If you haven’t yet seen the teaser trailer for Rocketman Studio’s upcoming independent short film, Stolen Planet, then prepare to be impressed.
The story behind Stolen Planet takes place in a future where Earth is a dying planet reliant upon the excavation of resources from other worlds. It follows Charles Hockner (Brian Deaver), a technician who is sent to check on interplanetary outpost JP-693 after it fails to report in. Upon arrival he expects to find a malfunctioning communication tower, but instead what he discovers leaves him fighting for his life, and not just his own…
Before I give away some of the reasons why I’m so impressed with how this film looks, watch the trailer:
Stolen Planet Trailer
Stolen Planet is the brainchild of filmmaker Nick Kougioulis who has been working on developing the film for more than three years. Kougioulis has personally handled nearly all aspects of the production, from the screenplay to filming, editing, and even the visual effects – everything except the acting. He has shot most of the movie in the studio and on location using a Sony Camcorder, and all of the post production has, in his own words, taken place “in the dark corners of a basement.” I was pretty impressed with the trailer but once I learned it was all the product of just one man I’d say ‘amazed’ sums it up better.
Keen to learn more, I caught up with Nick who was kind enough to take some time away from his dark basement to field a few questions.
Have we seen Brian Deaver in anything else?
NK: Brian’s done a lot of advertising work and has been in some of my smaller short film projects. He has a great look and endless energy in the way he performs. He was also willing to let me put him through some very grueling shoots in 100 degree weather wearing that suit. So he was my guy for this role.
I also see the name ‘Jeremy Dillon’ in the casting credits. What role does he play?
NK: I’d rather not comment on Jeremy Dillon’s particular character at this point. But, he is a newcomer to film but has done some theatre work.
Can you tell me anything about the laser whip shown at the end?
NK: The laserwhip! Well lets just say that every technician that travels through space and visits distant planets should have one.
How long will the film be?
NK: The film will be approx. 20 minutes
Can I confirm that you’ve filmed Stolen Planet on a Sony Camcorder?
NK: Yes, the EX1 was the camera I used to shoot the majority of the film which has been shot and posted at 1080p.
What software are you using to put the film together?
NK: I’m editing the film using Final Cut Pro, and doing FX work with Vue, After Effects, Shake and a few others.
Do you have any specific festivals lined up as yet?
NK: Not as of yet.
Are you planning on releasing a longer trailer at any point?
NK: Probably not, but there might be some behind the scenes type clips that I release on the website that will give a little more insight into some of the other elements of the story. I’m not a big fan of trailers that give too much away.
What have been your biggest challenges during the production process?
NK: I think shooting on location has been the biggest challenge. Our primary location was 4 hours away, so pulling off multiple production days there with some big props and a virtually non existent budget was tricky. However, the effects work is the nightmare that I currently live in at the moment.
Kougioulis refers to Stolen Planet as a “throw back in science fiction adventure” that should bring back memories of something you’ve seen before whilst feeling fresh and original at the same time. He plans to complete the film in July 2009 at which point he intends to showcase it at various festivals around the world.
I’ll be looking forward to it.
In the meantime, support his excellent looking independent film by spreading the word to visit the official Stolen Planet website: