Saturday, 30 October 2010

Call for voice actor for new dark production

I've been on holiday this week.

Try as I might, I cannot avoid being drawn to the computer to try out new story ideas - both in terms of scripting and set-building. Well, I'm afraid it's too late! I have a new script, and the beginnings of some new sets that I'm getting quite excited about. It's far too early to say too much about this movie, I can't even tell you what it will be called yet as I don't want to give too much away.

Anyway, here is an early screenshot to give you an idea as to what this will look like. There's no post production done on this shot so it is a bit rough at the moment. I've borrowed some of the textures from D.L. Watson's excellent Industrial Corridor set (with permission!) which contributes to the gritty feel tremendously. Also, you might be thinking that I've addressed this topic before in Cut & Shut - but actually, what is going on here is something quite different...

It's quite a short script, and I'm looking for a voice actor to play the nasty guy. Ideally, I have a Ray Winstone or Jason Stratham type of accent in mind - menacing, London gangstery type of thing. If you're interested then please send me a message; iain.friar { a t }, ideally with some samples of your work. I will warn you now that sound quality is pretty important so you will need to provide a low noise recording.

Monday, 25 October 2010

The Countdown to Machinima Expo 2010

The countdown to Machinima Expo 2010 is now well under way. This year it is being held on the 20th and 21st November, and is possibly the biggest date in the machinima community's calendar. And the great thing is that anyone can attend, no matter where you are in the world...
That's right! The Expo takes place in Second Life, which means that anyone can come along for free - all you need is an internet connection, and access to Second Life (which is also free).
It's also a great way to take the plunge and try out Second Life for yourself if you haven't already done so - it's dead easy to use, and as there is always a healthy turnout at the Expo it means you'll be picking up lots of contacts while you're there.
However, if you don't fancy the idea of Second Life then for the first time ever you'll be able to join via a normal web browser thanks to the TMU Theater. So, you can just sit back and enjoy the entertainment.
The Jury has already been announced over on the Machinima Expo blog, and features some familiar faces, and some new ones. And of course excitement is now building to hear which movies made the grade to be screened, and which ones have been selected to go forward for the Jury prize competition. There are some killer prizes on offer this year so watch this space!
The Expo is rightly recognised as an important event for the world of machinima, and that's why we see some great names in there as sponsors. There's the established heavyweights of Moviestorm and Reallusion, and joining them this year are cheeky young upstarts Muvizu. How do I know they're cheeky upstarts? Well, like me they're from Glasgow and it is a known fact that everyone from Glasgow is a cheeky young upstart.
Anyway, this year's Expo is shaping up to be a doozie, and that is thanks in no small part to the organisers, and those who are working behind the scenes so well done to Phil "Overman" Rice, Ricky Grove, Dulci, Phil "Biggs Trek" Browne, Damien Valentine, and Kate Fosk! (Did I miss anyone? If so tell me!)

Sunday, 3 October 2010

Beautiful movie by the Blender Foundation

This week I watched a movie that has been generating quite a lot of interest among the online community of late. It's called Sintel, and is a charming fantasy animation made entirely within Blender, which is an open source 3D content creation suite.
The reason I think this movie is so interesting is because it shows just what is possible when a free software tool is placed in the right hands. The "right hands" in this case appear to be quite numerous, and although the software itself is free that's not to say there wasn't money involved in this project. No, it's probably not machinima (and I'm not going to try to offer a definition of machinima here, there are too many trolls out there ready to take exception), but the spirit behind the project shares something with the spirit of machinima. That is, just because you're not a full time professional animator with access to artists, modellers, and render farms, doesn't mean you can't bang out your own modest little animation. That said, Sintel isn't really a modest little animation - it's a slick, atmospheric short which combines beautiful visuals with terrific sound mixing.
Watch it, enjoy it, don't try to figure out what it is and what it isn't, and reflect on the idea that maybe one day the machinima tools that we all use might yet be capable of something of this calibre.

First festival showing for Ruth

I managed to get Ruth completed just before the submission deadline for Machinima Expo 2010. After an anxious couple of weeks I received a confirmation that Ruth has been selected for screening at the expo. This is terrific news because it means I'll have two movies screening this year; in addition to Ruth, Embers was also selected!
There was a 25% increase in submissions this year, with around 200 movies submitted in total, so it's great to have made the final cut.
Congratulations to the other directors who were successful too.
Looking forward to the Expo.