Interview with creator of $500 Half-Life movie

Wagner James Au sez, "I just published a short interview with the Purchase Brothers, the Toronto guys who made that great 'Escape from City 17' movie featured on Boing Boing last week. They explain more how they did it, and what they spent their $500 budget on. As it turns out, that's 500 *Canadian* dollars, so even less than most of us first assumed."

He said all of the visual effects were done from scratch. Many of the elements (the background, the gunships, etc.) were extracted from Half-Life 2, then graphically enhanced, and incorporated into the live action with “a lot of complicated tracking and rotoscoping.” Though the movie itself was made independently of Valve Software, the developers and publishers of the Half-Life franchise, David said the game company got involved with its promotion, plugging its premiere on Valve’s user community channel, Steam News.

The brothers plan to release part two of City 17 in 6-8 weeks, though the storm of attention over part one has delayed that somewhat. “We have been getting a ton of emails and phone calls, which has slowed things down,” said David. Judging from the brief teaser clips at the cliffhanger end of the first video, a spunky heroine joins the team – as do hordes of headcrab zombies. (The Purchases promise to reveal details about their cast after that goes online.)

Interview With David Purchase, Co-creator of Escape From City 17