“American History” (1992) By Trey Parker

From the archives, here’s the 1992 student film that Trey Parker, co-creator of “South Park”, made at the University of Colorado – a film that went on to win a student Academy Award (Silver Medal) in 1993. It was co-directed by Chris Graves.

Apparently Trey got his Japanese roommate to talk about the history of America as he knew it, which Trey then animated with crude paper cut-outs. The rest is… American History!

Lest you think The Book of Mormon, Team America or Orgazmo were Parker’s first live action efforts, check his other student film: Giant Beavers of Southern Sri Lanka

(Thanks, Charles Brubaker)


  • bluenowait

    Remember. The Alamo.

  • James

    Did they recreate their student film later on for one of their documentaries? Because I remember them showing a clip of the pilgrims blasting away the Indians with their guns in the oft shown “student film” clip, but here its the Columbus caricature with the pilgrims later sharing the turkey with the Indians.

    I also recall the revised clip looking more polished, along with the cut-out American flag.

    • tommmy

      I think it was in Bowling for Columbine.

      • Crystal

        They didn’t make the Bowling for Columbine short (and they were really upset with Moore for playing that cartoon after their interview to make it look like they did). I don’t know if James could be talking about something else though.

      • Anonymous

        That clip wasn’t done by Stone and Parker. They were actually rather upset with Moore for including it right after Matt Stone’s interview, since the sequence of the interview and cartoon somewhat implied that Stone made it to follow up his bit, which wasn’t the case.

      • Chris Sobieniak

        I do recall getting confused a bit there too. Both films could seem to have very similar ideas (violence through war/conflict) though they both differ in their premise, Parker’s of course is a Japanese person’s spin on American history, while Bowling For Columbine’s cartoon is American history as viewed by white supremacy groups.

  • James

    Those ancient George H.W. Bush jokes almost seemed like a dry run for “That’s My Bush”

  • http://bakertoons.blogspot.com/ Charles Brubaker

    While we’re at it, here’s another cut-out animation that Trey did with Matt Stone, “Jesus vs. Frosty”. This is more or less a genesis of “South Park”. They did this with cut-outs under a very old 8mm camera.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Oar-oN_k6AM

    • Chris Sobieniak

      somehow I thought it was done on 16mm but I guess I couldn’t tell too easily through the many generations from the original source I had saw of it.

  • Pedro Nakama

    And where is that Japanese roommate now?

    • eeteed

      he is now head professor of american history at the university of colorado.

      • Chris Sobieniak

        At least he accomplished his goals there!

  • thomas

    “Lest you think The Book of Mormon, Team America or Orgazmo were Parker’s first live action efforts”

    Don’t forget Cannibal the Musical and BASEketball!

    • Chris Sobieniak

      Fudge, Packer?