Crash Bandicoot Untold Story - July 22


Dave Siller
Kelly Flaherty was the Director of Marketing at Universal Interactive Studios, who has been much-maligned by Jason Rubin attributing falsehoods concerning her marketing efforts. She was good at her job and she was one tough little cookie. She took no s*** from Rubin's constant barrage attacks. It was her that finally orchestrated a title name conclusion. Up to her brilliant conference room pow-wow, the Naughty Dog guys were still insisting on "Willy the Wombat"! They say otherwise, but then they invented the history they desired.

D. Stott (fan)
Was this the same marketing director who ripped Rubin a new one upon seeing the designs for Tawna and when she met the woman whom was the designs were based on; Rubin claimed she "forced them to listen to half an hour's ranting about women's issues that culminated with a tirade about some women's shoe commercial that featured women playing basketball in high heels?"

Dave Siller
Maybe, but I really don't believe there was a real woman that she was based on that Rubin might have known. I never saw or heard of him with any woman while I knew and worked with him. I would remember that she was based on Pam Anderson and Jessica Rabbit.

Craig Anthony Perkins
Kelly pulled me in to help with the Crash "Hint Guide". She was fairly conservative, but good at her job and always kind to me.

Matt Wallace (fan)
So how many people from Universal actually contributed to Crash?

Craig Anthony Perkins
Universal were the Producers, Design and Marketing. Naughty Dog were one of two in-house developers (the other being Insomniac Games) who did the in-game art and programming (Dave could elaborate better.) There were a few of us from Universal that contributed, and in the case of David Siller, really shaped the game.

The other Producer, Michael John, mostly worked on the Insomniac projects. I had to work with both teams as the Quality Assurance Manager and as an uncredited Associate Producer acting as a go-between between the in-house Developers and Universal Producers. Same with when I worked at Philips Media; except we had something like 7 in-house developers and a dozen outside developers.

Matt Wallace (fan)
Did you do/have any designs for either Crash or Spyro?

Craig Anthony Perkins
Dave had asked me to do a level design or two, but I don't think they ever made it in (he was just trying to help me out; to expand my horizons.)

Spyro on the other hand... Well, don't get me started! All I will say is, I was the one that came up with having a Dragon as the character, and I was the one who came up with the "spoked world" for the general level designs. This was all during a brainstorming session we had between Insomniac and Universal. I still have my original ideas/designs somewhere.

I thought the dragon "Spyro" ( I didn't come up with the name) should grow bigger and older, with more power as it progressed through levels. It was Mark Cerny I think who wanted to keep Spyro young and cute throughout the whole game to compete with the other "mascots" which was probably a better idea for marketing and to reach a wider audience, but my version would have been cooler though not sold as well.

Dave Siller
Craig was a tremendous asset at UIS. A larger team of beta testers were planned when UIS was going to publish Crash Bandicoot, but when Sony licensed the game Craig did a great job managing all of UIS testing and documenting those results!

Craig Stitt also had some meaningful contributions to the early conceptuall planning for Spyro.

Craig Anthony Perkins
Despite the occasional turmoil and the couple of people that were very hard to work with, I do miss those days. And I really miss just working on the Universal Studio lot!

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Dave Siller
Joe Pearson and Charles Zembillas were significant contributors to the forming and shaping of the "look and feel" of the original game. They were not insignificant as told by Rubin and Gavin in their "history" interviews! These two gentlemen shaped the imagery of the world of Crash Bandicoot as well as detail, refine and invent these characters. They are two of the nicest and most talented people you will ever meet!

Joe Pearson
David. Thanks for the kind words and postings. It was a real pleasure working with you and the team on the first Crash game. I appreciate your efforts to give credit where credit is due. I was delighted to see that Charles and I received credit and had images posted in the recent Art of Naughty Dog book, but was saddened that you seemed to be inexplicably deleted from the history. For the record, I remember well that you were a present, supervising force at every meeting Charles and I had at ND on the first game.

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Dave Siller
The DIVORCE, part 1:

Jason and Andy stormed into Rob Biniaz office one day in a huff! They asked, NO demanded that I be removed from the project because they had just read EGM and in the "Quarterman" gossip page, Ed Semrad had written addressing that there was a concern about the merits of the "new" Naughty Dog game in development, but stated "Veteran Producer Dave Siller is handling the project so it should be good" (I am paraphrasing since I don't have that quote handy at the moment).

They theorized that I was secretly talking to the press and feared that I was going to get the lions share of credit if the game was successful! I had NOT talked to Ed Semrad or anyone at EGM in some time at that time, so it was completely without merit!

Talk about paranoia and insecurity! The game wasn't even finished yet and they were more concerned about who was going to get the credit!!! Unreal....

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S. Fernandez (fan)
Hey David, I have a question. How did you manage to get in touch with Josh Mancell and Mark Mothersbaugh (Mutato Muzika)? Was it an easy job? How were they? I always loved the first game's music, especially Pinstripe and Cortex's song.

Dave Siller
I was introduced to Mothersbaugh by a contact from Universal. We met at our offices and he was wearing a brown lady's style coat and had freaky green sunglasses on. We immediately hit it off and I wanted him for the game. Naughty Dog were snow boarding and left it to my digression of what to do. Much more to come in it's own heading.


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