We are thrilled that eleven individuals from the show will be at BotCon in San Diego!. Attached you will find brief bio's along with pics of all those appearing at BotCon 2013. All eleven will be there on Saturday ONLY.
BRIAN HOHLFELD is the Supervising producer/co-creator of Rescue Bots. He also wrote the movie "He said, She said" and has worked extensively on the Winnie the Pooh franchise.
NICOLE DUBUC is the Story editor/co-creator of Rescue Bots. Having started out as a child actor, Nicole began a career writing for children's television with credits on Kim Possible, Transformers Prime and of course, Rescue Bots!
GREG JOHNSON is a Story editor for Rescue Bots. Long time Transformers fans will note that before Rescue Bots, Greg wrote four episodes of BEAST WARS. Since then his writing has included Ultimate Avengers, G.i. Joe Renegades and Rescue Bots.
STEVE BLUM has voiced hundreds of amazing characters and is most well known to Transformers fans as Starscream from Transformers Prime and Heatwave from Rescue Bots.
PARVESH CHEENA recently starred in NBC's Outsourced as the lovable Gupta and is currently the voice of the aerial bot Blades on Rescue Bots.
D.C. DOUGLAS has a long list of TV and Video Game credits to his name but to Transformers fans, Chase the Rescue Bot is at the top of that list!
IMARI WILLIAMS had provided voices for several Video Game's before landing his first animation role as the muscle behind the Rescue Bots, Boulder!
ELAN GARFIAS provides the voice for the youngest of the Burns siblings, Cody Burns, a young but already skilled Rescue worker!
JASON MARSDEN has done a variety of voice over work, including voicing Duke from G.I. Joe Renegades, and currently can be heard on Rescue Bots as the ill-tempered Kade Burns, older brother to Cody.
DIAMOND WHITE has provided voices for Phineas and Ferb, was a final 5 contestant on "The X Factor" and can currently be heard as the voice of Doc Greene's daughter, the strong willed Frankle Greene, on Rescue Bots
SHANNON McKAIN has appeared on CSI, It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia and to Transformers fans, the voice of the Rescue worker Graham Burns!
Q:We’re halfway through MONSTROSITY. The first series that you worked on withChris Metzen and Flint Dille, AUTOCRACY, focused on Orion Pax becoming OptimusPrime. Why did the focus was shift to Megatron and what happens to him, whileshowing bits and pieces of Prime on Cybertron?
LIVIO RAMONDELLI: Itfelt like a natural progression in the story to shift things a bit more toMegatron’s story. He suffered a big defeat at the end of AUTOCRACY, and soseeing how his followers respond to that interested us. Plus, we wanted tocontrast that against Prime having a more political battle ahead of him, andshowing the hardships of leadership for a divided world.
Q:Megatron has obviously suffered prior to the series and gone through a littleredesign? How did you come to the design we see him in now?
LIVIO RAMONDELLI: Weknew that he’d repair himself with pieces he’d scavenged on Junkion, and so wedefinitely wanted him to be asymmetrical. By the end of his time on that world,he’s almost unrecognizable as Megatron… his colors have rusted and hisDecepticon logo has burned away. He really needs to find himself once again,essentially.
Q:There have been a few new characters making themselves know so far in theseries. What led to those characters coming into the series rather than others?Are any of them you just wanted to see in there?
LIVIO RAMONDELLI: Absolutely.Trypticon, Sharkticons and Quintessons were the ones I most wanted to include.I felt like they lent themselves well to the story we wanted to tell, and theyadded a more monstrous side. We knew they’d be in there from way early on. Andthen others like Dai Atlas and Bulkhead grew organically from the story, wherewe felt like we had a place for them that also felt natural.
Q:The Dynobots are going though a bit of a journey in the series. What is itabout this team that makes you want to creative something with them involvedafter all the previous material with them involved?
LIVIO RAMONDELLI: Ithink they’re a very classic part of the TF universe. Funny enough, they’re allover the place now in the various games and the TV shows, but when we firstdecided to use them they weren’t really around. And as Chris said it, MONSTROSITYis about a man becoming a monster (Megatron), and a monster becoming a man(Grimlock). I always loved that.
Q:We have the Quintessons making their first real appearance in the IDW universe,after being previously teased at the end of SPOTLIGHT: WHEELIE in 2008. Was thisa deliberate nod to the 1986 TRANSFORMERS animated movie (after the nods we sawin AUTOCRACY)?
LIVIO RAMONDELLI: Nota deliberate nod, exactly, since we use the Quintession Pentius in a verydifferent way, here. Though, of course, we drew from the movie since, visually,we felt there were some great things we could do that hadn’t been seen in [the IDWcomics] before. And we wanted to certainly tease the Quintessons without givingtoo much information about their race… certainly leaving more to be revealedabout them in future stories.
Q:Taking into account what you established in Autocracy, was there much researchthat had to be done about Megatron to see what was already established abouthim in the IDW world so you could figure him out?
LIVIO RAMONDELLI: MEGATRON:ORIGIN is a big favorite of mine, and so I knew a lot of his history prettywell. And then of course James wrote the great “Chaos Theory,” which furtheradded to it. Our take on him is meant to reflect those but also portray him asincreasingly dangerous… a truly growing threat. [Editor] John [Barber] is greatat jumping in and suggesting things or filling us in on some continuity we mayhave missed.
Q:With Dai Atlas, he has some backstory in the IDW universe, but also some gaps.When figuring out his role in this story, do you think it was the intention toshow he was more than we previously may have thought? He’s proven to be a hellof a fighter.
LIVIO RAMONDELLI: Wecertainly wanted to shed more light on him. And also, TRANSFORMERS: ROBOTS INDISGUISE #17 that I did with John [also on sale today!] will also give us bigmoments with him in the past. I think he was perfect to use in this prequelbecause we know he left Cybertron… and now we get to see the why and how of it.And there’s a sadness to seeing him and Prime trying to work things out becausewe know it doesn’t succeed. Their final moment together in Monstrosity is anemotional favorite of mine.
Q:Given that you worked with Flint and Chris before, has the creative processbeen any smoother for you all this time around, now you know how each otherbetter?
LIVIO RAMONDELLI: We’remuch closer just as friends by this point. In AUTOCRACY, it was really theirstory and I was coming in to draw it. But they embraced me warmly, and let mereally suggest a lot of stuff… it was the most fun I’ve ever had in my career.And now with this current series, it’s only gotten better. It’s a truecollaboration and I feel very much a part of the story. Chris and Flint areawesome guys, and I’m very thankful for their generosity and friendship.
Q:What is your favorite stage of the creative process when putting the seriestogether?
LIVIO RAMONDELLI: There’sa few… I love the early stages of just chatting about any insane idea andseeing if we can connect the dots. I also love when the issues start coming outand the reader responses arrive. And then finally finishing a series is a veryrewarding moment since you know that story will live on forever and hopefullybe passed around to new readers.
Q:Would you say working in a digital format, with less page space than a regularcomic, is a plus or a minus point for both you?
LIVIO RAMONDELLI: It’sboth. Certainly, there are times it can be a minus because you want to do bigmoney shots and sometimes don’t have the space. But as a plus, it makes usreally concentrate on the screen time and make every moment count. As a result,I think the pacing in these issues feels very fulfilling… we cover a lot ofstory and readers seem to really love that.
Q:Tease us about future issues of MONSTROSITY. What would you like to say aboutthe series to anyone looking to pick it up for the first time?
LIVIO RAMONDELLI: Obviously,the revelation that Trypticon has been discovered is a huge clue for the restof the series. We wouldn’t show something like that and have it not wake up.And we’re aiming for a level of destruction with Trypticon that hasn’t beenseen before. Optimus Prime will really be put to the test, as he has beenthroughout the series. Megatron will of course return to deal with his betrayalat Scorponok’s hands… and he isn’t the merciful kind.
And for anyone who hasn’t read ityet… I’d say it’s the story of a world coming apart at the seams, showing how asociety can destroy everything they love and not even be fully aware of it.
Q:Can you see the story that you’re telling branching out even further into thewar, maybe offering up a third digital series after this one?
LIVIO RAMONDELLI: Withoutsaying too much… I think there’s a very good possibility…
Join us for an amazing afternoon on Saturday where fans will get to meet and hear from nearly a dozen members from the cast and crew of the Hub Network's hit show "Rescue Bots."
The Rescue Bots panel, featuring the voice talents of ALL FOUR Rescue Bots, Parvesh Cheena (Blades), Steve Blum (Heatwave), DC Douglas (Chase) and Imari Williams (Boulder), is a must see for anyone attending BotCon 2013!
In our ever expanding line-up of guests we are very happy to welcome Ken Christiansen to Charticon 2013! Ken has been working as an illustrator and concept designer for over fifteen years. Starting as a video game concept artist, at Nintendo of America (Ridge Racer 64, Pokemon Puzzle League), then moving to Los Angeles to work in games for the Walt Disney Company (Kingdom Hearts, Finding Nemo). In 2004, Ken started his own company, Bad Flip Productions, working for video game clients like Disney, Warner Bros., Universal, and Activision. After working with Activision on Transformers the Game, and the Revenge of the Fallen game, he began working freelance in media development for Hasbro Inc. (Transformers), doing concept art for their film, tv, book, games, and toy initiatives. That expanded into media development beyond the Transformers brand, including Star Wars, Spider-Man, and more.
Ken’s current work includes the cover runs on the Transformers Prime series (IDW), Star Wars Fighter Pods, and Ultimate Spider-Man Spider Pods. Along with other random bits and pieces, hanging off pegs in the toy aisles, book shelves, and video game departments…
He is my all time favorite Transformer. I lucked out, and got to take a pass at him. I got the assignment, and he was to be explored as a secret government FBI/CIA type SUV, in the style of 24, or a Presidential Caravan. I knew this was coming from his previous incarnation from Animated.
Transformed! As always, I try to keep as many classic cues in as possible, but there were a few things being asked from Aaron and Eric at Hasbro to try to add, like a movie style head, and there was something with the legs, though in the notes I can't seem to find any reference, probably was in an email that was deleted long ago.
Ken Christiansen wrote:The assignment was to envision a near-future tank, so I did a few quick sketches, got feedback from Siebenaler, and actually only did a colored line art pass, because of a time crunch. After the presentation and following feedback, I was asked to render it fully, with no changes, along with the Prime truck, that was also initially done as colored line art, for the same pitch.
TFcon wrote:We are honored to welcome Transformers voice actor Jack Angel to TFcon 2013 for his first ever Canadian convention appearance.
The voice of Astrotrain, Breakdown, Cyclonus, Ramjet, Smokescreen and Ultra Magnus in the Generation 1 cartoon; he is also known to GIJOE fans as the voice of Wet Suit and Superfriends fans as the voices of Flash, Hawkman and Samurai. Mr. Angel will be taking part in Q&A panels and autograph sessions with the attendees of the world’s largest fan-run Transformers convention.
TRANSFORMERS: REGENERATION ONE #91—the comic book that continues the original 1984 TRANSFORMERS series, courtesy IDW Publishing and Hasbro—launches an all-new story arc! “DESTINY” part one sets the stage, as BLUDGEON and SOUNDWAVE launch their ultimate assault against the universe, thanks to legendary writer Simon Furman—who we sat down with for a brief chat!—and artist Andrew Wildman. TRANSFORMERS: REGENERATION ONE #91 is out now at comic book stores everywhere, and for download at https://transformers.comixology.com/ or via the Comixology and iBooks apps on your computer or mobile device)!
PAGE 1: We’re on the world of Cresta Superior, with some beetle-like war machines in operation. What was your inspiration on the design of these machines? Did you have a specific look in mind or did you let artist Andrew Wildman design what he thought would work best?
SIMON FURMAN: A lot of the design of Bludgeon’s Blitz Engines comes (naturally enough) from Andrew. But of course I threw a bunch of ideas into the mix in the script too. My main requirement was that they in no way appeared humanoid. We went that route in Generation 2 (in which there’s a parallel story of Bludgeon and Matrix-infused clone troopers, one of a few G2 elements that are finding their way into the REGENERATION ONE mix… another big one of those says hi this very issue!), and I wanted these to be visually distinct and just generally big, threatening and armed to teeth.
They’re siege engines, tanks on legs basically. And Andrew took that and ran with it, creating these almost crab-like mechs that really look like they can just plough through anything (and anyone) in their way. They’re going to get a lot of action in #94-95, and to have even the slightest hope of combating them, the Autobots are going to have to wheel out a really BIG gun of their own.
PAGE 2: The machines are slaughtering the humanoid soldiers and breaking their way through into their base. Cresta Superior is a brand new world in TRANSFORMERS. Why create something new instead of using a previously established world for this scene?
SIMON FURMAN: One criticism I’ve seen leveled at RG1 is that we’re very focused down on just three worlds (Cybertron, Earth and Nebulos… and there’s a reason for that, trust me, which will become apparent in the final arc), so I took the opportunity to just remind readers that there are other worlds (and other mech species) out there (again, something that will form a big plot-point in the final arc), and lay in the idea that there are vast distances and gulfs of outer space that while maybe mapped aren’t well travelled or continually on the Cybertronian radar. Remember, a lot of RG1 (initially) was about Optimus Prime having (disastrously) taken his eye off the ball, allowed his sphere of awareness to focus too much on Cybertron (to the exclusion of all else). The business with Earth (and to an extent Nebulos) is going to turn out to be quite a micro-failing compared to what’s been happening out in the wider (macro-) universe.
PAGE 3: Bludgeon and Soundwave are talking, and we’re seeing that the machines are called Blitz Engines and are Bludgeon’s creations. Tell us about where Bludgeon is coming from in his point of view and how he sees the universe. And what he believes should happen to it.
SIMON FURMAN: Bludgeon’s a complex character. He has this whole martial arts style warrior code he adheres to (more or less) that skews his conventional motivations. Bludgeon is much more concerned with his wider legacy and how he’ll be regarded (by future generations) than the here and now. So while his current goal seems straightforward (return to Cybertron and the conquest of the same), it’s much more layered. Bludgeon believes in predestination, and that if that destiny is not forthcoming he must force the issue. He sees this life as merely stepping-stone to another (greater) destiny, and that makes him incredibly dangerous. Death holds no fear for him. Maybe even attracts him?
PAGE 4: Soundwave and Bludgeon are discussing their future plans, which would appear to involve Thunderwing. Even though Soundwave and Bludgeon are Decepticons and on the same side, are they really fighting for the same common cause or pursuing two very different agendas here?
SIMON FURMAN: There’s a certain amount of crossover in Bludgeon’s and Soundwave’s motivations/goals, but there’s also a whole side to what Bludgeon wants that Soundwave isn’t privy to. Soundwave is all about keeping Megatron’s banner raised over Cybertron, even post-mortem, whereas Bludgeon wants… well, that’d be telling.
PAGE 5: Looking at the aftermath of what Scorponok was doing in the previous issues. Is everything really back to normal on Cybertron? Can these guys just go back to the way things were before events of war took their toll on the population again?
SIMON FURMAN: I think that irrevocable damage has been done by Scorponok’s gene-engineering, but it’s not insurmountable. Part of the reason I wanted to do that particular arc was to show what a tenuous hold the Autobots have on the “heroic” side of their nature, that (actually) every day is a battle to hold onto the values and moral ideals they live by. (Grimlock, for example, walks that line a little more visibly.) They’re supremely powerful beings, appointed guardians/custodians of the entire universe. How could that degree of power, responsibility and status not go to your head? So every day is a struggle to keep on the side of right and virtue, and thanks to Scorponok that struggle is a little tougher, a little more evident.
Ken Christiansen wrote:The request was to keep him a long nose, as he now appears in the film series, and if I remember right, that was just about it. Of course I ventured the question. "I don't have to put those flames on him, do I?" But I did keep in line with the movie logic of the long nose, giving him more mass to work with in robot mode, and we added in a roof fairing over the extended cab to build it out even more.
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