It's no secret, my real name is Frazer Diamond. My Tax Return
me as a freelance cartoonist and writer operating out
of Elgin, in the wilds of
North-East Scotland, but in reality, right now I seem
to have donned the mantle
of Unpaid Cartoon Researcher on the Great WWW.
If you want to know more, you should check out my new
personal site, as it
gets up to speed:
you're still here, so I guess I'd better give you the shorthand version
complicated life thus far. And I'll begin by telling
you I'm the fourth of sixth siblings,
all boys. My father was the late great film and television
fight arranger, performer,
actor and director Peter Diamond. He accrued over a
thousand credits in his
lifetime, and I've started detailing what he did and
when he did it over
As you might imagine, I spent my formative years on and around
big and small and everything inbetween. Biggest of all
was, probably, the original
Star Wars Trilogy. Dad arranged all those lightsabre
duels and appeared in
seceral iconic roles. Better still, my brother Warwick
and I got to shuffle
on screen too, playing Jawas in the Sandcrawler with
C-3PO in "A New Hope".
Just a blink-and-you'll-miss-it appearance on Elstree
Stage Two back in 1976,
but it was one hell of a Claim to Fame for an eight
year old, I can tell you!
I was still at school when I composed a stack of storyboards
for my father to
bring to the set of "Highlander". And after my
"A" levels, I spent a very short
spell working as a trainee puppeteer on "Who Framed
Roger Rabbit" before
moving on to be a runner for Disney on the film. That was
to the best part of eighteen months. Afterwards, I was
employed in various
production capacities by The Monty Python team and Jim Henson.
all rather daft, actually. I nailed down the British
ad campaign for "A Fish Called
Wanda", worked as a production aide on "Storyteller:
Greek Myths" and even
stepped in front of a blue screen to take aim at "Perseus
and the Gorgon".
Moving on, I spent eighteen crazy months working in the stills
of Elstree Studios whilst Brent Walker's wrecking balls demolished
sound stages around us. I also went to Cannes with The British
and a year later, with Majestic Films Intl. That second visit
I found myself
stumbling blindly into the offices of New York's "unique"
Troma, Inc. I blagged myself a twelve month contract as their
London Operations, which sounds very impressive, but
in reality meant
running up and down Dean St. in London dressed as a Radioactive
Squirrel. And worse. The highlight of my time there was putting
a Troma Tour of classic films. A couple of DVD deals
also fell into place.
It was a steep learning curve, but hugely rewarding.
I'm always writing spec scripts and in the mid-90s I
formed a creative
partnership with an industry friend, Mike Key. Together we
presented various film and TV projects for commission
left, right and center.
Our piratical adventure series "Smollett"
had a great cast and crew on board
and we even persuaded Lew Grade to hoist the mansail
with us. But alas, our
ship sunk mid-Atlantic. Equally, our documentary series
all about Elstree's various film studios. That one had a
sizeable amount of
industry support and I've still got some fantastic,
famous letters round here
somewhere. Alas, Mike died suddenly and with him, the
energy to keep
these projects alive.
For a year-or-so I contributed unpaid animation reviews
and articles to
"Movie Collector Magazine". I was also paid
to write two scripts and contribute
several storylines to a German cartoon series from Hahnfilm
Then there was "Up into the Apple Tree", a
French screenplay which I was
hired to rewrite and which subsequently received funding
from MEDIA and
was attached to Norma Heyman Productions for a while.
In and around all of the above I was always cartooning.
Just bits and pieces
on a freelance basis, here and there. I drew toons for
tv's "You Bet!" and
"Scofield's Quest" and my doodling got me
down to Cannes for a third time
when I was employed as official cartoonist for "Moving
Wilbur P. Dogsbody appeared in all the Cannes dailies
and, upon my return,
inspired a new toon creation called Flick. In 1998 I self-published
my first volume
of Flick Cartoons called "When Films Collide",
which sold rather nicely thank
you through a few select outfits like the film memorabillia
archive and store
"Flashbacks" in which, in true Tarantinio-style,
I spent a few years working
part-time to supplement my dreams.
In July 1999 I married Claire and three months later
we fled the rot and grime
of London for the delights of a north-east Scottish city
which thinks it's a
market town. And nowadays you're most likely to find
me ensconced in the
attic of our 250yr old semi by Elgin's ruined cathedral.
We have two new
additions to the houshold, too, in the form of Ollie
and Stan, our Springer
Spaniels. And today, we're still crawling through an expensive
Toonhound was born in January 2000. It started as a
bit of fun, really, filling
a gap on the web for information on British cartoons. Now
it's a 700+ page
behemoth with 1000+ links to keep updated, and new stuff
bloating the work
load, week-in, week-out. It's been self-built using Dreamweaver,
but I don't
profess to having any professional computer skills. I'm sure
if you try validating
the HTML you find the source code is all over the shop, but
the site loads and
works okay in the browsers I've tested it on, so that'll
do for me. And when
it first launched, it was well-received by the PC Press.
.net magazine Web
The site employs Amazon links to generate the cash to
cover the running costs.
And Toonhound has earned me a fair few gigs too.
I've been quoted on DVD
releases and popped up on a couple of "extras", I've
written for the BBC and
others, and I am often contacted by the media for cartoon
comments and info.
There are been lots of lovely treats too: "Thankyous"
from some of my heroes
to keep hold of and to treasure. Best of all, the site
is reccomended reading
for a number of academies, colleges and courses. It's
got me dreaming
of an Honorary Doctorate, some day...
Even so, the desire for my own commissions still burns bright
and I always seem to have a dozen projects on the go. There's
screenplay for "Meon Hill" still out there somewhere
as you read this. I've got
two new toons in development too. And my new vanity publishing
Cold Dead Press. Oh, and I'm producing giclee art prints
Someday, somehow, one of these beauties will set the
world alight, I'm sure.
If anyone wants to talk toons with me just
drop me a line. And needless
if you want to tap into my cartoon mind for ideas, scripts
and storylines, I'm always
primed and ready...