NICHELLE NICHOLS and other Trek/sci-fi celebs sign onto the virus-safe SPACE COMMAND: “RIPPLE EFFECT”!

First of all, a big congratulations to MARC ZICREE of SPACE COMMAND for raising more than $57K from nearly 700 backers in his latest Kickstarter. It’s a challenging time to be crowd-funding, and the latest campaign did struggle over the past few weeks. But for a project with a goal of $48K, surpassing that by nearly 20% is quite impressive.

This latest campaign will fund the shoot for the fourth hour of Space Command, part 2 of “Forgiveness.” Hour one (part 1 of “Redemption”) is completed and can be viewed here. Hours two and three are in post production, and hour four will go into production just as soon as society is allowed to leave our homes and come into contact with each other again…which could be weeks or it could be months.

In the meantime, actors still like to hone their craft, even if they can’t leave their homes…and Space Command creator Marc Zicree is giving them a chance to do just that! As I mentioned last week, Marc is writing a special episode of Space Command titled “Ripple Effect.” It will take place in the continuity of the Space Command universe, featuring characters from the two episodes that are being produced so far plus introducing a bunch of new ones.

The actors themselves won’t have to leave their homes. Instead, each one will be able to film themselves using their own camera. The footage will be uploaded, and Marc and his post production team will edit the pieces, add VFX, adjust sound and color balance, and turn it all into a special “free” episode (no crowd-funding) that will be posted publicly to YouTube.

Even more exciting is that Marc is planning to allow fans to watch the post production process every step of the way through completion.

When first I mentioned this last week, only a few of the actors had signed up for the project. But Marc was in the process of talking to more of them, and this past weekend he announced a growing cast confirmed to appear. These include:

  • NICHELLE NICHOLS (Star Trek)
  • ROBERT PICARDO (Star Trek: Voyager)
  • ETHAN PHILLIPS (Star Trek: Voyager)
  • MIRA FURLAN (Babylon 5, Lost)
  • BILL MUMY (Babylon 5, Lost in Space)
  • MICHAEL HARNEY (Orange is the New Black, Project Blue Book)
  • BRYAN McCLURE (Atlanta, Doom Patrol)
  • BARBARA BRAGG (Carol’s Acting Class, American Horror Story)

The full cast of Space Command is even more extensive than that, so I suspect we’ll see yet more names added to the above list. It sounds like a fun project, and I’d imagine actors are itching to act during this stay-at-home crisis (or at least read Shakespearean sonnets). So we’ll see what happens.

And of course, once Marc starts offering fans a look at how the project is progressing, I’ll be sure to keep you all in the loop!

SPACE COMMAND is filming a special VIRUS-SAFE episode: “Ripple Effect”!

The global coronavirus pandemic has shut down most, if not all, television and movie production nationwide. Many TV news anchors are broadcasting from their homes and basements, self-quarantining because they want to keep themselves and others safe. And while a number of fan films that have already been shot are still being worked on in post production—where folks can work individually at home (including my own fan film INTERLUDE)—projects that were either in, or soon to be entering, production have had to put their plans on hold for the time being.

All but one, it seems.

Publicly launched back in 2012, SPACE COMMAND has already raised over a million dollars from crowd-funding and from selling shares in the production. The brainchild of TNG and DS9 episode writer MARC SCOTT SICREE, Space Command will ultimately span twelve 1-hour episodes for its first season, featuring such notable sci-fi actors as DOUG JONES (from Discovery); ROBERT PICARDO (from Voyager) ; MIRA FURLAN, BRUCE BOXLEITNER, and BILL MUMY (from Babylon 5); FARAN TAHIR (the captain of the USS Kelvin from Star Trek 2009); JAMES HONG (from Big Trouble in Little China and Kung Fu Panda); and a host of others.

Already, work has been completed on the first full hour episode, which you can watch here. (Mira Furlan, Doug Jones, and Robert Picardo give especially poignant performances…definitely worth checking out!) Post production is being completed on the second half-hour, which will form a single two-part episode titled “Redemption.”

The second two-parter, “Forgiveness,” is currently in production. Part 1 has been fully crowd-funded and filmed, and Part 2 is being crowd-funded right now. In fact, their Kickstarter ends on April 4. Although they’ve crossed their $48K goal, it’s only just barely. So a little “cushion” would certainly help. If you’d like, you can donate to “Forgiveness – Part Two” by clicking here:

https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/spacecommand/space-command-forgiveness-part-two

Obviously, actual production won’t be starting on that episode until the COVID coast is clear.

BUT!!!

Marc Zicree just announced that he’s writing a special standalone episode of Space Command called “Ripple Effect”—and it will be filmed now…during the pandemic while everyone is self-quarantining. How is this possible while not being irresponsible? Simple: everyone will be working from home!

Many of the main actors from the series have agreed to film scenes in their own homes with their own equipment. No camera crews or lighting or sound or make-up or wardrobe people…just actors and their cameras. Some might have green screens, others might not. Then their footage will be edited, scored, VFX added, sound-mixed, etc. And everyone will be working completely apart from each other.

Will it work?

Too soon to say, but it certainly sounds intriguing and exciting! And to make it even more so, Mark is planning to make the magic right in front of us, showing fans the project AS it takes shape every step along the way. No crowd-funding necessary, and the finished film will be posted for free.

Here’s Marc to tell us more…

A winning streak of SUCCESSFUL Trek fan film CROWD-FUNDERS!

Lately, it seems like I’m covering a LOT of crowd-funding campaigns raising money for a variety of Star Trek fan films. That’s because it’s been a really pretty busy few months…with more campaigns to come!

Fortunately for our wallets, though, four campaigns have just successfully reached their funding goals (or come very close!), clearing the way for the newcomers. So let’s take a brief look at the fan productions that scored recent wins…

THE TEARS OF J’KAH

Two week ago, I reported on how BENNY HALL raised $49,183 (of his $50K goal) for his second Trek fan film THE TEARS OF J’KAH…from just 13 donors! This post-guidelines crowd-funding record was accomplished with the help of some very generous friends and contacts who each made donations of $5K and even $10K.

AXANAR – shoot #3

Last Thursday morning, ALEC PETERS launched a “tiny” (his word) fundraiser on Ares Digital trying to generate $3,400 to cover expenses for the third AXANAR shoot at Ares Studios in Larenceville, GA on March 15. By Sunday evening, he’d taken in more than $5,000!

The surplus will go into the upcoming fundraiser for the “big” fourth shoot. That on is scheduled to happen in Los Angeles and will include GARY GRAHAM playing Vulcan Ambassador Soval plus a bunch of other aliens, each of whom will require a top-level make-up artist. Combined with the cost of studio rental, travel, lodging, etc., this is expected to be around a $30,000 expenditure (although a final budget is still being worked out).

The Axanar fundraiser for Shoot #4 will launch on Ares Digital right after shoot #3 wraps on March 15…with the long-awaited debut of the FULLL TRAILER! You can watch it debut live by clicking here.

STARSHIP INTREPID – “ECHOES”

For the first time in its decade-and-a-half history, those INTREPID folks from Scotland have sought some financial assistance from fans and supporters. NICK COOK set the goal at a humble $2,500 (or thereabouts, since they get their money in pounds, not dollars) with a 60-day deadline. Earlier this week, with less than two weeks left and with the help of 72 backers, they hit their goal.

CONSTAR CONTINUES

With an even more humble goal of $1,175, VANCE MAJOR launched his latest GoFundMe campaign back in December. It’s taken a little while, but this past Monday morning, he also reached (and slightly surpassed) his goal…with the help of 24 backers (including me).


My congratulations to all of the projects I’ve just mentioned, and my thanks to those of my readers who chose to donate in order to help make these fan film dreams into realities.

So what’s left that still needs crowd-funding help (besides Axanar)? Glad you asked!

Continue reading “A winning streak of SUCCESSFUL Trek fan film CROWD-FUNDERS!”

Just hours left to donate to SPACE COMMAND…as a NEW EDIT of the first hour is released!

One of my favorite things about MARC SCOTT ZICREE’s fan-funded sci-fi epic SPACE COMMAND is watching it “evolve.” Last summer, Marc released the first half-hour of the 2-hour pilot “Redemption.” It was impressive, to be sure, but it needed a bit more “polish.” A number of things didn’t look quite right, including the infamous driving scene where a father and son in a convertible roadster are speeding down the highway, and neither actor’s hair is moving at all. (The original footage was shot in front of a green screen.)

In February of this year, Marc released the full first hour of the pilot. But in addition to simply adding a half hour of new, just-completed scenes and visual FX, Marc also re-edited, color-corrected, sound-corrected, and updated a fair amount of the first half hour. Finally, the hair of those two actors was actually blowing in the wind! It was fascinating to me to watch those first two releases side-by-side, comparing them. It really allowed me to appreciate the craft of filmmaking.

Now, with less than 24 hours left in their latest Kickstarter, Marc has released an updated version of the first hour, and it’s worth taking a look at because it’s getting even better. This version is edited to be a few minutes shorter with improved VFX and some other intriguing changes (including having not only the previous mini-trailer for the second episode “Forgiveness” but also a new short trailer for the third episode “The Great Solar War”)…

And speaking of the second episode, “Forgiveness,” as I mentioned, the month-long campaign is in its final hours, ending at midnight Saturday Pacific Time. Although the stated goal of $35K was surpassed almost immediately and the current total stands (as I type this) at just under $80K, Marc would love to see $100K.

It’s not clear whether they can reach that stretch goal, but if you haven’t donated yet and still wanted to, this is your last chance—at least for this Kickstarter!

Here’s the link to find out more and donate…

https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/58936338/space-command-forgiveness

Newest SPACE COMMAND Kickstarter is off to the races…AGAIN!

So what do you call a fan film that’s already raised over a million dollars, turned a warehouse into a studio with those donations, then closed the studio, isn’t finished with the film yet (even many years later), and is now asking supporters for even more money…and getting it?

Yep, it’s MARC SCOTT ZICREE’s SPACE COMMAND…back again for yet another Kickstarter!

And the fans are still showing their support. With a stated goal of $35K, their newest campaign was already well past $45K before it even launched! How did they manage that? Easy…just open it early to previous donors for 36 hours when they can be the first to claim special limited-time perks. It’s now about a week later, and the Kickstarter is well over $60K and climbing steadily. (I should be so lucky with my crowd-funder next month!)

So if Space Command has already taken in over a million dollars and hasn’t even finished their first 2-hour pilot yet, then what are they doing asking for even MORE money? Glad you asked!

Space Command got its start waaaaaaay back in 2012 with an early Kickstarter that brought in a staggering $212,000 from more than 2,000 donors. It then took five years for the project to reach post-production, where a second Kickstarter raised an additional $108,000 that would help complete the first hour of the 2-hour pilot episode “Redemption.”

The first half-hour segment of the pilot premiered last summer at San Diego Comic cons and debuted on YouTube for fans in August. Then a third Kickstarter raised $102,000 more for post-production on the second hour of the pilot. Marc is also selling individual $7,500 shares in the venture for supporters looking for a return on investment if/when the series sells. Those shares have brought in an additional half million dollars.

Space Command will ultimately span six 2-hour episodes for its first season, featuring such notable sci-fi actors as DOUG JONES (yep, that Doug Jones); ROBERT PICARDO (from Voyager) ; MIRA FURLAN, BRUCE BOXLEITNER, and BILL MUMY (from Babylon 5); FARAN TAHIR (the captain of the USS Kelvin from Star Trek 2009); JAMES HONG (from Big Trouble in Little China and Kung Fu Panda); and host of others. This is a true professional sci-fi endeavor, created through public funding for a fraction of the cost the networks are paying for their shows (although hopefully they’ll be buying it).

The first 2-hour (pilot) episode “Redemption” has already been fully funded, completely filmed, and half-completed with 900 visual FX shots, sounds, music, color adjustment, etc. And the first hour has been available for free on YouTube since January 1. Check it out…!

But now it’s time to crowd-fund the second episode, “Forgiveness.” Let’s talk about that one for a little bit…

Continue reading “Newest SPACE COMMAND Kickstarter is off to the races…AGAIN!”

NETFLIX now actively considering buying SPACE COMMAND fan series!

Late last year, writer/director MARC SCOTT ZICREE traveled to London where he met with NETFLIX to see if he could interest them in buying his independent, fan-funded sci-fi series SPACE COMMAND. Of course, there’s no guarantee of anything yet, but according to Marc in a recent mailing to donors:

Netflix is now actively considering Space  Command!  And if they buy it, they minimally would order an entire  season – twelve hour-long episodes!

But we’re not resting on our laurels.  We’re now actively working to set meetings with Amazon, Apple and many other networks and VOD platforms that might give Space Command a good home.

This news came right on the heels of the public release of the second half hour of the two hour pilot episode, “Redemption,” starring (among others) DOUG JONES (yep, that Doug Jones); ROBERT PICARDO (from Voyager) ; and MIRA FURLAN, BRUCE BOXLEITNER, and BILL MUMY (from Babylon 5). Each turns in amazing performances. And in upcoming episodes, we will see even more famous faces.

Space Command got its start waaaaaaay back in 2012 with an early Kickstarter that brought in a staggering $212,000 from more than 2,000 donors. It then took five years for the project to reach post-production, where a second Kickstarter raised an additional $108,000 that would help complete the first hour of the 2-hour pilot episode “Redemption.”

The first half-hour segment of the pilot premiered last summer at San Diego Comic cons and debuted on YouTube for fans in August. Then a third Kickstarter raised $102,000 more for post-production on the second hour of the pilot. Marc is also selling individual $7,500 shares in the venture for supporters looking for a return on investment if/when the series sells.

A fourth Kickstarter is on its way soon, funding production on the second hour-long episode, “Forgiveness” (40 minutes of which has already been filmed). There is also now a VERY impressive first issue of the Space Command Comic Magazineposted online…check it out!

In the meantime, Marc released the completed first hour in January. It’s REALLY worth watching—especially for the captivating performances of Doug Jones, Robert Picardo, and Mira Furlan…truly some of their best work! It includes bookend commentary updates from Marc along with scenes (at the end) from upcoming episodes. Take a look…

And as an added bonus, below is the first half-hour that was released last August. I’m including it here for comparison/contrast. Y’see, Space Command is a work-in-progress, and VFX and color correction are an ongoing process. For example, after the release of the first half-hour, some folks noticed that in the scene where two characters are driving in a convertible (originally shot against a green screen), neither actor’s hair is moving in the wind! So that was fixed in the second release…along with many other little and not-so-little tweaks. So if you want to test your “eagle eye,” here’s your chance…

Can SPACE COMMAND make it to $100,000?!?!?

WOW!  Just three days ago, I wrote a blog about two Kickstarter campaigns that each had less than a week left: STALLED TREK (which wraps up early this Thursday morning in the U.S.) and SPACE COMMAND (which ends at 9:06pm Pacific Time on Monday night…tonight!).

At the time I wrote the blog, Space Command had well exceeded its $45,000 goal…insuring they would collect the donations and locking in post-production on Part 3 of their 4-part, two-hour pilot “Redemption.”  In fact, by that point, they’d raised $73,581 from 921 donors with four days to go…very impressive!

The hope of writer/director/show-runner MARC SCOTT ZICREE (whose birthday was this past Saturday) was to reach all the way to the $100,000 stretch goal.  This would fund post-production on both Parts 3 and 4, completing the two-hour pilot.

I’ll be honest with you: I thought they might get close, but based on needing to increase their total by 35% in just 93 hours, reaching that final stretch goal seemed to be a pretty remote possibility at best.

Not anymore!

The Kickstarter has taken in a staggering $20,000 from nearly THREE HUNDRED new backers in the last 72 hours…leaving them only $6,000 short of their $100,000 stretch goal (as I write this) with just 21 hours to go!  Can’t they make it to $100,000?  Possibly even by the time I wake up in seven hours…we shall see!

How did they manage to attract 300 new donors in just three short days?  Those of you trying to fund projects of of your own might want to take note.  During those three days, Space Command managed to get a “shout out” from two other successful crowd-funding campaigns with large donor lists (in the thousands each).  Renegades and The Circuit both issued e-mail updates to their donors—which they do periodically—and mentioned the Space Command Kickstarter.  Since actors from those two projects also appear in Space Command, the shout-out is actually relevant.  (By the way, Renegades‘ update was a simple one: “September 8th, 2018 – RENEGADES RETURNS…”  Oh, wow!)

Anyway, if you haven’t donated to Space Command yet and want to get something in before the deadline, please click here!

And if you still need convincing, listen to this interview I did with Marc Zicree two weeks ago:

Marc Scott Zicree

…and/or watch Part 1 of “Redemption”:

TWO Kickstarters enter the HOME STRETCH!

Have YOU donated yet?  Smack dab in the middle of a year that’s turned out to be very busy on the crowd-funding front, two active and worthy Kickstarter campaigns are heading into their final days.

Both are well past their goals, so each will get to keep the money donated.  In fact, each has even surpassed a stretch goal or two, so they’re doing quite well.

But there’s always room for more donations, right?  Well, at least I think so!

The first campaign ends on Monday night just after midnight Eastern Time.  It’s raising money to pay for post-production on the third part of the 2-hour pilot for SPACE COMMAND: “Redemption.”  (Here’s the link to their Kickstarter page.)  With an initial goal of $45,000, they’re currently at $73,581 from 921 donors.  If they reach $100,000 in donations, post production on the pilot can be completed.

Creator MARC ZICREE has just added a new perk at the $1,000 level (for those who can afford it): “A 16 Gigabyte Jump Drive with an INCREDIBLE AMOUNT OF SUPER SECRET SPACE COMMAND MATERIAL! Screen Tests! Concept Drawings! Visual Effects Tests! Rehearsals! Outlines! Series Bible! Scripts! Behind-the-Scenes Footage! Character Designs! Alternate Takes! Discarded and Bonus Scenes! Trailers! And MUCH MUCH MORE!”


The other Kickstarter campaign isn’t nearly as ambitious, but it’s just as deserving of your support and contribution.  It’s for the Star Trek animated parody STALLED TREK.  The first episode, “Amutt Time” (watch it below), was hilarious.  Now creator MARK LARGENT is ready to create a sequel: “The City on the Edge of Foreclosure.”

With a modest goal of only $600, the campaign quickly surged passed that level as well as its first $2,000 stretch goal: a special behind-the-scenes feature for download and included on the Blu-ray for anyone donating $25 or more.

Right now, with just six days left, Mark has taken in $2,281 from 74 backers.  If he crosses $4,000, he’ll be able to render out a special HD version of “Amutt Time” to include on a Blu-ray.  (Here’s the link to his Kickstarter page.)


Check out videos for both.  Here’s Part 1 of Space Command: “Redemption”…

Click here to donate to Space Command


And here’s Stalled Trek: “Amutt Time”…

Click here to donate to Stalled Trek

 

 

MARC ZICREE talks about SPACE COMMAND! (audio interview)

Yesterday I promised you all a really awesome interview with MARC SCOTT ZICREE.  And now it’s time to deliver!

Marc has written hundreds of hours of television for dozens of different shows, including episodes of Star Trek: The Next Generation, Deep Space Nine, Babylon 5, M.A.N.T.I.S. and Sliders.  He also wrote, directed, and produced the excellent Star Trek: New Voyages fan film “World Enough and Time” with George Takei.

And now Marc’s passion project is the independently crowd-funded epic fan series SPACE COMMAND.  The initial Kickstarter raised over $220K back in 2012.  Since then, it’s been a long journey, with two additional Kickstarters, the latest going on right now!  As I type this it’s up over $66K (far past the original goal of $45K), with 12 days still to go.  Already, post-production has been funded for the first 90 minutes of the two-hour pilot, “Redemption.”  But if this current campaign can reach $100K, there will be enough to complete all 1,900 visual FX and the rest of post production on the entire two hours of the pilot.

The cast is a veritable who’s who of Star Trek and sci-fi veteran actors, including:

  • Robert Picardo (Star Trek: Voyager)
  • Doug Jones (Pan’s LabyrinthThe Shape of Water, and Star Trek: Discovery)
  • Bruce Boxleitner (Babylon 5)
  • Mira Furlan (Babylon 5)
  • Bill Mumy (Babylon 5 and Lost In Space)
  • Faran Tahir (Star Trek 2009…he was the captain of the USS Kelvin)
  • James Hong (Big Trouble in Little China)

And new actors are being added for later episodes, including the most recent announcements: Ethan Philips (Voyager) and Armin Shimerman (Deep Space Nine).

Marc is a fascinating person to talk to with loads of stories and unique perspectives—and he always gives a really great interview.  Today is no exception…

Marc Zicree…on Mars!

Continue reading “MARC ZICREE talks about SPACE COMMAND! (audio interview)”

SPACE COMMAND: “REDEMPTION” (part 1) is now available to the public!

Fans have been waiting for six years to finally see SPACE COMMAND…ever since the initial Kickstarter back in 2012 took in $221,000 from more than 2000 donors.  During that time, show-runner MARC ZICREE created a studio, built sets (no, not all by himself), cast actors like ROBERT PICARDO, DOUG JONES, MIRA FURLAN, BILL MUMY, and a host of other noted sci-fi and Hollywood veterans, filmed scenes, sold shares to investors, and planned out post-production.

Then, last November, a second Kickstarter raised an additional $108,000 from 1,126 backers…enough to fund post-production on the first hour of the two-hour pilot “Redemption.”  Post-production includes things like editing, VFX, sound, music, compositing, and a host of other tasks that take a bit of time.  But finally, last month at San Diego Comic Con, Marc debuted the first half-hour of Space Command: “Redemption” to a live audience.

Shortly thereafter, Marc shared a special video link so that donors could also see that first half-hour segment.  It was really well done—especially considering that the budget was the merest fraction of what gets spent on shows like Discovery or The Expanse.

I expected, when the newest Kickstarter campaign launched late last month (to fund post production on the remaining hour of the pilot), that the link to the completed Part 1 would be shared with the general public.

Surprisingly, it wasn’t.

Yesterday, I interviewed Marc (great interview, by the way; it’ll be posted tomorrow) and asked him about that.  It turns out that Marc was just waiting for a few last-minute tweaks.  Apparently, the version that had been posted to donors was rushed out to be ready for Comic Con, and now Marc wanted to fix a few things before showing it to everyone else.

But now those fixes are in (and apparently, a few more are still to come), and the video is available for the public to see.  HOORAY!  There’s a short 5-minute introduction by Marc—which you’re welcome to watch or skip—followed by the complete first half hour of “Redemption.”  Enjoy…


And remember that you can donate to their latest Kickstarter up through August 27 by clicking here:

https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/58936338/space-command-redemption-chapters-3-and-4