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Blender Sci-fi series 'Deadstar' wins NYC Film Festival Prize


Brandon Wright's 'Deadstar' series has won the 'Best Web Series/Trailer' prize in the 2013 Philip K Dick Film Festival in Brooklyn, New York.

Brandon writes:

Deadstar is a sci fi action series about a mercenary with nothing to lose and a mysterious little girl with strange powers. The show prodominantly follows the reckless mercenary Harrison through his different missions, while the little girl, Panala has just arrived on the same planet from a different universe. I just completed the first season of the series which consists of 7 episodes I created myself and voice for, with the help of some talented voice actors. I came up with the concept and the idea to make the show in August 2011. In March 2011 I finished a short film in blender called Infinity, and I was about to make a sort of sequel to that short film. Once I thought of the concept for Deadstar I figured it might be more resourceful and original to make a series of short films about the same characters, instead of doing a collection of separate ones. I've also always been a fan of anime and I grew up on shows like Dragonball Z and Gundam Wing on Toonami.

Episode 1 - Escape

So I started developing the show in September 2011. After a bunch of trial and error and learning new techniques through the tutorials of Andrew Price and David Ward. Techniques like character modeling from scratch, and fluid character movement, and of course the look of the show. I finally began the first official episode in May 2012, and I finished the first two by the end of September 2012. The first official episode was released on October 21st, 2012, I waited until I had a good amount of episode 3 done before I released it.

Episode 2 - Red Devils

However after the third episode was released in January 2013, I realized the show wasn't getting the amount of attention I thought it would. And I realized it was my fault for not making it as good as it could have been. So my workflow and writing style started to change to make the show better in all the ways I thought it was lacking. After months of work I decided to postpone the work I did for future episodes, and I started what became to be episode 4 around April. I paid more attention to the writing and the tone I wanted for the show. I also thought it'd be fun to film/render the show in stereo 3D. Basically side by side cameras. haha The fourth episode came out in May. I realized I had finally found and honed my process in making the characters and sets as appealing as possible and at the same time making sure I'm aware of conserving time. And I actually submitted art from the 4th episode to Blender Nation and you guys were kind enough to accept it as the banner of the website for a while. That was surreal haha. Ever since then I've tried to tighten the writing and each episode has taken me about a month to complete. The final episode of the season which I just finished, was the most challenging and the most work out of all of them. It took me about a month to complete from start to finish, and it came out a few weeks ago, November 21, 2013. I managed to finish the first two episodes of the second season before I started the season 1 finale, so right now I'm taking a break from Deadstar and I'm starting another animated series that I hope to get finished by January. At which point season 2 premiere will be released, and I'll start up Deadstar once again along with the other show I'm developing.

Episode 3 - Falling from the Stars

The Philip K Dick Film festival is a fest that exclusively features science fiction films, and it was held this past weekend. The screening for the short films and webseries, were on Friday, and sadly I wasn't able to make it. However I was informed that my webseries was still eligible for awards even without my attendence. So on monday when I woke up I found out that I had won the competition with Deadstar. I submitted footage from the show that consisted of an action scene from episode 5 and a few short scenes from episode 7. It's the first award I've ever won for anything I did, it's pretty crazy. Especially considering I think my film was the only animated film.

Brandon produced a total of 9 episodes so far, you can see them on the Deadstar YouTube Channel.


About Author

Bart Veldhuizen

I have a LONG history with Blender - I wrote some of the earliest Blender tutorials, worked for Not a Number and helped run the crowdfunding campaign that open sourced Blender (the first one on the internet!). I founded BlenderNation in 2006 and have been editing it every single day since then ;-) I also run the Blender Artists forum and I'm Head of Community at Sketchfab.

1 Comment

  1. I must admit that although I don't like the animation and the posing of the characters, I like the impression of the whole work. Very good! :)

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