‘The Fungies!’ Creator Slams HBO Max For Pulling Jennifer Coolidge-Voiced Animated Series

·3 min read

Stephen P. Neary, creator of animated series The Fungies!, has slammed HBO Max for pulling his Jennifer Coolidge-voiced show from the service.

The Fungies! is among 30 titles that are set to be removed from the streamer as Warner Bros. Discovery continues its cost-cutting measures and ahead of the merger of the HBO Max and Discovery+ services next year.

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Neary took aim for a lack of promotion for his “fever dream of a show” and also highlighted the fact that he and his team worked hard through the pandemic to ensure that it could air.

Neary, who has also worked on Cartoon Network’s Clarence and as a story artist on animated feature films including Ice Age: Dawn of the Dinosaurs and Rio, said on Twitter: “Last night during a figure drawing class I found out that The Fungies! was getting pulled from HBO Max this week. I’m heartbroken but I want to take this opportunity to thank all the amazing artists and production folks for their hard work on this sincere, fever dream of a show.”

Stephen Neary - Credit: Cartoon Network Studios
Stephen Neary - Credit: Cartoon Network Studios

Cartoon Network Studios

The Fungies! ran for three seasons and 80 episodes, launching in August 2020, with the third and final season premiering in December 2021. The show is set in a prehistoric and mythological metropolis of Fungietown in a strange world inhabited by some fungi-looking creatures and occasional dinosaurs. The series follows the adventures of Seth, one of the town’s young mushroom inhabitants, whose love for scientific adventures often ends with him stirring trouble with the local inhabitants and learning to understand others.

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“We worked so hard through the pandemic, and I hoped that diligence would be rewarded with support from the network,” Neary continued. “[I] was promised the show would air on Cartoon Network, which would drive views to HBO Max, but soon after launch, the show was pulled from the air without notice. There was little to no promotion. Although I was graciously asked to speak on a mushroom podcast, a company representative monitored the taping so that I wouldn’t give away any ‘spoilers’ to the show.”

He added that the fact that “more well-known shows” are also being pulled makes it clear that these are “uninformed, money-driven decisions.”

“My heart goes out to the other shows affected, and the beautiful work getting canceled before even airing. I’m going to keep making stuff! Even if it’s just for me. It’s what I’ve always done, since I was very very little. Thanks everyone,” he continued.

The cast included Harry Teitelman as Seth as well as Zaela Rae, Justin Mitchell, Niki Yang, Grace Kaufman, Sam Richardson, Edi Patterson, Tama Brutsche, Terry Gross, Mary Faber, June Squibb, Chris Diamantopoulos, Eric Edelstein and Coolidge, who voiced the character of Dr. Nancy.

It was produced by Cartoon Network Studios.

Neary is the latest animator to take to social media to criticize the decision to pull the shows. On Wednesday, Summer Camp Island creator Julia Pott, similarly, shared her disappointment, saying that HBO Max was pulling the episodes “like we were nothing”.

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