Chip ‘n’ Dale: Park Life will be streaming on Disney+ on July 28th and we were lucky enough to get the opportunity to speak with director Jean Cayrol about the show. Jean Cayrol (“Oggy and the Cockroaches”) talked to us about the animation, the stories and much more!
#ChipNDaleParkLife, an Original Series, starts streaming July 28 on #DisneyPlus
BSCKids: Can you tell us a bit about how you got involved as the director of the new Disney+ series “Chip ‘n’ Dale: Park Life?”
Jean Cayrol: I’ve been working for Xilam Animation in Paris for more than 15 years (10 as a series director). With shows like “Oggy and the Cockroaches,” Xilam has expertise in 2D slapstick cartoon comedy, so when Disney decided to make “Chip ‘n’ Dale: Park Life” they asked Xilam to make it. Marc du Pontavice, Xilam’s CEO, then asked me to direct, since I have a very 2D traditional background in animation.
How much Chip and Dale animated history was used to create the new cartoon and characters?
The show is loosely based on the animated Chip and Dale cartoons from the 40’s and 50’s, but it’s not a remake. We wanted the show to have its own identity, visually and story-wise. We also wanted the show to be set in the modern era, hence the choice of bringing their treehouse to the middle of a city park.
What is your favorite (besides this show) animation that has Chip and Dale in it?
I really love “Out of Scale.” It’s a 1951 short where Chip and Dale live in a miniature city built by a train model enthusiast, Donald.
How was the animation style determined? Were you tasked to follow the style of the Mickey Mouse shorts?
As much as I love the incredible work that has been done on the “Mickey Mouse” shorts, it’s not so much of an inspiration. We really wanted the show to have its own flavor. The 2D animation style, which was decided very early on, really helps create the unique look that “Chip ‘n’ Dale: Park Life” has. When you do a slapstick comedy, it’s really an appropriate style: you want to stretch, squash and transform the characters as much as possible and 2D allows you to do so.
What does your day look like while working on the show? How different has it been to working on a show like this with all the restrictions in place?
The previous year has been the same for everyone: e-meetings all day long. But we were lucky to start production before the pandemic hit and we spent a lot of time working together in Paris. The energy was incredible as everyone was so thrilled and excited to work on “Chip ‘n’ Dale: Park Life.”
What has been your favorite story so far that you have worked on? (Just the story title will be fine we don’t want to ruin it for anyone)
What is something people would be surprised to learn about you?
Even if I draw all day long, it’s not my favorite part of the job — meeting people and exchanging ideas is. Also, my uncles, who are twins brothers, were nicknamed Chip and Dale by friends and family since long before I worked on the show.
What bit of advice could you give any up and coming animators that you wish you had during your career?
Never assume you know better than others. Be modest, accept advice and criticism, and try to learn from every situation, especially the bad ones. For me, the perspective of learning new things is what makes every day special and exciting.
Besides anything with the Chip and Dale characters, what would you say is your favorite Disney animated series or movie of all time?
I grew up with the original “DuckTales” series, so it will always have a special place in my heart. As for the movie, I’d say “Sleeping Beauty.” The visuals are stunning and each background painting is a masterpiece. About more recent shows, everyone who knows me and has seen my office won’t be surprised to hear that I absolutely adore “The Mandalorian.”
Why should everyone tune into watch “Chip ‘n’ Dale: Park Life”
If you’ve ever wondered what Chip and Dale’s life is like when they’re not hunting for acorns or if you like slapstick comedy cartoon and epic action, you should watch “Chip ‘n’ Dale: Park Life.” It’s Chip and Dale as you’ve never saw them before!
Special thanks to Jean Cayrol for talking to us about Chip ‘n’ Dale: Park Life and make sure to check it out streaming on Disney+ as well as a quick snippet below