Jon Schnepp (Metalocalypse) spoke with 411Mania about how he got involved with Hail To The King: The Animated Series, how the series ties into Avenged Sevenfold’s “Hail To The King” album and “Hail To The King: Deathbat,” the work he did on the project and Avenged Sevenfold being involved ‘every step of the way.’
Jeffrey Harris: So how does the Hail to The King animated project tie into the Avenged Sevenfold album and how did you get involved?
Jon Schnepp: I got a call from Machinima—I had been talking with them and I had met them earlier in the year and talking with them about a bunch of different projects. And this project came up and they thought I’d be perfect for it. And Avenged Sevenfold felt the same way. Avenged Sevenfold had an album called Hail to the King that they had been working on as well as this whole entire storyline. [It was] a sword and sorcery storyline that they had been working on making a videogame, an iPhone game and they wanted an animated series that told the bulk of the story as more of a like a prequel—a setup for the videogame. So once you start the game, you just jump in and you’re this character, the Deathbat. So what I’m basically doing with the prequel is telling the origin of the Deathbat. So that’s kind of how it all started up, and they had a really early beta test of the game that I checked out. And they had a really rough outline of the animated cartoon I was going to work on. I just went from there. Machinima worked with Avenged Sevenfold on the story and the script. And I came in and voice directed the actors and just started working on the radio play, and animatics, and designs, and background. And over the last six months just really put it all together, so really a fun project to work on, especially with getting access to Avenged Sevenfold’s music and all their instrumentations. So I was able to weave it all together into this one—you basically watch all six episodes altogether, and it’s this one seamless story.