It's time for another episode of Hello Kitty and Friends Supercute Adventures! And today's episode was written by our good friend, Kirk Kushin. Find out what he loves about writing and a fun easter egg to look for in todays episode.
And don't miss out on the new Hello Kitty and Friends Supercute Adventures episode that airs today at 1PM (PST) on Hello Kitty and Friends YouTube channel
Hello Friend! Introduce yourself and tell us what you do for Hello Kitty and Friends Supercute Adventures.
My name is Kirk Kushin and I'm the writer of today's new episode “Badtz Maru's Danger Drone”. I also wrote both “Hello-ween” and “The Claw” from our first season. I've also written comic books (OZopolis and Superteen*Topia) and am the screenwriter for a live action film that's now in production. I hope we eventually do a Hello Kitty and Friends Supercute Adventures comic book because I'd be all over that!
When did you first hear about Sanrio?
Hello Kitty is so iconic. She's everywhere, but Sanrio wasn't on my radar much until I started writing for the show. Now, I can't even go anywhere, even on vacation, without running into Hello Kitty fans. I just met a family in Kauai who has been avidly collecting together since the 1970s! I really enjoy hearing peoples' stories about what Hello Kitty means to them.
What Hello Kitty and Friend character is your favorite, or do you relate with the most from the series?
Well, both Kuromi and I make haunted houses every year but I think she is probably better at it! She is hands down my favorite to write, with Badtz Maru being a close second. I realized recently that I am probably most like My Melody because of all the lists, charts and color coded time tables I create to meet all my deadlines!
What’s the best thing about being a writer?
The best part is probably figuring out how to work an idea you're personally excited about, like Halloween or arcades, into your story pitches. I love combing through Sanrio history to find quirky elements that I can use in my scripts. Things like Badtz having a pet alligator told me right out the gate I would be able to have a lot of fun in my episodes. Being part of the recording sessions and hearing our actors, like Jenny Yokobori doing Kuromi, read my dialogue is icing on the cake.
This episode has some fun movie inspiration, one being Top Gun! Can you give us another fun fact/easter egg about this script/episode?
I do love my easter eggs! I include the more obvious pop culture stuff as well as classic film call backs. But they have to fit the character because this show is totally character driven. I also include fun little touches that allude to more going on than you see on the screen. For example at the very end of today's episode some of the characters show up outside Chococat's house and they are all holding different things. I came up with funny items that would suggest each character had some adventure off screen we didn't get to see. Look closely at what Kuromi is holding. There's certainly a story there!
Any advice for someone who aspires to write for animation?
The Writers Guild Foundation is good place to start learning about the craft online. Classes are great because they can open the doors to networking and connecting with your peer group. Read a correctly formatted screenplay, then watch the film and then read the screenplay again. Enter the studio writing fellowships (Universal, Disney and Warner) because even if you don't win they are good training and they can open unexpected doors. Be prepared to outwork everyone along the way but your peers will eventually be your co-workers so be sure to treat them like Hello Kitty would!