The man who gave us Transformers!

Discussion in 'Transformers News and Rumors' started by Nevermore, Dec 31, 2006.

  1. Nevermore

    Nevermore It's self-perpetuating a parahumanoidarianised!

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    A happy new year everyone!

    It began a few days ago with a few questions that arose during my research on the early days of the Transformers brand. Eventually I asked Karl Hartman, who directed me to George Dunsay, who was Hasbro's Senior Vice President of R&D back in the day. Surprisingly enough, Mr. Dunsay not only remembered the details amazingly well, but also gave me exhaustive replies to my questions.

    Those helped me close a lot of gaps in the documentation of the behind-the-scenes events that led up to the launch of the "Transformers" brand in 1984, and on top of that debunked various rumors and widespread misinformation.

    So ultimately, my mail exchanges with him evolved into a fully-fledged interview. With the permission of Mr. Dunsay, a slightly edited version of this interview is now open to the public under the following address:

    http://www.tfarchive.com/fandom/interviews/george_dunsay/george_dunsay_interview.php

    Special thanks have to go to Karl Hartman for establishing the initial contact, and of course for George Dunsay for taking the time to answer my questions almost in record time. You will find him to be a very down to Earth person who has no problem giving credit to other people that also had a share in the creation of the Transformers as we know them today. :) 
     
  2. Gears

    Gears buh-buh-body ya Veteran

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    Great interview!:thumb 
     
  3. IACON

    IACON "That's Vector Sigma?" TFW2005 Supporter

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    Thanks! I love those kind of interviews. :thumb 
    Thanks Nevermore
     
  4. REDLINE

    REDLINE longer days, plz? Veteran

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    oh hell yeah. awesome as per usual, bro. I am working on a FP for this gem!
     
  5. Optimus Scourge

    Optimus Scourge Arcee's boy toy Veteran

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    kudos, Nevermore! Great read!
     
  6. ams

    ams Generation All Veteran

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    Very insightful, thanks.

    At the time, I doubt any of them could have possibly imagined the longevity and success of what they were creating.
     
  7. Thundercracker

    Thundercracker Contemptuous

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    That guy has a great memory. Nice read.
     
  8. Nevermore

    Nevermore It's self-perpetuating a parahumanoidarianised!

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    I was amazingly surprised by that. The biggest problems he had were some names, their spelling, and the "second airplane". A lot of people on here don't remember news and/or discussions from two months ago, so that's a big plus there.
     
  9. THE-TRANSFORMER

    THE-TRANSFORMER Well-Known Member

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    Great interview. I really enjoyed reading it, thanks a lot.

    I'm surprised you didn't ask who came up with the name "Optimus Prime", or is that common knowledge?

    I remember an interview with Bob Budiansky where he said the name was already in place when he started on the brand and he didn't know where it came from.
     
  10. Nevermore

    Nevermore It's self-perpetuating a parahumanoidarianised!

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    Budiansky suggested it came from Denny O'Neil, who did most of the naming and characterization stuff before Bob came on board.
     
  11. Omnius

    Omnius Well-Known Member

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    Wow, great interview Nevermore. :D  A fascinating insight into the origins of TF! I wonder if Mr Dunsay knew it would be going stronger than ever 24 years later.
     
  12. ams

    ams Generation All Veteran

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    Do you suppose he's remembering incorrectly about the "second airplane", or is that new info about an aborted G1 release that has remained unknown until now? I'd guess the former.

    Here's a thought... I wonder if he could be thinking of Shockwave and is misremembering him as being an airplane? He and Jetfire were shipping at the same time, if I remember correctly; and it fits into the idea of buying other properties to keep them away from the competition.

    Actually on second thought, I doubt he'd make that mistake, based on how clear he seems to be on so much of the other minutiae of the time.
     
  13. Steevy Maximus

    Steevy Maximus Movie Megs eats your soul

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    Yeah, I think this is an issue a LOT of collectors seem to fail to grasp from EVERY toy affiliation.

    Awesome read, it is rare to see that kind of look at a toyline, and I enjoyed it greatly.

    I don't supposed maybe you, Nevermore, could maybe contact him again to maybe get some info about Transtech? Since he was still consulting during that time?
     
  14. Nevermore

    Nevermore It's self-perpetuating a parahumanoidarianised!

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    Since he suggested that I could always ask him more questions if I had any, I might do a follow-up interview later this year. There's a lot of questions other experts like Maz might have about unreleased toys such as Road Vulcan, unused prototypes like the first version of Godbomber depicted in Generations or countless other stuff that never came out.

    I'm also still curious about that "second big airplane". Anything from Macross, mayhaps? Anyone?
     
  15. Psychrome86

    Psychrome86 Well-Known Member

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    nevermore, you've got one hell of a shovel! major kudos
     
  16. JimPrime

    JimPrime xJIMPRIMEx

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    Great Interview :rock 
     
  17. KidDynamite

    KidDynamite don't know nothing Veteran

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    Fascinating stuff there. I also join others in being pleasantly surprised at the depth of detail he remembers. That is a real rarity in these types of interviews.
     
  18. chokinzoku

    chokinzoku Member

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    Jetfire

    From the interview: "Technically they [Jetfires] were licensed from Bandai, who bought Takatoku."

    So this confirms that Hasbro never had a deal with Matsushiro or Takatoku, just directly with Bandai.

    So the chronology apparently went something like this:

    >>Takatoku produces 1/55 Macross Valkyries

    >>Molds go to Matsushiro

    >>Molds go to Bandai

    >>For the first run of Hasbro Jetfires, Bandai subcontracted Matsushiro to manufacture them and later began to build them in house. Which explains why the first run of Jetfires had a Macross U.N. Spacy logo emblazoned on the wing and a Matsushiro logo on the underside of the jet.
     
  19. Superquad7

    Superquad7 We're only human. Super Mod

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    Nevermore, great work and nice job on the well-constructed questions! Awesome work man!
     
  20. Kickback

    Kickback Proud father Administrator Super Mod News Staff

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    Amazing interview. +1 rep points to Nevermore
     

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