INTERVIEW: The Expedition

UPDATE:(8/8/13) A Second campaign has begun! Go HERE to help fund it! And read the interview below if you missed it the first time! 

So, by now, people may or may not know that I am fairly active on Twitter, and Facebook, and this site... and... Well, I am fairly active. Recently, I had a conversation with the fine folk of "The Expedition"  on Twitter, and came to the conclusion, that they needed to be featured on the site! Well, we all know my love of the interview, so here you go, another interview! I might be wrong, but this might be my first filmmaker interview!

ME: So, right off the bat, what can you tell us about your movie? What's the story?

EXPEDITION: The Expedition follows a research team led by a well respected Professor who journey to the Amazon in a kind of quest to protect endangered species and also with a remit to catalog any new discoveries they make there. With films of this type of course, things don’t go according to plan and things soon take a turn for the worse. The guides that brought them into the rainforest abandon the team and without them, they are hopelessly lost out there.

What started out as the trip of a lifetime soon turns into an adventure to die for as our team come up against an apex predator who’s very existence they thought impossible.  

ME: It looks to be a sort of monster movie, what movies would you say were the biggest inspirations to this project?

EXPEDITION: Yes it is true to day that this is monster movie but not in the strictest sense of the word. Our monster isn’t an alien or some kind of mutated, hybrid creature with unfamiliar origin that wreaks a bunch of havoc… he’s a real animal who behaves as such.  Like the shark in Jaws, our monster is simply protecting it’s territory or a territory that it BELIEVES it has ownership of. I think we as humans like to think that we have ownership and control of everything on Planet Earth but the reality is far different.

We wanted to have it come from the realm of believability… this could happen!  

In terms of inspiration, we’re big fans of Cloverfield (2009) and also of Troll Hunter (2012) which we feel both pushed the boundaries of what is possible in the storytelling format but also approached there subjects in an interesting and compelling way. 

Arthur Conan Doyle’s “The Lost World” is a big inspiration to us as we move forward with the project but to say much more would give away too much! We are working over time to keep our monster’s identity a secret.

Lets just say that we want to keep some of that movie magic and mystery for when audiences finally sit down to watch the film! We want them to be surprised!

ME:   As movie makers, which do you prefer when it comes to effects, practical or digital? Why?

EXPEDITION: There is definitely a place for both and it really does depend on the shot and the movie. Effects should only ever be used in service of the story, too often now effects are being used to drive the movie in the absence of a compelling narrative. You cannot substitute substance for spectacle… it is about finding a balance between them where they both serve eachother.

 In The Expedition we’re going to be using mostly Practical effects. We’re having a company here in the UK build a fully functioning, life sized creature for us to have on the set with us. The design is coming along well and we’re pretty confident it’s going to blow your mind. 

ME:  I hear that there may be a bit of an environmental message involved. What environmental cause are you championing in this film?

EXPEDITION: I think rather than championing a single cause, I think we wanted to simply embrace the idea that areas like the Amazon are vital for Planet Earth. In the film, we explore the idea of logging and how that may effect the ecosystems of the Amazon itself and whilst it’s very true that there has been a down-turn in the number of areas being logged, we feel it is very important than more is done to protect the flora and fauna of the Amazon basin…

ME:  Are you going the typical Hollywood style of filming this with a sequel in mind, or is this an entirely self-contained story?

EXPEDITION: We were talking the other day about this actually. I think for now we’re working so hard on this one that it’s impossible for us to look at any potential sequels or spin-off material however that’s not to say that we won’t look at the possibility of further stories in this world at a later date, certainly, when audiences see the movie they’ll recognize the possibilities. There are certainly plenty of avenues and alleyways we could choose to explore!

ME: Where can I find other works of yours? Any suggestions?

EXPEDITION: Our Producer and star, Ben Loyd-Holmes has recently finished a multi-episode arc in Da Vinci’s Demons, directed by David S. Goyer. He’s also had parts in Skyfall, Torchwood, Spooks and Band of Brothers as well as serving as Producer on the 2011 feature The Hike, which is distributed by LionsGate. Our director, Adam Spinks is currently in post-production on Survivors which is due for release later this year.

ME: So, what kind of film rating are you guys hoping for with this film? Is this going to be a gory film, or is it going to be a more family-friendly affair?

EXPEDITION: For us it’s really about telling the best story in the best way. I think we’ll be avoiding 18 or R ratings on this  and going for something that’s a little more toned down. That’s not to say that The Expedition won’t have it’s moments where you jump out of your seat or hide behind the popcorn!

We want this to be a movie that everybody can enjoy… young and old… we don’t want to alienate those people will excess blood letting or constant use of coarse language.

ME: Is there any other movie genre you would love to make a movie in?

EXPEDITION: Adam talks a lot about his desire to make a Science-Fiction movie one day and I know he’s writing a script for it so we’ll see where that takes him!

ME: Any advice for the aspiring film-makers out there?

EXPEDITION: Grab camera and grab some friends/actors and shoot a short story. Edit it together and then learn from all the mistakes and go out and make another one… It will be better!

The more stories you tell, the better you will get at it! And most importantly of all… never give up!

ME: This one's a free-for-all, Anything else you would like to say to the readers?

EXPEDITION: Obviously we’d like to thank people for supporting us so far! We’ve got a little over 30 days left of our campaign and hitting our target would really be a dream come true for us! Please take a moment to visit http://igg.me/at/theexpedition/x/13244 and if you like the look of the movie, choose a perk package and get involved!!!

There you have it! An interview with "The Expedition" folk! I'd like to thank them for taking the time to answer my questions, and I know they would appreciate if you took the opportunity to check out the links above, and see what they have to offer! Check out their Indiegogo preview video below, and thanks for reading!