I love fan films. It doesn’t matter if they are professionally produced or amateur crap. Even the amateur ones usually are such a labor of love you have to give the people doing them credit for getting off their butts and trying. Software and hardware available these days, much of it free or very low cost, has enabled so many to give film making a try.
What is a fan film? For my purposes, it’s a film made independent of any known production company which uses someone else’s intellectual property. It may be a series based on Star Trek, or a one off short film based on Star Wars, or a show based on characters from comic books, video games, and novels. It could be a story set in Tolkien’s Middle Earth before Bilbo’s journey or a parody of DC super villains out for a karaoke night. Whatever it is, it involves someone else’s stuff, and the danger of copyright infringement lawsuits lurks around every corner. Luckily, most companies just let these things slide as long as people aren’t making profit or claiming they are official. Original tales won’t make the cut here.
And I watch a lot of these things. Jason doesn’t understand how I can sit through some of them. I admit many of them are awful, and not awful in any kind of watching-a-train-wreck way or so-awful-it’s-good way. They’re just plain bad. However, I’ve seen just plain bad at the cinema, too, made by people with a lot more money, so who are we to judge? Also, I just find the whole process fascinating: someone has a vision and will soldier on creating their movie, even when they realize it has all gone horribly wrong. And the sparkly gems stand out even brighter.
I can, however, understand people not wanting to bother with everything I can handle. Thus, I’m beginning my fan film articles. You’ll get reviews of individual films, tips to films and series you might want to check out, as well as notes on what I found great even in the bad ones. There’ll be links to other fan film bloggers and sites as well.
Let the pain and the awesome begin!