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Potemkin_Prod February 18 2014 10:45 PM

Star Trek ~ Project: Potemkin "Duty Bound" S02-A
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Star Trek ~ Project: Potemkin "Duty Bound" S02-A

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The Potemkin is beset by a pair of Orion frigates! Can Captain Grigory and his crew hold them off?

Starring Jeffrey Green as Captain Alec Grigory, Douglas Harper as Helmsman Mike Delaney, Hannah E. Ruiz as Tactical Officer Doreen Spampinato, Chris Coleman as Engineer Drew Wallace, Jason Ryan Wallace as Communications Officer Sonaj, Richard Hope Thornton as Security Chief Darrell Frazier, and introducing Sara Higgins Mackenzie as Yeoman Ziandra Yanari.

Featuring Kim Landers as the Navigator and Linda Marcusky as the Science Officer. Written by David Eversole. Directed by Bill Mackenzie. VFX by Mark Berge, John Northam and Randy Landers. Edited by Randall Landers. Music by Tony Lunn. Senior Producer: Rick Foxx.

MikeH92467 February 19 2014 12:56 AM

Re: Star Trek ~ Project: Potemkin "Duty Bound" S02-A
Once again, we see the improvement in so many aspects of this production: more of Jeffrey Green (always a good thing IMHO) and a nice little character twist. I sometimes get a little annoyed with the implication that everyone on a starship had a perfect Academy record, never had personal problems, never underachieved, etc, etc. Maybe that's why I enjoyed the Barclay and Ro episodes of TNG.

Anyway, the sound problems with the first few lines of Grigory's dialogue just can't be overlooked. Just my opinion, but I really don't think it should have been released without addressing that issue.

Aside from that one very noticeable glitch, a sure-footed episode that does a good job of fleshing out a character.

Potemkin_Prod February 19 2014 03:20 AM

Re: Star Trek ~ Project: Potemkin "Duty Bound" S02-A
Thanks, Mike! We appreciate the feedback!

Sir Rhosis February 19 2014 04:01 AM

Re: Star Trek ~ Project: Potemkin "Duty Bound" S02-A
Indeed, Mike's honest critiques are always welcomed and listened to.

Sir Rhosis

Ryan Thomas Riddle February 19 2014 08:49 AM

Re: Star Trek ~ Project: Potemkin "Duty Bound" S02-A
Hate to say it, but I checked out after the first few lines. Why? Because we're presented with another space battle where we're talking about shield percentages (a common fan film trope at this point). And it's hard to get interested when the actors themselves don't seem vested in the situation. Your last effort was trying to tell a story we'd care about even though there were flaws, but this one fails to engage. There's nothing to care about.

Potemkin_Prod February 19 2014 09:08 AM

Re: Star Trek ~ Project: Potemkin "Duty Bound" S02-A
Sorry you didn't care for this one, Middy. Maybe the next one will spur your interest. Thanks for the feedback.

Duane February 19 2014 02:27 PM

Re: Star Trek ~ Project: Potemkin "Duty Bound" S02-A
Since these types of productions face so many challenges, I am a big believer in solving one issue at a time. Perfecting sound quality would be my goal if I were in your shoes.

Then we can move on to costumes, sets, effects and other stuff that can't be done well without $$$. I know it's not easy, but I love the effort.

Potemkin_Prod February 19 2014 05:23 PM

Re: Star Trek ~ Project: Potemkin "Duty Bound" S02-A
Thanks! In September we purchased a sound recording device that we hope will help in this area. We've used the Tascam on some of the third season productions but those wont be seen until next year or so. At present were working on cleaning up as much of the sound we can with adobe audition. We're still learning. ;)

Maurice February 19 2014 08:54 PM

Re: Star Trek ~ Project: Potemkin "Duty Bound" S02-A
Yeah The sound would be my #1 suggestion for a fix where technical stuff goes. Make sure you have a suitable mic type for what you're recording.

This film gets off on the wrong foot because the battle is so...rote.

What bugs me is the Captain acts so inert. It's never really clear why they're taking such a pounding. Do these other ships outclass them?

Question: is that sound effect of the shields being hit from the Sega Star Trek arcade game? It sure sounds like it!

Potemkin_Prod February 19 2014 10:41 PM

Re: Star Trek ~ Project: Potemkin "Duty Bound" S02-A
Like I said, we spent half a month's budget and got a small TASCAM to help with the sound. We're using a couple of hypercardioids at 30š to the camera. We may have them positioned too far out from the actors, so we're going to look at moving them closer. We're aware of the issue; we're just not sure if we can get the problem solved with such a limited budget.

The battle is the first one in Project: Potemkin's 12 releases to date. I don't think we even have another in the next 15 productions until we get to "Third Watch." I think fans have become jaded to battles, but this was our cast's first, and they were excited.

The pair of Orion ships depicted are, according to the chap that insisted we use them, more than a match for the Potemkin. Faster, more maneuverable, and toward the end of the battle began targeting critical systems.

The sound effect of the shields being hit is from TOS "All Our Yesterdays": It's Mr. Atoz's stunner. Of all the sounds I listened to when coming up with the sound catalog for this episode, I liked the reverb it had. :) The Potemkin's interior rumble when hit is from "Balance of Terror." And the Orion Sortex frigates engine noises were from DS9 Runabouts.

Maurice February 19 2014 11:06 PM

Re: Star Trek ~ Project: Potemkin "Duty Bound" S02-A
You know, I thought I recognized the sound from the original show, but I it was recreated in the Sega game...for a shield hit, oddly enough.

Potemkin_Prod February 20 2014 06:24 AM

Re: Star Trek ~ Project: Potemkin "Duty Bound" S02-A
Now on-line on Vimeo! Downloadable MP3.

northstar February 20 2014 05:19 PM

Re: Star Trek ~ Project: Potemkin "Duty Bound" S02-A
I liked the stuff on the bridge - you can see it is a small set that not necessarily fit to the ship, but thatīs ok. I would suggest giving the pilot/nav actors a real visible desk, because sometimes they seem to have no idea what they are doing. The sound issues were pretty severe - I couldnīt understand a lot of the dialogue. What you really need to focus on - if you want to tell these kind of stories - are the vfx. The Orion ships were not recognizeable, the motion of the ships was very awkward - like they have no mass at all. And the lighting is pretty bad, too. Whoever did those effects should watch a couple of Scifi flicks to get a feeling on how big heavy ships should move. Sorry, but that took me really off.

Potemkin_Prod February 20 2014 09:08 PM

Re: Star Trek ~ Project: Potemkin "Duty Bound" S02-A
Thanks for the feedback, Northstar.

Did you watch it on YouTube or on Vimeo? If the former, try the latter. It's got a much better look and feel to it, and to my ears a better sound.

The helm-nav console was actually the first thing built for the Potemkin sets, and it is fully decorated using appliques. To accomplish the lighted controls, John Northam took a JPG of the CorelDraw file and animated it for each console. The "buttons" however, didn't always line up, so it was tricky getting the 3-D animated applique in the right position so that the buttons lined up with the actors. What would be really sweet was if the consoles were backlit using color transparencies. Thomas Sasser was going to work on this, but he fell ill, and we ended up going with the console animations instead of a physical set. We're still considering getting some animated picture frames with our animated panels and placing them behind the set pieces, but that would require a tremendous amount of donations.

The VFX were of the Orion Sortrex class from the Bridge Commander game. Our VFX guy at the time, William Walker (who did a couple of the VFX shots, in fact) secured permission from the fellow who designed them and wanted to use them instead of the ST-R or TOS Orion ships. Unfortunately, real life issues forced Bill away from the project, and Mark Berge had to pickup the pieces, rebuilding the Sortrex (an Orion frigate) from scratch. I rather liked the look myself. :)

The question of mass and ship movement will always be an issue to some. I recall other productions that have taken some criticism for that same issue. That being said, we receive an equal number of "the Potemkin moves too slowly" to "the Potemkin moves too quickly" so I'm figuring it's just about right. ;)

Maurice February 21 2014 01:16 AM

Re: Star Trek ~ Project: Potemkin "Duty Bound" S02-A
It's rarely an issue of linear speed, it's usually how the vehicles maneuver which portrays or betrays a sense of mass. Just understanding the principle of "slow in/slow out" fixes a lot of this stuff.

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