Posts Tagged ‘Star Trek Continues’

Inside Farragut Films: Costumes & Props

03/25/2014

Farragut Films stretches beyond the studio into the academic world. U.S. Army SGT Kolleen Elsberry with the Defense Information School (DINFOS) located on Fort Meade, Maryland contacted us to participate in an important course.  Kolleen has been taking the Basic Combat Correspondence Course, roughly a 4+ month class focusing on journalism, communications and media.  She and her classmates selected “Starship Farragut” to be the subject of their human interest story/class project.  Kollen is a friend and “battle buddy’ to Peter Christian who also graduated from the same course last month and referred Kolleen.  For those that may not be familiar with Peter Christian, he was an Associate Producer and Costumer for another fan film project called, Star Trek – Of Gods and Men.

This mini-documentary features interviews with Holly Bednar and myself — and provides just a small glimpse into costume creation and some of the props used in Starship Farragut and in some cases, Star Trek Continues.

Many topics discussed in the two days of filming were cut only to meet Kolleen’s project requirements. However, we acknowledged the talented and creative people who help and support Starship Farragut.  Those folks mentioned in the context of their areas were:  Mike Bednar, Vic Mignogna, Matt Bucy, Ralph Miller, Michael Struck, Jack Marshall, Greg Greene, Royal Weaver, Sam Rooks, Hetoreyn and Dan Scanlan.  Those related to wardrobe specifically called out are also acknowledged here (no order of priority) – Ginger Holley, Eve Gidion, Nancy Heyl, Kim Haas, Christine Boyer, Michael Cowart, Christine Jefferies, Amanda Hamilton, Dean Rogers and Teresa Eick. When I got the DVD documentary from Kolleen, I asked her what her ‘take-away’ from doing this project – her reply:

“Seeing all the work and behind-the-scenes passion that goes into this project is amazing to me.  It’s clear that everyone’s heart and soul is vested into this project.”

Special thanks to Kolleen Elsberry and the rest of her military classmates – UASF SSGT Adam Keele, ARMY Private Victoria Eckert, USAF Airman Madison Silvestor that worked on this mini-documentary.  With Farragut Films rolling up on its 10th year anniversary, we’ll likely be working to produce a full-length documentary to celebrate and highlight the contributions of our entire team.  Look out for “STARSHIP FARRAGUT – The First 10 Years” coming soon!

Seeing is Believing – Spotlight on Kurt Carley

06/05/2013

For those that have seen Starship Farragut’s “The Price of Anything,” you will definitely remember the cloaked Romulan super-soldier in the film.  That memorable, yet “unseen” character was played by Kurt Carley.  Kurt is no stranger to the fan film genre, having played Captain Christopher Pike in Star Trek New Voyages, as well as Lex Luthor in “World’s Finest.”  I first saw “World’s Finest many years ago and thought it was a real movie trailer!  For those that may not be familiar with it, here it is:

Anyway, some more information on Kurt:

Kurt Carley started playing monsters in the original off-Broadway production of Little Shop of Horror’s in 1986 and knocked around doing various puppets for a NYC based puppet company. In 1997 he moved to Los Angeles where he played Godzilla for the film of the same name for Roland Emmerich. Kurt has played numerous creatures and what not for films and television since then including: Lethal Weapon 4, Underworld 1, 2, and 3, The West Wing, Lady in the Water, Land of the Lost, Jack and Diane, The Today Show, various commercials, and the upcoming film Flight 7500.  Here is Kurt’s demo reel as a Suit Performer in Hollywood:

http://www.kurtcarley.com/kurtcarley.com/Home.html

The Starship Farragut shots with Kurt on the planet were filmed in Calico, California.

The Invisible Man - Kinda, Sorta

The Invisible Man – Kinda, Sorta

Michael Struck of NEO f/x who leads up special effects and post-production efforts for the webseries, spent a considerable amount of time defining how shots would work.  To ensure that the live action shots of Kurt would work effectively by the special effects team at NEO f/x, Michael came out on location.  He worked closely with the Director, Vic Mignogna, the Director of Photography, Matt Bucy, and Line Producer, Kasey Shafsky during the two-day desert shoot , and was able to direct the monster’s and camera’s actions to allow for easier effects creation.  Surprisingly, giving life to an invisible creature is not a simple task.

“While we could have shot the movements of the creature in a studio, it was better to have Kurt on-site and interact with the other actors.  However, that presented challenges of its own, considering that the creature was not supposed to have a shadow. Overall, a challenge, but one of the more ‘fun’ effects we have worked on in a while!”

Vic, Matt Bucy, Michael Struck and Kasey Shafsky prepare for FX shot

Vic, Matt, Michael, Kasey and Ralph Miller prepare for FX shot

I recently interviewed our Invisible Man on his work with us…

For “The Price of Anything”, you played quite a different role donning a green-screen outfit from head to toe and running in the Californian desert. What was that like?  I recall it being hard to see, perhaps breathe, and very cold out in the Californian desert.

I have done a lot of similar work for video games, films, and television over the years and it was an absolute pleasure to work with the director Vic and the entire cast and crew. Working in the suit was quite easy for me as I am accustomed to wearing much more ‘restrictive’ costumes and so the simple green-screen suit for “The Price of Anything” was a vacation.

Referring to the previous question, did you find it difficult being directed?

I did not find it difficult at all being directed as my ‘performance’ did not need to be as modulated or subtle as the real actors. I was there to be a reference for the actors and the FX people working in post-production. I did tell Vic my standard rule, which I tell every director I work with, which is: If I don’t understand what you’re TELLING me to do, SHOW me what you want and I’ll do that.

When you received the DVD and saw the completed film, what did you think?

I am always impressed with the quality of the product… especially when you realize that these are being produced with very little money. Of course I hated what I did, but I always do!

Overall, how would you describe your overall experience working with Farragut Films?

After we were finished I sent John Broughton a message and told him how much I enjoyed working with them and if the opportunity arose again, I would love to be a part of their work in some way. I love their passion and commitment and it really shows in everything they do.

What are some of the other film projects you’re working on?

I am working on some ‘top secret’ projects right now and I have hopes of doing an independent feature with my friend Sandy Collora, the director of Batman: Dead End later this year.

"Make a wish!" - Kurt, Todd Haberkorn and J. Broughton

“Make a wish!” – Kurt, Todd Haberkorn and J. Broughton

Look for more of Kurt’s distinctive voice and commanding presence on-screen and upcoming TV segments.  Who knows, Kurt may return in an upcoming Starship Farragut or Star Trek Continues episode, but certain that we’ll see his face next time.  Thanks from the entire cast and crew of Starship Farragut!

TREK Magic Once Again!

05/17/2012

Wow, it’s been quite some time since I last blogged.  Probably because I’ve been busy jumping from filming of Starship Farragut’s THE PRICE OF ANYTHING exterior shoots in LA, to supporting wardrobe of the new Dracogen and Farragut Films’ webseries, STAR TREK CONTINUES (STC), to then filming STC two weekends ago.

Speaking of wardrobe, special thanks to ANOVOS for the Starfleet uniforms.  Because of their involvement, I only needed to tailor the uniforms to the respective actors and create Trek pants, as well as an additional tunic for Vic Mignogna.  Vic and I are most grateful for our ANOVOS partnership.  Although a small level of effort for wardrobe, it did seem challenging given real life commitments.  I’d be remissed if I did not also acknowledge and thank my friend Pavlina for developing the pattern and constructing a key outfit from a TOS episode; as well as thanking Lizzy Shram for her work on the orange jumpsuit and other sewing support.  It feels great to finally get ‘down-to-earth’ folks who have strong interpersonal skills and talent beyond just sewing a straight line.  Actually, both are “master” costumers as I became to understand; blessed to have their involvement.

With THE PRICE OF ANYTHING slated for release this August, folks have posted on our Starship Farragut Facebook page, asking what’s next?  Well, we’re officially in pre-production of our next Farragut adventure.  The group reviewed numerous scripts and we ultimately chose the screenplay, CONSPIRACY OF INNOCENCE written by Bobby Nash.

Bobby Nash Watching Rough-cut of “The Price of Anything” at TREK TRAX

Bobby has written a plethora of novels and scripts – you can check him out at www.bobbynash.com.  Producer Jack Marshall is currently reviewing and annotating the script; from there collective weigh-in from the other stakeholders, which will then provide back to Bobby for final incorporation.  We will film CONSPIRACY OF INNOCENCE immediately following the STC full episode this fall.

Also, I should point out that Mark Hildebrand will be filming his Starship Farragut vignette, NIGHT SHIFT during Veteran’s Day weekend.  Mark wrote the screenplay a couple of years ago, but has been busy with non-TREK films, such as ANTHEM, which tells the story behind Francis Scott Key’s creation of “The Star-Spangled Banner” and explores the role of music and patriotism during The War of 1812.  A long-time Farraguteer – we’re glad to have Mark doing some TREK work again!

The last time we hung out with Mark, we showed him a rough cut of THE PRICE OF ANYTHING.  He was most impressed. I shared with him my thoughts on how great the filming went and how it took me seven years “to get it.”  On that point, he reminded me that I needed to relay to folks that I will be continuing the role of CAPT Carter.

The last time I blogged, I shared how I was stepping down – filming at the OCT film shoot was bitter sweet as I finally able to enjoy the acting aspect, but had already committed to stepping down.  While formulating ideas how the Carter character could reprise a role in the next Farragut adventure outside of being the Captain, Mike and Holly Bednar conferred with me about staying on and “keeping things the way they were.”  I don’t think that they will truly know how much that meant to me.  I’m optimistic that when folks see THE PRICE OF ANYTHING, they will finally see the Carter character as I envisioned him.  Much of the success of this film goes to all the hardworking individuals, including key crew folks such as Vic Mignogna, Matt Bucy, Jack Marshall, Kasey Shafsky, Michael Struck, Ralph Miller and of course our dedicated set construction crew — Royal Weaver,Greg Greene, Dan Scanlan, Sam Rooks, Ron Simkanich, Frank Parker, Katrina Parsons, Cera Weaver, Scotty Whitehurst, Stacy Walker, Jeff Johnson, Bruce Boyd, and Carl Mazur .  Last – but not least, thanks to Paul Sieber for writing the script.

Staying Aboard Farragut

Could the magic that we shared during the OCT and DEC film shoots for Starship Farragut be replicated for the STAR TREK CONTINUES shoot?  The answer is AFFIRMATIVE!  With memories fresh from filming a few weeks ago, I can tell you that folks were equally committed to both webseries and we were able to film amazing things on schedule and have fun without drama or strife.

I’ve been a steadfast critic of staying clear of doing a fan film based on the iconic characters of Kirk, Spock and McCoy.  Our Starship Farragut webseries is fundamentally different, showcasing the crew of a different starship than the one named Enterprise.  However, having witnessed the filming of the STC shoot, I can tell you that I was blown away.  Not only are we working with professionals, but each actor had embodied the essence of their respective character, which translated well on film.

Vic and the others have spent the necessary time and effort to portray our legendary space heroes and have done justice by them.  If I may share a geek-out moment – there was a moment when the entire cast was on the bridge in uniform filming a scene that caused the hairs on my arms to stand straight up.  I was standing near Jack Marshall who had his back to me watching the monitor – when he yelled, “Cut!” – I immediately was going to tell him about what transpired and called his name.  When he turned around, his eyes were glossy and he said, “Did you feel that?”  I replied, “Yeah!”  We both concluded that it was like witnessing Star Trek being filmed almost 50 years ago on the Paramountlot.  A truly surreal moment…

Cast of Star Trek Continues

Even though this was our first STC shoot, there was a genuine camaraderie of the cast and crew.  I’m extremely optimistic about the continuing voyages of this enterprising adventure…

Grant Imahara, Greg Greene, Chris Doohan and Mike Bednar

Having a Blast – Jack Marshall

Kasey Shafsky, Scotty Whitehurst and Matt Bucy

I’ll wrap up simply stating “Thanks” to all the cast and crew of Starship Farragut and Star Trek Continues.  We are truly and boldy going where no one has gone before.