A chat with David
On April 14th, 2002, we had the privilege of hosting a member of the
Galaxy Rangers production team in an IRC-chat session, David Rosler.
David worked as a storyboard artist and character designer when the
project was being produced. Now running his own company,
David stumbled across Betamountain.org a short time ago and contacted us
about spending some time looking back down memory lane.
really personable guy, David spent 2 1/2 hours of our questions and
insane IRC abuse. You, however, don't have to weather that and
instead you'll get to read a nice streamlined interview style
posting. For you purists out there, David gave the approval
for the edit. Besides, if you were there, you'd have a chat
log of your own ;)
W. Rosler, Storyboard Artist
So, without any
The David Rosler
<Did Robert have a firm
idea of character designs (what each character looked like) before
he started working with the artists, or did they hand him sketches
and they worked from there, or what? >
I DO know the answer to that and almost always when it comes to
secondary characters the story comes first.
So we would get the screenplay or a part of it... and
whoever's job it was would design under David Gregg's direction.
They ALWAYS knew what they wanted. Now that you mention it
there were times when they would hand us a PHOTOGRAPH of someone.
Carl Sagan was one. The kid from "Lassie" was another.
But rarely if ever do I recall a story being designed around
a character. I forget
the name of the character designed after Sagan. Wait...
SENATOR WHINER! That was Sagan. :-)
The late Mr.
Carl Sagan & Senator Wheiner
I'm gonna have visions of Wheiner saying "billyons and
<Getting away from the past, what are you up to
Actually, I'm wrapping production on a made-for sci-fi action
feature of my own called The Aries Knights, but I think the room
might be more interested in Ranger history first. :-)
we'd like to hear current projects as well. :) >
It should be completed in a few months. Heavy on the CGI.
Some articles coming out soon, including a feature in Femme
fatales (the three main characters are women).
Actually, if you like the Galaxy Rangers you might very well
like The Aries Knights. If
you want I'll keep you posted on the details. (There’s) very big
production values on this. we're rather proud of it, actually. it's
no cheap-o movie. :-) It’s a live-action feature with additional
CGI creatures by the way, just so you know.
<Sort of like Farscape with cg instead of
puppets then? >
Not as zany as Farscape... more intense drama and the comedy coming
organically from the drama.... Farscape, while good, is a bit more
like a vaudeville show to me, though top vaudeville honors must go
<May we ask which company is doing the CG? >
My company, called The Rosler Group, is a design and animation/FX
firm, and the production grew from that.
better - sounds like a great project>
We think so. People have seen some rough cuts of scenes and sat
engrossed on the drama, laughed at the jokes and said
"cool" at the action scenes, so I think we're doing okay
"The Rosler Group" have a website? >
We're changing domains. If you do a search on The Rosler Group
you'll find a link, but there is no Aries Knights page yet. When we
have one it'll be an entire site. It’s a proposed series of
features with a lot of back-story.
<How long were you with the Galaxy Rangers?
Were you one of the original crew, or did you join later on
(inasmuch as there was a later)? >
Actually, I have been a genre fan all my life and would have been
sitting in on a forum like this if there were such things years ago,
so I’m happy to be doing my part on the other side of the screen.
:-) I came on
pretty soon after they started I think, but the ORIGINAL designers
were Ed and oops... what's the other guys name? There was a lot of
initial designing on GR before I came on, but mostly just the main
like having a bunch of fans ask you about a show from 16 years ago
(probably 17-18 from a production standpoint). >
the original designers were done by Ed and.... what was the other?
I think there was a big wave of hiring just after they moved
into the offices and I was on the tail end of that.
Ray Shenusay (Kat)>
RAY! I kept thinking "Sean"! And Ray was a nice guy too,
but was the hardware designer so I didn't interact with him much
Ray and Brad Fox did the hardware stuff. ****Even though only Ed and
Ray were listed as designers, a good number of people listed under
storyboards did alot more than storyboard. The most notable examples
were Laslo Nosek and Alex Stevens, who were listed as storyboard
artists but were master scene designers. Brad Fox was a hardware
designer, I did some characters, etc
Anyway...Ed and Ray were
working for Robert when Robert was working out of his home office as
I understand it. That work was then used to raise the financing for
the show. So Ed and Ray
were the ORIGINAL designers for the show, though even the main
characters were tweaked a bit as the show went into production.
Ed was funny in a way.... he confirmed to me what I had been told
early on: that he REALLY wanted to be a fashion illustrator at the
time, so all his character designs he did had a gorgeous,
illustration style to them. Unfortunately,
and this is only an opinion, there seemed to be a downside to it....
Insert group approval here -->
well, the further from the actually drawing style of the animation
you go, the more need there is on the part of the animators to
interpret what they are given. If you draw it in EXACTLY the animation style, they
essentially have a blueprint. Well, Ed's stuff was half-photographic
in illustration style. And
the show, during production in Japan, was handled by four different
divisions of the animation company. Hence, Niko, for instance,
ranges from looking athletic tomboy to petite intellectual,
depending on which division was working.
So his stuff meant a lot more work reproducing it? >
Not work in reproducing it. Extra effort maintaining the
consistency, because if you hand a bunch of cartoonists a line
drawing, they'll give it back with small variations. If you give
each one a photograph, you get WAY different interpretations.
explains a lot…. noticed the characters would shift looks from
time to time... hadn't realized that was why…also very noticeable
in the different style of the introduction sequence to the actual
David Gregg told me at the time there were 4 different divisions,
explained as A, B, C and D, going from the sublime to the merely
okay. The great scripts went to A and so forth and the scripts like
"marshmallow trees" would go to "D". So when the
show was cooking it was hot. When it was just okay it was just okay
at best. Still, that's a much better average than most shows,
really. It's funny about the quality issue of the show itself. When
watching the show initially I was so aware of the production it lost
me as an audience. After stumbling on your site, I cracked open a
couple of shows and it's pretty darn good :-)
We tend to agree - even the
bad episodes tended to be a lot better than most of the rest on at
the time…We refrain from asking where Mothmoose went. >
"Mothmoose" (Obi Wan
imitation) there’s a name I've not
heard in a long time.
you have a metal badge? If
so, the emailed question pertains to that...>
I do have a metal badge. What's the question?
writes that he “found the picture on a Galaxy Rangers Fan site and
that the badge was made with a CNC machine... I think that the
negative form was made with a CNC machine and then the badge was
poured with aluminium (anodized) or any other metal (gold plated).
Do you know any details about this badge, how or by whom it
was manufactured?” >
Gee, I have no idea. All I know is that all the pre-production
staff, the designers and artists mostly, though the secretaries
perhaps also, got one. It was some form of costume jewelry and very
well made. I often wore mine to work and that's no joke. When the
president of the company gives you a pin personally you wear the
damn thing, and I was happy to.
true. And to end that
email, no chance you'd give it up due to the fact he'd like one?
I have it to this day, in fact. It’s a treasured memento from a
really fun production to work on…. but I would never part with it.
Like a set of cuff links my father gave me as a teenager, there's
just too much sentimental attachment to it.
along the pic of the badge to your email>
do you want me to confirm if it's genuine? I did see the mail you
sent. It looks like the real thing to me. Where did he get it?
I think he found it on another
fan-page. Origin unknown >
strange. To my knowledge those badges were only ever given to the
people of the art staff.
This one needs a little setup
*** Joins: rangerh
** ChanServ sets mode: +o rangerh
all and honored guest
my pleasure, Scott. That reminds me of a story, may I?
Scott said "honored guest". A few years ago I was in the
lovely Caribbean country of Trinidad doing some work which was
essentially for all of Caribbean television (Trinidad is essentially
the flagship location for all of the island television stations) and
at one point was invited to their version of a senate council of
some sort (forget the proper title of the Governmental body)... and
it had a lot of the old world British still attached to the
proceedings…. All very formal with dignity dripping from each
inflection. And at the beginning I was introduced even though I was
only there as an onlooker.
and VERY TIME someone stood to say something, even if it was to say
"bless you" after somebody sneezed, they would say,
"Mister chairman, fellow senators (and turn to me with a BOW)
and Honored guest." After the 80th time it got pretty
uncomfortable, although they were deadly serious about it. :-)
**** On my first
Saturday in Trinidad I sat down in front of the TV to try to absorb
what the television market was down there…. Trinidad is the
southern most island in the Caribbean. So I settled down with my
breakfast at 9 am, turned on the TV, flipped the channels and what
do I see? The Galaxy Rangers!
your reputation precedes you! Back
on the GR designs, how about the "settings"?
How much of that did you design, and how much was handed down
from above? >
Nothing was "handed down" really, it all got done in the
general creative pit, though I had not one thing to do with the
environments. I did storyboards and characters; Alex Stevens and
Laslo Nosek did the primary environment art. God this is bringing
back memories. Shall I tell a Laslo story?
via email post chat.