Here it is. We’ve finished our festival run, so here’s the complete proof-of-concept short.
Cowboys & Engines is a steampunk western short that stars Richard Hatch (Battlestar: Galactica), Walter Koenig (Star Trek), Libby Letlow (Masked Rider), newcomer Kaila Katesh and screen legend Malcolm McDowell (A Clockwork Orange).
The film is an extended pitch piece, aimed at turning the concept into either a film or a series. As such, it isn’t a linear narrative; it’s a selection of scenes from the feature that give the viewer the story arc, and a sense of the world and its characters.
Our goal was to create a world that lives and breathes; an old west framed by a steampunk aesthetic that is at once fantastic and yet completely believable and real. A full feature script and a deck outlining a 13-episode 1-hour adventure series are available.
Set in an alternate 1876, Cowboys & Engines follows Cade Ballard, the former Texan ambassador, as he encounters Guinivere Wheeler, a sexy gunslinger and con artist. Together, they form an uneasy pact to stop Dr. Clay, a would-be conqueror who wants to unleash the destructive power of the Temporal Engine, a machine that threatens to lay waste to the entire city of San Francisco.
Just a quick update; we’ve been submitting C&E to festivals all over the world, and the response we’ve been getting is extremely positive. It’s considered declassé to announce you’ve been accepted into a festival before the festival press goes out, so we can’t be more specific. Just suffice it to say, the film will be screening all over the world in the next 12 months!
One of the hardest parts of filmmaking is knowing your own limitations. When it comes to doing audio work, I’m smart enough to know someone else needs to do that job, because it’s the place for skilled craftspeople, and where sound is concerned, that does NOT describe me.
It DOES, however, describe Mark Edward Lewis, our fantastic sound designer. Yesterday, I sat in on the final mixdown of the audio for C&E. With all the dialogue edited, the sound effects laid in, the music properly mixed, it was a fantastic experience. For all intents and purposes, the sound is FINISHED.
Even though we’re still missing several VFX shots, and the graphics in the movie are just temporary placeholders, for the first time, watching Cowboys & Engines, it felt like a film.
Big thanks to Mark and his team for all their hard work.