South Park animation director Eric Stough, who appears tonight as part of the University of Colorado at Boulder's International Film Series, has known Trey Parker and Matt Stone, the former Coloradans at the heart of the cheerfully profane Comedy Central show, since long before they were Hollywood heavyweights. "Trey and I lived in Conifer, and I saw him performing with his band in middle school," Stough says. "I think they were called Satan's Offspring, and even then, he had controversy following him around. They broke into a rock rendition of the Andy Griffith Show theme and ended up smashing a guitar. It made everyone angry."
As for Stough, he has a well-developed sense of humor, and that's fortunate, since Parker and Stone based the character of relentlessly chipper stutterer Leopold "Butters" Stotch on him. He was part of the team that made The Spirit of Christmas, the short film that led to South Park, and has worked on the vast majority of Parker-Stone projects since then, including the 1997 movie flop Orgazmo. During this return to his alma mater, Stough will screen several South Park episodes while providing behind-the-scenes commentary and details about the insane pace at which they were made. "It's often ten o'clock Wednesday morning before we get everything done," he says. "And the show airs Wednesday night."
Stough takes center stage at 7 p.m. at Muenzinger Auditorium, on the CU-Boulder campus. Admission is $4 for CU-Boulder students with an I.D., $5 for the general public. Get directions and information by dialing 303-492-1531 or by visiting www.internationalfilmseries.com.
Sun., Sept. 23, 7 p.m., 2007