Thursday, July 31, 2008

I need a real den...

We've been watching a lot of home make over shows lately and I have come to a conclusion...I NEED A NEW DEN! I usually watch what the family wants to watch until 9:00 or 10:00 but lately the family has been up until 11:00 0r 12:00 and then I can't watch what I want to see (i.e. action flicks with the volume cranked up loud enough that I don't need subtitles to know what is happening) because some of the family is still awake. When it comes to remodeling, unfortunately I know that the Kitchen comes first, then the bathroom, then the boys room, then the toy room, then the bed room, then the dining room...then (at last) my den/home entertainment center...sigh.

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

BIOS - Everyone who 'died', 'died' for free - Leigh Meadows

Liegh was a student who went to the school that my wife worked at. She and her twin sister (Death Runner Katie) were both interested in the movie and asked to be in it. After a brief costume fit at our house, they arrived and went right to work. Liegh lucked out. The one day she was on location shooting, lightining had struck near by and the house we had the hoses hooked to (to opperate our rain rack) lost power. The pump, then, was out and she did not get to soak her with icy water. She was, however, covered many times with sticky strawberry syrup for her death scene.

Disclaimer: No actual actors were killed during the making of this movie...that we know of.

Sunday, July 27, 2008

BIOS _ everyone worked for free - Debbie Ngo

I decided to devote some space on the blog to the actors that made my dream come true. Debbie Ngo was a trooper. She was one of the last members of the cast to be brought in and she had a huge roll to fill. Originally the roll of Danea was for a tall, massive, muscular black woman. Debbie is clearly none of those. She is smaller than Zack, my Ten year old, and has not a mean bone in her body. However, she has a strong, commanding personality. She was a student of mine in a drawing class and for many months, I was convinced that she hated me as an instructor...mainly because she was such a FANTASTICAL artist that I felt I had little if anything to teach her. What I didn't know was that she was shy. VERY SHY. When I approached her to play the part of Danea, I was shocked at how quickly she grabbed on to the idea. (Fool) She had no idea what we would put her through. She was forced to run, blindfolded, through the forest, act out NINJA moves (she stated more than once that she had no ninja moves...she lied) and deal with mosquitoes (she would burst out in huge welts anytime a mosquito flew even close to her) and deal with the evil RAIN RACK that produced extremely cold water.

So, here's to you Debbie! Thanks for the contribution.

Below: Debbie and Dani take a break and discuss how bad their costumes are stinking.

Missing Blood

There is a scene where Sally is attacked and I splashed blood on a tree limb during the actual shoot to represent the Garum's vicious attack. It had always bothered me because it looked so bad - as in FAKE. Several weeks after that shoot I had 'splashed' some blood on a tree in my back yard and was much happier with the look of the splash. But then the footage disappeared. UNTIL TONIGHT! I found the footage on the external hard drive. It was mislabeled. I had hopes that there was more missing footage there, but alas, it was not to be. I am posting the blood splash here cause it looks cool. Of course I'll need to crop it to keep the Electrical Wires and Phone Lines from showing in the scene.

Saturday, July 26, 2008

Arizona Ted sent some stuff to me...

Ted's been busy with the new job, but he's found time to get some of the SPFX done. Here are some low res screen grabs of Lilly powering up to blast some Drifters.

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

16:48 - that's the minutes and seconds of dialog in the movie...

I edited down the movie to just the dialog that needs to be replaced...and brother, that is ALL of the dialog. We knew from the beginning that we would have to replace most of the dialog (due to the rain rack and me shouting instructions to the blindfolded actors) but we didn't realize we would have to replace ALL of the dialog. So I have edited it down to just the dialog and it is 16 minutes and 48 seconds...less if you consider the pauses and dissolves. So, here are some images we have not posted that you can enjoy looking at as we work on the dialog.

After training with her new sword, Gwen is visited by Danea and Kasel...

A dissolve shot of Lilly as she overlooks the oncoming battle between Gwen and the Garum...

Gwen returns from the Old Caretaker to tell Clarr that she has been elected as the new Caretaker...

Gwen confronts the River Dwellers...

Sallel challenges Gwen and announces Core as the River Dwellers fighter...

Core is defeated and is sulking when Sallel askes him to allow her and a friend to hunt for food...

After the Garum attacks, Sallel crawls out of the forest...

Close up of Lilly comforting Sallel...

A death...

Lilly tracks the Drifters...

Danea and Kasel confront Gwen about the death of one of their warriors...

Gwen gives up after finding her old teacher dead...killed by the Garum...

Lilly confronts a Drifter...she ain't too happy...

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

some good news...

Just heard from Arizona Ted. He has five days off of work now and is going to get back to editing and creating some much needed SPFX...hope he hasn't forgotten how. When he sends me stuff, I'll post it.

Also, heard from Jon. He and his brother are going to attempt to do part one of the graphic novel of Darkness Adtermath. Coolness.

Sunday, July 20, 2008

Coolness thing of the week.

The Planet if for rent and getting some pretty cool advertising as this Video Rental Vendor at Scotts Grocery stores. Congrats to the guys in Scotland! Go Michael, Mark and Kerwin!

Thanks to Matt. M. for spotting this!

Thursday, July 17, 2008

After 4 days of cars...

...driving over Lincoln's head, it's still in pretty good shape.

Will it ever end?

I met with Ron Lewis and he is going to take the footage of Danielle and any shots we have of the forest and cut together the fight between the Garum and Gwen (Danielle). It is in his hands now. Once I get the edits from Arizona Ted I can drop those in and then Jon and I can put the CG Drifter passing through the forest from Lilly's POV. Then we just have the sound to worry about...I mean, complete.

Sunday, July 13, 2008


It's that time of year again. I have an 8 ft x 8 ft square of scalding hot pavement to draw on and I chose to do a large portrait of Lincoln (our Lincoln Museum just left town permanently and I felt that it would be symbolic to draw the man on the pavement knowing that he would be gone by 9:00 pm sunday night.

First I laid down a tempera base to draw on.

Then the fun begins...the wind was wicked and I used a lot of hair spray to set it firm into the texture of the pavement.

My hands hurt, my feet hurt, my back is sore and my wife got so sunburned I call her the tomato. But it was finally done and now that I see that the clock says it is 9 pm, any moment, cars will be driving over it. By Monday night, there won't be much left.

Friday, July 11, 2008

Almost there...almost there...

Michael Clark said, "You know, good sound doesn't cover bad edits and mistakes. Good edits and getting rid of mistakes does. (unless you're in Hollywood of course)."

And it is so true. I had the laptop for a few days again and was able to edit in some of the storyboards for the CG action. The fight scene is going to work now and I am very happy. The movie is not what I had dreamed it to be, but it is close to being finished and it is more than I have ever done in the past. I am so glad that I edited the five pages of notes because it is a lot more of a fluid story. I can't wait to remix the sound with the ADR and Foley and soundtrack.

Thursday, July 10, 2008

You think you're close, but then you aren't...

I'd not looked at the "final rough cut" edit (as I am calling it) for some time. But then the other day I watched it on a computer that didn't have a sound card. What blew me away was how many mistakes and bad edits there were. FIVE PAGES WORTH! Sound really covers a lot of errors, I guess.

Sunday, July 06, 2008

I think my brain just threw up

I just read this on re: the AKIRA live action remake.

"Two part Live action film based on the six volume Manga Akira. This first film, due for a 2009 release, will be based on the first three volumes of the Manga.

Set in New-Manhattan a city rebuilt with Japanese money, the story focuses on two biker friends. Further plot is not known at this time."

NEW MANHATTAN? BUILT WITH JAPANESE MONEY? FURTHER PLOT NOT KNOW? And worse yet, Leonardo Decaprio is rumored to be in it. WHY?!?! (drops to knees and raises fists ti the cloudy skies) KAHN! KAHN! KA- oh wait...inspired by Jon there for a moment. (shouts) NO! NO! NO!

Friday, July 04, 2008

BIRTHDAY time...

July 4th is the day that it was announced that the Declaration of Independence was signed (the actual day it was signed was July the 2nd, I believe). So Happy 4th of July.

On a much smaller note, though very special to me, this is the third birthday of the idea of Darkness Aftermath. It was July 4th 2005 that I sat at my wife's, Uncle's lake house and drew out the first few pages of the storyboards for the movie.

On Sunday I am heading back to the same lake house...I will have a bunch of blank storyboards to take with me as I am going to storyboard the final battle between Gwen and the will be 90% CG. I have some shots of Gwen (Danielle) that we will use, but most of the fight scene will be is the only way...unless we resort to claymation...

Wednesday, July 02, 2008


We have had so much rain this summer...and cloud coverage? Fantastic. Too bad we aren't shooting a movie about rain. We even had a lightning strike in our back yard that stuck a high limb on one of our trees. The falling limb was slowed down by the garage roof and the electrical wires. It then hit our 12 ft. inflatable pool and drained all of the water. The pool survived.

We are expecting more thunderstorms tonight.

what to do...a quiz

What do you do when you've edited your movie together and there are several plot holes due to important footage that is missing?

a) State, "I always intended it to be this way. That was my first version. It always has been. Oh...and it's Darkness Aftermath episode 4, by the way. I'll clarify the story in the prequels because it was always meant to be the Tragedy of the Garum, not the adventures of Gwen"

b) get creative, REALLY creative with the editing.

c) Dub the entire movie in German and use French subtitles.

d) rewrite the story with a narrative voice over.

e) all the above.

Tuesday, July 01, 2008


Got internet back!

And then tonight I dropped off my keys and other stuff at my old job and walked out for the last felt good. I reached into my pocket to pull out the keys to my truck and realized that I was holding the key to my new office. YEAH!

old job office - basement storage closet that I share with two other guys. It is also the storage closet for old paper that no one wants to throw away even tho it is rotting. Also, low ceilings and a strange pipe that constantly hisses. Plus the room is about the size of an average bathroom.

new job office - upstairs room with my desk next to a window. I will have a computer that works and isn't 1,000 years old. I share the room with others but they have their own desks. There is a sink and shelves and (oddly enough) no old, rotting paper! I also get my name on the wall outside of my door. Plus the whole dang thing isn't in a low ceiling, black walled basement!

No internet at home

Things have been a bit slow without the internet at home. Seems our Verizon router has died. Should have a new one by Wed.