – Garfield talks about figuring out a way to please everyone with the new series.
  • 4:30 – Garfield talks about the toys he most excited for, including one he came up with.

Judging from these interviews, it’s hard not to imagine that Voltron Force will indeed offer something for fans of the old Voltron: Defender of the Universe series as well as new fans young and old.

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