Difference between revisions of "Me and My Friends (partially found live-action pilot of "The Backyardigans" Nick Jr. CGI-animated series; 1998)"

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|title=<center>Me and My Friends</center>
 
|title=<center>Me and My Friends</center>
 
|image=Me and My Friends photo 1.jpg
 
|image=Me and My Friends photo 1.jpg
|imagecaption=Still of the cast, courtesy of The Backyardigans Wiki.
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|imagecaption=Still of the cast, courtesy of ''The Backyardigans'' Wiki.
 
|status=<span style="color:orange;">'''Partially Found'''</span>
 
|status=<span style="color:orange;">'''Partially Found'''</span>
 
}}  
 
}}  
'''''Me and My Friends '''''is a lost Nickelodeon pilot taped at Nickelodeon Studios in Orlando, Florida in September 1998. It was declined by Nickelodeon,<ref>[http://www.lyonpuppets.com/meercats.html An article about the pilot from puppeteer Rick Lyon.] Retrieved 08 Jun '15</ref> though an animated pilot featuring the characters of "Me and My Friends" created in 2002 was picked up as the CGI animated series, ''The Backyardigans''.
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'''''Me and My Friends''''' is a live-action pilot episode taped at Nickelodeon Studios in Orlando, Florida. It was written and produced by Janice Burgess, and it was taped from September to November 1998. The pilot was declined by Nickelodeon,<ref name=tech>[https://techmediatainment.blogspot.com/2009/12/animated-kids-show-backyardigans-began.html Text of a ''Tech-mediatainment'' article about the pilot.] Retrieved 28 May '21</ref> but in 2002, Burgess reworked the concept into an animated pilot featuring the same characters. This second pilot was successful and became the CGI-animated series, ''The Backyardigans''.<ref>[http://web.archive.org/web/20060212033602/http://www.yvettehelinstudio.com/credits.html Yvette Helin's credits list, which describes the fate of ''Me and My Friends''.] Retrieved 28 May '21</ref>
  
==Characters==
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==Production==
The only characters from ''The Backyardigans'' who appear in ''Me and My Friends'' are Uniqua, Pablo, Tyrone, and Tasha (in addition to scrapped characters called "the Meerkats"). Austin, the purple kangaroo, is absent. This may be the reason why he is called "the new kangaroo on the block" in some of his character bios.
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Janice Burgess is a former television producer for Nickelodeon. In 1998, Burgess was given the opportunity to pitch a live-action TV pilot at the request of her manager, Brown Johnson.<ref name=tech/> Burgess pitched a concept titled ''Me and My Friends'', which followed four full-body puppet characters as they embarked on adventures in their shared backyard.
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The ''Me and My Friends'' pilot was storyboarded by Thomas Henry,<ref>[http://web.archive.org/web/20100402141445/http://www.fxman.net/team.html Thomas Henry's credits on his website.] Retrieved 28 May '21</ref> a longtime artist for Nickelodeon. The pilot was filmed at Nickelodeon Studios from September to November 1998. The four main characters were Uniqua, an adventurous unique creature whose personality was based on Burgess herself; Pablo, a blue penguin with a tendency to panic; Tyrone, an easygoing orange moose; and Tasha, a self-confident yellow hippo. The characters' costumes were designed and built by Yvette Helin Studios in Brooklyn, New York.<ref>[http://web.archive.org/web/20010721183751/http://www.yvettehelinstudio.com/friends.html Page for ''Me and My Friends'' on Yvette Helin's website, archived from 2001.] Retrieved 28 May '21</ref> Two sculptors, Yuji Yashimoto and Dan Quinn, were hired to create animatronic heads for the costumes.
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The pilot was declined by Nickelodeon, but Brown Johnson insisted that she liked Janice's characters and would like to see them in a different form.<ref name=tech/> After the pilot's completion, a gold-colored plaque bearing the ''Me and My Friends'' logo was created for Nickelodeon Studios' wall of plaques, which commemorated all of the studio's past productions.<ref>[https://static.wikia.nocookie.net/thebackyardigansencyclopedia/images/c/c9/Me_and_My_Friends_Plaque_at_Nickelodeon_Studios_Orlando.jpg Image of the plaque (''Me and My Friends'' is fourth on the bottom row).] Retrieved 28 May '21</ref>
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In the early 2000s, Burgess reworked the concept into a CGI-animated short. This short was successfully picked up as ''The Backyardigans'', which premiered in 2004. The animated series notably added a fifth main character, Austin the kangaroo, who did not appear in ''Me and My Friends''. Nickelodeon's character description from 2004 labels Austin as "the new kangaroo on the block."<ref>[https://www.viacomcbspressexpress.com/cbs-news/releases/print?id=7539 Nickelodeon press release from August 19, 2004.] Retrieved 28 May '21</ref>
  
 
==Differences==
 
==Differences==
The characters' appearances aren't vastly different from that of the CGI series, besides a few minor differences:
+
The characters' appearances are not vastly different from that of the CGI series, besides a few minor differences:
  
*Uniqua has visible nostrils.
+
*Uniqua has visible nostrils and a thin tail.
*Pablo's propeller is yellow, as opposed to red.  
+
*Pablo's hat propeller is yellow, as opposed to red.  
 
*Tyrone and Tasha's nostrils are black instead of dark yellow and dark orange. These were utilized as vision areas.
 
*Tyrone and Tasha's nostrils are black instead of dark yellow and dark orange. These were utilized as vision areas.
 
*Tyrone's shirt has yellow/blue stripes rather than red/blue stripes.
 
*Tyrone's shirt has yellow/blue stripes rather than red/blue stripes.
 +
*Tasha wears a small bow on her head.
 +
 +
The backyard setting also has some differences. A shed and a gate are visible, which do not appear in the final series. Additionally, Tyrone had a stuffed rabbit toy that he does not have in the final series.
  
 
==Availability==
 
==Availability==
The only known footage of ''Me and My Friends'' online is in a 5-minute compilation video created by former crew members of Nickelodeon Studios for its 10-year anniversary in 2000. There are around 3 seconds of video without the original audio. There is very little information about this pilot available, and whether or not Nickelodeon still has this remains unconfirmed. The images seen below were from the website of Lyon Puppets.
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A clip of ''Me and My Friends'' was released in a 5-minute compilation video created by former crew members of Nickelodeon Studios for its 10-year anniversary in 2000. There are around 3 seconds of video without the original audio. At least eight photos from the production were released by the pilot’s costume designers.
  
 
==Gallery==
 
==Gallery==
 +
===Images===
 
<gallery mode=packed heights=175px>
 
<gallery mode=packed heights=175px>
 
File:BONSFMAMF01.png|Screenshot 1/2 taken from the Best of Nickelodeon Studios video.
 
File:BONSFMAMF01.png|Screenshot 1/2 taken from the Best of Nickelodeon Studios video.
 
File:BONSFMAMF02.png|Screenshot 2/2 taken from the Best of Nickelodeon Studios video.
 
File:BONSFMAMF02.png|Screenshot 2/2 taken from the Best of Nickelodeon Studios video.
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File:Nickelodeon Studios plaques.png|The pilot's logo plaque is fourth on the bottom row.
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File:MAMF models.png|Models of the costumes for Tasha, Tyrone, and Uniqua.
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File: Bandicam 2021-02-14 13-08-05-079.jpg|Crew member with Uniqua.
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File: Bandicam 2021-02-14 13-03-19-863.jpg|Uniqua's head.
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File: Bandicam 2021-02-14 13-06-17-678.jpg|Crew member entering the Uniqua costume.
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File: Bandicam 2021-02-14 13-01-30-391.jpg|Pablo doing a gesture.
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File: Bandicam 2021-02-14 13-05-26-373.jpg|Crew member in the Pablo suit.
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File: Bandicam 2021-02-14 13-19-10-311.jpg|The cast and crew on the set.
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File: Bandicam 2021-02-14 13-04-51-341.jpg|Crew member with Tyrone.
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File: Bandicam 2021-02-14 12-59-35-282.jpg|Crew member with Tyrone.
 
File:Me and My Friends photo 2.jpg|Tyrone with costume designer Yvette Helin.
 
File:Me and My Friends photo 2.jpg|Tyrone with costume designer Yvette Helin.
File:Meerkats(Meercats).jpg|The MeerKats and their puppeteers.
 
 
</gallery>
 
</gallery>
{{Video|perrow  =1
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===Videos===
 +
{{Video|perrow  =4
 
   |service1    =youtube
 
   |service1    =youtube
 
   |id1          =uFsSrtFbfNk
 
   |id1          =uFsSrtFbfNk
 
   |description1 =LSuperSonicQ’s video on the subject.
 
   |description1 =LSuperSonicQ’s video on the subject.
 +
  |service2    =youtube
 +
  |id2          =v=5nmZI32a4Ps
 +
  |description2 =SewerReviewer's video on the subject.
 +
  |service3    =youtube
 +
  |id3          =9Yn1JfJaf2g
 +
  |description3 =LSuperSonicQ’s livestream that showcases the costume designers’ images.
 +
  |service4    =youtube
 +
  |id4          =v=pGuQDCiamc0
 +
  |description4 =SewerReviewer's follow up video on the subject.
 
}}
 
}}
 +
 
==See Also==
 
==See Also==
 
===The Backyardigans===
 
===The Backyardigans===
 
*[[The Backyardigans (partially found British dub of Nick Jr. CGI-animated series; mid-late 2000s)]]
 
*[[The Backyardigans (partially found British dub of Nick Jr. CGI-animated series; mid-late 2000s)]]
*[[The Backyardigans (partially found unaired pilot of Nick Jr. CGI-animated series; 2002)]]
 
  
 
===Other Nick Jr. Pilots===
 
===Other Nick Jr. Pilots===
*[[Blue Prints (partially found unaired pilot episode of "Blue's Clues" animated/live action TV series; 1995)]]
+
*[[Blue Prints (partially found unaired pilot episode of "Blue's Clues" animated/live action TV series; 1994-1995)]]
 
*[[Dora the Explorer (partially found unaired pilot episodes of Nick Jr. animated series; late 1990s)]]
 
*[[Dora the Explorer (partially found unaired pilot episodes of Nick Jr. animated series; late 1990s)]]
*[[Super Why! (lost stop-motion Nick Jr. pilot of PBS Kids CGI series; 1999)]]
+
*[[Super Why! (partially found stop-motion Nick Jr. pilot of PBS Kids CGI series; 1999)]]
  
 
==External Links==
 
==External Links==
*[https://mega.co.nz/#!DJhxnDSJ!g-BDzndNfP5aNMEIz0hnKnTAVNkiT224JkC0B8GwjU0 MEGA mirror of "Best of NSF, Florida".] Retrieved 13 Apr '15
+
*[https://mega.co.nz/#!DJhxnDSJ!g-BDzndNfP5aNMEIz0hnKnTAVNkiT224JkC0B8GwjU0 MEGA mirror of ''Best of NSF, Florida''.]
*[http://backyardigans.wikia.com/wiki/Me_%2B_My_Friends The Backyardigans Wiki article about "Me and My Friends".] Retrieved 13 Apr '15
+
*[http://backyardigans.wikia.com/wiki/Me_%2B_My_Friends ''The Backyardigans'' Wiki article about ''Me and My Friends''.]
  
==Reference==
+
==References==
 
{{reflist}}
 
{{reflist}}
  
 
[[Category:Lost TV]]
 
[[Category:Lost TV]]
 
[[Category:Partially found media]]
 
[[Category:Partially found media]]

Latest revision as of 18:58, 9 June 2021

Me and My Friends photo 1.jpg

Still of the cast, courtesy of The Backyardigans Wiki.

Status: Partially Found

Me and My Friends is a live-action pilot episode taped at Nickelodeon Studios in Orlando, Florida. It was written and produced by Janice Burgess, and it was taped from September to November 1998. The pilot was declined by Nickelodeon,[1] but in 2002, Burgess reworked the concept into an animated pilot featuring the same characters. This second pilot was successful and became the CGI-animated series, The Backyardigans.[2]

Production

Janice Burgess is a former television producer for Nickelodeon. In 1998, Burgess was given the opportunity to pitch a live-action TV pilot at the request of her manager, Brown Johnson.[1] Burgess pitched a concept titled Me and My Friends, which followed four full-body puppet characters as they embarked on adventures in their shared backyard.

The Me and My Friends pilot was storyboarded by Thomas Henry,[3] a longtime artist for Nickelodeon. The pilot was filmed at Nickelodeon Studios from September to November 1998. The four main characters were Uniqua, an adventurous unique creature whose personality was based on Burgess herself; Pablo, a blue penguin with a tendency to panic; Tyrone, an easygoing orange moose; and Tasha, a self-confident yellow hippo. The characters' costumes were designed and built by Yvette Helin Studios in Brooklyn, New York.[4] Two sculptors, Yuji Yashimoto and Dan Quinn, were hired to create animatronic heads for the costumes.

The pilot was declined by Nickelodeon, but Brown Johnson insisted that she liked Janice's characters and would like to see them in a different form.[1] After the pilot's completion, a gold-colored plaque bearing the Me and My Friends logo was created for Nickelodeon Studios' wall of plaques, which commemorated all of the studio's past productions.[5]

In the early 2000s, Burgess reworked the concept into a CGI-animated short. This short was successfully picked up as The Backyardigans, which premiered in 2004. The animated series notably added a fifth main character, Austin the kangaroo, who did not appear in Me and My Friends. Nickelodeon's character description from 2004 labels Austin as "the new kangaroo on the block."[6]

Differences

The characters' appearances are not vastly different from that of the CGI series, besides a few minor differences:

  • Uniqua has visible nostrils and a thin tail.
  • Pablo's hat propeller is yellow, as opposed to red.
  • Tyrone and Tasha's nostrils are black instead of dark yellow and dark orange. These were utilized as vision areas.
  • Tyrone's shirt has yellow/blue stripes rather than red/blue stripes.
  • Tasha wears a small bow on her head.

The backyard setting also has some differences. A shed and a gate are visible, which do not appear in the final series. Additionally, Tyrone had a stuffed rabbit toy that he does not have in the final series.

Availability

A clip of Me and My Friends was released in a 5-minute compilation video created by former crew members of Nickelodeon Studios for its 10-year anniversary in 2000. There are around 3 seconds of video without the original audio. At least eight photos from the production were released by the pilot’s costume designers.

Gallery

Images

Videos

LSuperSonicQ’s video on the subject.
SewerReviewer's video on the subject.
LSuperSonicQ’s livestream that showcases the costume designers’ images.
SewerReviewer's follow up video on the subject.


See Also

The Backyardigans

Other Nick Jr. Pilots

External Links

References