Friday, June 08, 2007

Planet Heroes!

As some of you may know, my previous job was at Fisher-Price, working on a direct-to-DVD animated show called "Planet Heroes." It was a 9 month project and we produced a 27 minute episode that will be packaged with a new line of toys coming out this fall. (Or summer? I'm really not sure.) It centers on a set of heroes culled from each planet of our solar system. And half-way through production Pluto was deemed no longer a planet! That was fun. (We had to keep him in, we just added jokes about how he was tiny and a dwarf planet...let's see how many short people get mad about that.) I was a designer, modeler, texture painter, lighter, animator, and compositor on this. The only things I never touched were rigging and sound. And now there's is a great website for the product that you can access here. On the site you can watch a trailer for the episode and download the theme song MP3 and a comic book and coloring book pages, etc. You can even order a copy of the DVD for free! Here's a screencap from the site:

I painted that matte painting of the city in the clouds. Hopefully once the DVD's been out for a while I can post some of my concept art for it and no one will mind. Also, I searched YouTube for an embeddable trailer but all I found was a video some mother had made of her kid's reactions to the Planet Heroes episode. (I would post it here but it was really boring.) They were two young boys and one of them liked "the skateboard race" and the character of Ace. (The hero from Earth.) And the other liked "the hot one" which would be Dazzle, from Venus. (She is not bad looking, but I assume he meant her fire-powers.)

38 comments:

denise said...

Bill,
I found your site because my son loves Planet Hereos. We've had it for months and we wish there were more episodes or that this was a cartoon. Thanks for the info on Pluto. Good work.
Denise

Dawn said...

I'm sure you'll get a lot of hits from moms like Denise and myself, searching the web for Planet Heroes products. My four-year old son now has all the planets and their order from the sun memorized thanks to the video and accompanying poster. He is always saying he can't wait until the next video comes out and I keep trying to explain there won't be another.

I was annoyed when we first got the video in the mail. I worked in advertising for years, but hate being marketed to myself. But, my son has learned a lot and ultimately the video did inspire his interest in learning about the solar system.

Good work, there, pal.

Anonymous said...

Hi there, I wanna know when these will be available in the UK, only available to buy in the USA and to get it all bought for me by someone over there ans shipped to me will cost a bomb.

Anonymous said...

My 3 yr old son was HOOKED from the first time we unsuspecting parents put the free DVD, that was sent by mail to us, on. Good marketing gimmick by FP. I must say you did a very good job putting life lessons together and just enough contraversy not to offend parents like me but enough to keep a 3 yr old engaged. Good job. I think you're on to something and if you produced a series of videos, you just might be just as successful as the Power Rangers, maybe even more because at least the heroes don't kick and fight physically and school won't discougrage it.

Anonymous said...

We JUST got into the Planet Heroes last week. My son is HOOKED. We have 4 so far. We liked the video, too. But I must admit I was a little shocked when "Tiny" totally scratched his butt. Bill do you remember putting that in?

Dennis said...

My 4 yo son loves the Planet Heroes and he watches the video all the time. He has nine of the DVDs because, as you know, you get a free one with every toy. He loaned one of them to my neice a couple of days ago and has been bugging me ever since to get it back. Even though he has 8 others that are exactly the same. His birthday wish a few weeks ago was that the Planet Heroes would become real.

Anyway, good work.

Penfuin said...

PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE convince Fisher Price to make another video AND a series from this. My 4 year old LOVES them and I think they are so much better than Superman or Spiderman and definitely Power Rangers! He has seen the video probably a couple hundred times already.

Who do we write to to push for more?

Kate said...

Mark me down as another thrilled Mom. My 5-year-old is having a Planet Heroes Christmas this year.

I also hope they put together more videos. As thrilling as the one DVD is, it's going to drive me nuts. LOL

Glenn said...

Add my 5 and 3 year old's the HOOKED list. We've got most of the toys and they're wanting more episodes. Frankly I don't care if they make more shows, because my kids use their imaginations to create new adventures. Great job on the video. The art is superb.

stasko said...

why won't they make more videos? its obvious that people want it.

Tracey from Austin, TX said...

Well, my 5 year old son LOVES the Planet Heroes and received all but two for Christmas. We couldn't find Rings and Tiny and so ordered them from the Fisher Price website. when I went on there earlier this week, I saw they had created some new characters and a new comic book. I take that as a sign that there may be another video in the works. Keep your fingers crossed!

Tammy said...

Bill,
Just like everyone else wishes, a new dvd episode would be awesome!My 4 year old has memorized the current one word-for-word and acts out the video with all his action figures, including the turbo shuttle. I even catch myself humming the song. He wants to take everything with him where ever we go, we got a small suitcase with wheels for him to take the planet heros with him. Wow! what an incredibly marketable toy set!
Clothes, bed sheets, you name it I would buy it! Tammy

Penfuin said...

I just saw on the Fisher Price website that NEW DVD Episodes are coming soon! I am so excited for my son. He now has all of the characters except Pluto and Sun and we are working on finding those!

Tina said...

WE WANT MORE!!!

We LOVE the Planet Heroes, though my daughter wishes there were more GIRLS and that some of them would have long curly hair and wear pink and purple!

Perhaps Ace's little sister can get involved and fly through space in a Mega-Tutu that Yuri can design for her!

Perhaps you can talk to the powers that be!

Just when I thought we had every planet hero and bad guy under the sun... we discover there are more.

Instead of groaning, my husband and I are in hog heaven!

It is not an unusual sight to see us on the floor with our two, vanquishing one another as we save the solar system.

At the park, we are various planet heroes, soaring through space, even venturing into other galaxies as we chase Red Giant and Professor Darkness...

WE LOVE THEM and want MORE MORE MORE!!! PUHLEEZ?!?

Tina said...

By the way... we want Planet Heroes T-Shirts!

Who do we talk to about that?

Fisher Price needs to get on this! We mommas want it!

With the space shuttle retiring and the new Constellation program coming up, NASA and Fisher Price should put their heads together... the UNIVERSE is the limit!

We need more kiddos excited about space and pumped about science! Come on Fisher Price (you know you're reading this)... force parents to explain black holes, comets, asteroids, stars...! It's GREAT fun (AND makes you more money! GO CAPITALISM!)

Scintillate, scintillate, asteroid minific;
Feign do I fathom your nature's specific
Exaltedly set on the aether capacious
A reasonable facsimile of a gem carbonaceous.

Scintillate, scintillate, asteroid minific;
Feign do I fathom your nature's specific

Anonymous said...

Just bought Saturn! My boys, 6 and 4, are fighting over it! I saw the ad for a new video coming out, this is AWESOME!! My boys are also hooked. Thank you for a creating toys that are well made and don't fall apart after one "Transformation!"

Dorina

Mr. Mom (Indianapolis, IN.) said...

Our son is three years old and we got him the shuttle along with Digger, Ace, Gustus, and Zip for Christmas. I was also hoping for more films on this since he is so in-tuned to this program.

Today, I noticed the new characters added to the roster of products for the two new DVD's that they have in the works. The comics on the website pretty much give me an idea on what to expect for the DVDs.

Anyways, good work and best of luck on future projects.

Mr. Mom (Indianapolis, IN.)

Anonymous said...

Love the story, characters, art work, concept, action figures. My son who will be 3 in a few weeks has watched the DVD sometimes two or more times a day since Christmas. And my husband and I watch it over and over with him. We are all hooked! My son knows all the planets and their order and some facts. His favorite is Dazzle from the start and can't wait for his Planet Heroes Birthday party. Problem is that there are no party supplies to buy. We can't wait for all the great "stuff" to come out, t-shirts, stickers, TV series etc. it just has to happen, think Buzz Lightyear! Anyway way to go an amazing project, and glad that this is getting my son and others kids (and parents) excited about space.
Christine

Anonymous said...

My sons love these as well and want a Planet Heroes birthday party. Where are all the supplies? Help!

Anonymous said...

My 3 yr old son absolutely loves planet hereos - he watches almost every night and has since became interested in a few planet books we already had - please come out with more DVDs more Planet Hereos . . .

Anonymous said...

Excellent work on the first episode! My three year old son is crazy for the Planet Heroes and I love watching it myself! He is now very interested in the solar system and space! I hope that Fisher-Price releases the new DVD episodes soon and more additions to the toy line as well!

Anonymous said...

Looks like I'm here to basically "ditto" everyone else's comments, but I still feel compelled to repeat the theme.

We received the free DVD back in October when I started ordering some Christmas gifts. As soon as we got it I let my two boys, 2 & 4, watch it, thinking it might be fun for me to show them something new to discover. They immediately loved it! Even my husband, who was in another room, got hooked on the theme song.

We ended up getting them all of the characters for Christmas. (Well, except for Pluto, that can never be found...but I have it ordered on backorder). And I will happily buy them more as they come out. They love it and they LEARN from it, which I love! They have both been passionatly into all of the typical superhero stuff for a while, so this was a nice change that also has value that a parent can appreciate. As other parents have stated, my kids now know the planets and in order. My 4 year old even knows the 'facts' about them that come with the trading cards.

The boys birthdays are close together and coming up soon. We are having a party for them together this year and including their 9 year old cousins birthday as well. Since there is no Planet Hero party supplies, we are just having a "space" party (which can also appeal to the older crowd of kids). We are going to hang a styrofoam solar system up (found a kit for $10 at a craft store) and we will give the kids astronaut ice cream as favors. We are making the cake in the shape of a moon and making craters on it. And serving Dippin' Dots ice cream (the ice cream of the future). Since we aren't having the party at our home (an indoor inflatable place so they can 'spacewalk') we don't need to plan activities or many decorations. But we did make our our Planet Heroes birthday shirts for our two boys...which they LOVE and can't wait to wear.

Mom from TX

mommy22qts said...

My 4 year old son and 3 year old daughter LOVE planet heroes. We have all the figures except for SUN. He is sol out everywhere, BUT THANK YOU FOR KEEPING PEACE AT MY HOUSE!!!

Stephanie said...

My son is almost four and is absolutely nuts about planet heroes and the DVD. He watches it over and over and over, we also want more. Now he is asking for a Planet Heroes birthday party, where can i find this and when will there be more merchandise?
Great job!
Stephanie

Anonymous said...

WOW! I thought my kid was the only one who is completely obsessed with the Planet Heros... The one episode DVD is ALL he wants to watch.
His 4 yr. B-day is this week and he is asking for party supplies, also. too bad.

Lucy said...

Bill,

Excellent job! Echoing all the others my three year old son also asks to watch the free DVD EVERY day. I'm about to create a new epicode myself! I had called FP to see if new ones were coming out but the customer rep said he didn't know and will forward my request. My son also "has to have" all the characters in the cartoon so that he can exactly recreate the scenes - $$$$$ brilliant on FP's part. As a parent I actually really like this cartoon because there is no physical violence like many other cartoons and shows. I find it very appropriate and educational while scoring high on the entertainment scale.

Thanks again! GREAT Job!

Lucy said...

...Now who can I speak to about the toys????

Tara said...

My 3 year old LOVES his planet heroes. He can tell you something about all of them. I'm so excited that there is a new video coming. He has the first pretty much memorized. He gave up his love of Buzz Lightyear for Planet Heroes. I love them too, they are cute and educational. His 4 year old sister will play them with him too.
Great job, keep up the good work.
Tara

Anonymous said...

my 3 yr old loves the planet heroes and wants a planet hero birthday party when will you get party suplies

bacchusmyfriend said...

My son is Planet Heroes crazy! I am kinda too....shhhhh.

Amanda said...

Add me to the list... a 3 1/2 year old who is obsessed to put it mildly. I've already written several times to FP, but to no response. I'm on a mission to find his missing heros before xmas!!!

Anonymous said...

Add me to the list also. my son LOVES Planet Hereoes and I was looking for party supplies and found your site. Hopefully more items/DVD's will come soon, probably right after his borthday is over, LOL.

gacossey said...

I need birthday Planet Heroes...YIKES...I promised my almost 5-yr-old Collin we'd have a Planet Heroes birthday party and apparently I should have looked FIRST...any ideas out there ? Bill, I love your sketches & designs...sign me as another happy mom ! (just need that birthday stuff !!)

gacossey said...

I need birthday Planet Heroes...YIKES...I promised my almost 5-yr-old Collin we'd have a Planet Heroes birthday party and apparently I should have looked FIRST...any ideas out there ? Bill, I love your sketches & designs...sign me as another happy mom ! (just need that birthday stuff !!)

Anonymous said...

i've been trying to find info on the actors who voice the planet heroes, especially lunar from "the ace that jumped over the moon" and have been unsuccessful.

Amanda said...

For thoses still looking, I found Saturn Rings at Toys R Us. There is a new version out the "metallic squad". I finally have the complete set for my 4 year old fan.

Anonymous said...

My son loves Planet Hereos. He has about 5 or 6 of the characters and is on the website or watches the DVD almost every day.

Through this he has learned all the planets in order and facts about each one. He has been studying the solar system through books and DVD's for about 3 weeks now. He's only 4!

Marie

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