Trey Parker launched his career by making animated short films with Matt Stone during their college days. Their first feature, Cannibal! The Musical was inspired by Alferd Packer himself.
South Park has become a beloved comedy series since it first premiered in 1997, pushing boundaries of taste with every episode produced since. Creators Trey Parker and Matt Stone recently signed a $900 million deal to continue producing it for another ten years.
Trey Parker’s Biography
Trey Parker has earned a name for himself as an artist with many talents, from acting and musician to animator, director, writer, composer, and producer. His talents have seen him work on several popular projects like South Park and the satirical musical The Book of Mormon as well as live-action films such as Orgazmo and BASEketball – winning him multiple awards including both an Emmy and Grammy Award.
His birthplace was Conifer, Colorado – a small mountain community close to Denver with Pike National Forest as its backdrop and offering ample outdoor recreational opportunities. Conifer boasts not only mountain living but also many attractions for visitors to enjoy.
Parker displayed his creative spark and playful spirit from an early age. At his school talent show, he wrote and performed “The Dentist”, complete with fake blood effects. In high school, Parker participated in community theater before going on to study music and film at the University of Colorado Boulder.
In 1992, Parker and Matt Stone produced their inaugural short film entitled Jesus vs. Frosty. It was inspired by Alferd Packer, a nineteenth-century prospector suspected of cannibalism who inspired Parker and Matt Stone to develop Alferd Packer: The Musical as their fictional musical about his life.
After the success of their film, Parker and Stone created South Park as a cartoon series on Comedy Central. It became an instantaneous hit, and its popularity continues to increase today – it currently ranks fourth highest-rated on that network and Parker and Stone have received multiple awards for it.
Parker has provided voices for several characters in South Park, such as Stan Marsh and Officer Barbrady. Additionally, he wrote and performed songs with D.V.D.A. He has earned multiple awards–a Grammy as well as Primetime Emmy nominations–for these performances, in addition to participating in stage plays and musicals.
Parker and Stone have also collaborated on live-action films such as Team America: World Police (2004). Although Parker and Stone battled with the MPAA to keep their films R-rated, these movies still made billions at the box office.
Trey Parker’s Career
Parker and Stone have been creating South Park for two decades now, yet their work isn’t done! Recently they signed an agreement to make movies for Viacom’s streaming service that will expand on the current world of South Park as well as introduce new characters and concepts similar to the Marvel Cinematic Universe.
South Park was first conceptualized in 1992 when Parker and Stone met during a film class at the University of Colorado Boulder. Utilizing an old 8mm camera, they created The Spirit of Christmas which featured four foul-mouthed kids building an aggressive snowman – it was crudely animated but was successfully shown at each semester-end screening; its success catapulting Parker and Stone onto Hollywood.
Though they found early success, Parker and Stone struggled during the years that followed. Without access to proper mattresses or a decent sleep environment, they often slept on dirty laundry as their mattress. Furthermore, they worried they may be accused of racism or sexism by critics, fearing their work wasn’t mature enough for mainstream audiences and they felt their work wasn’t mature enough for commercial audiences.
They managed to overcome these challenges by remaining true to themselves and remaining firm on their values, remaining true to themselves and remaining true to comedy with an original approach that has led to one of the longest-running and most beloved TV shows of all time. Their creative team continues to be recognized with numerous awards and honors for their hard work.
Parker and Stone are known for creating live-action and animated films outside the realm of television shows, such as Orgazmo (1997) about a Mormon who breaks into the Los Angeles adult movie industry; this film earned an Independent Spirit Award nomination.
Parker and Stone are well-renowned for their dedication to satire, social commentary, and improvisational acting. Their work often appears deliberately amateurish for comic effect, and they frequently use puppetry or paper cutout animation techniques when creating characters.
Parker and Stone create, direct, voice act for, and design all of the characters in South Park as well as design and build its sets. Through experience they have devised a process to produce one episode per week; believing this keeps their ideas fresh and funny.
Trey Parker Co-wrote The Book of Mormon
Matt Stone and Trey Parker, the creators of South Park, also co-wrote The Book of Mormon musical on Broadway. It follows Mormon missionaries who travel to Uganda to spread God’s word – it’s a comedic musical about religion! Critical reviews praised its plot, music, actors, and direction – Tony Award nominations were numerous but they won nine total Tony awards over time and have become one of the most beloved Broadway productions ever.
Parker and Stone recently discussed the production of The Book of Mormon with FRESH AIR in an interview. To create their satirical musical, Parker and Stone conducted extensive research into Mormonism while finding ways to make its characters comic without offending religious communities.
Before they settled on The Book of Mormon script, there were multiple attempts. At first, they considered making it into a movie but ultimately decided on a Broadway play instead. Through numerous readings and workshops, they worked out most of its kinks before debuting their production off-Broadway for testing purposes.
At their first tryout, Parker and Stone could observe how audiences responded to the show as well as fine-tune its technical aspects. Parker and Stone hoped that their production would be a hit; in fact, its original Broadway cast album won a Grammy Award!
The show has made an immense mark both on entertainment and Mormonism alike, being translated into over 20 languages and winning numerous awards along the way. Furthermore, its success has inspired multiple sequels and spinoffs.
No doubt about it: the success of The Book of Mormon has caused considerable uproar within the Mormon community. Many Mormons have taken offense at its content while others have welcomed it with open arms. The creators have assured everyone involved in making this show that their intent isn’t meant to offend anyone.
The creators of the show have defended their choice to make Mormon jokes by noting they do not target individuals but rather their doctrine from The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints. Additionally, they insist the show does not intend to offend and simply aims at entertaining.
Trey Parker Co-produced Deep Voodoo
Trey Parker and Matt Stone, best known as the creators of Comedy Central’s animated sitcom South Park, have become known for being highly outspoken and controversial artists who do not shy away from confronting issues to pursue their art. While not interested in fame or Hollywood-speak, their unconventional approaches often lead to public disputes between themselves; nevertheless, they remain friends working on an animated sitcom they both cherish together.
Two individuals with complementary talents and sensibilities are now making waves in deepfake technology development. Together, they have founded Deep Voodoo as a creative studio for other creators to join. Recently, Connect Ventures provided $20 million as an investment round for this studio to be used towards speeding up the development of deepfake tech and VFX services.
Deep Voodoo’s inaugural project was Sassy Justice, a short film using deepfake to transform President Trump into a consumer reporter in Cheyenne Wyoming. Produced in 2020 as an early test run for their planned feature-length movie about Trump – unfortunately, due to COVID-19 Pandemic they had to put this on pause temporarily.
Since its founding, the studio has blossomed into a full-fledged production company offering various services – digital makeup, facial animation, and motion capture among them – as well as working with numerous celebrities – Kendrick Lamar among them – to produce music videos.
Parker and Stone are known for their artistic vision as well as their ability to grasp what will capture an audience’s interest. While their animation may look less-than-perfect at times, this can often be intentional as part of the style – something seen both in animated shows such as The Book of Mormon and Orgazmo as well as live musicals such as West Side Story Live!
Deep Voodoo is an exciting new development that could allow producers to utilize this technology to create more realistic characters in films, as well as reduce VFX costs by using computer simulation instead of real-world stunts.