Media Release: Thursday February 4, 2016
Animals. is an edgy and irreverent new adult animated series straight out of New York City from the comedic genius of Jay and Mark Duplass and featuring the vocal talents of some of comedy’s biggest stars.
A decidedly different animated comedy, each 30-minute episode of Animals is comprised of 2-3 shorts that follow New York City’s most ubiquitous but often-ignored creatures as they reveal their neuroses and hilariously human-like qualities. In these unexpected tales of urban life – whether it’s lovelorn rats, gender-questioning pigeons, or bedbugs in the midst of a midlife crisis – the awkward small talk, moral ambiguity, and existential woes of non-human urbanites prove startlingly similar to our own.
Creators/writers/directors Phil Matarese and Mike Luciano voice a different pair of animal buddies per episode named, respectively, Phil and Mike. In addition to the hijinks of New York City’s animal population, the series also features an ongoing non-speaking narrative about the city’s corrupt mayor.
The voice cast includes Mark Duplass, Ellie Kemper (The Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt), Marc Maron (Maron), Aziz Ansari (Master of None), Nick Kroll (The Kroll Show), Katie Aselton (The League), Molly Shannon (SNL, HBO’s upcoming Divorce), Chelsea Peretti (Brooklyn Nine-Nine), Rob Corddry (Ballers), Steve Zissis (Togetherness), Matt Walsh (Veep), Kumail Nanjiani and Zach Woods (Silicon Valley), and many more. Unlike many animated projects, Animals. records these guest actors at the same time, in the same place, leaving room for improvisation.
Animals. was born when Matarese and Luciano, who met while working together at an advertising production company, noticed a pair of pigeons outside their office and began speaking to each other from the bird’s point of view. Their subsequent 12-minute pilot, “Pigeons,” won Best Comedy at the 2013 New York Television Festival. The first two episodes of this series debuted at the 2015 Sundance Film Festival, after which Animals. received a two-season pick-up from HBO.
Executive produced by Jay and Mark Duplass, writers/directors/producers of Togetherness (which returns to showcase for its second season on February 21), Animals. is part of a two-year overall deal the Duplass brothers recently struck with HBO, under their Duplass Brothers Productions banner. Animals. is produced by Starburns Industries, the animation studio behind Adult Swim’s Rick and Morty.
Animals. premieres exclusively on Foxtel from Wednesday February 17 at 9.30pm only on The Comedy Channel.