The cast and showrunners of Animaniacs were on hand at New York Comic Con to give fans a glimpse of Hulu’s rebooted series, starring the voice actors who originated the roles in the 90s. And to get fans hyped for the show’s return, they brought along an introductory scene that’s sure to delight.
Starting at the 18:42 mark on the show’s panel, the intro scene is a loving rip on Jurassic Park‘s first major reveal, this time casting Steven Spielberg in the role of John Hammond. (Spielberg has been the executive producer of Animaniacs from the start, and has been heavily involved in this revival, so the homage is quite fitting.) Doctors Grant and Satler get a peek at the reanimated Warner Brothers—and Warner sister, Dot must still gamely remind everyone after all these years—before they return to their water tower for more misadventures.
Executive Producers Wellesley Wild and Gabe Swarr admitted that Spielberg was still quite hands on this project, and rejected all revamps of the animation until it was closer to the original, leading the team to reapproach one of the original studios that worked on the show. Rob Paulsen (Yakko, Pinky) praised the director’s devotion to the project, however, and the fact that he never considered recasting the original crew with bigger name actors. Paulsen, Jess Harnell (Wakko), and Tress MacNeille (Dot) were able to return to the studio and record together for the first time in decades.
These actors have maintained their relationships even in the show’s absence—they’ve done a touring circuit with an Animaniacs Live! show for many years now, and frequently turn up together at conventions to meet fans. The love between the cast members is palpable; images were shown of their first day back at recording where Maurice LaMarche (Brain) wore a Pinky shirt, and without any consultation, Paulsen showed up wearing a Brain shirt. They are all clearly elated to be back doing what they do best.
Hulu’s Animaniacs will premiere on November 20th.