Updating the ol’ Animatic

by - 2012/04/17 20 Comments Directing & writing, Production

Currently the animatic is set up a little weird!

We’ve linked in scenes from every blend file into a master timeline in the video sequence editor (making significant use of the mapping cameras to timeline markers)- which is both cool and not-so-cool. On the plus side, it gives immediate updates. Whenever anyone updates an animation or a model, all we have to do is update SVN and bam! It’s in the animatic.


Editing the Storyboard

by - 2012/03/19 8 Comments Artwork, Directing & writing, Production

The video has nothing to do with the rest of this post :P. I was sketching “defensive tombstones”, and Sebastian walked by and said, “I have the perfect shot tracked for that!” so I threw some in! I’ll wait to develop them until we know if we have a specific place for them, though.

It’s also the first video on our new Mango-Specific YouTube channel. There are some videos we want to post, but aren’t really deserving of the massive traffic the BlenderFoundation channel gets, so it’s more for scraps and the like. If that’s your thing, though, feel free to subscribe-or-whatever.

Anyway! Anyways? Anywaying?


Open or closed: we’re open! :)

by - 2012/03/12 24 Comments Directing & writing, Production

This morning’s kick-off meeting we agreed on following the OPEN strategy:

– We’ll open everything, except for the last minute.
– But we do not publish the script at all.

This is easier than trying to check each time if we spoil secrets… or being forced to categorize posts. This strategy allows us to discuss a lot of issues openly for our followers, but still keep the ending hidden – AND let everyone guess the story :)


Kickoff Workshop: Day 2

by - 2012/03/06 31 Comments Directing & writing, Production


So we filmed the script this morning. The current edit is looking pretty darn similar to the animatic from yesterday (with a few minor exceptions). Everybody was awesome! This is a pretty incredible team.

Destruction simulations, amazing robot texturing, 3d motion tracking, editing, great animation, and insane bug fixing abound! The film has really taken shape- but tomorrow the CG shots should really start looking closer to finalized! Also! Getting audio locked down!

If this is where we’re at by the end of the 2nd day, with any luck we’re going to be able to do all the polishing we need!

Kick-off week

by - 2012/03/05 32 Comments Directing & writing, Production

Kickoff meeting!

Monday morning, 10.00h. I delivered a script to the team, which they’ll have to turn into a short film within 5 days. Premiere will be here at 18.00h friday, on youtube an hour later! The process of making it will be shared as open as possible. So: here’s the script already linked to the right. Written by yours truly, playing here in the Blender Institute! By the end of the day it should become a full storyboard and shot breakdown.

Tony Mullen will be here filming to deliver a documentary making-of!

Isn’t focus-puller the silliest job ever?

by - 2012/02/22 14 Comments Directing & writing, Production

Ian (Director) and Joris Kerbosch (Director of Photography)

Today meeting with Joris Kerbosch (Director of Photography) and Ian. We went extensively over the script (“Ian, what’s this film about, for real?”), and already discussed plenty of practical filming issues – Joris brings in so much experience! Joris also had his wishlist of important people to add to his crew. On the top of his list: the Focus Puller!

Me: “So… eh, focal pulling can’t be done by some local monkey?”

Ok… now I’ve learned that there’s much less good focus pullers than decent DP’s around. He’ll not only “keep things in focus” but will be operating the camera itself in general; with Joris also running around to work with gaffers (light) and grips (cranes, dollies). Assuming we can find all of these… luckily there’s Rob Tuytel – our Film Academy connection!

Joris and Ian will be meeting next week again to visit some locations in town. I can only give Joris final answers on crews in 2 weeks… when we know a bit more about final budgets.

Day 2: If you look at the windows, they are so dutch.

by - 2012/02/21 15 Comments Directing & writing, Production

So we decided that, unlike Sintel, we’re not going to wait to post blog updates until we have things like, “Good Reasons”- we’re gonna post whatever, just to keep you guys in the loop, and show you what’s really going on. We’re not going to be nearly as worried about secrecy (that said, we’re also probably not going to bend over backwards showing you everything :P).

This is good news for me, because otherwise the concept of frequent blog post ‘presentations’ to the blender community would be totally exhausting/intimidating!


First Day in the Institute: Script Updated!

by - 2012/02/20 8 Comments Artwork, Directing & writing

My first day working in the institute is finished! This morningĀ I finished polishing up the next draft of the script. I’d been chewing on the first version for a while, and realized it suffered from being spread a bit too thin, and dramatically detached (non of the stakes directly affected the main characters). It seems like the best changes are always obvious in retrospect (‘does the protagonist have a ‘motivation’?’) I consolidated the scenes to take place in only two locations, and brought the antagonist into the same scene as the protagonists, and the story is now a lot stronger!