Post-Human is a scifi proof-of-concept short based on the award-winning and bestselling series of novels by me, David Simpson. Amazingly, filmed over just three hours by a crew of three, the short depicts the opening of Post-Human, drawing back the curtain on the Post-Human world and letting viewers see the world and characters they’ve only been able to imagine previously. You’ll get a taste of a world where everyone is immortal, have onboard mental “mind’s eye” computers, nanotechnology can make your every dream a reality, and thanks to the magnetic targeted fusion implants every post-human has, everyone can fly (and yep, there’s flying in this short!) But there’s a dark side to this brave new world, including the fact that every post-human is monitored from the inside out, and the one artificial superintelligence running the show might be about to make its first big mistake. 😉
The entire crew was only three people, including me, and I was behind the camera at all times. The talent is Madison Smith (Legends of Tomorrow, Supernatural) as James Keats, and Bridget Graham (Pixels, Manhattan Undying, Hemlock Grove) as his wife, Katherine. As a result of the expense of the spectacular location, the entire short had to be filmed in three hours, so we had to be lean and fast. What a rush! (Pun intended).
The concept was to try to replicate what a full-length feature would look and feel like by adapting the opening of Post-Human, right up to what would be the opening credits. Of course, as I was producing the movie myself, we only had a micro-budget, but after researching the indie films here on Vimeo over the last year, I became convinced that we could create a reasonable facsimile of what a big-budget production would look like and hopefully introduce this world to many more people who aren’t necessarily aficionados of scifi exclusively on the Kindle. While the series has been downloaded over a million times since 2012, I’ve always intended for it to be adapted for film, and I’m excited to have, in some small measure, finally succeeded.
Many thanks to Ivan Torrent, an unbelievably talented composer who allows his work to be used for free for non-commercial films. We set the pacing of the opening to his incredible work, and we hope we can expose him to thousands of new listeners through our movie.
Also, a huge thank you to Michael Eng, who is literally the only visual effects artist to have worked on this film. He did everything CG that you see (and some that you don’t see) and is the reason the effects have such a unified, compelling look.
Thank you to Sanha Cho, my former student and now a film student at NYU for helping us with the cameras during our rushed set ups.
And my biggest thank you has to go to my wife, Jenny, who worked just as hard as I did on this project and deserves a ton of credit. I can’t believe how lucky I am to have a wife that supports my dreams like this. Jenny, you are the BEST! I love you!
And for you, the Vimeo community, a huge thank you! If I hadn’t seen such incredible films on here, done with micro budgets and affordable but powerful cameras, this would have been impossible. A special mention is deserved by Ian Watt, who made beautiful films with a Black Magic Pocket Cinema, a Glidecam HD4000, a Metabones Speedbooster, some nice filters and a Rokinon 16mm f/2.0 lens. We ended up opting for the Sigma 18-35 mm, but we basically had the same set up. Add a couple of tripods and a slider, and you’ve got what you need to make a great short film! We also used a Zoom audio recorder and a Rhode mic, and we edited the film in Final Cut and the sound in Adobe Audition. The colour correction was done in DaVinci Resolve. And yes, we did it all! Everything in post was done by Jenny, myself, and Michael. We even bought a second-hand Makerbot and 3D printed the original design for James’ helmet! It was a heck of a lot of work, but it was a labor of love and we’re very proud of it. I hope you’ll enjoy it too, and if you feel like being extra awesome, please share what we did or leave a positive comment to help us get a feature film off the ground. 🙂
And a huge thank you to the growing Post-Human tribe of readers, who’ve made attempting something like this possible by supporting the series online so enthusiastically and making my dream of becoming a professional novelist a reality!
Written & Directed by David Simpson
Th3 Awak3n1ng, Blue Factor and Angelus Ex Inferno by Ivan Torrent
Michael Eng Visual Effects
Post-Human VFX Breakdown: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ANFZRfNPrPA