Creator: Genndy Tartakovsky
Genndy Tartakovsky (Геннадий Тартаковский) is a Russian-American animation director and producer and one of the greatest minds to ever come out of classic Cartoon Network.Born in 1970 in the USSR to Jewish parents, Tartakovsky moved abroad with his family, afraid of anti-semitism. First they went to Italy, where he picked up art from their German neighbours' daughter. Upon his arrival in the USA, he got his first exposure to American cartoons and developed a deep love of Popeye, Looney Tunes and Humongous Mecha animes.Genndy would attend California School of Arts (because he was too late to apply for a business school). There he embraced his future career as an animator and made his first two shorts, one of which eventually became Dexter's Laboratory. While schooling, he formed a strong friendship with Craig McCracken and Rob Renzetti (My Life as a Teenage Robot), which often shows in their cooperation between series.Following Dexter was Samurai Jack, a hugely ambitious series with a unique, cinematic style, equal parts Star Wars, anime and Akira Kurosawa. It's widely considered to be his greatest accomplishment, as well as one of the best cartoons ever produced for Cartoon Network.After four years of Jack, Genndy started putting together his own independent studio, an effort which, in retrospect, was horribly timed, conceding with both the economic crash in 2008 and the downfall of traditional animation in America. In the end, the studio produced one project, a single season of Sym-Bionic Titan for Cartoon Network.These days, he has moved on to Sony Pictures Animation, in which he directed Hotel Transylvania to both financial and critical acclaim. After directing its sequel, he was pegged to do an All-CGI Cartoon Popeye feature, returning to his roots, but the film has since entered Development Hell, putting his next project, an original story called Can You Imagine?, next in the roster.
His notable works include:
- Animator on Batman: The Animated Series
- Storyboarding on 2 Stupid Dogs
- Dexter's Laboratory
- The Powerpuff Girls
- Samurai Jack
- Star Wars: Clone Wars
- Sym-Bionic Titan
- Storyboarding the action sequences on Iron Man 2
- Hotel Transylvania and it's sequel.
- Animation direction on the Steven Universe pilot.
- Can You Imagine? [In development]
Tropes applicable to him and his works include:
- Action Film, Quiet Drama Scene: His signature style for most of his action cartoons, with Samurai Jack being the crowning example, having a few episodes where no characters talked at all throughout it.
- Animesque: Most of Tartakovsky's cartoons follow this, mainly because he was inspired by Japanese animation.
- Art Evolution: He used to be so horrible at art he couldn't draw a circle.
- Aside Glance: Many of his characters' silent reactions to something odd or stupid taking place often involve this, either directly to the audience or another character.
- Cerebus Syndrome: Compare the comedic Dexter's Laboratory to the more serious Samurai Jack or Sym-Bionic Titan.
- Development Hell: The Movie of Samurai Jack is in here, and interest is needed at hand.
- And now the Popeye movie.
- Getting Crap Past the Radar: Tartakovsky is either in love with this or owes it money. Sym-Bionic Titan's Radar entry is pretty much its recap.
- He Also Did: Briefly animated for Batman: The Animated Series at their studio in Spain.
- Lock and Load Montage: Tartakovsky's apparently a big fan of these; they can be found quite frequently in all of his cartoons.
- Ms. Fanservice: If there's a young woman in one of his cartoons, expect her to almost always be a Fetish Fuel Station Attendant.
- Rule of Cool: Even in his non-serious related works such as Dexter's Laboratory, he'll often have some form of action scenes in some episodes that either involve or invoke ancient Japanese customs or warriors such as Ninjas or Samurais or Giant Mechas. Sometimes all at once.
- Serious Business: The writers for The Powerpuff Girls learned the hard way that he does not tolerate story meetings being used for idle chit chat about anything non-story related, such as discussing video games.
- Silence Is Golden: Most notably in Samurai Jack. Not as much, but still prominent in Star Wars: Clone Wars and Sym-Bionic Titan. Happened occasionally in Dexter's Laboratory.
- Thick-Line Animation: Consciously averted with Samurai Jack (it has the look, just not the lines), but his previous and subsequent works have this style.
- Widget Series: But as Sym-Bionic Titan proved, this has never looked so cool.
- What Could Have Been: Tartakovsky had two chances to get into directing films, none of which came to be. First being a sequel to The Dark Crystal, which ended up in development hell. Second being a film of Astro Boy, which later ended up being finished in another studio unrelated to him, and did so poorly that it closed them down.
- Sadly, it seems that the Popeye feature he was working on at Sony has been canned
- Before his studio fell apart, they were developing a movie about vikings (before How to Train Your Dragon no less). They were even invited to create a silent film about dinosaurs, which eventually became Walking with Dinosaurs, as Illumination Entertainment's first feature.