How Bristol got the scoop on the Simpsons.
It's not very often that you get to see a genius talking about what they know best. In the case of Matt Groening, creator of the Simpsons, it's even rarer. When the Bristol International Animation Festival announced a live event with the man himself, it's little wonder that the event sold out within minutes.
So, how did the festival persuade Matt to appear? Well, it turns out there were two things that tempted him - the chance to talk about his favourite pieces of animation before showing them on the big screen, and the chance to drop in on Aardman Animation. The original invite was made by Nick Park, who created Wallace and Grommit for Aardman - it turns out that Matt is a huge fan of the claymation duo, and would have shown a Wallace and Grommit film if he didn't think the audience would have seen them all anyway. It also helped that Phil Jupitus agreed to interview Matt on stage - the two are friends. In Phil's words, it was husky bearded guy night at the Watershed!
The Cult site got seats in the Bristol IMAX cinema, which took a live feed from the event. Although we didn't get to see Matt in the flesh, we got to see the animations on a really huge cinema screen! The audience was made up of everyone from kids to venerable grey-hairs, which must have encouraged Matt, as he wants the Simpsons to be enjoyed by both kids and grown ups.
We ought to make it clear at this point that the quotes from Matt in this article might not be word perfect - there's only so much of a two hour presentation you can write down verbatim in a very dark cinema! We'll do our best to give you the gist of what Matt said, remaining as faithful to his words as possible.