MEPSgirl Productions

Production Journal

July 04, 2004 - About a week and a half ago, I wrote and posted a wonderfully detailed update here. Or so I thought. I came back yesterday and found that it had not made it to the final update stage. So, I'll try to redo it as best I can.

The project hit a serious downturn. Yep. Katie bailed on us three days before we were supposed to start filming. Why is it that girls will agree to be in a fanfilm, but then bail at the last second, leaving the rest of the cast and crew hanging? I've tried to discuss this on the fanfilm forums, but no one has an answer. C'est la vie.

Anyway, this required yet another rewrite of the script. It took me about a day to finish, and I had set up a day and time to get the remaining cast. So I called them up the night before we were set to film, just to check and make sure they were going to make it.

"Oh, yeah, buddy. We're not going to be able to film at all this week. We're taking a roofing job so we can make some extra money."

They're fifteen years old! What kind of sick teenager wants to work through his whole summer?!?!

Anyway, they decided to work for a whole week, and then go on vacation with their family the following week (which means they left today). I wasn't really informed of all this ahead of time, so my timeline for filming and editting and sending the clips off to be rotoscoped and whatnot has been totally blasted.

The day they get back . . . . I'm abducting them. I'm dragging them out into the forest. Two Jedi enter, one Jedi leaves . . . . Two Jedi enter, one Jedi leaves . . . .

Just kidding about the only one leaving bit. Ha-ha. Ha.


June 18, 2004 - I'd like to first apollogize for the exceeding long delay in updating here. Life has been a bit of a pain in the butt of late.

The script has undergone a nearly-massive overhaul recently, with two of the actors bowing out. Well, only one officially bowed out. I just haven't heard from the other one for about three weeks.

A rehearsal with about half the cast and crew is scheduled for this afternoon. The opening crawl will be presented to them, to get them a little more excited about the project. Costume fittings will also begin this afternoon.

With the setbacks we've experienced with the cast, and the necessary re-writing of the script, production has been pushed back. It had been scheduled to start in two days. From the way things stand now, it will begin in two weeks. All things considered, that's not too bad. There are new lines to be learned, and the fight breakdowns have been changed rather dramatically.

Thanks for taking the time to read this - I noticed about 40 hits in the past week and a half - and for your interest in the film.

Have a nice day.

May 17, 2004 - About four hours were spent this afternoon going over basic swordsmanship principles with three of the actors. Many bruises, blisters and screams of "Not in the face!" later, we broke for hamburgers and a session of Star Wars D20 RPG.

The GM, who is not involved with the film, had this to say: "Fanfilms are such cheese. Only a dork would want to make one." This from someone who has 25,000 Star Wars CCG cards, RPGs with the D20 system, and plays Galaxies for about 60 hours a month.

The big debate now is exactly what to make our blades out of. We broke four wooden sabers - one of which was broken by a PVC blade. PVC is much lighter, cheaper, and (apparently) more durable when properly cared for.

May 16, 2004 - Things are looking good for the project.

I picked up my new FireWire card today. I'd install it as soon as I get home from work, but I need to sleep for a few hours before going in to my other job.

We have five of our nine main costumes completed. Five of the ten lightsaber hilts we need have been obtained - either through purchase or by custom construction.

Location scouting begins tomorrow - we have about 250 acres of land to scour, and only about five weeks left before filming begins!

Also beginning tommorow is Katie's combat training. I know that she's had some considerable training in the past, but she's a bit out of practice. I look forward to seeing what she's capable of at this point.

May 15, 2004 - Ben Olmstead - one of our principle fight choreographers, as well as the actor in the role of Garik - recieved the final draft of the script today. Katie Spring (pictured left), playing the part of Keira, also got her copy.

In addition to acting in the film, Katie will be working with make-up and prosthetics to make some of our actors a bit more alien-looking.

May 14, 2004 - Today, I hired a local artist to begin storyboarding the script. Within just a few hours, he'd finished the opening scenes of the film. I'm not sure which of us is more excited about the project at this point. He's also signed on to help with model construction and a few non-CGI effects shots.

May 13, 2004 - Christopher Raine - the actor portaying Rade in the film - began combat training today.

Filming is tentatively set to begin June 21, 2004. Keep your fingers crossed for us.

May 11, 2004 - After nearly two months of writing, re-writing and re-re-writing, the script is finished!

Bringer_of_Spiff and ObiJuan2080 from the forums at have signed on as rotoscoping artists.

Contacting John

Question? Comments? Suggestions? Hate mail? Send it to me at or