Bad news turns into good news for STALLED TREK!

By far, one of the funniest and most beloved of the fan-produced Star Trek parodies is STALLED TREK, the hilarious CGI-rendered puppet characters from the comedically brilliant mind of MARK LARGENT.

Mark’s first Stalled Trek fan film “Amutt Time” was released in 2012 and followed the adventures of the crew of the USS Second Prize when its first officer, Mr Spott, began going through heat and needed to return to his home planet of Vulcanine to mate. It’s a MUST-SEE fan film.

After doing this blog interview with Mark back in 2016, we collaborated on a parody of Prelude to Axanar, which was really a parody of the Axanar lawsuit. Called Prelude to Ax’d-We-Are, it featured the same puppet-style of characters and was just as funny as Mark’s first offering.

Then, last summer, Mark announced a new Stalled Trek: “The City of the Edge of Foreclosure.” This time, he would be returning to a parody of the TOS characters, and he successfully funded a Kickstarter with $4,181 (over an initial $600 goal) from 114 donors.

It was time to start animating! Well, kinda. As Mark informed donors along the way, animation was a slow, tedious process, as he was rendering on a single Macintosh computer, using a 3D application called Animation:Master. Although it’s a great, affordable all-in-one app (according to Mark)—and he’d been using it reliably for the last 12 years—a single frame could take 3-5 minutes to complete.

With 30-frames-per-second being the accepted norm, each second of Mark’s fan film could easily take 2 hours to render…or more ominously, each minute could take 120 hours of non-stop computer render time! And of course, a single glitch in the rendering of any scene would require starting all over from zero.

This was why Mark told me that “The City on the Edge of Foreclosure” might be his last Stalled Trek. But to make matters worse, a few weeks ago, the makers of Animation:Master announced that their application would no longer be supporting the Macintosh platform…and Mark didn’t have the funds to buy a new PC with the power necessary to render frames of animation at any speed where he could realistically finish in months, possibly even years!

Was this the end of the road for Stalled Trek???

Continue reading “Bad news turns into good news for STALLED TREK!”

My FAN FILM just beat AXANAR in the Berlin Sci-Fi Film Festival! (Yay!)

Now, this is pretty crazy!  Back in April of 2016, while the CBS/Paramount v. Axanar lawsuit was still going strong, MARK LARGENT and I decided to create a parody of the whole mess with a short animated spoof called PRELUDE TO AX’D-WE-ARE.  We wrote the script together in about five days, and I provided the voices for half of the characters.  Mark did the lion’s share of the work, animating the entire seven-minutes in just 31 days!  (For more background on how this all came together, check out this blog.)

When I first heard about the Berlin Sci-Fi Filmfest back in June, I posted about it because, for the first time that I was aware of, an international film festival was featuring a category specifically for FAN FILMS!  I suggested to Mark Largent that he might want to enter Prelude to Ax’d-We-Are.  After all, it was just 15 bucks.  Other Trek fan films were also entered—including the excellent Chance Encounter, Starship Republic – “Serpent of Yesterday”, and Survivors—and we figured we might have a shot…maybe.  There were also three Star Wars fan films (one from the UK and another from France), a Blade Runner fan film out of South Africa, and a horror movie spoof.

And then we saw that Prelude to Axanar had been entered.  Oh well, we thought, there goes our chance to win.  (Prelude is pretty much a juggernaut.)  But at least audiences would be able to watch both the parody and the original it was based on.

We actually made it to the semi-final round, along with Tears in the Rain (the South African Blade Runner fan film with some great acting), The Secret of Tatooine (all in French with awesome visual effects), and of course, Prelude to Axanar.  With competition like that, we figured that “semi-finalist” was as far as we’d get.  We were wrong.

We won BEST FAN FILM!!!!

Mark and I thought it was a typo!  But no, there is was up on their website with our poster image.  “I feel like there’s all these guys in my class who studied for months to pass the exam and all I did was cram at the last minute and ace it!” Mark told me over the phone.

I joked to ALEC PETERS of Axanar, writing, “I hope you’re not pissed at us.”

Why would I be pissed?” he wrote back.  “It’s awesome.  Its all in the family.  We have won 47 awards.  Nice for you guys to win one.”

So Mark and I, co-writers and co-producers, can now also call ourselves winners of an international sci-fi film festival competition.  And that is totally cool!  Thanks for letting me share that news with you.

And in case you missed it, here’s Prelude to Ax’d-We-Are in all of its 7 minutes of glory…

PRELUDE TO AX’D-WE-ARE (feature)

Prelude to Ax'd We Are bannerHow’s this for a first? A parody fan film of another fan film! And not just any fan film…it’s a parody of Prelude to Axanar!

Prelude to Ax’d-We-Are is a love letter to the amazing fan production that has become so popular… and it also doubles as a bit of light-hearted satire on this whole copyright infringement controversy. Oh, and it’s pretty darn funny, too!

So how did this Axanar parody come about? Who can we blame?

Continue reading “PRELUDE TO AX’D-WE-ARE (feature)”