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John Semper Talks Static Shock
by Jim Harvey

Most animation fans know John Semper as one of the major contributors to the recent Spider-Man animated series that ran on FOX, a show that many claim to be the best animated Spider-Man series. But now, John Semper has joined the Static Shock crew as story editor. Toon Zone caught up with Jon about his new roles on the series.

As a story editor for Static Shock, which is you role for the series? What does a story editor do?

It's different on different shows. On some series, the story editor is literally the person running the show, since everything emanates from the script. On "Static Shock" I work closely with the Executive Producer, Alan Burnett, who is the guiding force behind this series. We develop ideas together and then choose the writers, or write them ourselves. We also rewrite everybody's work. Everything passes through our hands. I also attend recording sessions and give notes on performances and line readings. Often there's some amount of rewriting on the spot. Basically a story editor is really a "head writer." I've always thought the term "story editor" was confusing and doesn't do the job justice.

Do you plan to write any of the new upcoming episodes? And if so, could you perhaps give us a little teaser about them?

I've written one, co-written another and possibly might write the last one. All I can say is, we have many animated guest stars this season. And on one of my episodes, one of the voices was done by Terrence Stamp. THAT was fun.

What are your plans for a third season?

I plan to pray nightly that there will be a third season.

And finally, it was revealed on a recent KIDS'WB C-TOON image that Static Shock will be getting a new costume. Will we be seeing this happen, or will this be a change that'll happen with no explanation?

No, we didn't do an episode explaining it. Maybe we should have. But networks shy away from doing things that have to be aired in a specific order (I fought against this all the time on Spider-Man). So the new costume will simply "arrive" with the new stories.

Originally posted on TZN on 08-02-2002.

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