Q&A #2

How is the business going to be handled in the future?

17 Presidents Productions, as it currently exists, is composed as Andrew Johnson (Writer/Director) serving as President and Luke Nader serving as CEO. The responsibilities break down as Andrew being the creative head and Luke being the business head. Once the necessary funds are raised, we will be setting up the production company as an LLC in Texas, because we believe that great animated films can be created in our great state.

Though we definitely plan for the production company to grow substantially in the coming years, we do not want things to get so large that projects are operating completely independent of one another. All decisions will continue to pass through Andrew and Luke in the future. Through this, we hope to insure a consistent level of quality in all our films. Further C Level positions (CFO, etc.) will be filled as the business grows. We plan to add at least two team members before production begins on our major follow-up project to “Jupiter IX.”

Development will focus primarily on original, in-house material, but we will also be open to obtaining material originated outside the studio, such as optioning books, stories, and screenplays, and bidding for commercial work, including advertising. Though our first short film will be stop-motion animated, ever concurrent project will be produced in the style and format that best fits the material. Since Luke and Andrew have degrees that focus on Graphic Design and Computer Animation, and Andrew went on to also receive a graduate degree in Film, we are confident that we will be able to produce high-quality, entertaining genre material for film lovers in many formats, whether animation or live-action.

From a more immediate business perspective, we will be focusing on procuring financing for the production of “Jupiter IX.” To do so, we will be applying for an Austin Film Society Grant as well as launching a Kickstarter campaign this summer.

What are your major inspirations for your current project?

2001, The Searchers, Alien, A Fistful of Dollars, Star Wars, and Unforgiven.

I’ve heard grumblings about Andrew being fired every single night.

Of course he is. It’s far too inefficient to pay him while he sleeps, and this will continue until the LLC is finalized.

And now for the Facebook promised terrifying/hilarious photos. As a team-building exercise built on Andrew’s pre-existing ritual, we will be shaving clean at the beginning of each filmmaking step on “Jupiter IX,” and refusing to shave in between (our wives were in full agreement with this, in case you were wondering). Below are our Pre-Production Kick-Off shots.

Andrew Pre Start Luke Pre Start

On the plus side, Andrew’s beardless photo was horrifying enough to put him on a diet.

Q&A #1

In the first of what will hopefully be a monthly event, this post is dedicated to answering questions submitted on our Facebook page. And now, after that unnecessary segue…

When will we be seeing a collective storyboard for your screen play Jupiter IX?

Unfortunately, if you were to see the whole storyboard, the entire short would be spoiled for you, so that’s not going to happen, mostly because I love you too much. However, I will be sharing a handful of the boards with you in March to demonstrate how I plan my shots and to give you little glimpses into the unfolding story.

What’s your timeline looking like? When can we expect to see the production start on this film?

Pre-production will be completed  by April 15th (fingers and toes crossed). This includes character and set design, storyboarding, creation of a budget and schedule, and a temp-tracked animatic. At this point, I will begin puppet construction. As for production, that will rest entirely on the success of our coming Kickstarter campaign. If successful, we can begin shooting in late June/July. If unsuccessful, things will take longer, because we’ll only be able to produce what we can as money slowly becomes available. So, start saving your nickles to finance our film in the summer 🙂

It seems like the developmental design is taking a while are you currently working on other projects at the same time?

Why yes, yes I am.

Wait… you want details? Okay!

Since updates on this site have begun, I’ve continued to expand the website, I’ve written the first draft of what will be 17 Presidents Productions’ second short film, and have been working on the outline for a feature script.

This is a independant stop-motion animation project you are making, so how would one be able to recieve a copy of this feature post production?

Good question. The easiest way to receive a copy of the finished film will be to become a backer of our eventual Kickstarter campaign. The DVD will contain much of the behind-the-scenes material from our updates, as well as much more (including the collective storyboard requested in the first question).

Will Luke fire everyone if this isn’t the best project ever?

Maybe not the best project ever. But if “Jupiter IX” isn’t artistically successful, I can guarantee that Luke (17 Presidents’ resident producer) will fire everyone except me.

That wraps up the Q&A. Thanks for the great questions, and if you didn’t like the questions, make sure to ask your own within the next month.

For those of you still hanging with us, I’d like to show you my gratitude by sharing my failures. Below are some of the character design choices that were just wrong:

The Seeker002

The Seeker004

Android001

Android002

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AJ