Hello everyone! My name is Jason Steele and I create animations on my YouTube channel "FilmCow". Some of my more well known projects include Charlie the Unicorn, Llamas with Hats, and Marshmallow People. This August will mark my tenth year of being able to do this stuff full time!

Most recently I launched a Kickstarter to fund a 30 minute "Charlie the Unicorn" finale:
https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/1556971210/charlie-the-unicorn-the-grand-finale

Ask me anything!

Proof: http://www.filmcow.com/reddit/

EDIT: Thank you everyone! It's been... oh god, 9 hours, so I should probably end this. Thanks for all the questions, I hope my answers were of at least moderate satisfaction.

Comments: 1966 • Responses: 84  • Date: 

RedhawkDirector1155 karma

What caused you to take the Llamas with Hats series in the direction that you did, from hilariously morbid to actually somewhat sad?

Fathomas1577 karma

Originally there was only going to be five episodes, but after the forth one came out everyone guessed what the fifth would be. Carl isn't funny if he can't surprise you. My partner Scuffy disliked the series, and suggested that the llamas should just "blow up." This sparked an idea for a legitimately surprising fifth episode: Carl's depressing descent into madness and eventual suicide. The only way to end Llamas with Hats in a legitimately funny way was to end it as sadly as possible.

BigSwedenMan598 karma

Are you aware that by creating this series, I now must endure hearing "Caaarrrlll. That kills people" about 10-20% of the time when I meet new people. 7 fucking years later. My name is Carl btw. Yes I have one of your t-shirts. It's pretty damn comfy actually...

Fathomas383 karma

My apologies. I get messages from people named Charlie with similar accounts!

Lightdaze1005 karma

Hi there! What was your inspiration for Charlie the Unicorn?

Fathomas2974 karma

I lost most of my possessions, and my job, when hurricane Katrina hit New Orleans (where I was living at the time.) My mom's birthday was coming up, and I was completely out of money, but I still wanted to get her something. Knowing this, she said that instead of a gift I could make a cartoon for her about unicorns. So I made "Charlie the Unicorn." More than ten years later she still brings up the fact that her birthday present launched my career, hah.

vervete582 karma

What was her reaction when she saw it? Because I can't see my mom enjoying Charlie haha.

Fathomas1019 karma

Honestly, I don't think she was very impressed, hah. I mean... she liked that I made it for her, but it took a few years before the humor in it started making sense.

NeltharionsEgo843 karma

How does it feel having created some of the most memorable animations on the Internet?

Fathomas1639 karma

I alternate between "this feels good because I am good at what I do" and "this feels bad because I'm a terrible artist and a fraud" pretty much every hour.

DudeDude2020523 karma

Hey Jason, which day in the ghost house is your favourite? Mine is day 34 in the ghost house.

Fathomas554 karma

Nothing beats your very first day in the ghost house, in my opinion. All of the Cracker Barrel days are a close second, though.

Slapajack497 karma

Judging by the frequency of your uploads, I'm guessing that Youtube is your main source of income. We all know Youtube kind of screwed animators over with their new systems of payment, and I would just like to ask whether or not it has affected you in a significant way?

Fathomas809 karma

The changes YouTube has made to their platform has completely made it unviable for animators. It's not really possible to make a living from YouTube revenue alone anymore if you do cartoons or scripted videos. Patreon, and occasional big projects on Kickstarter are what keep things going for me these days.

MoistPockets266 karma

What did YouTube do to screw animators?

Fathomas938 karma

In 2011 they removed the front page, which used to have spots like "Top Favorited" that would reward higher-quality videos by giving them increased exposure. Then in 2013 they deemphasized the subscription feed, replacing it with an algorithm-based list. And the algorithm rewards watch-time over all else, so a one hour "Let's Play" is seen by the system as more valuable than a five minute animation.

The result of this is that YouTube doesn't promote animations anymore, and most of my (and other animators) subscribers aren't notified when a new video comes out. The only way to make money on YouTube is with frequent, lengthy uploads, and that's not possible if you're one person doing cartoons.

AnAppallingFailure336 karma

https://www.youtube.com/feed/subscriptions

I have that bookmarked as my youtube page. It only shows my subscriptions. So I don't see any of that other inane bullshit. Only what I've subbed to.

Fathomas483 karma

This is what I do too, but unfortunately almost no one else does this. Views on videos used to slowly curve off, dropping by 15% or so a day. After they made the change that deemphasized the subscription feed, after the second day the drop-off is around 95%.

HesusTheMexicanJesus386 karma

What's your rarest pokemon card?

Fathomas685 karma

I have a shadowless foil Venusaur. I don't know how rare that is. I've got a few shadowless foils. I really want to be the very best but I don't think I am.

Ohtarello19 karma

eBay says it's about $300. Not too shabby.

Fathomas44 karma

Wow, that's more than I expected. Alas, Venusaur is too close to my heart to ever sell. My dear sweet monster shrub.

Lordthom373 karma

Do you know why some randomness works and other randomness doesn't? Like, i feel like most people can come up with random cartoons but yours just work really good. Are you conscious with your choices?

Fathomas728 karma

A non-sequitur isn't funny just because it's a non-sequitur. "Good" art make you feel something, even if you aren't sure what you're feeling or what it means. I take a lot of inspiration from surrealist art in that regard. I think for "random" humor to work it has to seem like it makes sense in the context of the world. Also, drawing butts on everything can help.

I_dementia335 karma

My dad was shown llamas with hats and he thought "boat nectar" was hilarious. He now refers to any liquid has "____ nectar." For example a running nose is nose nectar or diarrhea is butt nectar. So thanks I guess. Do you every hear your videos referenced in public? What is it like seeing the referenced on the Internet?

Fathomas444 karma

I love the word "nectar".

I saw someone wearing a Charlie the Unicorn shirt once, that was really weird. I actually get super anxious about even mentioning what I do in public. NO ONE CAN KNOW. When my dentist asks about my job I just say I'm an "animator" working on "lots of projects at the moment."

Linve297 karma

1) To which TV Network did you send "The Magic Realm of Horseman", and are you planning on continue the series? (I think you should keep trying to sell it, it's pure gold).

2) How many people are involved in the creation of an usual FilmCow video?

Fathomas363 karma

1 - I pitched Horse Man to Adult Swim and FOX's ADHD. I would like to continue the series - I have 30 episodes planned out!

2 - Usually just me. Sometimes Scuffy will do the art (Agent Kit-Kat, Business Cats) and sometimes I have additional voice actors (Chris Alex as Carl the Llama, etc.)

ArielViolet127 karma

How did the people who you pitched "The Magical Realm of Horseman" to respond? Have you ever gotten any offers from television networks for other series or anything like that before?

Fathomas556 karma

Adult Swim said that they didn't like that the characters were monochromatic. I don't know if that's the real reason they passed on it, but that's what they said. I don't remember if the ADHD people gave a reason.

I've pitched a few projects. The only time I've gotten a direct offer was from Adult Swim for a "Charlie the Unicorn" series. I got to the contract stage but decided to pass. The Adult Swim producer I was working with thought the show needed to have more "drug humor" so that college kids would like it, and I began to realize the project was likely to turn out really bad. To me there's a huge difference between "something people on drugs might find funny" and "something that just has a bunch of drug references."

Linve33 karma

Great, thanks! This leads me to other questions though:

Are there any chances they can distribute it in the future?

Was there any time where you ran out of ideas? Or do you have a huge pile of stories to tell? If so, have you considered a partnership with another animator to make you job lighter? (since I assume the animation part takes most of your time)

Fathomas151 karma

I can't see Horse Man ever getting picked up at this point, especially with another show with the name "Horse Man" out there now.

I run out of ideas every time I have an idea, actually, hah. Every new idea is followed by a period of panic where I am certain I will never have another good idea again.

9_Nines281 karma

Morning, Jason! Two questions:

  1. Have you ever rejected an idea for being too weird?

  2. What video was the most fun to make?

Fathomas515 karma

1 - Yes, although sometimes I will go back and try to make it work. "Hell Yeah Batman" is a video that was too weird, that I eventually went back to and made "work." I have another video on my computer right now that is literally just stock footage of business people set to inspiring music. Still not sure how to make that "work."

2 - Marshmallow People is a lot of fun to make, because it involves way more complicated animation than my usual videos. Animating facial expressions is the least interesting thing to me, but it's the thing I do most.

Wiizel1337175 karma

What is your favorite type of ghost butt?

Oh, and what inspiried you to first start making videos on YouTube I guess?

Fathomas253 karma

My favorite type of ghost butt is a sexy ghost butt, which is a good thing because they are all so sexy.

I've been making videos since I was 11 or 12, although at that age I was mostly doing little stop-motion projects (I was a huge fan of Ray Harryhausen.) In the early 2000s I would put my animations up on Newgrounds, and then someone took Charlie the Unicorn from that site and uploaded it to YouTube, where it blew up. Then YouTube introduced the "partner program" which was one of the first times you could actually get a split of the ad revenue your content generated. So I decided to start releasing all my stuff there.

OttselSpy2563 karma

Curious about one thing. I noticed recently that the original Charlie the Unicorn video uploaded by someone else had been taken down. It's still on the "top viewed videos" list, you just can't click on it. Did you copyright strike it, or did you ask the channel owner to take it down and he complied?

It's obvious why you would have him take it down -- you need the ad revenue. But I thought it would have been ironic if you had given the Youtube channel that made you viral a strike...

EDIT: Nevermind, it's up. Sorry guys.

Fathomas135 karma

It's still up as far as I can tell: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Q5im0Ssyyus

As far as I can remember the only time I've ever sent take-down requests were when someone uploaded something of mine and changed the credits to make it seem like someone else had made it.

Hildart167 karma

Hi Jason, which are the names of blue and pink unicorns?

Fathomas345 karma

Their names are SECRET. Although tt's possible to figure out their names on your own, there are clues hidden in an unrelated FilmCow video.

ladykillerwannabe283 karma

Congratulations, you just made every single person reading this thread start binge watching your videos.

But seriously though, one more hint you can give us maybe?

Edit: For anyone reading this, we've now made a subreddit dedicated to finding the names. Come over to /r/whoarepinkandblue

Fathomas251 karma

The only hint I'll give you is that the names are literally just written out, there's no code you need to decipher or anything. But there is a huge clue in the shot to let you know it's their names - it's not just two names randomly placed somewhere.

Tankmin114 karma

I've noticed a lot of your videos featuring politicians don't really make much of a statement on politics (ie. Obama's favorite pokemon, Obama's bootiful butt, McCain's vegetable friends). These videos kinda avoid controversy, but are still really funny. On the other hand, you are also known for making videos with insane characters advocating for things like cat abortions, things that are so over the top and controversial that they're obviously comedic. My question is, have you ever made an animation/video and didn't release it because you were worried how the community would receive it? Like have you finished a video, or stopped making it halfway through, and said to yourself "wow, this is just too messed up" or "this isn't really that funny" and scrapped it? Have any of these scrapped ideas been reused for your other works? IS THERE A SECRET UNDERGROUND VAULT FILLED WITH SECRET VIDEOS?

Fathomas171 karma

It's important to me that I express how I feel in my art, but unless someone is actually malicious or predatory I don't want to attack them in a way that feels mean spirited. When doing art about politics it's super easy to demonize an entire group of people, and that isn't something I feel comfortable doing. Absurdism for me is a good way to present my ideas without making people who disagree with me feel directly attacked.

There are definitely videos I have stopped working on because I realized it would be taken the wrong way. And yes, I do have a secret vault filled with forbidden projects, but they are mostly forbidden because of how incredibly unfunny they are (like my VERY FUNNY Sonic the Hedgehog "parody.")

-Jameswhat-113 karma

Hi, Jason! Thanks for doing an AMA! I've got a few questions...

Do you ever burn yourself out while making a series?

If so, what's your strategy to get yourself back to making content?

Will there ever be a sequel to The Cloak?

Fathomas231 karma

The way YouTube works now I have to release with a very consistent frequency or else I take a pretty big hit financially. Sometimes I don't actually have an idea I want to work on, but I still need to make a video, and that burns me out. What helps in that situation is to make a video about the fact that I'm burning out (see Gary and the Horse: Dreams). It sounds so obvious, but I forget that I can just make a video about what I'm feeling at the moment even if what I'm feeling is "I don't want to make a video."

And yes, there will be more The Cloak! This year, hopefully!

Bonjbop99 karma

I love your stuff! Who is your favorite character of all time ever (Of your own stuff I mean)?

Fathomas140 karma

At the moment I would say either the Ghost House guy, Annabelle the platypus, or Agent Kit-Kat.

benowillock97 karma

Hi Jason, what will you do differently this time around to avoid the issues you had with the "Detective Heart of America" movie Kickstarter?

Fathomas160 karma

My biggest issue making "Heart of America" was not setting aside money for my own time. So when my financial situation changed I had a lot less time to work on the movie than I had expected, which dragged production out an extra year. For "Charlie the Unicorn: The Grand Finale" a good part of the budget is just straight-up going towards my own time.

tiff38387 karma

Did you know that you are required watching at the Royal Military College in Canada? When I was there I was part of Charlie Flight and Charlie the Unicorn was shown to us as our unofficial mascot. We used to watch one video before every lecture and would call to other flight members by screaming "Charlie!" at each other. The Sargeant Major was not impressed most days.

Fathomas58 karma

Hah, I am glad to hear my videos were of service!

zedd6184 karma

Hey, Jason. I've been a fan of your stuff for years. The first video I saw was Spatula Madness. I still sing that song about new France every now and then.

Are we going to see any more Dark Midnight in the future? Also, did the Deathbat ever reconcile with her father?

Thanks for doing this AMA and giving us such odd entertainment over the years.

Fathomas83 karma

I love Dark Midnight and really, really want to do more with it. Maybe a Dark Midnight movie at some point!

Deathbat spoiler: Deathbat kills her father at the end of the movie, but he comes back in the 6th Deathbat as a clone and they finally work things out.

crevassesexual72 karma

Hey Jason, long time fan, hope it doesn't bother you that I will read all your responses in Horsemans voice.

What's you creative process like? Do you have a set routine you like to go through when creating videos?

Fathomas183 karma

My creative process is basically a week of freaking out about being a failure and not having any ideas, an hour of finally getting an idea and writing it out in burst of creativity, and then another week of second guessing the idea as I work on it, thinking it's the worst thing I've ever created until I finish it and decide it's okay after all.

Drsmall71 karma

How did you get so good looking? And how can I become as good looking as you?

Fathomas135 karma

Ocelot magic, mostly.

RowtheBrofoSho70 karma

What goes through your mind when you think of ideas for videos? They're just soo... Different... Excited for the final episode of Charlie the Unicorn :D

Fathomas147 karma

Usually what goes through my mind is "Why am I thinking about giraffes with no necks? I guess I should write that down. Okay now why am I thinking about turtles making loud bird sounds? Better write that down too."

Cardly_Wool69 karma

  1. Do you work with other people to animate your videos? (I know you have different voice actors)
  2. Favorite pizza toppings?
  3. Do you take acid before coming up with the plot of a video?

Fathomas119 karma

1 - There are a few people I sometimes use as voice actors, and Scuffy makes puppets and physical props for some live-action videos, and occasionally artwork (Business Cats, Agent Kit-Kat). Oh, and Chris Alex did some lip-sync work for a few videos. Other than that it's all me!

2 - Black olives.

3 - Nope! That's just how my brain works all on its own.

Alpha-Trion70 karma

Black olives? You fuckin' savage.

Fathomas152 karma

My favorite pizza topping is actually double or triple black olives. Just... the whole pizza covered every inch in black olives.

CasaBlacka87 karma

you disgust me

Fathomas196 karma

I feel no shame for my intense olive love.

cthul_dude66 karma

Hey Jason, I remember wondering what the hell you looked like way back when... you were kind of a mystery and I freaked out when you first showed your face. Was the anonymity intentional for a while?Love u bb

Fathomas96 karma

I've shown my face in videos dating way back before YouTube, it's just been infrequent. The main reason you don't see me that often is because when I do live-action stuff I'm generally holding the camera. LOVE YOU TOO.

lerthedc64 karma

How is Nick doing in Cyberspace?

Fathomas97 karma

Nick now works in a cyber cafe, meeting new cyber people and generally having a pretty chill cyber life.

MrHeagBy63 karma

After Carl died did he aquire a sexy llama-ghost butt?

Fathomas83 karma

Almost certainly.

Orangebanannax54 karma

I love your videos. You've been doing this for ten years now, but what about the rest of the cast? I don't think YouTube revenue could support Chris, Jennifer, Nick, and yourself. Do they all have day jobs, and appear in your videos because your friends, or do you pay them?

Also, I want a behind the scenes documentary like the one Robert Benfer made a few years back. I really liked seeing what you and the Filmcow cast was like in day to day life, maybe with some scenes of you working.

Here's to another ten years!

Fathomas131 karma

Chris used to work on FilmCow stuff full time, but when YouTube revenue started to dry up he had to find more stable work. Jennifer does occasional voice acting on cartoons, but has always had a 9-5 job. Nick has a day job as well, and recently moved out of state! I miss Nick.

My day-to-day life is, honestly, pretty boring and mostly involves me either working or stressing about work, or baking delicious cookies and cakes. Although I'm sure I could make that more interesting by adding a murder mystery sub-plot. MAYBE NICK DIDN'T REALLY MOVE OUT OF STATE.

themightychondria53 karma

Have you ever had an idea for a video that you've decided is just too weird and insane to spend time and money animating or filming? Or do you make absolutely everything that you conjure up in your beautiful, beautiful head?

Fathomas103 karma

My computer has a big "ABANDONED" folder on it, inside of which hides my most shamefully unfunny and unworkable projects.

ocarinaofdicks49 karma

Please, for the love of god, make a compilation.

Fathomas183 karma

Sure, I might put together some sort of "The Worst Ideas I've Ever Had" video.

ItsKiddow53 karma

Hi, thanks very much for doing this AmA.

What was the point when you decided to do that what you to full-time? Was there any special moment or occasion which caused you leave what you were doing beforehand?

Fathomas77 karma

Before doing internet videos full time I would do freelance video editing and motion graphics work. I wasn't good enough to make a career out of that though, to be honest. The very moment I started making money from my cartoons I decided to try turning that into my full time job, and thankfully it has worked out so far.

mattwise1550 karma

How much money have you spent on Eagle statues?
Also, the Ghost House Guide to Ghosts is phenomenal. Can't wait to get the Charlie storybook.

Fathomas71 karma

Exactly $824, actually! $824 worth of eagle statues.

RommieJ134250 karma

Hi Jason. Big fan.

I'm trying to construct various mythical creatures out of meat, but I cannot seem to adequately stick pieces together let alone bestow sentience upon them. Any suggestions?

Fathomas78 karma

Apparently there is a very good paste you can make by grinding up orphan bones. I am not sure why it has to be orphan bones but that's what the recipe says. As for sentience, you'll have to ask a spellmaster about that, and I am but a humble spellenthusiast.

Wyatt91546 karma

Where did the name "film cow" come from? Also if someone has a rad butt before they die, does it become sexier as a ghostbutt than a person who had a flat butt in life?

Fathomas87 karma

FilmCow comes from me being 17 and making a list of various animals mixed with synonyms for "movie" and eventually settling on FilmCow. I would change it, but it's been around for too long at this point, hah.

redking100045 karma

What was the best moment for you when you were filming Detective Heart of America: The Final Freedom?

Fathomas108 karma

Honestly, I really enjoyed filming at the Holiday Inn Express because that was a pretty nice Holiday Inn Express. My least favorite moment was the next morning eating the free Holiday Inn Express breakfast because it was really really bad.

LegoSpaceship45 karma

First off congrats on the funding! Can't wait! xD

My question: Given the amount of YouTube drama/freebooting on facebook going on, it seems like content creators are having a tough time at the moment getting exposure AND getting paid. Would you say the golden age of YouTube is over, and how can content creators stay viable these days?

Also will you ever do any more political cartoons featuring David Cameron? Maybe Jeremy Hunt? Thanks again for the laughs and amazing videos.

Fathomas69 karma

I don't think it's possible to make a living on YouTube anymore if you do scripted content. It's just not a good platform for that stuff, and they don't seem interested in fixing it at all. The moment a better site comes along you will probably see a lot of artists jumping ship.

If I can think of a good concept I'll definitely do another David Cameron video, or a video about another british politician. I have lots of "VERY IMPORTANT THINGS" to say, but I try to only say them when I think I have found a unique way to present my perspective.

TheMotte42 karma

My roommate and I got each other Ghost House Guide to Ghosts for our respective birthdays (we're 4 days apart). This is what he asked to be written in mine.

What's the weirdest thing someone asked you to write in their copy?

Fathomas53 karma

Someone asked me to write something that was pretty romantic, which I did, and then I drew that same ghost and butt next to it.

SCREAM2NIGHT41 karma

What is your favourite character voice?

Fathomas82 karma

The Ghost House guy, probably. Some of the voices I do really hurt my throat, but not Ghost House guy. I could do that voice for hours. Also, I really like how well that voice portrays both honesty and grumpy ignorance.

ladykillerwannabe40 karma

Which voices hurt the worst?

Fathomas136 karma

The blue and pink unicorns. I can only do that for a half hour or so before my throat starts trying to crawl out of my body and escape.

Libbits37 karma

Have you considered creating a gritty reboot of Spatula People?/s

In all serious, would you say anyone in particular inspired you to pursue animation?

Fathomas35 karma

Ray Harryhausen and Terry Gilliam were big animation inspirations. I started out doing stop-motion stuff, which definitely translated to how I do 2D animation. More or less all of the stuff I do is basically stop-motion cut-out work, just on a computer.

Wukeywukey37 karma

Would you ever consider a kickstarter to bring back spatula madness as a feature film?

Fathomas88 karma

Possibly, but the movie would be pretty different at this point. There's a lot in the original script that makes me cringe now. Like a scene where the whole joke is that an elevator is saying "Whoooaaaaaaaa" while it slowly moves up and down.

TheManWithSomeGoals35 karma

Jason will you make a Charlie Teh Unicron 5 in correlation with CTU5?

Fathomas58 karma

Yes, yes I will.

TheDiscoNarwhal33 karma

What's your favorite Nick Cage movie?

Fathomas94 karma

Face/Off, definitely.

KristoffIsHere32 karma

Do you still talk to Robert Benfer? Are you going to do more videos with him?

Fathomas46 karma

Occasionally! I'm always up for videos with Benfer. He is a true comedic genius.

Shubumpkin32 karma

What's your favourite video that you wish received more views?

Fathomas150 karma

It bummed me out that the "Hit It With a Car" series didn't do better. A lot of people thought it was literally just a bad internet show about hitting things with a car, rather than a show about a sad, incompetent dude who was making a bad internet show about hitting things with a car.

Destro_31 karma

Is there any reason to the "Grand slamwich" joke? Do you just not like grand slamwiches or do you think their name is funny?

Fathomas58 karma

I LOVE ridiculous restaurant items, like the Grand Slamwich, or Pizza Hut's "Literal Cheeseburgers for Crust" pizza. Like, I don't like to eat them, but I find it so enchanting that they exist. It really seems like no idea is too extreme to make it to a menu, and that is incredible.

T-nawtical29 karma

Hi Jason!

Your voice literally has the ability to make me laugh no matter what you say. You could literally be reading Schindler's List in one of your character's voices and I'd laugh my butt off.

Would you ever consider doing a series where you read dramatic poetry or stories in the voices of your characters? Like the marshmallow people reading I dunno war and peace or some shit? Or Charlie reading part of "My Immortal" and just being completely weirded out.

Anyways, thanks for coming on over and congratulations on achieving your kickstarter goal!

Fathomas39 karma

Hah, that could be interesting. Maybe I can get into audiobook recording!

Adamkazam24 karma

Hey Jason,

  1. Has there ever been a character you regretted creating?

  2. What happened to your friend, Robert Benfer? He disappeared from social media.

Fathomas59 karma

1 - The spatula in "A Serious Business Meeting" who keeps interrupting the meeting by loudly saying "That's totally gay!" My intention was to present his actions as inappropriate, but when you make a character bombastic enough they come across as heroic. The comments on my videos for years would include people just saying "Totallyyyy gaaaaaayyy!!!" which was the opposite of what I wanted. It was a good lesson for me on how not to write satire.

2 - No idea! I still see him posting on Facebook, but I'm not sure what he's up to these days.

balmoraman21 karma

Was Merlin the Wizard supposed to be sort of an extension of your own opinions as a way to let the trolls know how much you appreciate them?

Fathomas40 karma

Nope, that wasn't the intention at all, although after doing "Merlin Reacts" (which was my opinion) I've been thinking about actually using Merlin to talk about stuff I care about.

Lidocain20 karma

What is the worst fan interaction you've ever had?

Fathomas62 karma

I had a stalker once, I guess that counts. She worked at a company that wanted to do Charlie merchandise - I gave her my phone number to talk about it, and then after talking with her I decided it wasn't a good deal. I then got weekly voicemails from her for YEARS (this was before you could block numbers on your cell phone without paying for a special blocking service.)

Cameroon6219 karma

Hey Jason! Huge fan of all your content. But I must ask you this: Will there be more Nick in the future? I need more Nick in my life. Can you also tell Nick I said hi?

Fathomas37 karma

Nick moved out of state, unfortunately. But I am still going to make all of the Nick stuff I can. The world needs more Nick. I NEED MORE NICK.

ItsWeenie17 karma

Hey Jason love your work, my favorite being the ghost house series. I noticed recent videos have been more just you as a character and less of the other character voices played by Jennifer and Chris what have they been up to lately and how often do you try to write them into videos? Also have you ever worked on a cartoon that was near completion but just never released?

Fathomas51 karma

I stopped being able to afford paying Chris to work on FilmCow stuff full time last year, so he had to find another job. And then he and Jen just had a baby! You'll definitely see them show up in videos again, but it will be less frequent.

I have worked on many cartoons that were near completion and then never released. Some titles from my "Abandoned" folder:

Discount Babies
Zepp's Quest for the Soul Nexus
Sausage Man
Investment Tips
Sarnarg the Hardge Harg

oferzina17 karma

Who would Charlie vote for in the upcoming elections?

Fathomas52 karma

Honestly, I imagine Charlie as a Green Party voter.

InsaneWizard_17 karma

I'm a huge fan of your videos. So what do you have planned for the future?

Fathomas37 karma

This year I'm going to be working on the big Charlie finale, as well as a bunch of shorts for the YouTube channel. I'm also going to be making a few video games this year with Scuffy! I used to make games as a teenager and I've been really wanting to get back into it.

Capt-Murphy17 karma

Hey Jason, any plans for the Filmcow Extra channel?

Also, thoughts on Metalocalypse?

Fathomas38 karma

I'm trying to figure out what to do with FilmCow Extra... maybe I can share some of my fabulous muffin and pie recipes. Turn it into the FilmCow Food Network.

I am really sad that Adult Swim decided not to pick up the final Metalocalypse season. A tragedy.

Tuzz51616 karma

Which form of biscoff spread is superior, crunchy or smooth?

Fathomas23 karma

Crunchy, in my humble but obviously correct opinion.

Sa-horse16 karma

Whatever happened to "Hit It With A Car"? Also, what inspired HIWAC?

Fathomas25 karma

Very few people liked the series, and then the car broke down. The inspiration came from me thinking about what sort of internet show the Chris character would create. That's probably why people didn't like the series, hah.

KetamineKyle16 karma

What is the meat dragon doing now that Carl's gone?

Fathomas33 karma

By now, the meat dragon has surely fallen apart. Carl is a genius but his designs are not meant for long-term stability.

SunsetInZero16 karma

Hi Jason! I've been a big fan of FilmCow for a while now (The Cloak is still one of my favorite videos) and I love all of your work.

I was just wondering, why did Llamas With Hats end the way it did? Did you plan on ending the series that way, as soon as it became a series instead of a one-off video, or was it a result of the fanbase constantly bitching about wanting a sequel to every video?

Thanks!

ArielViolet15 karma

Just in case Jason doesn't reply to you, he made a post about it on his website: http://www.filmcow.com/2015/02/12/llamas-with-hats-an-explanation/

Fathomas21 karma

Yeah, that link pretty much covers it!

Belgarion26215 karma

What can you tell us, to sell us on this idea? What is going to make this worth the kickstarter money?

I like Charlie the Unicorn, I know making these videos is expensive, but what makes this, in your opinion, worth our money?

Fathomas31 karma

There's two questions here: is the video worth your money, and are the rewards worth your money.

As for the first part, it depends on how much you like Charlie the Unicorn. I've had this finale planned since I wrote the second episode, and I think people are going to be surprised at how much the entire thing feels like a cohesive whole by the end. I like financially backing art that means something to me, but that's me, you've got to do you!

As for the second part, I really, really like Kickstarters that offer exclusive items that feel special. And so I've tried to fill the rewards with as much of that as possible. I don't want anyone to get their rewards in the mail and think "this wasn't worth it." This is going to be the last time people spend money on Charlie the Unicorn and I don't want them to come away from this whole thing feeling anything but happy.

JohnTheMod14 karma

Hi, Jason, I gotta say, I'm a big fan of yours. Charlie the Unicorn was one of the first videos I saw on YouTube back in the day. Did you ever think that Charlie was going to be as big of a deal as he wound up becoming?

Fathomas33 karma

Nope. If I had any idea that Charlie was going to be so big I probably would have panicked and over-thought the whole thing, completely ruining it.

CrunchyMeatBrick9 karma

How did you get into animating; did you have any previous experience?

Fathomas13 karma

When I was 9 my mom got a video camera to make home movies, and I started using it to make short films. By the time I was 11 or 12 I was doing short stop-motion stuff, and then that eventually turned into doing cut-out style animations on the computer. I don't have any professional experience, but I think's that's pretty obvious if you've seen my stuff, hah.

steescribbles9 karma

Have you considered any professional voice acting roles, such as in movies, games or anime?

Fathomas10 karma

It's something I would like to do, but I have no idea how to get into something like that. Also, I have crushing self-doubt about everything I do so that keeps me from pursuing a lot of things!

JadedDarkness9 karma

What made you decide to reveal your face after many years of being hidden?

Fathomas20 karma

My face has been in videos dating back to the early 2000s, but for a while I was under a curse where people would forget they saw me immediately after looking away.

GWayne_of_Terror8 karma

Hey Jason! I really love your animations, but I've also thoroughly enjoyed many of the live-action skits you've put out as well, particularly the ones with you, Chris, Nick, etc actually on camera. Do you have any plans in the near future to create more live-action videos like these? Or are you focusing almost entirely on animation at this stage?

Fathomas7 karma

Nick moved out of state, and Chris has a new job and a tiny baby now, so at the moment I'm mostly focused on animation. You'll definitely still see the occasional live-action video however!

FaultofDan8 karma

When did you begin to notice the gap between hobby and professional? How was the transition between working on your projects for fun, to earning money, to being able to support yourself through them full time?

Fathomas10 karma

It wasn't so much a transition as it was an immediate switch, thanks to Charlie the Unicorn. One day I was trying to figure out how to make enough money to afford an apartment, and then next I had a merchandising deal with Hot Topic.

Turning that one big-hit into an actual career was helped a lot by the fact that I never considered movie making to be a hobby. It was always my primary focus even when I wasn't making money doing it. So when things started to take off I was able to keep it going by just sort of... doing that I had already been doing.

AlphaDarpin3 karma

Lemons?

Fathomas4 karma

No, limes.

Fathomas6 karma

Wait I change my mind, lemons, yes lemons.

XenonCeilingFan3 karma

How many horse butts have you drawn?

Fathomas5 karma

In my videos, probably ten. Outside of my videos, probably a few hundred.

prollygon2 karma

Did you attend college and if so what's your alma mater?

Fathomas3 karma

I went to Full Sail in sunny Orlando, Fl. I would not recommend Full Sail in sunny Orlando, FL.

funkyquasar2 karma

What's it like knowing so many people including me are willing to donate their money to your silly projects?

ALSO WILL THERE EVER BE A CLOAK 2?????

Fathomas3 karma

It makes me tear up every time I think about how many people put their (probably) hard-earned money towards my work. And then I get really anxious and terrified of failing them.

There will indeed be more of The Cloak! This year, probably!