So next weekend is the second annual Rooster Teeth Expo in Austin, TX and if you aren’t already excited…. then let me explain to you why you should be. I’ll have some help from Matt Hullum, the Co-Founder of Rooster Teeth and voice of Sarge on Red vs. Blue, to give some insight on RTX and Rooster Teeth’s web series Red vs. Blue.
I already talked about some exhibitors and features from RTX in my previous article so I’ll touch base with some of the major names going to RTX. The biggest guys coming to RTX include 343 Industries who will bring a demo of Halo 4, Red 5 Studios bringing Firefall, Freddie Wong giving a keynote address, Penny Arcade, Twisted Pixel, along with numerous cast members from Red vs. Blue such as the voice of Sheila the Tank and Tucker. There are many others attending RTX that have already been announced and still more exhibitors to be announced. Below will be details on the Interview I had with Matt Hullum:
Q: What made you want to start doing RTX?
“We do a lot of conventions around the US, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, the UK, Germany, and all those places and people are always wanting us to spend more time with them at the cons and do more. We thought, we can’t go everywhere and spend twice as much time with everybody so why not just get everybody down to Austin and we’ll have a big party for all the fans and the community and spend a couple days just hanging out with everybody. That’s basically how it started and it has been really fun so far. We had a great time last year and kinda did our first foray into it. RTX was supposed to be more of a community event more than just an exhibition, but tickets were for sale and we were planning to sell 200 to 300 tickets and within 3 minutes people had crashed the store and we had oversold with 600 tickets in 3 minutes. Which was three times as many as we wanted to haha. It was great! People came out and we had an awesome time and this year we’re kinda looking for a more the merrier situation.”
Q: What future do you have in mind for RTX?
“It continues to grow, but we’d like to keep it community focused first and foremost. RTX is about our community, but we’ve had such a great response from major exhibitors such as 343 bringing Halo 4 and a lot of great independent developers and big game companies in Texas/Southwest Region and all over. We want to be able to extend it to them as well and the nice thing is that we’ve been able to meet a lot of exhibitors that we’re interested in and that Rooster Teeth is already talking being interested in and working with or working on and being able to share that our community is great.”
Q: What caused the shift in Red vs. Blue’s production methods?
“We wanted to be able to do other things and tell other parts of the story, and because we telling this very unique prequel story with the Freelancer story it felt like it made sense to present it visually in a very different way. Obviously its still Halo and the same look and overall aesthetic, but because it has a different storyline and it has a different thematic elements and we just wanted it to have a different feel. Plus we were really enjoying the new stuff that Monty (the guy who does the visuals) could do and we wanted to push our limits a little bit and see how far we could stretch in terms of our animation skills and our visual storytelling. It has been really fun to explore and interesting to marry these two storylines that are going on simultaneously. We have the animated prequel storyline and then we have the current day machinma storyline with the Bloog Gultch crew and I think the audience this year is going to have a really fun time seeing where both those storylines are headed.”
Q: What do you want to do with the storyline with RvB later on?
“Obviously I can’t really say too much, but the heart of RvB has always been the characters and the characters are very important to us. I think the main thing to refocus on with each season now, and continuing with the future, will be telling more of the stories of these characters and flushing them out more and there’s a lot of questions that people have asked over the years that they want to see answered and we’re attempting to do a lot of that with Season 10 and keep going into Season 11 and further basically expanding our RvB universe as much as we can. People have been great and we’ve always said that if people are still enjoying and want to keep watching it then we’ll keep making it.”
Q: Are you ever going to have a dead end with the Freelancers?
“In Season 10 we are trying to wrap up the story with the Freelancers we began in Season 9. So that’s not to say there won’t be more Freelancer stories in the future, but questions that people have asked and the storylines that we left open from last year specifically regarding the freelancers and we’re attempting to finish telling that story this year. There will be other things regarding characters from the Freelancer storyline possibly in future seasons.”
Q: What has been the most enjoyable experience in making Red vs. Blue?
“Oh man, that’s really tough to say because we’ve had so many incredible experiences. We were asked recently about what was our favorite season debut, because with debuting Season 10 it was a really big milestone and it was a lot of fun. We were here at the office and we had a livestream that we did and everyone was online asking us questions and it was a lot of great interaction with people and it was such a really fun night. I think back to when we debuted Season 2, which you know we did Season 1 and it was one of those things that was like you know is this something that people are going to be really interested in and are they going to watch and their response was just great. When we debuted Season 2 it was the Lincoln Center in New York, a very prestigious theater in the museum district and they had just finished showing the Lord of the Rings movies with the Lord of the Rings cast there and we were following that up and it was just like here’s Red vs. Blue and the Red vs. Blue cast. It just seemed like how can we be in this league? It didn’t make any sense, but we showed the first episode of Season 2 there and it was such an incredible response and people were just so excited. It was one of the first times we had spent a lot of time with the fans/community in person as opposed to just the website and it was just so fun and energizing to be around everybody. I always remember that as just a great night and you know people would come from around the world, literally people were there from the UK and all over the place. It was really amazing to see how the show had already inspired this great community of people and with such a great following. That was a special moment for me. We just continue to have such great support for people and we’re looking forward to showing a lot of fun stuff and having a great time at RTX.”
Q: Is Rooster Teeth planning on going into theatrical releases?
“Yeah, I mean we have a lot of plans for future productions. I don’t know if it’ll be Red vs. Blue or a live action piece, but we’re continuing to develop a lot of stuff and certainly not ruling out any form of distribution whether it’s internet, big screen, TV, or whatever. We love the internet and we love doing stuff online, because it has such immediacy and has such a great way to connect with the viewer that you don’t get with any other form. We’ll just see where the future leads and we’ll show a lot of cool new stuff at RTX and I think that’ll be a great jumping off point for the next year of Rooster Teeth content.”
Q: Are you planning on doing any voice acting for anything other than Rooster Teeth stuff?
“I haven’t thought about it too much. I’ve had offers in the past, but we stay so busy at Rooster Teeth so there hardly isn’t any time for anything else. Usually if I do other voices I do just dumb voices when I’m putting my kids to bed with bed time stories, that’s usually how I get it out of my system.”
Q: Are you doing any work with 343 Industries for Halo 4? Such as any RvB or Sarge cameos?
“Well that’s a great idea. You should be our ambassador and call 343 to recommend us for that. (laughs) You’ll see them at RTX and mention it! I think it’ll be really cool.”
Q: Will there be the return of Sarge’s “southern accent” from the scene inside Caboose’s head?
“I don’t know, nothing on the horizon but man I love doing those dumb voices so we’ll see.”
In addition to the questions, Matt talked about something RTX does called Side Quest. Which is basically stuff related to RTX, but not directly at the expo. Some of the core members of the RT community get together and just enjoy the events and this year they’ll be doing a Pre-RTX party, a Cocktail Party and an auction, the SideQuest BarLympics, a Post-RTX Laser Tag match, and a farewell lunch. Although it seems the tickets for that are all sold out you can still follow SideQuest on Twitter for future updates.
So with that I hope you are all very excited for RTX this Saturday and Sunday, because if you aren’t? Well… then you’re just weird and more than likely a blue… Check back with GNN’s Facebook for some quick updates and bits of information and awesome pictures throughout the weekend. Not to mention GNN’s YouTube channel will be getting it’s first video finally! We’ll probably do a couple videos of the convention to show you all how awesome it was. There will also be a couple fully detailed articles about the convention including details on the Halo 4 demo I’ll be playing!