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BRAD'S NEW HAT [19-21]

Photo courtesy of Amy J. Putnam

Brad's New Hat

[19] Brad Carpenter was the Director of Marketing and Merchandising for Renaissance Pictures until recently. Brad had been with Renaissance in one capacity or another from the beginning, and he has truly worn many hats during his tenure. He's been a character [Amphion] on HERCULES a couple of times, he's written story ideas for the show, and he's been Rob Tapert's assistant. When Rob Tapert decided he could no longer devote energy to merchandising as well as making shows, Brad took over the challenging task of supervising the merchandising of products for Renaissance.

[20] Brad is leaving Renaissance to take a position with Gay Entertainment Television, a new cable channel starting up later this year in some major cities/markets. To start with, they will lease time for a few hours a week, and grow from there. Renaissance in general and WHOOSH! in particular will miss Brad now that he's left for bigger and better things. Brad was very helpful and supportive of us, and we in turn appreciated that very much.

Photo courtesy of Debbie Cassetta

[21] Brad's presentation both days was very similar, here are the highlights for Day One, which are at least 98% applicable to Day Two.

Brad and Lucy on The Tonight Show

[22] Brad showed us the clip from The Tonight Show where he and a friend carried Lucy on stage. This was after Lucy's previous misadventure on The Tonight Show. Brad is something of a bodybuilder, and he and his companion were scantily clad in contrast to Lucy's gown. He said that Lucy had not quite fully recovered at that time, but she worked out the little "pirouette" routine to show people she wasn't still badly hurt. Prior to their entrance, the director of the show reiterated that they were to just bring Lucy on and walk off, so the three of them were nervous about whether they should do that little number or not. Lucy was the most concerned of all, and wondered what they should do. Brad said "You're the star, you should do what you want!" Lucy smiled and said "Well, he *did* say to have fun, so let's do it." They did, and even though Brad was a little concerned someone might be angry, they used that scene in promotion shots, so everything worked out well.

A Peek Behind the Scenes

[23] Brad then gave us a slide show about behind the scenes things. He commented that in the first season of HERCULES, when Lucy played Lyla, her hair colour was closer to her natural colour (lighter brown, not black).

[24] He said the main reason Lucy got the job as Xena was because Vanessa Angel, who was originally up for the role, got sick, and no one else wanted to come down to New Zealand during pilot season to take a chance on a new show. They wanted to use Lucy, but someone said "You just used her [on HERCULES]." Rob Tapert responded "Aw, just dye her hair black!"

[25] The character of Gabrielle was written for Renee O'Connor specifically.

[26] Brad showed a demonstration of how they do the Titan/Giant effects. It's done with camera work, not special effects.

[27] Lucy does her own fire-breathing stunts. But after a stunt-person was injured, Lucy doesn't perform that stunt much anymore.

[28] There is a sequel to A DAY IN THE LIFE (#39) in the works.

[29] We were teased with some scenes from MATERNAL INSTINCTS (#57), THE QUILL IS MIGHTIER (#56), THE BITTER SUITE (#58), KING CON, MEN IN PINK (#H71), MEDEA CULPA (#H70), YES VIRGINIA THERE IS A HERCULES (#H74), and ARMAGEDDON NOW (#H72-H73).

[30] Brad said Kevin Sorbo was back at work and he was fine.

Merchandise Update

[31] YOUNG HERCULES is coming out in video rental, and YOUNG HERC will be a 30 minute series Monday through Friday on Fox as part of the Kid's Network.

[32] There will be a new line of 6" and 12" action figures coming out in April which everyone seems to like a lot. He encouraged people to call stores to ex press interest so they will order the product.

[33] The Home Video release of the HERCULES trilogy will hit stores on February 3rd. The animated video is available now.

[34] XENA will come out on video with the entire first season, two episodes per tape, one big set. HERC eps release is being worked on but there is nothing definite yet.

[35] Someone wanted an Argo action figure. Brad encouraged people to keep asking for what they want and to make themselves heard.

[36] There was a request for more music. It is hoped that the music from THE BITTER SUITE will be made available in the near future [Ed. Note: THE BITTER SUITE CD is due March 26], and they're trying to get a HERC/XENA dance mix CD deal put together as well.

[37] Life-size cut-outs will be available soon. They are working on producing T-shirts in children's sizes. Brad then answered a few basic production questions.

[38] The music videos shown at the convention won't be released for general sale because the licensing is just too expensive.

[39] Brad is very positive about the future of Renaissance and Universal, and thinks the recent business deals involving Universal are a good thing.

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