Monty Oum, who helped revolutionize Rooster Teeth’s hit series “Red vs. Blue” (above) via his unique use of animation, died yesterday. He was 33. (Image courtesy: Flickr).
By Kevin Matyi
Monty Oum, animator for Rooster Teeth Production’s award winning machinima Red vs. Blue, as well as creator and director of the original animated series RWBY, died February 1, at about 4:30 p.m. at the age of 33. According to the official Rooster Teeth journal post, he suffered a severe allergic reaction on January 23 during a medical procedure and became comatose.
The initial announcement, posted on January 30, also included a link to a GoFundMe page to aid Oum’s family with medical expenses, asking for $50,000. Fans showed their support and care in excess, with the goal being reached in under three hours, and more than tripled in nine hours.
A second journal post released yesterday, February 2, at 1:30 p.m. saying that he had passed away surrounded by friends and family. The official post also said that he was well cared for and did not suffer, and that “he is survived by his wife Sheena, his father Mony, his bothers Sey, Chivy and Neat, and his sisters Thea and Theary, as well as a countless number of fans and friends.”
Oum was hired by Rooster Teeth following the success of his popular Haloid animation, wherein he took models from Halo 2 and assets from Super Smash Bros. Melee in order to pit a Spartan from Halo against Samus Aran from Metroid. The 10 minute animation showcased his love for humor, over the top fast paced action and use of guns in melee combat. His employment was announced at the Penny Arcade Expo (PAX) East in 2010.
Initially, Oum worked on the popular Machinima series Red vs. Blue as an animator, using the Poser animation program to move the characters in a way that the game’s original engine did not normally allow for. This also let the show make much more extensive use of animation in general.
During season 10 of the show, he asked the show’s creator and Rooster Teeth founder Burnie Burns if he could work on a new project following the conclusion of the season. After being given permission, the first trailer for the Rooster Teeth original animated series RWBY premiered at the end credits of the season 10 finale of Red vs. Blue.
It is unknown at this time how this loss will affect the continuation of the projects that Oum worked on. However, on January 26, Rooster Teeth showed a poster of Red vs. Blue season 13 via Twitter; and RWBY season 3 has already been announced to be planned and in development, likely to air later this year.
Rooster Teeth has decided not to release any videos today and requested that their fans spend the day remembering Monty.
Oum will live on through his work and in the memories of those who knew and loved him.