Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Phase Two in the news!

an independent bakersfield news source | July 28th, 2009

Local Film Crew Lands Big Budget To Make Zombie Film
Just when Bakersfield film fans thought Hectic Films was no more, comes the huge film project “Phase Two,” which promises more explosions, crazier zombies and even better acting with Hollywood talent in the cast. Only, this film is in association with Higher Definition Media and will be mostly shot outside of Bakersfield.

“I’m not allowed to disclose our budget,” Rickey Bird of Hectic Films said. While the budget is rumored as sizable, that doesn’t mean it’s of Hollywood blockbuster scale. It does mean that film crews will be shooting on a camera fit for Blue Ray disks.

Jason Sanders, who started Higher Definition Media with colleague Andrew Waite, added that the budget is good enough where they can hire actors, have catering, pyrotechnics, props and vehicles.

Either way, after landing an investor, Hectic films name is still associated with the movie, and is even shooting on an actual film lot. George the Giant, who was in “Big Fish,” was associated with an earlier rendition of the film. But he, like other actors, weren’t paid, but donated their time. Their big cast member is up-and-coming actress Jessica Erin Sylvia. While she is most well-known for her Italian lingerie and Playboy modeling, she is a promising talent that the project is banking on.

“We went casting in LA. It was her look. The way she looked more Latino. And that’s what I had going with the character,” Bird said. He added he also wanted the main character to be both beautiful and tough looking.

Shaun Paul Piccinino, who plays a soldier in the film, is already well known for his Hollywood expertise. According to Sanders, Piccinino edits as well as does visual effects for the popular stop-motion animated show “Robot Chicken,” which is produced by Seth Green and Matthew Senreich. He has also directed more than one episode of “The Deadliest Warrior,” an original series for Spike TV.

According to a press release sent out on Tuesday, the indie film company Higher Definition Media will begin principal photography of the sci-fi thriller “Phase Two” in film lots located at California City Studios on Aug. 4.

Film crews will also be shooting on location in and around Bakersfield.

Many people came out as extras for an earlier version of the film to be in the unreleased zombie-slasher movie, “Wretched Flesh.” But that film was only partially made due to budget issues. “Money and time, but mostly money was the issue,” Bird said. Footage from the film will hopefully be added as bonus material on the DVD release of the movie.

Watch: Footage of Hectic Films and zombies. Motocross scenes are cool:

Local talent and crew around Bakersfield have already helped out. Bryce Hatch of Inspiration Studios is a production manager on “Phase Two.” Hatch directed and wrote the film, “Stamped!” which premiered at the Fox Theater in Bakersfield. He also adapted “Phase Two” for film production. The film was written by both Bird and Sanders.

As “Phase Two” production begins, cast and crew will head out to the high desert for on-location shooting. Jason Sanders is director, while Andrew Waite is director of photography. Bird, of Hectic Films, is slated as the assistant director.

So what does it mean to be a director duo? “Kind of makes things easier,” Bird said. “Jason is more of a technical person and I’m more of a people person, which is what the assistant director does. I deal with the people.”

“Phase Two” is set in a post-apocalyptic future. Survivors of a deadly virus are faced with an undead-filled environment of zombie-infected humans. John Ross Clark plays a high strung professor, while Jessica Erin Sylvia portrays his tough-minded assistant. Both are on a quest to find a cure for the infection. The film also stars Tattie Grace, Matt Thompson, Robin Steffen and Luke Bishop. 

Rickey Bird, Andrew Waite, Jason Sanders, and Travis Yoder

Scene from earlier rendition of “Phase Two”
Images and video by Nick Belardes

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1 comment:

  1. You gize are totally famous.

    ps. my zombie run woulda been better.