In Rick and Morty, a new animated series co-created by Justin Roiland and Dan Harmon, Rick is an outlandish, irresponsible genius who moves in with his daughter's family. Morty is his grandson, whose lack of school smarts makes him Rick's ultimate foil/assistant. The show, which premieres on Adult Swim tonight, is the kind you might expect to see during Fox's family-oriented animation lineup. Its roots, though, are perhaps a little different.
Years ago, Harmon, now best known as the guy who created Community, and writer-director-actor Rob Schrab (The Sarah Silverman Program) launched an event called Channel 101. That's where filmmakers create shorts that function as pilots. They're screened in front of an audience. The crowd votes on what they like, and those who pass the audience test get to make another installment.
Roiland was one of the young filmmakers that got involved with Channel 101. Among the videos he made was a spoof of Back to the Future. "When I made my thing, I was blowing off steam and my intention was to shock an audience," Roiland says during a recent interview at Cartoon Network's Burbank offices.More »