Progress and Possibilities
Greetings Insane Children,
After a recent project development trip to Beijing and with news from our intrepid animators, American here to provide you with an update.
First off, work on the animated shorts continues to produce visible results. Troy and his team of stop-motion animators in Los Angeles send photos of the rigs and props they've been building. Troy says they're close to completion on pre-production tasks and will start actual shooting as early as next week. I'm really excited to see how Alice's stop-motion journey into the mind of Wagner turns out. Scroll down for photos from Troy.
Ed in Shanghai also reports progress on his team's work towards a 3D animated short set inside the mind of Jules Verne. Pre-production on that short is also near complete and Ed says he expects to send actual animated samples within the next few weeks. Yay for progress!
Meanwhile I've been pushing forward on the idea of a live-action Alice feature film. I'm happy to report that we have secured commitment from a British film writer to knock out the script. And over the weekend I met with Tsui Hark and his team in Beijing to discuss story, development, finance, and timing. He and his team re-confirmed their commitment to getting the feature made - and Tsui himself pitched me an EXCELLENT film narrative to contain critical story elements from "Alice," "Madness Returns," and "Otherlands" under one feature film "roof." During his 20+ minute verbal pitch I was seeing all the action in my mind and getting goose bumps all over. If we can make this thing happen, it'll be awesome.
Writing on the script will commence soon. Proper development on the film could start as early as April of this year. Again, yay for progress!
While it's easy to get excited by the possibility of an Alice feature film, I would like to remind everyone that the idea for this movie has been bouncing around since before the first game was even released. Film development - and actually getting a film made - is HARD. Feels to me like we're getting a lot closer to making Alice on the big screen a reality, but I'd like to list some of the challenges we still face... Will the script come together as hoped? Can writer, director, and producers all agree on a creative direction? Who will fund the production? Can everyone agree on how to share the financial pie? Since we're planning to shoot this thing in China, can we get government approval to do so? And there are many questions beyond these.
Anyway, let's all keep a positive outlook - and I'll keep doing everything I can to make this thing a reality. I'm happy that we've come this far - and want to thank everyone who supported the "Otherlands" campaign for putting us in a position to do so.
In the meantime, Tsui has asked that we all think about actors. Who would YOU like to see play Alice? Bumby? What if Bumby had a "boss" - who would pay that ultimate bad guy? Any thoughts on Alice's father, mother, and sister? How about a voice for the Cheshire Cat? The Duchess or the Queen? Here's your chance to get involved with ideas that can impact the film! Have fun!
From Shanghai with a Lulu in my lap,