YOU know Keith Alcorn, this week’s Feature Artist, as the producer and co-creator of Oscar nominated feature film, Jimmy Neutron, Boy Genius for Paramount and Nickelodeon. And you also know him as executive producer of The Ant Bully for Warner Brothers.
I’VE been blessed to know him as the guy whose jokes tickle my funnybone and who makes me giggle until my sides hurt, the director who always has time to ask me how it’s going or respond to the dumbest questions, and the guy who would never in a gazillion years brag about his MANY accomplishments.
Wanna know how I met him? When I heard he was going to be speaking locally, I high-tailed it to hear first-hand from this creative genius. See, my boys, now 16 and 13, were HUGE Jimmy Neutron fans at the time. I felt it was my maternal duty to listen to the man share his creative insights. I also felt a weird connection to sassy Cindy Vortex, a Jimmy Neutron character. She is basically my inner voice who I have to keep shushing so I can be nice to people. Well, imagine my DELIGHT, when I won the door prize (a bottle of wine) that night at the Dallas Producers Association. I felt weird because A. I don’t drink, B. I am not a producer, C. I kinda shouldn’t have been there, and D. I was basically just stalking Keith Alcorn. But they had me get up and say a bit about myself. “Hi, I’m Holly Franklin. I’m a voice actor. Yes, this is my real voice….blah blah blah.” Never mind that I secretly prayed I would win, because maybe, just maybe, it would be like a mini audition. MAYBE he’d hear me speak and hire me on the spot to be Cindy in case the real Cindy was away in Tahiti? Maybe he’d create a whole series just for me because I’m so spectacular?! Yeah, none of that happened. But it didn’t matter bc I was in the room with THE KEITH ALCORN, a man I had professionally admired from afar for a freaking long time.
After the talk which was fantastic, as expected, I was WAAAAY too nervous to go talk to him. Lucky for me, my VO pal Mary Morgan was there, and she knew Keith from a project they had worked on previously. She was so kind to introduce me to my hero. What stood out to me that night was how he was so kind, and genuine.
Fast forward a few years. I got an email out of the blue from Keith saying he wanted me to audition for his upcoming project. WHAT?! He remembered me?! I guess those prayers really worked! It was for Owlegories, a Gospel-centered animated series. And much to my delight, I booked the role of Violet, the pretty purple snow owl!
Over the course of the last 2? 3? years, I have been so honored to work under the direction of Keith Alcorn. He sets up each scene beautifully, fosters a true environment of creativity and teamwork, and really pulls out of each of us what he is looking for to make each episode super-special! I’ve always said that God created imagination, and I can say without a doubt that Keith Alcorn has been gifted with a extra helping of imagination and creative genius.
If I could handpick and choose ANY director EVER to work with, it would be this man – my friend, Keith Alcorn.
Let’s hear more about Keith now!
Bio: For over 30 years Keith Alcorn has been involved in all facets of animation. In 1987 he Co-Founded DNA Productions, Inc.
In 1997, Alcorn served as Producer/Character Designer for the 1997 ABC animated Christmas special, “Santa vs. the Snowman”. That same year he served as Director/Designer for the CBS’s Saturday morning series, “The Weird Al Show”.
In 1999 he produced the Emmy nominated, “Olive, the Other Reindeer” for the FOX network and Matt Groening. Two years later, Keith Produced and Co-Created the Oscar nominated animated feature film, “Jimmy Neutron: Boy Genius” for Paramount and Nickelodeon. Alcorn also served as Director/Co-Executive Producer on the Nickelodeon series, “The Adventures of Jimmy Neutron, Boy Genius” before serving as Executive Producer on the feature film, “The Ant Bully” for Warner Brothers and Tom Hanks.
In 2010 Alcorn was Co-Creator/Executive Producer/Director/Writer for the Nickelodeon animated series, “Planet Sheen”. Currently he is Co-Writing and Co-Directing for the faith-based animated series, “Owlegories”.
Keith Alcorn attended UTA majoring in Fine Arts and Film. In 2001 he received the Distinguished Alumni Award from the University of Texas at Arlington. Keith and his family reside in Grapevine, Texas, USA, Earth.
What types of media do you specialize in? Animation and Animation Accessories. (Writing/Directing/Producing).
Fave project ever and why: OWLEGORiES is one of my all-time favorite projects! Why, you ask? Well I’ll tell you, it’s because I feel like we’re helping children build a firm foundation with our Lord, and (this is a very important “And”)… and it gives me the incredible opportunity to work with the multitalented, bold, unique, spunky, amazingly creative and excessively courteous, Holly Franklin.
Dream job or project: I would love to ride an inflatable rooster across the Atlantic Ocean.
Oh wait, you mean in animation? Actually, I absolutely love the all the projects I am currently working on. I am living the dream!
Describe a typical day in your work life: If I’ve learned anything (and that is up for debate) during the course of my career I’ve learned that no day is typical.
I usually roll into the office around 9:30 (I quickly realized that driving is faster). I work at a company called, Istation. We do interactive animated curriculum for students that are struggling with Math, Reading, Spanish, etc. It is incredibly rewarding.
When I’m not at the office, I work on other projects, such as, OWLEGORiES. This is also incredibly rewarding, but on a more spiritual level.
I also have other projects I am working on, but I can’t talk about them at the moment. Top Secret stuff! Shhhhhhh!
Where can we see or hear your next project? You can find Owlegories at Owlegories.com! You can also find DVDs at many of your favorite Christian Bookstores.
What led you to being a director/producer? Back when dinosaurs roamed the earth, I was working as an animator/character designer. Years and years of production experience helped me realize that writing, directing & producing is something I would love to do.
Tip for a director/producer wannabe: Tip #17: Listen and learn! No one person has all the best ideas (No, not even you) and if you stop and listen, you just might learn something.
Tip for a VO talent: Tip #4: Be prepared. Read your script. Know your part.
BONUS Tip: Learn to accept rejection and learn from the experience. You learn more from losing than you do from winning. Remember, only one person will get the part you are reading for. If it’s not you this time, try again.
Biggest talent pet peeve: Being unprepared. GRRRRRRRR!
Coolest marketing you’ve seen from a VO talent? No one will ever call me a marketing expert, but the coolest VO marketing I’ve ever seen can be found at hollyfranklin.com. She seems really nice too!
What keeps you busy outside of work? My family. I stay pretty busy most of the time, so when I have any spare time, I love to spend it with my family!
Interesting fact no one knows about you? I can drink sea water. No, wait… that’s penguins. Penguins drink sea water. Hmmmm… no, nothing interesting, I guess.
Pets? We have one beautiful & feisty Havanese doggie named, Trixie.
Favorite goodies? I’m not really into sweets. I don’t care for cake, candy or ice cream. I love fruit! Blueberries, Peaches are awesome!
But on those special occasions, I make my favorite… a Strawberry Poptart with Grape Jelly and Fruity Pebbles sprinkled on top. Fruit all the way!
Anything else you want to tell us? Otters sleep holding hands.
Contact info: The best way to reach me is with your arms, but if that doesn’t work, try this: email@example.com
Social Media Links:
Closing Remarks from Hollypop! Keith Alcorn. Man Genius.