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  • Jan
    replied
    And again, JMS quotes what he's replying to from this post. Triple-F has posted a number of times, trying to get fans to show support for an 'Art of Babylon 5 book'.

    Originally posted by J. MIchael Straczynski
    “Joe has to approve any B5 licensed publication. He would never I mean NEVER let me publish anything B5.”

    Y'know, I write about telepaths sometimes but I never claim to BE one.

    Ron has never ASKED to do a B5 book. Not at any point. If he did, and he had a publisher, I wouldn't stand in his way. I'd be involved in the process same as any other book, but to say I wouldn't allow it is simply foolish.

    Honestly, the more I read these threads, the more apparent it is that you guys have serious issues that often -- not always, but often -- have nothing to do with reality.
    Jan

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  • Jan
    replied
    Next, in this post JMS quotes what he's replying to:

    J. MIchael Straczynski "...the B5 producers who now owned the FX." I never owned the FX. Those were all properties of Warner Bros. And BTW, attempts to keep those files from the studio, which owned the assets, would have been breach of contract.

    As to the quote above from Copeland...sorry, folks, but that's the reality of every shot, every script, every performance. You do it the best you can but at some point you have to let it go. Art is never finished, only abandoned. That some animators might "grumble" about it is not salutary to them. It's childishness. Should a shot not come in in time for broadcast because the animator is still twiddling with it? So we should scuttle the whole episode? Nonsense. I have script deadlines; directors have deadlines for cuts; music editors have to deliver their files in time for the audio mix; and animators have to deliver their shots in time for broadcast. Is it perfect? No. Nothing is. Perfect doesn't exist. There's not a single episode of B5 where I wouldn't want to go back and tweak a line of dialogue or an edit here and there.

    It's the reaction to the quote that is telling, not the quote itself. It shows a serious lack of maturity on the part of those involved...as it does the person who recites it here thinking somehow that it constitutes an indictment.
    Jan

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  • Jan
    replied
    JMS replied to a couple of things in this thread:

    A poster named Aris asked if JMS didn't simply write 'space battle' in his scripts without any description and then the effects crew stepped in and created them. Daniel Taylor (from the effects people?) confirmed that.

    Originally posted by J. MIchael Straczynski
    Show me those scripts. I've never seen them or written them. In some scenes, after setting the stage and the logistics, I would say we would need a Ron Thornton special, but never just wrote "space battle." Sorry. If you want to back up your story, since you must have seen this to quote it, please, do so. Otherwise back off this shit.
    JMS quotes the part he's replying to in this one:

    Originally posted by J. MIchael Straczynski
    "In case you haven’t guessed it yet, one of the things that come out of the interviews on B5Scrolls was that Joe Straczynski was far from being the only person who had creative input into most aspects of Babylon 5. It was a very collaborative process involving dozens of artists."

    And I've never said anything to the contrary. I've gone to considerable length, at every possible opportunity, to express my appreciation for the crew and efx guys, which I manifested by giving them as much creative room to play as possible.

    What I will say for my part is this: it doesn't make any difference how good your EFX team is IF THE SHOWRUNNER DOESN'T LET THEM DO THEIR JOB. You need someone at the helm who gets it, and encourages them to be as creative as possible. I don't care how good the Starfury designs are, if I'm the showrunner and I want something that looks like it came out of Fireball XL5, that's what you're going to spend the season making. Which is why a lot of SF shows suck and suffer from a lack of ingenuity.

    I honestly don't know what your problem is, but you guys seriously need to get over your case of the bitters. You don't prop yourself up by trying to step on the other guy's throat. It's unseemly and unprofessional and most of all it's inherently false. As Copeland said, and as all of us have said from the git-go, this was a partnership and a collaboration between all of the departments. The CGI wouldn't register as well as it does without the sound effects; the sound needs music to create the emotional moments...the cast needs to perform and the scripts need to make sense. It's all or nothing, and this kind of bitching-and-moaning after the fact, that somehow of those elements *you* didn't get your due when we all participated, and none of us probably got what we should have gotten, and all of us participated in every facet of this show. You need to get over your case of the bitters.
    Jan
    Last edited by Jan; 10-06-2013, 05:27 AM.

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  • Jan
    replied
    Most folks here are probably aware of the B5 Scrolls site which has some wonderful interviews with a lot of the behind-the-scenes folks. It's no secret that Triple-F and I have exchanged views over what I consider an unfortunate tone to many of his interview questions or posts but until now, JMS has remained silent as far as I've been aware. Until tonight, that is, when he corrected some bad information that was out there and comments on some of the quotes. In some cases it looks like JMS is unearthing really old thread (and he may be) but there's also an oddness about the way things show up on the B5 Scrolls Facebook page where posts don't always show up under current dates (at least I've had trouble finding some things when I've gone looking after the fact).

    In response to this particular paragraph in this post:

    Originally posted by B5 Scrolls
    Lets put it this way. Once Warner Brothers and Babylonian Productions - owned by Rattlesnake (Doug Netter) and Synthetic Worlds (J. Michael Straczynski) - took their cuts via various accounting methods, the artists who designed things like the Starfury, Omega and Shadow vessels NEVER made a penny on all that merchandising that was created. Still don’t, but that’s sadly not that unusual.
    Originally posted by J. MIchael Straczynski
    Y'know, if you're going to take a shot at somebody, you should a) do it to their face and b) be accurate. This was neither.

    You talk about the producers (meaning me) taking their "cut" of merchandising, and about owning a production company. Babylonian Productions was what's called a pass-through company; it exists only to receive the budget from the studio, and use those funds to pay for production costs. At the end of the shoot, the company is folded up or transferred back to the studio. It's not like owning DreamWorks. It was a tube through which money funneled to the cast and crew, and when the show was done, the company was done. Total assets we own of that: zero, effective as soon as the shows (B5 and Crusade) were done.

    To the matter of merchandising, I don't know what figures you've made up in your own mind about that, but I can pretty much guarantee you that they do not touch reality at any two contiguous points. By contract, I had a very small piece of merchandising which WB got to determine...meaning very close to zero. The only direct merchandising that Foundation *could* have gotten would have been the model ships, and I think my total check on that merchandise came to about a couple hundred dollars. Literally. Leaving aside their fun little computations...show me the merchandising that made millions. Hell, show me the merchandising related to Foundation that made maybe a hundred grand.

    Except for my writer's guild residuals on the episodes themselves, which don't exist while the show is off the air in the US (international is nearly nothing), I've never received a dime in royalties or profits on the show to this date. I'm happy to share with anyone who wants to see it the next royalty statement that comes in from WB. According to the last one, we are still (by their accounting) about 15M in the red. Nor have I ever received anything beyond WGA residuals on the DVDs.

    Did the show make money? Hell yes. Where did it go? To the studio. So ifi you're going to start taking shots at me, you'd damn well better get your facts straight before doing so. What resentments you may have toward Doug -- and some of them are well-founded, something I did not know at the time but discovered later -- do not give you the right to simply make shit up because you're pissed off.
    By now pretty much everybody knows that if you want to discuss any/all of these, please take the discussion to a new thread. Thanks.

    Jan
    (splitting these into separate posts because vBulletin keeps losing big chunks of posts. DougO's looking into it.)
    Last edited by Jan; 10-06-2013, 05:42 AM.

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  • Jan
    replied
    Sounds like Buddy may have gotten his revenge?

    Originally posted by JMichael Straczynski
    ‏@straczynski 7h
    Life Rule #27. Never lean nude over a cat unless you have resolved in your own mind what the cat might consider a threat.
    Jan

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