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Posts Tagged ‘episode 2’

It’s been a little over three years since I finished work on the first “episode” of my Fallen Star film series, which was, at the time, only to be a one-off (although initially planned as a series). Those three years have been spent working on another five episodes simultaneously, but the last year has seen the final push to get Episode 2 out the door, and now it’s finally available to watch online. Check it out below:

We learned a lot on episode 1, felt what our limitations were, and decided to push against them here. With a better camera and improved image clarity, I was able to make more extensive use of our greenscreen background to put our characters into a wider variety of locations, most of which did not physically exist. I’d also improved upon my animation and rendering, and with a faster PC, was able to create longer and more dynamic space sequences.

We paid closer attention to our camera work and editing for this one, and more time was spent on the scripts and trying to flesh the characters out a little more. The practicalities of working on scenes from five episodes at once were difficult but we got everything we absolutely needed in time for this one, and more episodes are still being worked on now.

I personally think what we all, as amateurs, have achieved here, on practically no budget, is something to be proud of. However, I want to keep this blog focused on my technical skills, which I will get to in a later article, accompanied by a visual effects breakdown video. Thanks for watching!

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Last weekend, I put together a short trailer (or a long teaser, depending on your take!) for Fallen Star: Episode 2. Here it is on YouTube (click the video title to view it larger on YouTube):

This is what I’ve been working on for the past few months. Well, the past year if you include all the writing and planning we did first.

But how?! Why?! Well, towards the end of 2010,  barely a month after we premiered Fallen Star Episode 1, we discussed the possibility of making more ‘episodes’. It wasn’t completely out of the blue – we’d thought about making it episodic right from the start – but the scale and difficulty eventually put us off, and so it became a one-off film.

After it was finished, making more ‘episodes’ made sense in a way – we still had all the pieces of the set, all the costumes, etc.  – but we didn’t want to just make one more; it seemed too much effort for the sake of just another film. So I considered the economics of scale – we’d only have to set everything up once; filming five times as much footage doesn’t take five times as long. If we could end up with a kind of ‘mini-series’ of episodes, it would be worth the relatively little extra effort required to make it happen.

Principle filming began in August 2011, and I’ve been working on production and post-production since then. With all my attention on episode 2, I’ve had my work cut for me in constructing new virtual interiors, new spaceships and new graphics. I’m reusing whatever I can, but that’s surprisingly little. It’s still a learning process, and I’m muddling through the best I can, but I love doing all this stuff.

For the trailer, there wasn’t a lot I could show off just yet. Full trailers normally have dialogue, but none of our scenes are finished because we’re going to redo all the audio right at the end. That left me with only one choice: a montage of shots to some epic trailer music!

And as for the line at the end – “they’re here!” – would it spoil the illusion to learn that I recorded that at the weekend while sitting around in my dressing gown? Yes? Oh well!

I’m hoping the film will be done before the end of the year, although there’s a lot going on at the moment and hobby projects have a tendancy to slip. We’ll see!

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