Using Character to Create a Future World in RED EPIC-Shot Indie Sci-Fi 'Advantageous'

Still from Advantageous Film
Have you ever wondered how a filmmaker creates an entire world set in the future, especially on an indie-sized budget?

For director Jennifer Phang of the Sundance Special Jury Prize-winning film Advantageous, it all starts with character. We caught up with Phang at Sundance 2015 to talk about shooting on RED, the future of science fiction, and how creating the Victorian-futurist world of her indie Sci-Fi film began first with the main character:

And here's the trailer for the film:

Thanks to Jennifer for doing the interview with us.

Do you have experience doing Sci-Fi on a limited budget? What helped you create the world of your story?     

Your Comment

4 Comments

I created my space based sci-fi film Space Trucker Bruce on about $10,000 over 6 years (www.spacetruckerbruce.com). The hardest part for me was to create the 8 sets with no money and little experience. I used a lot of cardboard, 1x2s, hot glue and Masking tape over 3 years. I got free paint from a local paint store's reject pile. Also I had the typical micro-budget filming budget problems like not being able to pay the actors, equipment I couldn't afford, computer problems, data storage, etc.. I am a programmer/engineer with CAD experience so I did all the spaceship modeling and animations myself using a free open source 3d program called Blender. I didn't know what I was doing at first but figured it out over the 3 years of post production. For me, time saved me money. I was able to do each part as I could afford it. I had an old Mac laptop collection which I sold pieces of for movie money. Most of my birthday and Christmas gifts were in the form of movie money. You do what you can to create your masterpiece. For me what helped the most to create my world was not worrying about getting everything perfect.

February 13, 2015 at 4:58PM

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Anton Doiron
Creator/Filmmaker
1043

I believe the toughest part is worrying about trying to get everything perfect. I congratulate you on finishing your film and getting it out there. I look forward to see what you do next.

February 15, 2015 at 10:51PM

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T. Huff
Director, screenwriter
161

Thanks for this piece.

The audio wasnt levelled tho, i'll love to volunteer to help nofilmschool if you want.

February 14, 2015 at 1:22PM

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Tosin Akintuyosi
Independent Film Maker
171

It is great to see that indie filmmakers are creating SciFi films. I am in the process of developing a SciFi feature right now. It will be tough but it is a story I have to share with the world. You can check out the trailer at... openabagofchips.com

February 15, 2015 at 10:44PM

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T. Huff
Director, screenwriter
161

VFX. :) I found that the actors really help sell it as well as the costuming. Although if the VFX aren't there or done well it can really hurt the project as a whole. www.HarkerTheAwakening.com We are currently in post on this indie Sci-fi coming of age story and managed to get here on $11,000 with a ton of help and volunteers.

February 19, 2015 at 2:34PM

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Paul-Thomas Parnell
Writer/Director
74