Greetings from the Machinima Roadshow at Festival Arcadia 2007
in Montreal, Quebec, Canada! I don`t want to do too much cross-polination of Machinima Roadshow
and Machiniplex as they are two separate entitites, but since I`m learning so much here about perceptions of machinima, the making of machinima, and promoting machinima (particularly machinima tools like MovieStorm
), I thought this would be a good place to share it.
Byootiful Montreal (The Village) and the crew during set-up with our sound guy.
Various shots of people playing and working with Jedi & MovieStorm
I`m thrilled to be here with Damien Valentine, who has premiered his third installment of the Star Wars: Darkness Saga
, Star Wars: The Darkness Unleashed
. However, Damien`s primary purpose is to assist me both technically and as a machinimator, and I will say I could not have survived the show without him. Also with us is his wonderful and very supportive mum, Marilyn, and our French-speaking assistant, a Montreal local and cousin of one of my hockey teammates, Allison Medina, who has been absolutely amazing
. She basically learned what machinima is - with neither a gaming nor filmmaking background - and has become the ambassador of machinima to French Canada. So far she`s been on at least one television news program, one radio program, and one podcast - and who knows how many others.
Damien gets interviewed for Cinemaniax (.net)
We`ve been showing about two dozen machinima movies and bits of series as a sample of music videos, dramas, action films, comedies, and experimental films, as well as running live workshops in both MovieStorm and Jedi Knight II: Jedi Academy. More about that later. We`re fortunate to have a booth in a quieter corner right next to concession, and there are tables set up and people relaxing at them throughout the day with a great view of our screen and within earshot of our sound, though our theatre seating is often empty. The back of the booth has the workstations set up. We`re meeting all kinds of people interested in machinima and MovieStorm, some wanting to learn more, others with products that might become fantastic tools for machinimators in the near future. But more about that later!
Conducting a workshop... and people playing with MovieStorm.
This morning we took Hugh Hancock back to the airport to head off to Edmonton for a Bioware visit. Bioware is the black hole of independent machinimators - who get sucked in to amazing jobs working on in-game and interactive cinematics at what is probably the most respected game development company in the world. (Okay, my humble opinion, but I`m not alone...) Yesterday we had a special screening of BloodSpell
(the feature, which you can watch in its entirety here at Machiniplex) which went very well. The audience varied, as can be expected when other eye candy lures people away, but overall probably 200-300 people saw some or all of the film. Maybe more - it`s hard to count during an 83-minute screening.
People watching BloodSpell
After the screening Hugh gave a presentation in the Academic Zone (aka lecture hall) which was, as can be expected from Hugh, good for both a laugh and some serious learning. He talked about what machinima is, demonstrated a quick live session using World of Warcraft, and showed some behind-the-scenes / making-of footage and details from BloodSpell. The audience wasn`t large (maybe 20 people overall, some of whom stayed the entire two hours), but they were very interested and asked serious and intelligent questions, and the feedback afteward was excellent. So my special thanks to Hugh for coming all the way from the UK to introduce Canada to machinima!
Hugh Hancock presents with French translation from Ali.
All in all we`re getting a lot of exposure in the press, at the show, and in general. MovieStorm is also getting quite a bit of attention, and watching the kids (I should say, young men and women, as I`m an old lady and everyone is a kid to me) come in and just futz around with MovieStorm for a while is quite a treat. Making an actual movie seems to be the challenging part, but once we walk them through the camera set-ups and show them the basics, they seem to get it. Let`s hope they`re all downloading it from home so we can get more talent into the community.
Machinimators need to eat too!
But again, more on that later. Click to enlarge photos. I apologize for the quality - hard to take photos in the foggy dark!