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3D Printed Series “Gran’pa Knows Best” Comes to HBO

3D printed series

“Gran’pa Knows Best” is a 3D printed mini-series starring a 3D printed 87-year old Puerto Rican grandpa. Now, the fast and funny YouTube series is moving to HBO Latino.

Gran’pa knows a lot of things. Gran’pa has seen it all. And Gran’pa doesn’t hold back. He likes to share his animated opinions on rap music and junk food, and even has some strong words for kids who want to drop out of school. The comedy web-series Gran’pa Knows Best from William D. Caballero stars a 3D printed likeness of the creator’s own 87-year old grandfather, Victor Muriel. Now, the popular series is coming to HBO Latino.

How did the real grandpa feel about being 3D printed? His exact words were “I mean… it looks nice, but… I no too short like that!” … but that didn’t stop Victor Muriel from voicing his character in the show.

3D Printed series comes to HBO Latino (Image: HBO Latino)
3D Printed series comes to HBO Latino (Image: HBO Latino)

Why 3D Printing in Film? Why Not Use Real Actors?

Though downright cool, the choice to use 3D printed figurines for the series is a surprise, especially given Caballero’s previous films, which use live actors. However, as Caballero explains, the use of printed miniatures wasn’t just a gimmick.

“One of the reasons GKB captures the viewer’s attention almost instantly, is because of its visual aesthetic,” he told The Urban Twist. “The art of 3D printing is very innovative, and hasn’t really been used in such a way to tell these complex stories.”

The ability to use caricature-like figures makes the story almost more endearing and easier to jump into. Caballero rightfully claims it adds that “wow” factor. Unlike live actors or even animation, there’s a certain allure to stop-motion mediums. But the process hasn’t been easy. The designs needed to be created and printed, hand-painting and then placed in the 3D printing miniature set.

“Each print takes about 20 hours (from modeling to printing to hand-painting),” he notes, “and there’s about 35 prints of Gran’pa total.”

The results, however, are simply perfect. Starting on June 17, HBO Latino will be airing 15 new episodes of the print-centric story. You can check out the trailer here or read about some of the topics gran’pa will be dealing with this season.

  • Gran’pa tries to get out of a “traffic ticket” / talks against drunk driving
  • Gran’pa’s “family tree: Meet Gran’pa’s extended family 
  • Young people and respect
  • A day in the life of Gran’pa
  • Gran’pa’s eye – how he went blind
  • Cuba history and thoughts on embargo lift.