Just got done writing the story outline for Companionship.
"What?" you say? How did you not have a story already? Well I did have a story, but it was all jotted notes, thumbnail sketches, and stuff in my head. The sudden influx of talented people with various skills has drastically altered the scope of what this film can be, and has made it necessary to really nail down the specifics of every moment in it. Can't play it fast and loose with fifty people all coordinating toward the same goal!
And something funny happened over the weekend, as I unplugged from Facebook and let those talented teams (everyone's been sorted into departments with leads and a producer and a chain of command) go ahead and do their thing. Once I finished that outline and sent it off to the producer so she could work out a budget and figure out what our Kickstarter goal should be, this whole thing stopped being surreal.
Now it's fucking REAL.
There really are over four dozen people working to get this thing off the ground, and they really are doing some terrific work in pre-production. There really will be a Kickstarter effort, and I imagine it really will do well (fingers crossed). I really have a real Chell figurine sitting in front of me as I type, and though she's a mock-up based on the old model, she's really supposed to be painted, and she really will appear in the fundraising pitch video.
So many man-hours already invested, just in the past couple of weeks, and it's only the beginning! Once the push to get the (roughly) two dozen test chamber sets built, dozens of props and assets modeled, textured and rigged, the FX and portal methodology developed, and untold numbers of shots laid out for animation... yes, even once we have twenty or more animators hard at work pushing Chell through scene after scene, there's still the matter of the big action climax! That one scene easily will take a metric ton of effort to plan, orchestrate, and execute. And I'll be working with all the same people, who are currently churning out sets and props, to design and build a massive environment, pile on layers and layers of technical wizardry and artistic know-how to make the action and effects of that scene possible, and plot it out within an inch of its life before the animators -- those who've proven themselves the most rockstar-like throughout the rest of the production -- will ever get to touch one frame. I'm starting to wonder if I'll even get to animate on this short, which is ironic since it all started with me just wanting to animate a single shot for my demo reel!
Life's funny, I guess...