Indie goes alien: Filmmakers preview 'Skyline' at Comic-Con's Hall H
What makes this monster/alien invasion film different from the rest?
Follow HitFix: Follow @hitfix
Aliens the size of a mid-sized hotel. Violent blue lights that send tremors into Los Angeles like an earthquake. Intense facial deformity and stampedes from invasion.
The scale of "Skyline" is quite big, but the budget was small. The alien-invasion film was financed and paid for independently by some famous friends (like Brett Ratner) and its creators, The Brothers Strause, who were on hand along with the film's principals at the 2010 San Diego Comic-Con.
"So if you guys hate it, then we can't blame anybody else," Colin Strause quipped.
The pair's visual effects resume includes credits on "2012," "Avatar," "Aliens v Predator," "The Day After Tomorrow," "Terminator 3," "The X Files" and beyond, giving them a leg up on themes of extra-terrestrials, the End Times, destruction of Los Angeles and all combinations therein.
In a panel moderated by HitFix's own Drew McWeeny, Colin and Greg Strause plus Eric Balfour, Scottie Thompson, David Zayas, Donald Faison and Brittany Daniel were able to introduce the trailer and a two-minute clips of the flick, which comes out on Nov. 12 this year. Only about 120 people were part of the cast and crew for "Skyline," and the majority of it was shot in, on and around the Strause's apartment building in Los Angeles' Marina neighborhood. One of their screenwriters, for instance, was also a cameraman and the animation supervisor. There were no crew trailers.
"It's been efficient," Greg said. "There were about five people making the decisions."
The result: two couples in the heart of Los Angeles trying to enjoy a vacation, when spaceships roll into town overnight and, naturally, chaos ensues. As vessels hover over the city, what appears to be debris rises into the blue lights; upon closer inspection, however, it appears that it's humans that the aliens are after. "Like moths to flame," says Colin, human beings are drawn to disaster, and the earth's new visitors are taking advantage of it.
The creatures are what the directors and producers call organic, crystalline structures, and gigantic at that. "We wanted Transformer-sized aliens. We've seen an eight-foot alien. We wanted a 55-foot tall one," Colin said, alluding to his former project "Avatar." "I've seen 'Cloverfield,' 'King Kong,'... the premise of the movie is mass abduction on a global scale. [The aliens] don't shoot bullets or laser beams. That's not their MO."
The decision to join up with the movie was an easy one for "Scrubs" star Faison. "It didn't take a lot. I always wanted to fight against a green screen or something that wasn't there."
Check out what else HitFix's Motion/Captured guru had to say about the film.
1993 | Sports | PGSummary: Emotionally powerful sports classic featuring Sean Astin as a skinny high school kid with big football dreams and the determination to make his way towards his dream team at Notre Dame.Director: David Anspaugh
Cast: Sean Astin, Jon Favreau, Ned Beatty
2013 | Drama | RSummary: Leonardo DiCaprio and Jonah Hill have boundless energy in the story of a real-life commodities crook who earned millions through scummy small-time stock trades.Director: Martin Scorsese
Cast: Leonardo DiCaprio, Jonah Hill, Margot Robbie
2008 | Science Fiction | PGSummary: Animated series continues the story of Obi-Wan Kenobi and Anakin Skywalker as they battle the Emperor Palpatine, Count Dooku and General Grievous, but also takes time to explore other smaller characters in the Star Wars universe.Director: George Lucas (creator)
Cast: Tom Kane, Dee Bradley Baker, Matt Lanter
2013 | Thriller | RSummary: Based on the true story of Daniel Lugo (Mark Wahlberg) a Miami bodybuilder who wants to live the American dream. He would like to have the money that other people have. So he enlists the help of fellow bodybuilder Adrian Doorbal (Anthony Mackie) and ex-convict, Christian bodybuilder Paul Doyle (D...Director: Michael Bay
Cast: Mark Wahlberg, Dwayne Johnson, Anthony Mackie, Tony Shalhoub
2007 | Comedy | PGSummary: Newlyweds Nick (Ice Cube) and Suzanne (Long) decide to move to the suburbs to provide a better life for their two kids. But their idea of a dream home is disturbed by a contractor (McGinley) with a bizarre approach to business.Director: Steve Carr
Cast: John C. McGinley, Ice Cube, Nia Long, Aleisha Allen
1997 | Crime | RSummary: Quentin Tarantino adaptats an Elmore Leonard novel into this story of a few increasingly desperate people scraping to get by. It has deep soul, a wicked sense of humor, and Samuel L. Jackson, Robert De Niro, Pam Grier, and Robert Forster.Director: Quentin Tarantino
Cast: Pam Grier, Samuel L. Jackson, Robert Forster
1996 | Crime | RSummary: Jerry, a small-town Minnesota car salesman is bursting at the seams with debt... but he's got a plan. He's going to hire two thugs to kidnap his wife in a scheme to collect a hefty ransom from his wealthy father-in-law. It's going to be a snap and nobody's going to get hurt... until people start ...Director: Joel Coen, Ethan Coen
Cast: William H. Macy, Frances McDormand, Steve Buscemi, Peter Stormare
1995 | Mystery | NRSummary: Denzel Washington plays an out of work WWII vet who takes the wrong job and is soon neck-deep in a mess of politics, murder, and jazz in '40s Los Angeles.Director: Carl Franklin
Cast: Denzel Washington, Tom Sizemore, Jennifer Beals
2013 | Comedy | NRSummary: Insanely funny comedy show created by Amy Schumer, who stars in brilliantly funny sketches about sex, city living, dating, and friendship.Director: Daniel Powell, Amy Schumer (creators)
Cast: Amy Schumer, Kevin Kane, Mike Houston
Looking for something to watch?
Let Streaming Genie help you.
Let Streaming Genie help you.