While most fans are gearing up for the December arrival of Star Wars: The Force Awakens by snapping up the newly launched range of toys and collectibles, vfx artist Eric Demeusy chose to pay tribute by crafting his very own Star Wars mini-film.
Star Wars: The New Republic Anthology isn’t the first fan film to resurrect the ever-popular Star Wars villain Boba Fett — last seen in the official movies falling to into the maw of the giant creature in the Sarlacc Pit —but it’s easily the most polished, and almost certainly the only one to get the thumbs up from original Boba Fett actor Jeremy Bulloch.
Demeusy, whose animation and compositing work can be seen in Pacific Rim, Tron Legacy and the title sequences for Justified and Game of Thrones, has been steadily honing his directing skills with several festival-screened shorts. Star Wars: The New Republic Anthology combines his passion for both digital and practical effects and filmmaking with a long-standing love of George Lucas’ original Hollywood-defining trilogy. In fact this is Demeusy’s third Star Wars fan film, following two 20-minute shorts completed back in high school.
That an ultra low-budget short looks almost as glossy as the trailers for Star Wars: The Force Awakens is both a testament to the democratisation of camera and post production technology and the talents of Demeusy, compositor Evan Langley and director of photography Jason Mitcheltree. Mitcheltree shot the footage with the RED Epic Dragon (he also works at Red Digital Cinema). Resolve was used for grading, glows and chromatic aberration were added in After Effects, and visual effects created by the director in Cinema 4D.
Perhaps in honour of Abraams’ new-found restraint, Demeusy has wisely avoided drenching the footage in fake lens flares, though it’s a fair bet the official Star Wars director didn’t have to deal with budgetary constraints by kitting out any of his actors in a customised Rubies fancy dress costume…