Old Man’s War: The Title Sequence
Posted on September 30, 2008 Posted by John Scalzi 56 Comments
This is kind of fun: A student did a mock-up title sequence for an Old Man’s War TV show for his class on motion graphics. I found it out there on teh Intaarnets, although apparently (according to the BBS thread in which I found it) someone came over here to link me to it today. It’s a small world.
For the record: At the moment, still no movie or TV deals. But you never know what the future might bring. And in the meantime, I suppose this counts as fan art. Go me!
Holy Crap! That’s cool.
That seems more like a trailer than an opening title sequence. Still, pretty cool.
You have seen this of course. You get a lot of fan art for not being an epic fantasy writer.
OK, that was wicked cool! Now I want to see the show/movie …
I was sort of hoping the last shot would include a fade to green.
Agreed wholeheartedly on the fade-to-green bit. Very cool bit of video. OMW would work great as a movie (I must be the ten thousandth person to say that here).
It’s the fan *fic* you gotta watch out for.
Made of awesome. Invisible Sky Fairy bless teh intartubes.
The transition on the text from serif to sans-serif is a nice allusion to the body upgrade process. Pretty sweet. (Maybe the sans-serif should be green too.)
Great work. A student did this? I’m impressed.
Nice. Like the visuals, the music seems too… foreboding. Not that OMW is necessarily a light novel, but the music seems heavy and almost tragic whereas I don’t get that feeling from the novel.
Superb work, whoever did it.
That was remarkably well done. As #Elsie said, I wanna see the rest of it!
Maybe you should try to get a SF Channel Mini-series. They made the OMW series a SciFi essentials book. Maybe they just need a good dose of bacon.
Well, you know. Unfortunately, it’s not as easy to get a miniseries as it is to get a “SciFi Essentials” designation.
Yeah, that was wicked cool!
I think Caladan’s on to something. You just need to crank out a script starring Costas Mandylor and Danica McKellar, make the Consu act like space chupacabra, and SciFi would roll that sucker out in no time.
I can has rest of show, plz?
Very nicely done intro, now I want to see what comes after the commercial break.
Thats why you need to bribe them with bacon.
I’m all tingley and geeking (don’t worry, I’ll clean it up)
Seriously cool. He’d better have gotten an A+!
I liked it too, although the fade to green would have been even better combined with the reverse aging. Still, very nice work.
Seemed like the opening credits could have used a voiceover as well.
Hey there, I’m James Hodge, the creator of the title sequence (and the “star” of the show). I’ll have you know I did indeed get an A+ on the project & in the class. I went from having never touched After Effects in my life to creating this stuff, so kudos to my instructor, Sam Young at The Art Institute of California – San Francisco. I thank you all for the kind words. It made me feel all warm and fuzzy to read these responses.
I’d also like to thank John for writing what is now my favorite novel. I’m almost done with The Ghost Brigades and The Last Colony! BTW, John, I would love to have a part in a screenplay or really any creative part in a would-be movie or TV show based on OMW. Thanks again!
Sam Young? Is this the same Sam Young I knew back in Fresno?
OMG, I’d watch it.
That’s *great*! I’m afraid to show it to my students (who have just finished reading OMW) — they’ll want the whole thing! (‘Cuz *I* want the whole thing.)
Yep, that’d be the same Sam Young. He did mention he knew you when I presented my project. BTW, John, I just shot you an email. :)
For anyone interested, here is my full YouTube page with the rest of my video work. I hope to have my full online portfolio up soon. http://www.youtube.com/user/TimeBombTown
A very nice piece of work, and one that makes me really long for a filmed version of the book, but the “slow, foreboding build” music seemed way too similar to the existing openings of current shows like Heroes and Lost, as well as not the best match for the actual tone and content of Old Man’s War. Something a little bit more metal, maybe? It’s still an effective piece, but I agree that a touch of green (maybe a just a color wash over the “old man” face at the very end?) would have really sent it over the top for the viewer in the know.
Of course, the credits that I’d really expect on an Old Man’s War TV series would be a little bit more old school, with a bunch of action scenes showing the main characters using big guns, shots of gigantic funky spaceships sailing through the void, and bizarro alien species. I think that the whole series has a lot of elements that would make it a natural purchase for movies/tv (and even long-term serialization, if you’d ever allow others to write in your world), but the number of high-cost CGI elements that would be required to make it look good are definitely going to be an obstacle. Something based on Agent to the Stars seems like it would be a lot easier to get off the ground . . .
Great job and I would be in line to see this movie in a heartbeat. Just finished Sagan’s Diary and am looking forward to Zoe’s Tale.
Well, hell, now I want to see the movie…
Got a call today from my local independent bookstore that my copy of Zoe’s Tale has arrived. Yay, me!!!
This is fabulous work, James! I agree, though, it’s more like a TV spot for a movie than a title sequence for a TV show.
Very cool! I especially liked the reverse ageing and the slightly ominous background music. If this were a trailer for a movie or miniseries, I’d watch it.
Wow. If OMW ever gets made into a series, I hope they use this. Well done!
And know what would really kick ass if this was for an actual series and you had episodes to work with?
First, use the first 12 seconds of that as the opening.
Then, do the recap and teaser scene.
Use the rest of the video as the opening credits.
And then do the BSG/Space 1999 thing with action scenes from the upcoming episode.
Guaranteed geekgasm. Every single time.
(Please tell me someone’s optioned OMW!)
> space chupacabra
Mmm…space chupacabra…them’s good eatin’!
If OMW does become a movie, I assume they’ll remove the green skin/cat’s eye thing. Just because it might make it harder for the audience to identify with them (you get the same basic effect by turning the old people into young buff ones).
I think that the whole series has a lot of elements that would make it a natural purchase for movies/tv (and even long-term serialization, if you’d ever allow others to write in your world), but the number of high-cost CGI elements that would be required to make it look good are definitely going to be an obstacle. Something based on Agent to the Stars seems like it would be a lot easier to get off the ground . . .
Yeah, CGI is expensive. That’s what stands in the way of really big-scale SciFi TV. (Well, that and the pants-on-head retarded scheduling folks at FOX.)
Two ways to go around it:
1. Wait for CGI to get cheaper and better. Could take years.
2. Move to pure animation – you can draw anything, and it all costs the same per frame. In fact, I’m surprised that more American Sci-Fi franchises haven’t hooked up with Japanese anime studios. (The only significant collaboration I know of was The Animatrix, where the Wachowskis collaborated with a bunch of top-flight anime directors on short films elaborating on the Matrix backstory. It was quite good.)
A few years ago I though when and if I ever get “The Novel” finished it would be kind of cool to do a promotional video, a trailer, on YouTube. Of course the moment you think of something someone, or lots of someones, have already done it. This, for example, is one Jeff Carlson did:
“Sam Young? Is this the same Sam Young I knew back in Fresno?”
The Same. BWAHAHAHA.
james hodge did very well in my motion graphics class. kudos back to him.
Hmm… seems like the opening from a crime drama.
# James Hodge
I really like it…somber and stylish. Excellent introduction for a really cool novel. Kudos to both artists :o)
Which reminds me I really really really need to read OMW. I’ve actually only read Android’s Dream. I just bought OMW and have it sitting on my shelf, but I’m trying to not let myself read it until I’m caught up with schoolwork, because otherwise it’ll be one more thing I use to procrastinate. *sigh* It is pretty good motivation, though!
Well done James- I’m glad that you got an A+ on it.
Here I was, just about to pick up Zoe’s Tale. Instead, I think I’ll start over with OMW. There goes my day. (Thanks!)
Yeah on the green. In a TV show or movie, that’s what would let us remember after the first few minutes that the hero had been changed.
Any thoughts on the BrainPal voices?
Hey, that’s pretty cool! Wonderful, actually.
> I liked it too, although the fade to green would have been even better combined with the reverse aging.
I agree, excpect to the point that it would be a terrible spoiler. Granted, the body upgrade is covered early in the story, pretty much right off the bat, but revealing this in an intro/trailer would be a charm buster.
So use the green wash in episodes following the pilot.
#7 – Matthew
But there’s no need for fan fic in the OMW-verse.
There’s plenty of sex in the books, no need to create more. ;-)
Very well done–close to being a professional-quality teaser.
Given Sci-Fi’s serious problem in producing intelligent stuff beyond BSG and Eureka, I think Old Man’s War ideal form is miniseries, and the best people to do that would be Showtime, who seem to have a knack for picking up the edgier stuff HBO won’t do.
I’m currently in L.A., working towards writing for TV–if I get to the point where I have the clout and money to get it off the ground, I’m buying the rights.
The first thing I thought of when I saw this:
I wonder what John’s dream cast is…?
Awesome video. Very well done, Mr. Hodge.
… how horribly nit-picky am I to have immediately checked and been disappointed that May 28, 2261 will not, in fact, be a Friday?
Very horribly? That’s what I thought.
Never mind then. Carry on.
Actually, the date is May 22nd, 2186..since my birthday is the same day and month in 1986. I did however fail to check to see if that falls on a Friday. Sorry. ;)
AH, just realized you meant the date of the newspaper. Sorry about that, too! ;)
I knew this was a cool thing when I saw it on TREKBBS-that’s why I posted it for Messr Scalzi to see.
Good job, Flux!
Hey there, I just finished making a few adjustments, and present the OMW Opening Titles v1.1
Here’s the changes made:
– Corrected Perry’s middle name and birthdate
– Corrected the date on the newspaper so that it really *is* a Friday.
– Added a touch of green to the *new* version of the credits, and the young version of Perry at the end.