Merlin Mann Interview #2 - Fan Questions

Hey everybody! So, in a few days TTV will be conducting another interview (although it will likely end up being more of a casual discussion) with Merlin Mann, screenwriter of the BIONICLE 2015 animations. This go-round, however, we’d like to give you guys the chance to ask some questions as well!

Plain and simply, submit any questions you’d like to ask here in this topic. There’s no limit on how many you can ask; we will, however, only pick a select handful to ask on the interview itself.




I would ask:
"If you were given more time to develop any 2015 BIONICLE character, who would it be?"


Let’s see…

  • thinks for a bit *

Ah, here we go.

If there was one fight scene that you could increase the duration/grandeur of, which one would it be, and why?


Do you know if the name “Kulta” is actually official?


If you where put in charge of BIONICLE 2015, would you do anything differently story-wise or otherwise?

What’s the hardest part of your job and why?

####Were there any complications during development of the animations? Is there a reason the Skull Villians had no lines? If you had a chance/were charged with developing the Skull Characters what would you do? Will you be involved with any Bionicle projects next year? If so, can you give us a hint?


Is there a chance we may gain detailed information on the culture of Okoto villagers?

Is there a reason why the name “Kulta” was only used in the Lego magazine?

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Are we going to stay on Okoto? Or will we visit other settings, similar to Gen 1 and the fact that we visited many unique areas of the universe?

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alright alright alright! Cool, I shall list a few
-Why the needle in the haystack quote
-How does pohatu know so much
-Were you specifically told to make all the villagers have the same helmet or was that just your choice?
-Why didn’t basher get more screen time?
-Why are you so beautiful
-Why did you read that last question?
-Were there ever plans for a set of 2016 animations?
-Is kulta a canon name?
-Why do kopaka and tahu hate each other so much?
-How did onua get so good at hitting levers
-Was there a more detailed description for the mask of ultimate power or was it specifically stated to just be an all black mask with flames?
-What is love and is it canon?
-Ok no, serious question time. I’m curious as to which things were your liberties and which things lego outright told you to design a certain way? I’m also curious as to your knowledge of the inhabitants of Okoto and their origins
-And the really big one I hope gets asked, did you cut anything from the animations due to time constraints?
There are more but they’re much less important
-Would you join the TTV podcast if they offered the position to you?
-What part of the creation process of these was the most fun to see come to life on the screen? Like the dialogue, the animation style, stuff like that!
-Is there a reason there was no wildlife shown in okoto?
-Do you enjoy Ryder Winham’s writing style?


Are you satisfied with the amount of freedom you got when working on BIONICLE 2015?

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Seeing as he’s a screenwriter and likely has little influence design wise, I don’t think he would be able to answer this question: Why do the villagers (not protectors) look identical?

If you were able to design a new character/set in the Bio universe what would you do?

Favorite and Least Favorite part of the animations?


If you could change one episode of the animations/extend the durration, which one would it be and why?


Because folks are typing their questions in bold font…

Were you given any directions on how to characterize the characters introduced in this wave(Kulta, Slicer, Ekimu, etc.), or was that all of your own accord?

Those asking about the future of the story or other aspects written by other writers - didn’t we get an answer to those already - that he didn’t interact with the other story teams. Also that he was only working on the 2015 animations, given on twitter he implied he was no longer working on Bionicle.

As for questions;

  • What did you turn to for inspiration on the animations?
  • How long on average did it take to script/write an animation?
  • When were you first contacted about working on the animations?
  • Would you have rather worked on a Bionicle book instead of the animations?

Also a general non-Bionicle question;

  • As a writer what would be your tips to any aspiring writers? e.g. how to avoid writers block?

Which one of the 2015 BIONICLE sets is your favorite?

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What do you do in your free time?

"When creating the animations; Was there ever any cut content or ideas that were scraped?

Just to know what could have been.

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Did you come up with how the voices for characters should sound or was that up to the narrator?
How much free-reign were you given when writing the story?