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Childhood friends pursue filmmaking dreams
As childhood friends who grew up in Kent, they shared the love of visual arts and wonder of adventurous movies.
Now aspiring filmmakers in the industry, Erik Franklin and Daniel Husser are embarking on their first full-length feature movie.
Their independently produced project, “Revenge of the Lost,” is well under way, with scenes shot locally and starring a Seattle-area cast, including familiar lead actors Ivey Bronwen and Eli Bradford.
Franklin, writer and director, joined Husser, director of photography, in co-producing a science fiction adventure-action movie depicting the survival of mankind as dinosaurs reappear on Earth. Four survivors must make their way through the dinosaur apocalypse to a military base, the last safe place on Earth. Once there, they come across a plot that’s more terrifying than the dinosaurs themselves.
“We certainly put people under pressure in this move,” Franklin said. “Some great and unpleasant things about people will surface in this movie. … We wanted to make the characters as real and as human as possible. We really don’t want it to be about the effects.”
Franklin, a Kentlake High School graduate, and Husser, a Kentwood grad, always wanted to pursue a legitimate, character-rich and special effects-embraced movie. They successfully made student short films in high school and produced small-scale projects as students at the Art Institute of Seattle.
The young filmmakers complement each other. Franklin is a writer and painter, while Husser is a sculptor.
They share ideas and bring out the best in one another’s talents.
Now, on their own, they are busy making contacts and attracting support for their project, which they hope to pull off despite a modest $63,000 budget. Fundraising is ongoing.
To get it done, and to support the area’s film industry, they have hired an all-local cast.
To complete the movie in a timely and cost-effective manner, Franklin and Husser are shooting, splicing and editing scenes with the use of readily available equipment.
Using stop motion, puppetry and miniatures, the feature-length movie combines the best elements of traditional creature features with modern-day action, they say.
“It’s a great time to be an independent filmmaker because technology has become more and more affordable,” Franklin said.
For instance, the tandem is shooting local, high-definition-quality scenes on digital single-lens reflex cameras. Editing and effects are shaped and realized from the view and capabilities of a laptop.
”By the end of the day, you have a completed shot,” Franklin said of the process.
The plan is to complete the film by the end of the year, have it hopefully picked up by a distributor and entered for public review, possibly the Seattle Independent Film Festival. “It’s pretty exciting,” Husser said of the effort.
“Others tell us that we started out way too big, but really that’s what we want to do,” Husser said. “We may be a little too ambitious sometimes, but that’s what we are and that’s what we have to be to really succeed.”
To learn more or to contribute to the film project, visit www.indiegogo.com or search for “Revenge of the Lost” on Facebook.
Those who donate are eligible for prizes, including the chance to be included in a movie scene.