(for my first two eBooks, check out: www.amazon.com/author/jordanpage)
First of all, I want everyone to know that Resident Evil: Red Falls (which you can find the first two trailers at www.youtube.com/striketoburn1 -- and don't forget to subscribe, jabronis) is coming along slowly but nicely. From the first couple cuts that I've seen, I can tell that it's going to be the most passionate and serious-toned Resident Evil fan film that's ever been made; certainly, it's easy for you to say there's a certain level of biasness in my statement, but I think when you all see the film, you'll understand what I mean. Resident Evil: Red Falls--originally called Resident Evil: No Hope Left (based entirely on Resident Evil 6's tagline and viral campaign, which at the time made sense to follow suit)--is a project full of blood, sweat, and tears. It wasn't a film where a bunch of teens bought a few cosplay costumes from Amazon.com, bought some fake blood, and yelled "Action" with their parents' home video camera and ran around the woods with fake guns.
No, Resident Evil: Red Falls is much more than that. It's a risk. Not much is known of the story from the two trailers available on Strike to Burn Productions' YouTube page. But I will say this (not a spoiler): the film takes place after Raccoon City (*gasp!*); it takes place after Resident Evil 4 and Resident Evil 5 (*double gasp!*); in fact, you could say it either takes place directly before Resident Evil 6, during, or slightly after. And get this . . . prepare yourself . . . no characters from the video games are actually going to be in the film. That's not to say it's a zombie film with RESIDENT EVIL slapped on as its title to get more views; in fact, two characters (well, technically three; I won't say who) from the series actually have a big influence on the plot. Think of it as Halo ODST . . . but in the world of Resident Evil.
The characters in RE: RF are the would-be heroes (or casualties) if the perspective of Resident Evil shifted to lesser known characters (well, let's not kid ourselves here: they're--the characters in RE: RF--are completely unknown characters; but when you watch our upcoming film, you'll get the sense that they really do exist in that fictional universe) with less experience against B.O.W.s, but with realistic reasons for joining the B.S.A.A. nevertheless (or attacking the B.S.A.A., in terms of the villains).
As the writer of RE: RF, I really wanted to stay away from conventional fan fiction. Normally fan fiction consists of events that take place in Raccoon City. And when I say fan fiction, I don't necessarily mean fan films (because fan films means you need a camera and more than one nerd to act in your film; if you want it to be good, you need money; and if you want it to be better, you need talent; therefore if you don't have a camera, money, or talent, fans stick with fan fiction in the written form). All the fan fiction I've read (or have heard about via word of mouth) has been in Raccoon City, how so and so discovered this secret Umbrella station, or Wesker was actually here when those characters were there, etc., etc., etc. . . . Other fan fiction deals with what fans want Resident Evil 7 to be about, and since Resident Evil 6 just came out, I'm not sure what fans are wanting in the next installment. I only know that CAPCOM listens to fans as well as a genuinely interested ninety-nine-year-old person will listen to their great grandchildren's Christmas present list; that's to say they hear fragments of the wishlist, but ultimately they'll give your parents the money to buy the presents for you. Resident Evil: Operation Raccoon City and both the Wii's Chronicles--Darkside and Umbrella--are examples of this metaphor. ORC was an action, third-person shooter; both the Chronicles games were on-rails shooters. I consider that miscommunication between fans asking CAPCOM for remakes and CAPCOM trying to be risky (and misunderstanding what the fans are really asking for--they're asking for the same treatment CAPCOM did with the first game in the series [the GameCube remake] to also be applied to Resident Evil 2 and Resident Evil 3: Nemesis, and I'm certain fans--me included--don't want "improved gameplay, they just want remastered graphics) about the remakes which they're for.
Partly I blame fans for this miscommunication as well--and now I'm getting into the realm of fan films. Fan films aren't like fan fiction because there are limits, there are materials needed, there are people needed. Fan films are usually terrible. Ninety-nine percent of Resident Evil fan films take place in the Raccoon City Forrest. Why? Because trees are common. And they're free. But I think CAPCOM had mistook this budgetary decision a lot of fan film filmmakers make as a WE LOVE RACCOON CITY statement. Maybe that is true, to some degree. But those fans . . . I won't say they're "not true fans," because that's cliché . . . so how should I say this? I don't think they're contributing to the solution. I think they're contributing to the problem. The problem: CAPCOM's further descent into mediocrity . . .
. . . but I think Resident Evil: Red Falls will set a new standard for fan films, and hopefully push CAPCOM to . . . well . . . start paying attention.
I wanted to take the critiques I had for CAPCOM's flailing, dwindling had-once-been-survival-horror franchise, and apply them to my story. Now, granted. RE: RF is not truly a horror film. But it definitely isn't The Matrix (Resident Evil 5), and it definitely isn't Final Destination with 28 Days Later zombies and not-zombies-not-ganados-not-majini super zombies with machine guns, blades, and intelligence to fly helicopters (Resident Evil 6); instead, RE: RF is rooted in realism. Two films had a lot of influence on the narrative structure and tone of the script: The Raid: Redemption and the scene in The Dark Knight when Batman is interrogating The Joker while Rachel and Harvey are tied up in warehouses full of explosives. If you combine the two of those and add Resident Evil moments, terminology (such as the B.S.A.A.), and history (for instance, Wesker's death is mentioned in the film), then you can sort of piece together what RE: RF will be like.
Another reason RE: RF isn't like "other" fan films--and perhaps more essential--is that it has a great director (Travis Hayward: www.twitter.com/striketoburn), a passionate crew (that had multiple functions: www.imdb.com/title/tt2443852/?ref_=fn_al_tt_1), and nearly sixty actors/extras.
But enough about Strike to Burn Production's Resident Evil: Red Falls. The real reason I made this blog entry was to shine light on some other fan films that I find are really well made--or at least influential--or fun. (The following fan films are not in any particular order.)
Resident Evil: Down with the Sickness (by FreddieW) - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Z6xJJMIifi8&feature=share&list=PL257C0C316CA9EB9C
Project Resident Evil: Operation Mad Jackal (by evilcrewproductions) - http://youtu.be/cD_Kxjgw5W8
Resident Evil 4 (Bentley Bros) (by Bentlyma) - http://youtu.be/HxVAQYpNmUQ
Resident Evil - REAL LIFE fan film (by BARBSTER 360) - http://youtu.be/wddmYcXIt2g
Resident Evil: Welcome to Raccoon City (by Likeabosstvnow) - http://youtu.be/8glGj04rwv0
Resident Evil VS Silent Hill (by Brettsk8) - http://youtu.be/iO-a4aGeyjY
Finally, check out our two trailers:
Requiem-Action Trailer - http://youtu.be/2Yy0NUuGLoQ
"Eat Me Alive" Trailer - http://youtu.be/4maMmvTTBek