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The Story of Death Star Repairmen
by Darryl Gold

1999

Death Star Repairmen came to me as a funny title for a film. For a while It was only that... a title. I figured a great title like that deserves a great story. It wasn't until some time and a few funny ideas later I had a script that did the title justice.

2001

I mentioned the idea to a couple of producer friends, Brian Smith and Chantal Payette, who were keen to help me make it. Brian and I worked from May till November 2001 trying to pull together favours and facilities. Jym Campbell created an excellent prop droid. We had facilities to do the effects in real time. And we had lots of help. Unfortunately tech problems arose that we had no power to fix because everthing was done on favours. So after six months of trying we still had nothing shot.

Spring 2002

Chantal informs me of a Star Wars fan film contest at Atom films. George Lucas will select a winner. I thought "it's a excuse to get the thing done". So with renewed dedication Chantal grabbed the reins, made some calls and we did our shoot on March 25 2002.

The Atom films deadline was April 5th. I had help with the effects but It wouldn't be enough time to get it into the contest. Besides, I read the terms of the contest and there was no guarantee that Lucas would see our film and if they liked it they would own it for 3 years. it would be exclusive to their site but they didn't have to play it, they could just sit on it for that whole time. I didn't like that.

As the month went on my effects helpers had to find paying jobs. So I learned all the 3D software and continued on my own. The film is 6 minutes and there are 75 shots in the film. Every shot is an effect.

Attack of the Clones

I buried myself in the work. I told myself and others It couldn't take much longer. But it just seemed to expand in complexity the more I worked on it.

The next Star Wars movie was due May 16 2002 and The Media were hungry for anything related to Star Wars. Chantal got us some press in Eye magazine and an appearance on Star TV and Talk TV. Luckily I had just enough to make a one minute clip.

The Clones came and went. People stopped asking about the film. But I was still in there working night and day in the pixel mines. It went on for months.

2003

Finally I got it to the point where I would do no more work on it (a.k.a. "finished") and started working on a web site to launch it. I asked my friend, writer and cartoonist, Rob Pincombe to make up a fake newsletter like they might have on the Death Star and he came back with stacks of fake articles and comics that blew me away. He must have found some creative bliss in doing it. It's called The Imperial News and the emperor says read it.

So now the film is finished and online. I hope you like it. I threw away over a year of my life on it.

Darryl Gold

 



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