Wolf Bears Rabbit!

I'm Gary K. Wolf, author, screenwriter, and the creator of Roger Rabbit. My novel Who Censored Roger Rabbit? became a visual reality in Disney/Spielberg's $950 million blockbuster film Who Framed Roger Rabbit. The film won four Academy Awards and the Hugo Award.

I have just finished my third Roger Rabbit novel, Who Wacked Roger Rabbit?, which you can read all about at my website: www.garywolf.com.

I live in Toontown.

Proof: https://twitter.com/GaryKWolf/status/390873624518733824/photo/1 and https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=10202269352924092&set=a.1085388703799.15179.1498857407&type=1&theater

EDIT: Thanks for the great questions everyone! This has been fun! I'll try to stop in later this evening to catch anyone I may have missed. My publisher won’t let me have chocolate pudding for dessert tonight if I don’t pimp my latest book, “Who Wacked Roger Rabbit?”, which will be available for pre-order on October 22nd, and releases on November 29th at http://musapublishing.com/ or www.garywolf.com.

You can also keep up with the latest Roger Rabbit and Toon news on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/WWRRMusaPublishing or on Twitter at https://twitter.com/GaryKWolf_WWRR.

And new today, you can now get a sneak peak of Walter Windchill reading the first chapter of the book on my website, www.garywolf.com.

Comments: 128 • Responses: 45  • Date: 

Mimiros28 karma

Ten year old me would like to thank you for creating Jessica Rabbit, and giving me my first hard on.

GaryKWolf20 karma

Not the first time I've heard that. Whenever I make a public appearance, current and former teenaged boys routinely bow down before me!

Hemmingways7 karma

Is there a special lady Jessica Rabbit is crafted after, or is she the best bits of several ?

GaryKWolf30 karma

She's based on my wife. And now that I've admitted that, I don't want to see a hundred fan boys hanging around my front door.

Minifig8118 karma

Have you ever thought about doing another movie with Disney/Spielberg to update the world of Roger Rabbit? There are many Redditors (myself included) who were positively terrified of Judge Doom as a kid.

GaryKWolf14 karma

I think about another movie all the time, but that's way above my pay grade. I hear the Judge Doom comment a lot. He WAS terrifying. I've been told that theater owners complained that they had to mop out the theater after every show because so many kids were peeing their pants. With me, it was the nameless, faceless guy who shot Bambi's mother. I guess ever generation has it's own cartoon terror.

HippoGoggles4 karma

Haha, wasn't Doom supposedly the guy who shot Bambi's mother in an early version of the script?

GaryKWolf7 karma

Yes, that's correct. The terror of cartoons comes full circle.

THRitchie8 karma

Hi, I want to tell you THANK YOU for writing Who Censored Roger Rabbit. If you hadn't have written that book, Steven Spielberg wouldn't have made the movie. The movie helped 12 year old me escape the world that I was living in. I escaped to a world where Roger and Jessica were there when I needed them. I wanted to ask you about my cartoons and other Roger and company stuff but I see that it's where you draw the line. I will respect that. That's why I've changed my questions to this... Thank you.

GaryKWolf8 karma

That's a very tough question. For lots of reasons, creative, legal, pride of ownership among them, I can't give fans, even exceptionally talented fans, carte blanche to use the characters whenever and however they want. I know they do anyway, and will keep doing it. I'm rather proud of the fact that I've created characters that so many people want to use in their own scenarios. But I can't officially condone it. I can't read anything Roger related for fear that I might be working on something similar, and later be accused of stealing.

THRitchie3 karma

Thank you for answering my previous questions (never thought that you would, thanks for proving me wrong)!! So, does that mean more adventures to come for Eddie, Roger, Jessica, and Baby Herman? I'll look forward to it!!! :)

GaryKWolf2 karma

Hopefully, Eddie, Roger< Jessica, Baby Herman, and all the other looneys in Toontown will continue to have new adventures and to make people laugh for years and years to come.

Nailwraps7 karma

Questions regarding on Roger and Jessica:

  1. I love, love, LOVE, how their relationship was depicted in the movie; It was so beautiful. What are your thoughts>

  2. What do you think of Roger and Jessica having children (my own idea is that they would have 88 kids; 87 rabbits of which 44 of them are male and 43 are female and 1 female toon human)?

GaryKWolf7 karma

That's a whole lotta babies, baby! I'm not sure Jessica would take that much time off her career, or add that much baby weight to her already top and bottom heavy body.

Nailwraps2 karma

Well toon babies come from storks as a friend of mine once suggested.

GaryKWolf12 karma

Toon babies also are found under cabbage plants in cabbage patches and they occasionally fall off the backs of turnip trucks.

Nailwraps2 karma

Anyway, your thoughts on Roger and Jessica's relationship (as depicted in the movie).

GaryKWolf2 karma

I liked their relationship. He loves her, she loves him. That's as it ought to be but frequently isn't among married couples Toon and human alike.

oldchunkofcoal6 karma

How many times has being the author of Roger Rabbit gotten you laid?

GaryKWolf12 karma

There's another good news/bad news situation. The good news....every night. The bad news....only in my dreams!

gin-n-tonic5 karma

Was it difficult to get the two corporate worlds of Disney and Warner Brothers together for the film?

Big fan of the movie and til this day I fear "The Dip". Thanks!

GaryKWolf17 karma

When Disney first started trying to produce this movie, Roy Disney went to Warner Bros. and asked if he could use Bugs Bunny for a walk on in an animated/live action movie they were producing. Warner Bros. said "Get lost. No way we're ever putting Bug Bunny into a Disney movie." Years later, after Steve Spielberg got involved, he went to Warner Bros. and made the identical request. They said, "Sure. Take Bugs. How about Porky Pig, Tweety and Sylvester, Foghorn Leghorn, don't you want them, too?" Steve walked out with the entire Warner Bros. cast of characters. It's good to be king except in Hollywood where it's better to be Steven Spielberg.

Nailwraps5 karma

Any updates on the potiential Stooge movie with Mickey and Roger? The fact that it's a prequel to WFRR makes me oh so excited!

GaryKWolf4 karma

Last I heard, The Stooge project was slowly wending its way through the Disney evaluation process. More than that, I don't know.

Nailwraps4 karma

Thank you for replying Mr. Wolf and thanks for creating Roger Rabbit; my favorite Disney character next to Mickey and Donald. :)

GaryKWolf5 karma

Before I got my own characters, I was a Donald man myself. Still am. Had a fan club in school named the Scrooge McDuck club. We squeezed ever nickel until it hollered for mercy.

RodCannon25 karma

What inspired you to create Roger Rabbit?

GaryKWolf30 karma

I had written and published three science fiction novels. I wanted to branch out, do something that nobody had ever even thought about before. As a kid, my reading material of choice was comic books and the graphic True Crime magazines my dad hid in the back of his closet. My favorite films were cartoons. I wanted to do something that incorporated those three concepts. I thought about it for a long, long time. Finally, the inspiration hit me when I was watching Saturday morning cartoons. Purely for research, as I told my wife. It wasn't the cartoons that grabbed me, but rather the commercials. I saw Capt'n Crunch, Snap, Crackle and Pop, Tony the Tiger. All cartoon animals talking to real kids, and nobody thought that was odd. What an idea, I thought. What kind of world would it be if cartoon characters were real. From that came Roger Rabbit and the whole gang of Toontown.

Frajer3 karma

So Roger Rabbit's last name is Rabbit right? That's how Jessica became Jessica Rabbit?

GaryKWolf9 karma

Roger IS a rabbit, yet his last name is Rabbit. So does that make him Roger Rabbit Rabbit? That's the kind of conundrum that makes a Toon's head explode. And mine too if I think about it too much.

kugfersez3 karma

Hey Mr. Wolf, I'm truly saddened that I missed this but I'm hoping you can get a chance to get to late questions.

I wanted to tell you that I am genuinely grateful to you and the film adaptation for introducing me to the wonderful world of noir. It remains my favorite genre and it served as a catalyst for my love of film, literature and art in general. I still contend that Who Framed Roger Rabbit ranks among the very best noir pictures made in the last few decades.

Which writers, films, music or paintings colored your conception of the world of Roger?

Do you feel the adaptation has changed your internal perceptions of the characters as you create new material, or do their original voices, faces and mannerisms still remain fresh and viable to you? I can't imagine, for example, anyone but Bob Hoskins as Eddie Valiant now.

Finally, where do you typically write and what gets you in the mood to create?

GaryKWolf3 karma

i'm really big on the noir writers, Raymond Chandler, Dash Hammett, James M. Cain. Also like the hard boileds, Mickey Spillane and his ilk. I've always been a cartoon guy. Really liked Tex Avery stuff. I'm a rock and roll guy, so that plays into my writing as well. The French Impressionists always gave me a tickle. Maybe that's why parts of Toontown tend to fuzz out and get hazy. After seeing the movie, it's now hard for me to visualize the characters any way other than the way they're portrayed on film. I dedicated my new novel to Bob Hoskins who has retired from acting way, way too early.

I write every morning from 5 until 11 a.m. Getting out of bed is what gets me in the mood to write. That and looking at the stack of unpaid bills on my desk.

SlySonic3 karma

Do you prefer Disney or Warner Bros. cartoons?

GaryKWolf14 karma

I like parts of both. I wanted Roger to have a Disney sensibility. An upright rabbit who always did what he said he was going to do. Like Mickey Mouse. But I wanted him to have the goofiness and wacky sense of humor of Warner Bros. characters. Roger is basically Bugs in Mickey clothing.

LandOfLincoln3 karma

Hi Gary, I just wanted to give a shout-out from the Earlville/Serena, IL area! You're a certifiable local legend among the creatives in the area, and on behalf of all of us I'd like to say thanks for proving that success isn't contingent upon where you're born. You're a hell of an example and we'd all love to thank you in person if you ever drop by the old stomping grounds!

GaryKWolf3 karma

There's a lot of Earlville in Toontown.

mediahound2 karma

Another question: Why has it been so long between Roger Rabbit books?

GaryKWolf7 karma

I outlined the third Roger Rabbit novel back in 1991. My agent at the time suggested that I hold off publishing it until the second movie came out. He told me I would get more money for it if I did that. Well, we all know how that second movie turned out. Still waiting. I was talking to my editor at MUSA about my new novels Typical Day and The Late Great Show! We were trying to think about something I could put on my website to draw in readers. I told her I had a finished Roger Rabbit novel I could throw up there a chapter at a time. She nearly came right through my Skype screen and kissed me full on the lips. "If you've got it, and it's finished, why don't we publish it?" To tell you the truth, the thought had never occurred to me. I said sure, and the rest is, hopefully, a whole new chapter in the ongoing saga of Roger Rabbit and Toontown.

mediahound1 karma

I'm glad we're getting a chance to see it! Is it only an ebook or will it be a physical book as well? If it's just an ebook, why?

GaryKWolf2 karma

It will only be an e-book. The price will be more affordable for my fans, and it will never go out of print. I can't tell you how many people wanted to read my Censored novel but couldn't because it was no longer in print. That's why I made that one available digitally.

ZMild2 karma

I'm wondering why you decided to use the Streetcar thing as a plot point. I love that you did that, but I am curious when and how it occurred to you to use that?

GaryKWolf3 karma

Things like that were movie constructs. Things Disney and Spielberg came up for the movie story. The Red Line idea was a good one since there was a Red Line in L.A. Made historical and conceptual sense to play with that idea.

TheCheshireCody2 karma

Who Censored Roger Rabbit is definitely not a kids' novel. How did you decide you allow Zemeckis to change it and make it more kid-friendly? How much input did you have into those changes, and were you ultimately happy with the result?

GaryKWolf8 karma

When I wrote Censored, I wrote it to amuse myself. I was tickled to death when it got published. I considered it to be unfilmable. Disney worked on it for years and almost proved me right. Then Steve Spielberg and Bob Zemeckis got involved and turned my bizzarro, unfilmable book into a classic movie. I don't begrudge anything they did to make that happen. In fact it had to happen otherwise we'd still be spinning our wheels. I'm delighted with the result. Could not have been done better.

Recentsciencesays2 karma

No question here, I just wanted to say that Roger Rabbit was one of my favorite movies growing up, so thank you!! My wife is a red head and I'm still trying to find her that red cocktail dress so we can do Roger and Jessica for Halloween. Afterwards, hopefully she bakes me a carrot cake.

GaryKWolf3 karma

Sounds like a recipe for a great night!

MM2Dylan2 karma

Gary, I want to thank you for the happy memories you've given me with the creation of Roger Rabbit. It's been a favorite of mine since I was a little kid. Looking forward to seeing more of Roger and company in any medium! Could I ask for any tidbits of info on the Mickey Mouse/Roger Rabbit Stooge proposal?

GaryKWolf3 karma

The Stooge is currently working it's way through the Disney system. More than that, i don't know.

HippoGoggles1 karma

Hi! Thanks for making my favorite cartoon character, and a big part of my childhood. It's still my favorite movie (Happy 25th anniversary, by the way)! I'd love to see more Roger Rabbit cartoons! I think they're long overdue.

I heard that there was a rumor of a movie called 'The Stooge', with Mickey Mouse and Roger Rabbit that's being pitched. Is there any more news regarding that?

GaryKWolf2 karma

Last I heard about The Stooge project, it was slowly wending it's way through the Disney system. More than that, I don't know.

mediahound1 karma

Gary, thanks for all the Roger fun over the years. He's been my favorite character since 1988! What's been your favorite piece of Roger Rabbit merchandise?

GaryKWolf3 karma

I have a couple A life-sized Roger Rabbit doll. I can actually slip off his red overalls and wear them myself. The talking Roger Rabbit doll. Charlie Fleischer himself did the voice. You pull a string on Roger's back, and he talks to you. When the movie came out, I promised myself I would buy the first piece of Roger Rabbit merchandise I saw. I had no idea there would be so much. I walked into Macy's in NYC after the premiere at Radio City Music Hall, and they had an entire floor devoted to Roger Rabbit merchandise. I bought the first piece I saw. A Roger Rabbit plastic lunch box. I still have it.

Shezzam1 karma

I hope I haven't missed you... Emerging screenwriter here, is there anything you would consider off limits or taboo?

GaryKWolf2 karma

In Toontown, nothing. In my personal life, don't wear white after Labor Day. And never buy drinks in a bar for girls with boyfriends named Spike.

Shezzam1 karma

Lol, awesome! So I have a script that features a bubble bath, floating dog poop and a little girl looking after her sick mother and baby sister. Too much?

GaryKWolf4 karma

Are the little girl, the sick mom, and the baby sis floating in the bubble bath with the dog poop? If so, also show the dog. Will bring in the pre-school audience.

itwashimmusic1 karma

Gary, I watched the film version of your work until the VHS broke--twice.

How far are you willing to address the philosophy of the borders of ToonTown and humanity? For example, would it be too far to look at rape?

Thanks for answering questions!

GaryKWolf1 karma

That would be way, way, way too heavy for a Toontown scenario.

SlySonic1 karma

I love the setting of the Roger books but I was wondering,Have you ever thought of putting Roger & co. In a modern setting? Roger would have to deal with the rising popularity of CGI cartoon stars and stuff like that.

GaryKWolf2 karma

I'm kind of an old school guy. I like the classic style cartoons and hard boiled private eye conventions. I'm not sure Roger would fit well into modern life. Maybe when I'm in my dotage, I'll write something in which old Roger looks back on his life from the present. Or maybe I'll do his autobiography. That would be fun.

SlySonic1 karma

Awesome! That'd be a cool read,but can toons age?

GaryKWolf7 karma

Toons do whatever I want Toons to do. That's the beauty of being The Lord High Creator of Toons.

East_Threadly1 karma

Awesome, thanks for the fond childhood memories!

Where does your new book fall on the 'for kids/for adults' spectrum?

GaryKWolf6 karma

All of my books are adult books. They deal with grown up themes and require a knowledge of popular culture that most kids don't have. I wouldn't recommend one of my books for any kid younger than 13.

unmined1 karma

Who Censored Roger Rabbit was excellent. But crazy hard to find. I can't tell you how much I loved the tone of that novel, and the world it created. I like the movie as well, but really don't consider them "the same."

Is the new novel as noir as the first?

Do you see a film sequel happening soon?

GaryKWolf2 karma

The new novel is very similar in feeling and noirishness to Censored. A bit more hard edged than my sequel novel Plugged. I wish I had bought all of those hardbacked Censoreds when they first came out. They go for $300 bucks on eBay. If I had a couple of cases, I be riding around in a limo instead of a 30 year old VW love bus.

corgiroll1 karma

I read Who Censored Roger Rabbit so many times!

So the first two books will never have a reprint? I feel sorry that I can't get to read the second book.

GaryKWolf3 karma

Both books are available as eBooks on Amazon.com. Very reasonably priced. That's the best part about eBooks.

FOTBWN1 karma

Is there any truth to the story that Judge Doom was actually the toon that killed Bambi's mother?

Will there ever be another movie?

GaryKWolf2 karma

Yes and who knows.

persepolisp1 karma

Were you surprised by the fact that Who Framed Roger Rabbit? became viewed as a classic piece of cinema?

GaryKWolf2 karma

I was more surprised the movie ever got made. I considered the book to be unfilmable. Given that it was made, when you have people like Steven Spielberg, Jeff Katzenberg, Bob Zemeckis, Dick Williams, and Bob Hoskins involved, you're not talking chopped liver. You're talking the Grade A, prime cuts of Hollywood. I'm not surprised they produced a classic. I'm glad I was able to contribute, being more the chopped liver variety myself.

probablynotokyea1 karma

I had "Who Framed Roger Rabbit?" checked out from the library for almost six months when I was twelve. I would check it out as soon it was due back. That, and 1989 Batman are my favorite movies of all time.

2 questions if you can :)

What was the most difficult part of seaming 2D and 3D together to make such a convincing, 2d-in-3d-world final cut?

Did you enjoy "Cool World"?

GaryKWolf1 karma

The 2D/3D question is better answered by the technical guys who did the animation and the post production. Can't remember much about Cool World, so it probably didn't make a big impression with me

thebageljew1 karma

Any thoughts of making a sequel or a remake?

GaryKWolf1 karma

I think about it all the time, but that's way above my pay grade. That's a decision that has to come from Disney and Spielberg.

Jiggy111 karma

Hi, Mr. Wolf!

I’ve read both of the previous Roger Rabbit books, and I loved them! Your writing style is so much fun to read. I’ll definitely be getting the third one as well.

I also read this a little while ago, that said you were helping to create 3 new shorts, as well as the possibility of a movie starring Mickey Mouse and Roger Rabbit. That would be so awesome! It’s about time Roger got some new cartoons. Is there any truth to the article? How likely are we to be seeing those? And can you give us an update on their status?

I also remember hearing a while ago about a book in which Roger is giving a tour of Toontown, and it featured pictures that he took himself or something. That would also be a lot of fun to read! Are you planning on writing that one? :)

Thanks for taking the time to answer our questions! You rock.

GaryKWolf3 karma

My new book, Who Wacked Roger Rabbit? is set in Toontown. Eddie Valiant has been hired by movie producer Barney Sands to bodyguard Gary Cooper who is starring in Sands' film Hi, Toon! Coop has been getting death threats. Roger, who is also co-starring in the film, is using his self-published book Roger Rabbit's Gossipy Guide to Toontown to give Sands and Cooper a tour of their set locations. So I've incorporated the Roger Toontown book into this one.

Jiggy111 karma

Nice! Thanks for the info! Is there any word on "The Stooge" movie, or the shorts that were rumoured to be in production? I would honestly do cartwheels if that was true.

GaryKWolf3 karma

Last I heard about The Stooge project, it was slowly wending it's way through the Disney system. More than that, I don't know.

VoodooDarling1 karma

I've heard conflicting reports that (film version) Jessica Rabbit was based on 1) actress Vikki Dougan or 2) Tex Avery’s cartoon character Red. Is one, the other or a combination of both?

GaryKWolf6 karma

I grew up in a small town in Illinois where, through a genetic fluke, the boys outnumbered the girls by 10 to 1. So good luck getting a date if you were, like me, the president of the checkers club. I based Jessica on my ideal of what a perfect girlfriend would be. I've been told since them by many in the movie industry, that if Jessica is my idea of a woman, perhaps I should stick to writing Turkish prison or war movies where I don't have to deal with "feminine" issues. I based Jessica on Tex Avery's cartoon character Red Hot Riding Hood.

EkoZulu1 karma

First off, thank you for playing such an important role in my favorite movie of all time. I actually made my nephew (9 years old) watch it for his first time 3 weeks back, and he is still trying to watch it every day. I bought a copy of the book off eBay a few years ago, and haven't had it in my hand since I finished it because so many of my friends have wanted to read it. Now for the question: if given the opportunity to do it all over again, is there anything you would change about Who Censored Roger Rabbit?

GaryKWolf2 karma

Everybody asked me why they changed the title of the movie from Censored to Framed. The best explanation I've had of that is that they didn't want to use Censored in the title for fear parents would think it was a dirty movie. Hence, the change to Framed. Which, I actually think is a pretty good title. I might have used it if I had thought of it first.

oldchunkofcoal1 karma

Hey Gary, 2 questions:

1) How did you get Roger Rabbit published? What was the process like?

2) If you don't mind sharing, how much did you get for the film rights?

GaryKWolf2 karma

When I wrote Roger Rabbit, I had a three book contract with Doubleday. Roger was the third book of that contract. Doubleday rejected it. They said they couldn't sell it. There was no place for it on the bookstore shelves. It wasn't straight fiction, no a children's book, nor a typical mystery. I asked them what they would do if they had Gulliver's Travels, or Alice In Wonderland, or The Wizard of Oz. They thought for a minute and then said they couldn't sell those, either. My agent sent that book out to every publisher in the world. along the way, it accrued 110 rejects, always for the same reason. publishers didn't believe there was a market for it. Finally, St. Martin's Press picked it up and published it in very small quantities. At last count, it's gone through 16 paperback printings and still sells well as a digital book on Amazon.

I got $35,000 for the movie rights.

oldchunkofcoal2 karma

Did that amount leave a bad taste in your mouth after the movie went on to make hundreds of millions, or did you end up getting a piece of the back end?

Thanks for answering that personal question.

GaryKWolf4 karma

At the time, $35K was more than I had made on all of my other writings put together. So I was overjoyed. As for how much I've gotten paid since, that's a good news, bad news, good news situation. The good news, yes, Disney has paid me well. The bad news, Disney pays me in Disney Dollars. The good news, I can use Disney Dollars at Toys 'R Us.

THRitchie2 karma

^ That's terrible!!!!^ I think I've read somewhere about Felix Salten (and his kids) having problems with Disney too (took them to court) somewhere online years back. I guess it's best to watch your back when you're doing business with Disney.

GaryKWolf6 karma

It was a joke! Disney has been very, very good to me. No complaints. They actually pay me in Simoleans, and I can and do spend Simoleans everyplace.