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Follow hard boiled detective, Jack Gibson, in this visually striking film that gets to the roots of Noir & Science Fiction
Follow hard boiled detective, Jack Gibson, in this visually striking film that gets to the roots of Noir & Science Fiction
71 backers pledged $5,005 to help bring this project to life.

About this project

VALROSA BEACH - A 1980's Noir project video thumbnail
Replay with sound
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$5,005

71

LAST DAY - SPECIAL REWARD

Get the Digital copy of the film, soundtrack, and a Pixel Drawing of your choice!
Get the Digital copy of the film, soundtrack, and a Pixel Drawing of your choice!

At its core, Valrosa Beach is a classic hard-boiled detective film with a touch of science fiction. The film follows the journey of veteran detective Jack Gibson, as he tries to solve a series of murders related to an experimental substance known as "X5". Let's just say X5 does more to a human body than meets the eye, and it's not pretty. As Jack uncovers the epidemic that is plaguing the city he swore to protect, everything about his character is put into question. The film could be best described as a "neon-soaked" Noir, or better yet, "John Carpenter meets Miami Vice."

Det. Jack Gibson
Det. Jack Gibson
Concept Art of Jack Gibson and the experimental substance, X5
Concept Art of Jack Gibson and the experimental substance, X5

We are shooting the film on a Sony PMW F3 Super 35 Camera (In fact everything live action in the Kickstarter video was shot on the F3).

Besides the live action we are doing whole sequences of pixel-art in the film. Instead of animating sequences in CGI we chose to incorporate pixel-art to give the film a unique 80's look. We are inspired by art from 80's video games like Snatcher and Mortal Kombat.

The pixel-art process involves drawing from reference photography for animation
The pixel-art process involves drawing from reference photography for animation

Check out this Time-Lapse of the Pixel Art Process!

CGI is good for simple effects and matte paintings but we plan to do our science fiction and gore effects practically. We are completely inspired by the golden era of 80s practical effects in films such as The Thing, Videodrome, Total Recall, and The Terminator. Mark Santos, our Lead Practical Effects Artist, will make our effects a reality (See his Bio in The Team section below.)

Portfolio of Mark's practical effects work
Portfolio of Mark's practical effects work

Since we will be mainly shooting in Boston, the surrounding area, and in Connecticut we are using creative lighting and detailed set design to create the fictional city of Valrosa Beach. Valrosa Beach is inspired by a combination of 80's cities like Miami and Los Angeles. 

Warehouse location in Valrosa Beach
Warehouse location in Valrosa Beach

The team making Valrosa Beach is made up of film students at Massart in Boston and Local professionals. Check out our Bios!

Nick Sabia - Director , Writer, and Director of Photography

Nick currently resides in Boston where he attends The Massachusetts College of Art and Design for his BFA in Film/Video. Valrosa Beach is Nick's senior thesis film and he specializes in Cinematography, Editing, and Visual Effects. Nick has interned at Zero VFX in Boston and also works freelance in the city. Apart from filmmaking Nick is a Second Degree Black Belt in Kempo Karate and has been practicing martial arts since 2003.

Ray Hryb - Lead Actor; Detective Jack Gibson

Ray is a New England based actor, with a lot of independent films and commercial work under his belt. He is a huge fan of 80's Film and TV( such as Miami Vice and Magnum P.I.) He is super excited about the project and portraying the character.

Thomas Kim - Assistant Director

Thomas Kim is a Junior Film/Video major attending MassArt fulltime with crew experience on 30+ short films. Currently an intern at DirectR, Thomas is an expert on organizational management and regulating on set priorities.

Nick Valaskatgis - Camera Operator and Lead VFX Compositor

Nick is Junior Film/Video major at MassArt and a talented editor as well as a digital compositor. He is also a camera and technical expert and has been making films his whole life. 

Mark Santos - Practical Effects and Makeup

Mark is a Special Make-up Effects/Dental Technician from southeastern Massachusetts . Experienced in all areas of make-up effects including , but not limited to; Character Design/Creature Effects, Practical Effects, Dental Appliances, Prosthetic Make-up, Eye Balls, Props, and Collectible Masks.

We have many other dedicated film students working on this film as well!

We wanted to offer rewards that would really get people excited about the film. For even the smallest donation we are giving away our exclusive Synthwave soundtrack. The second you donate, you will get access to the first three songs on the album for free download! 

The three tracks available for FREE with any donation!
The three tracks available for FREE with any donation!

Beyond that we are giving away custom pixel art portraits and even props like our one of a kind custom printed VRPD detective badge! See the panel on the right for details.

VRPD Detective Badge and small pixel-art portrait.
VRPD Detective Badge and small pixel-art portrait.
Jack Gibson's Vintage Leather Driving Jacket
Jack Gibson's Vintage Leather Driving Jacket

LUXAR aka Tom Oke is composing most of the soundtrack for the film. He is an immensely talented composer and his expertise even led him to become one of the Lead Audio Producers on the DJ Hero video game franchise.  



Besides LUXAR the soundtrack will feature exclusive tracks from other Synthwave artists, including MoweLan and KFDDA.

 Money goes to a lot of different places , most of that being our art department. More than half of the budget is going to physically creating the city through practical effects, props, and set design. This means making silicone destroyable heads, weapon props, buying vintage 80's clothing, and building sets to name a few things. The remainder is covering our travel and food expenses as well as paying the artists doing the soundtrack and of course Kickstarter fees. Almost everyone working on this project is donating their time, out of passion and love for filmmaking, which makes the project even more amazing to be a part of.

Risks and challenges

This film will face the same risks and rewards that every film has. The money we're requesting is the minimum needed to make our short to the full vision, so if extra fees arise during production we will have to improvise solutions. If problems arise, we have the experience to create solutions on the fly and rework any scenes as necessary. We have used film school to temper ourselves to the life of production, and we anticipate problems before they happen to better prepare ourselves.
Our main challenge right now is producing until May, when we loose access to production equipment and facilities.

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  1. Select this reward

    Pledge $5 or more About $5

    Original Synthwave Soundtrack by Luxar (also featuring tracks by Mowelan, Kfdda, and more) GET ACCESS TO THE FIRST THREE EXCLUSIVE TRACKS INSTANTLY!

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    Pledge $15 or more About $15

    Access to our Production Blog with stills and behind the scenes videos and more (Immediate Access!), includes previous rewards.

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    Pledge $25 or more About $25

    Digital copy of the film upon completion, includes previous rewards.

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    Pledge $35 or more About $35

    RETRO PRINT of the film on a Studio Grade VHS, includes previous rewards (Limited Copies, is not included in higher rewards)

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    Pledge $49 or more About $49

    X5 SPECIAL - LAST DAY REWARD !
    Original Pixel-Art Portrait or drawing of your choice! Digital file, includes previous rewards!

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    Pledge $50 or more About $50

    Special Edition Signed DVD of the film and soundtrack, includes previous rewards

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    Pledge $75 or more About $75

    Limited Edition 2'x3' Poster, special thanks in the credits of the film, includes previous rewards

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    Pledge $100 or more About $100

    Original Pixel-Art Portrait of YOU! You will receive a 8"x10" print and a digital file and all previous rewards

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    Pledge $200 or more About $200

    Your original pixel-art portrait will make an appearance in the film! includes all previous rewards (is not included in higher rewards)

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    Pledge $220 or more About $220

    ONE OF A KIND! You will receive a vintage "Members Only" Jacket used in the film. Includes previous rewards.

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    Pledge $300 or more About $300

    ONE OF A KIND! You will receive Jack Gibson's Driving Jacket (Large) used in the Film, includes previous rewards (is not included in higher rewards)

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    Pledge $400 or more About $400

    ONE OF A KIND! You will receive Jack Gibson's VRPD Detective Badge used in the Film, includes previous rewards. (is not included in higher rewards)

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  13. Select this reward

    Pledge $500 or more About $500

    Executive Producer credit, a meet and greet with Nick Sabia and Ray Hryb and the crew, Includes previous rewards. (Must provide own travel and accommodations)

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    Pledge $1,000 or more About $1,000

    Become an extra in the scene of your choosing. Become a citizen of Valrosa Beach or maybe even a criminal! Includes previous rewards. (Must provide own travel and accommodations)

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    Pledge $2,000 or more About $2,000

    ONE OF A KIND! You will have a speaking role in the film! On-top of that, Nick will make a 30 second pixel-art animation starring you that will play at the end of the credits!

    Includes previous rewards. (Must provide own travel and accommodations)

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Funding period

- (30 days)