Archive for March, 2011

Farragut’s Next Feature, “The Price of Anything”

03/31/2011

Let’s publicly kick-off the next Starship Farragut feature episode!  Called “The Price of Anything” —- it was initially written by Paul R. Sieber in 2007 prior to leaving Farragut Films to work with Star Trek Phase II. Having co-written Starship Farragut’s pilot, “The Captaincy,” this story (previously entitled, “Fathers and Sons”) had carry-over elements from the pilot and was a Carter/Prescott story.  Since then, Paul has revised and enhanced it greatly.  We collectively believe it’s the right story now, coupled with perfect timing to finally execute on this film and bring this adventurous story to life.

For our most ambitious film to date, we have brought on-board some key individuals that will be instrumental in making this film a success. Starting with the behind-the-scenes professionals, we have:

Vic Mignogna – Director and Special Guest Star

No stranger to Starship Farragut, Vic Mignogna has lent his voice to Starship Farragut: The Animated Episodes. Since he was 8 years old, Vic has been acting for stage and screen, but in the last 13 years Vic has become one of the most prolific and popular voice actors in the world of animation and video games, lending his voice to over a hundred and fifty productions. Even longer than his voice acting, Vic has been a professional music composer / singer / producer who has written and produced hundreds of songs for TV, radio and CD.

At a very early age, Vic developed a passion for Star Trek The Original Series (TOS). Many days were spent, memorizing episodes, building communicators, phasers, costumes, and even rounding up the kids in the neighborhood for Star Trek movies that Vic shot, directed, and played Captain Kirk. In the years that followed, Vic earned a film degree and works regularly writing, producing, and directing all kinds of video and film productions. Nothing brings him more joy than bringing his skills and childhood love together, and after directing and acting in several Star Trek Phase II episodes, Vic is excited to be working with Starship Farragut on the live action series. In addition to directing, Vic will have a special guest role on film!

Matt Bucy – Director of Photography

Matt Bucy is enthusiastic about getting behind the lights and camera for Starship Farragut. He has worked in film and video for forty years on projects ranging from Super-8 experimental shorts to backyard SCI-FI to 35mm mainstream features. Most recently, he won Best Cinematography and Best Picture awards in the Vermont 48-Hour Film Festival for the short “Razor Burn.” Over the last two years he has completed photography and editing on the feature documentary, “The Sons of Tennessee Williams,” which has screened to sold-out houses at Frameline in San Francisco and at the Palm Springs International Film Festival, and which will make its television premiere on PBS in New Orleans this spring. For the past three years, he has volunteered at Star Trek Phase II as a grip, camera operator, and director of photography. He produces and directs behind-the-scenes documentaries, most recently the Seattle-based feature “Judas Kiss,” to be released this year. His film interests range widely and his award-winning experimental work has been screened frequently at underground festivals. Over the past year, he has completed photography on several shorts, including “The Tryout,” “Dear Edward,” “Razor Burn,” and “Violin Case” and is scheduled to shoot more short projects this year starting in March.

Todd Habercorn – Assistant Director

Todd Haberkorn has been involved with film productions for many years – attacking the industry from all aspects – in front of, as well as behind the camera. For “The Price of Anything,” Todd will be lending his Assistant Director experience to the project. When he isn’t working on live action projects, Todd is a voice actor for video games and anime. Some of his most recent video game titles include Rune Factory 3, Lufia: Curse of the Sinestrials, and Lux Pain while his recent anime projects are Dragon Ball Z, Full Metal Alchemist: Brotherhood, and Summer Wars. Todd also travels the country as a guest to anime conventions and enjoys meeting fans of the titles he has worked on in the animated world. His media company, Out of the Office Productions, keeps him busy as well with independent features as well as industrial work.

Sam Rooks – Lighting Gaffer

Sam Rooks is a local Jacksonville photographer and filmmaker, with a passion towards producing. He has been involved in many areas of film-making, including producer, property master, and electric gaffer. Sam was an extra in the movie “Lonely Hearts” starring John Travolta, as well as HBO’s “Recount” starring Kevin Spacey, where he was a political consultant to Producer Mike Hausman. He has photographed the Miss America First Coast Pageant and the Miss & Teen Jacksonville U.S.A. Pageants, produced such short films as “Within the Heart of a Child” and “Grandma and the Fly” and was dolly gaffer on the short film “Planting Hope” produced for Jacksonville’s domestic violence shelter, Hubbard House. Sam has been instrumental in equipping all sets with lighting and set construction.

Guy Davis – Animator and Storyboard Artist

G.S. (Guy) Davis is a comic book artist/animator living in colorful Colorado. He holds a Bachelor’s of Science degree in Animation, with a specialization in 2D (Hand drawn) animation. Having learned how much he loved to tell stories, Guy began writing comics in 1995. Not much has changed since then and today he still tells stories, working away on his current project: a Star Trek fan comic about the life and times of a Federation Destroyer called “Tamerlane” (http://www.usstamerlane.com). Currently, Guy is working on the Tamerlane episode “Weave.”  In addition to doing the storyboards for Starship Farragut’s “Just Passing Through”, he has worked extensively on both of the Animated Farragut episodes with NEO f/x.

These are just some of the key folks behind the camera that will be working on this film; I will mention others on another blog update (e.g., Sound Engineer, post-production team NEO f/x) such as our Line Producer (Production Manager), which I will personally be relying upon greatly on this effort!

In front of the camera, we have some newcomers to us, but known to others.

Frank Hernandez – Gene Carter

Born in Manhattan, NY and raised in Jackson, NJ where he still resides with his wife Gina, Frank Hernandez began his acting career by auditioning for a local theatrical production of “1776”. From there, his roles included “Carl, the Bus Driver” in “Bus Stop” and “Mendel, the Rabbi’s Son” in “Fiddler on the Roof” later followed roles in “Our Town”, “The Importance of Being Earnest” and the Ocean Country College production of “1776.” Since moving from local community theatre to media, Frank has been on the set of many television and movie productions, but is more widely recognized for his portrayal of the character “Declan” in “Star Wars: Revelations.” Frank also played “Agamemnon” in the episode “Greece” in the series “Engineering an Empire” on the History Channel and can also be seen in many of the second season episodes of the Science Channel show “Sci-Fi Science physics of the impossible.” Not a newcomer to Farragut Films, Frank plays “Suarez” is in United Worlds Entertainment’s SCI-FI film, “POLARIS,” which Farragut Films is working in association. As an avid Star Trek fan, Frank is very excited to be working with us on this production where he will play Captain Carter’s father, Gene and will have an instrumental part in this film.

Cheralyn Lambeth – Romulan Commander

Cheralyn’s acting pursuits include working in various commercials, as well as TV shows, including “One Tree Hill,” the Sci-Fi Channel show “IQ 145,” an episode of the CNN International program “Future Summit,” and the film “The Key Man” (alongside Jack Davenport of Pirates of the Caribbean). She was also a principal character in the History Channel docudrama “Isaac’s Storm,” which premiered in the fall of 2004 and can still sometimes be seen on The History Channel (THC).

Somewhat fascinating is Cheralyn’s impressive costume work.  She began creating her own costumes and creatures at an early age, when her mother finally refused to make any more odd costumes for her at Halloween. Cheralyn carried this passion with her into college at UNC-Chapel Hill where, after having failed miserably as an Air Force Reservist, she decided to major in something much more useful such as Dramatic Arts and Radio/TV/Motion Pictures. Shortly after graduation, Cheralyn relocated to New York to study costumes, wigs, and make-up at the Juilliard School, and earned her first fifteen minutes of fame performing Off-Broadway with John Leguizamo in Mambo Mouth. She then moved to Minneapolis to help create Muppet costumes for Sesame Street Live! (as well as a large purple bunny for the film The Net), and returned to New York a year later to work with Jim Henson Productions on the TV series Dinosaurs! and the film The Muppet Christmas Carol.  After her time at Henson, Cheralyn worked with Paramount Production Services, creating costumes and props for Paramount properties such as The Star Trek Earth Tour, Titanic: The Movie on Tour, and Star Trek: The Experience at the Las Vegas Hilton. Some of her other credits include work (both in front of and behind the camera) on Mel Gibson`s The Patriot, and costuming work on the Park Service historical film Manassas: End of Innocence directed by Star Wars sound specialist Ben Burtt. In addition to her costume work, Cheralyn has served as play-tester for the Star Wars RPG Mission to Lianna, and has written articles for such genre-related periodicals as Bjo Trimble’s Sci-Fi Spotlight and Con-Tour Magazine. Cheralyn’s most recent costume work includes the New Line Cinema feature film The New World starring Colin Farrell, and Evan Almighty (the sequel to Bruce Almighty). She currently lives in Charlotte NC and works as a free-lance costume/prop/puppet builder, as well as putting the finishing touches on her first book The Well-Dressed Puppet, scheduled for release later this year.

Brian Holloway – Romulan Soldier

Brian began his theatre career at age seven when he appeared in a regional theatrical production of “Fiddler on the Roof” with his father. Although he worked on other productions, he dabbled in the medical field for a short time, but could not be kept away from the bright lights and appeal of the stage. After receiving his BFA in Performance Arts, he toured nationally with several theatre organizations for about seven years and could be seen headlining in Productions ranging from Shakespeare’s “Much Ado About Nothing” and “Henry IV, parts I & II” to musicals like “Big River”, “Man of La Mancha”, “Kiss Me, Kate” and “Jekyll & Hyde.”

He got into the SCI-FI realm when he was still in high school and has been a regular convention attendee since he was 15. He has also received theater degrees in costume and makeup design and has won National and regional awards for his design work. He even had costume designs for an original theatrical piece “HOTLINE!” displayed at the Kennedy Center in Washington, DC. While in Utah, he was fortunate to befriend an actress, Paula Crist, who served as an actress and stuntwoman for productions like “Star Trek: The Motion Picture,” “Battlestar Galactica,” and the TV series “Planet of the Apes.” Paula got him connected to the film industry and he has been fortunate enough to land limited work in such productions as “The Patriot,” “Last of the Mohicans,” “Domestic Disturbance,” “Doctor Who: The Movie,” HIGHLANDER: The Series,” “Shallow Hal,” and Star Trek. Brian is currently the Special Make-Up F/X Supervisor for Star Trek: Phase II. Brian now lives in Charlotte, NC and is also a noted costumer working with fellow Cheralyn Lambeth, the 501st Squadron, and SCA Wardrobe Guild.

On behalf of the Farragut Films’ management team, “Welcome Aboard!”

Again, these are just some of the many folks that will be working on “The Price of Anything.” Future blog updates will provide introductory remarks for other key folks, as well as progress reports and happenings.  Damn the torpedoes, warp speed ahead!

Stay tuned for the next blog on MEGA-KHHAAAAANNNN! I mean, MEGA-CON.   🙂

A “Big Bang” for Costumed Trekkies!

03/21/2011

It was Wednesday, February 9th around 3:30 PM when I received a call from Joe Salcedo, CEO and co-founder of ANOVOS asking me if I could shift one of our current projects into warp following a request CBS Television. I had already been one of their main advisors and collaborators with previous projects. They were engaged to see if they could provide an exacting replica of the formal dress uniform worn by Captain Kirk for an episode of THE BIG BANG THEORY. They needed it quick as it needed to be at the Burbank studio early on Monday morning… luckily, this was something that we had already started working on together, I just didn’t expect it to be shifted to the warp speed timeline. Having just gotten an arduous roller coast of proposals to the government working long hours and several weekends, I initially declined citing I needed to rest and catch up on personal things on the home front; however, some good coaxing from both ANOVOS principals, Joe and Dana Gasser (COO and co-founder), I accepted the challenge.

Prior to committing, I had asked them if the tunic was going to be worn by the actor or used as a prop.  They got confirmation from CBS Television that it was merely going to be used a prop – one of two Star Trek tunics in a closet that would be pulled out with some accompanying dialogue.  With that in mind, I would not have to start from scratch, but could use a prototype of the formal dress uniform done a few years ago.

I’d like to point out that I just recently received a copy of the correct pattern that is exacting to how the originals were made.  The TOS formal dress uniform pattern is a complicated variation of the raglan sleeve pattern.  Interesting enough are the three pieces that comprise the sleeve itself.  There was insufficient time to make the tunic from scratch and since the uniform would be used merely for a prop for a second or two of air-time, simply not necessary for CBS Television’s specifications.

I would spend the next two nights after work finalizing it and detailing the tunic for overnight courier on Friday afternoon.  My prototype of Kirk’s formal dress uniform was made of a lime green satin-like polyester fabric using the reverse side of the fabric, which gives a metallic-like sheen as shown on TV. The fabric may not be exacting in terms of its original, screen-used counterpart, but it does look how it was presented on TV. A collar was added, as well as the gold metallic braid that parts the tunic down the middle.  The rare gold metallic braid is exact to the original for Star Trek’s flag officers (braid trim from the private collection of Robert Withrow).  The prototype already had gold piping along the shoulders (thanks to Cheryl Thomas-Smith’s help from some years back on this project).

Close-up Shot of Braid Trim - Courtesy of Robert Withrow

In terms of the decorative service triangles to denote Starfleet accolades, I used what triangles I had available. I did not have time to make the tear-drop medal and making that known upfront, Dana went ahead and developed it from scratch using materials purchased at Hobby Lobby. I was blown away after seeing it completed – looked exacting to me especially for less than 24 hours.

Close-up of Kirk's Service Accolades

You’d think that after shipping the costume out via FedEx, all would be well, but there was a small gliche for the exact time.  It was needed by the earliest 8:30 AM delivery in Burbank, but due to a disconnect at Fed Ex, it was being sent for the 10:30 AM delivery.  We were able to work some things and it was delivered at 9:15 AM and used for filming.

Flash forward a month later.  With great anticipation, we all watch to see both ANOVOS’ regular command gold tunic with the lime green formal dress uniform to make their debut on prime-time TV. This is what we got to see:

As seen on TV

Admittedly, it there was more to be seen, but it was a glorious 3 seconds to see our hard work on TV – that’s Hollywood for ya!  All in all, it was made to CBS Television’s specifications and thankful that ANOVOS convinced me otherwise to do this project.  I should also point out that in ANOVOS’ “regular” gold Kirk tunic above, the captain’s rank braid is that of Farragut’s braid (courtesy of Kim Haas of KRH Embroidery), which is used on our Starship Farragut productions.

For more information on this special project, please check out ANOVOS’  link.   Also, check out one of the original William Shatner formal dress uniforms @ Gerald Gurian’s blog:

http://www.startrekpropauthority.com/2010/08/special-photostudy-star-trek-original.html

For more details on ANOVOS and their official Star Trek exacting uniform line, including both the new JJ Abram’s film and Classic TREK, please check out:  www.anovos.com