Monday, July 21, 2008

Batman Fan Films

As you can imagine, The Dark Knight had a HUGE weekend, the biggest opening weekend in movie history, topping out at a hundred thousand million billion dollars (at least) by most accounts. Warner Brothers and DC Comics should be very happy to have that success. You know who else would like that success? The filmmakers I'm about to introduce to you.

There have been a few attempts over the last few years by aspiring filmmakers to make their own Batman films, and they've attracted a small but fervent fan base. These films were not made with cooperation from DC Comics, of course, but the creators didn't intend to make money directly off of the use of these copyrighted characters. The intent was simply to showcase their filmmaking talents in the hope that producers would take notice.

The first high profile attempt was by a man named Sandy Collora in 2003. He is the creator of Batman: Dead End, about Batman's fatefull meeting with an escaped Joker and some rather surprising yet familiar guests:



Two notes about the actor who portrays the Joker, Andrew Koenig.

1) He portrayed Sylvestor "Boner" Stabone on the 1980s sitcom Growing Pains.
2) His father is actor Walter Koenig, who played Chechov in the original Star Trek TV series and films.

Learn more about the film at Corrola's Web site: http://www.collorastudios.com/

The next notable Batman fan film was released just a year later. Grayson stars writer/director John Fiorella as Dick Grayson, aka Robin, now a grown man and out to avenge the murder of Batman at the hands of a cabel of supervillians and corrupt Gotham City officials. Not a full film, but in fact made in trailer form.



Learn more about Grayson and Fiorella's other projects at http://www.untamedcinema.com/.

Finally, a brand new Batman fan film has just surfaced. The Dark Knight Project takes place between Batman Begins and The Dark Knight, and follows the exploits of journalism students Heather and Mikey as they set out to confirm the existence of the Batman, thought by some (including Mikey) to be an urban myth. See the entire film right at the filmmakers' Web site:

http://www.darkknightproject.com/

Come back on Wednesday, when I will present, several days earlier than planned, part 2 of the 1949 Batman serial for the Saturday Matinee. Thanks!

4 comments:

patrick said...

Dark Knight is a must see for sure, though it might be a better game plant to go after the crowds die down a bit.

Phillyradiogeek said...

It will likely be a DVD viewing for me, Patrick. It's trouble enough for me to get to a theater at all, let alone to a movie with zero interest for my wife.

Clive Young said...

I run a fan film news blog called fancinematoday.com and last week I wrote up a great Batman flick worth watching, Batman's Bad Day, where Bats and Superman basically start talking smack with each other. Good, funny stuff.

Also, for what it's worth, I wrote a book about the history and future of fan films, Homemade Hollywood: Fans Behind The Camera, which is coming out this summer, and it has lots of info on a bunch of great fan films, including a few you mentioned in your article, like Dead End and Grayson.

Phillyradiogeek said...

Thanks Clive! I'll definitely check it out, and I hope you return to my blog. Welcome!

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