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Mythica: A Quest for Heroes

For two whole days I volunteered to work on what was the first in a series of fantasy films for Arrowstorm Entertainment called “Mythica”. I had gone to Comic-Con in Salt Lake (2013, I think) and the two guys behind Arrowstorm Entertainment were doing a presentation on making independent Science Fiction and Fantasy Films on the cheap. They were pumping out movies like “Orc Wars” and “Osambi” (Osama Bin Laden and his army of zombies) yearly.

They had a system. They would make one of these movies for a hundred thousand dollars, go up to the Cannes Film Festival Marketplace and sell it for twice that amount, and then return to Provo, Utah with the money to finance their next movie. The distributors who would buy the movies were actually looking for things to put out on European Television, so whenever Arrowstorm would receive a new script from a budding filmmaker, they would be sure that their act breaks would coincide with where the commercial breaks would need to go.

At the end of the presentation they put up their website information in case anyone wanted to know more, and I made sure to jot it down. At the time I had a small portfolio online filled with my short films from High School (which has now been replaced with this site), and when I got home from Comic-Con I sent an email to them volunteering some of my time if they wanted me, with a link to the shorts I had made.

I got a very nice email back with a phone number to call so they could put me to work (free work of course). I called them up and on the next Tuesday I found their studio by the railroad tracks in Provo. It turns out that their studio was a house they had bought with about a half acre of land behind it where they could work on their productions. I still think this is genius. When I got there I was asked numerous times who I was and what I wanted to do, and all I ever said was that I wanted to help out.

There was a lady named Jessica there who would put me on various tasks, and the first thing I did when I got there was help cut out a big plastic sheet of a fake rock wall outside with the summer sun blaring down on me. They were midway through pre-production and had all sorts of cool Lord of the Rings-like stuff set up for the movie.

I was out there for maybe two hours when the guy I was working with said we were done, so I had to go find something else to do while I had a couple hours left. The costume designer put me in a room with some twine, some beads, and some bones and told me to make an Orc Necklace. I had no idea what I was doing, but I went about doing it anyway. When I returned the next day, my orc necklace was hung up on the wall, and I had a couple other little tasks to do with the costuming department before I went home for the second day, never to return.

Before I left one of the producers took me aside and thanked me for being there, and gave me one of their movies to take home (“The Shadow Cabal”). I told him that I want to keep coming and helping, but school was a bit hectic at the time, so I was gonna see what I could do. We shook hands and I left.

Unfortunately, school did get to be too much, and I never came back. Not because I didn’t want to, but after a couple weeks of not being there, I didn’t want to be that guy who would just show up randomly that people couldn’t depend on heaven forbid they actually needed me that day.

So, what did I learn from working on “Mythica” for 2 days?

  1. If you’re smart with your money, even Fantasy film don’t have to be that expensive. Just stay out of the unions and get a whole bunch of interns to help you out.
  2. Be kind to your interns. Everyone was great to me that day, and honestly they could’ve complained about how slow I worked or how inexperienced I was, but they didn’t.
  3. If you can’t pay someone, give them a free movie to take home.
  4. I learned that Cannes Film Festival was more than an awards filled festival held in France, but that there was a giant marketplace there for selling films…Others may think this is a no-brainer, but that’s where I learned it.

I think someday soon I’m gonna look into getting a hold of “Mythica” somewhere, and I’m gonna pay special attention to the Orcs to see if my necklace showed up. I’ll let you know later on, I’m sure.

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