What would you do if your family suddenly needed you and you were far from home, with no way to get back? What if you were on the moon?
“…and miles to go before i sleep.” is the story of a lunar geologist, part of a team conducting surveys on the moon for a lunar research station. A flu pandemic erupts back on Earth and the main character must try to get home, a trip that takes at least three days. To complicate things, radio communications have been disrupted because of a solar storm.
The concept for the film came from a simple question — what if an astronaut in orbit around the Earth was the last living human?
Some of the most compelling stories are best told completely straight, as if it could happen today and without the whiz bang technology of science fiction films set in the future. In order to bring that feeling to the film, months were spent researching spacecraft cockpits, space suits and helmets, lunar geological tools, historical missions, audio recordings and transcripts, all the way from Project Mercury in the early 1960s to the end of the Space Shuttle program just a few years ago.
All this information is being used by the production crew to design and construct a spacecraft set, possibly the most ambitious and realistic set ever constructed for a short film. The instrument panels – some designed to be actively operated by the actors – are based to varying degrees on real spacecraft from history. The entire set itself is unusual in that it’s designed to be rotated between takes, so that what was “up” would then be “down,” “left, “right,” or somewhere in-between. This will be only one of several methods used to help sell the effect of weightlessness.
For the actors, this will be an immersive experience. When communicating via radio or intercom, they’ll be using a specially-designed audio system that will make the experience all the more realistic for them. This system will also provide the realistic scratchy audio that’s commonly heard in broadcasts from space and that will be used in the film. The actors will also be spending time in San Diego at the USS Midway Museum and the San Diego Aerospace Museum. At these museums, they will be learning about – and experiencing to some degree – life in the world of aeronautics and astronautics. By the time cameras roll, the actors will have experienced a small taste of what being an astronaut is like.
“… and miles to go before i sleep.” comes from the pen of David Barak (The Dysfunctionals) and Malfunction Films and is set for release sometime in 2015.
For your enjoyment: A short concept video for “…and miles to go before i sleep.”
This film is currently in pre-production so stay with Slice of SciFi for updates on this developing story.