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Iron Sky: reimagining transmedia for 2012 case study

Iron Sky: reimagining transmedia for 2012

By Ana Vasile published on 10/05/2011 0 comment(s)

Enter into the Iron Sky’s world: a dark science fiction comedy that takes place in the year 2018, when the Nazis, who fled to the dark side of the Moon in 1945, return to claim the Earth.  This Finnish-German-Australian co-production with a budget of 7.5 million Euros was created by the makers of Star Wreck, ( a Star Trek parody)

What makes Iron Sky special is the wide collaboration with fans and community: the project’s fans joined in by creating ideas and content in a collaborative movie making platform called Wreckamovie, they helped spreading the word about the film by sharing information online, they even funded the movie by designing and buying merchandize. Almost one million Euros should come from fan funding.

Directed by Timo Vuorensola and co-produced by Tero Kaukomaa (Blind Spot Pictures), Samuli Torssonen (Energia) as the visual effects producer, Oliver Damian (27 Films Production), Cathy Overett and Mark Overett (New Holland Pictures) the film should be completed in December 2011 and launched in 2012.

Using the internet and doing it right

Iron Sky managed to achieve an active collaboration between the film makers and the online community. The team is in direct contact with over 200.000 fans on a weekly basis: with more than 8 million views on YouTube, almost 73.000 fans on Facebook and 55.000 on Iron Sky’s official website.

iron sky

The fans and followers can take part in Iron Sky by offering their ideas through a collaborative film making platform called Wreckamovie.com. There, the film makers can give their followers tasks, which go from very simple (finding a name for a character) to quite complex (build a 3D model of a starship).

An integral part of the Iron Sky publicity campaign is a system called Demand to See Iron Sky : a tool that enables visitors to demand to see the movie in cinemas in their home city. Paris, Madrid, London, Berlin and Barcelona seem to be conquered by this idea.

They demand Iron Sky

The Iron Sky community can also take part in creating movie merchandise. The fans will be able to download a Design Kit, which includes Iron Sky themed graphics, fonts, pictures and other materials, with which they can create their own suggestions for Iron Sky merchandise. The most convincing creations will be added to the Iron Sky’s official line of merchandise which is distributed globally by EMI. The designers will be rewarded with movie tickets, cash and tickets to the Iron Sky premiere. More than 36 422 demands have been made!

Iron Sky, not just a movie

The movie is only one part of the Iron Sky storyworld. The producers imagined a series of three prequel comics, which will be published before the movie and a fully fledged graphic novel of Iron Sky story. There will also be a novelization of the film and a book about how this unprecedented movie project was created.

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The producers attested that a videogame based on the Iron Sky storyworld is under development and it will be published on the PC platform. There will be also Iron Sky themed content on mobile platforms, such as smartphones: these include an Iron Sky iPhone game and a free application which brings the latest Iron Sky news and content directly to the user’s phone.

Real time making-of videos

In order to keep up with the online community’s interest, Iron Sky offers a view behind the scenes as the movie is being made. The team publishes each month Iron Sky Signal documentaries on YouTube. The making-of crew offers an overview of the work progress from different departments, such as the art or costume department, in order to allow the audience to understand how a multi million euro sci-fi movie is actually produced. In addition, the film crew publishes shorter video diaries, such as the Director’s Diary: which Timo films often in a daily basis.

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Preview: the first minutes of the film in advance

Iron Sky published a new feature called Iron Sky Sneak Peek which gives the fans a chance to see the first five minutes of the film in advance, for as little as one Euro. In addition to that people will get the chance to follow how that part of the film is made, starting from the idea of the scene, script, storyboards, animations and other various steps.

Funding and overall budget

About half of the Iron Sky 7.5 million € production budget is covered from Finland, and the rest from Germany and Australia. The producers attested that they have secured about 6.3 million Euros through traditional film funding channels but in the same time they hope that the online communities will finance almost 1 million.

The rest is coming from more traditional sources such as Finnish Film Foundation, Hessen Film Invest, Eurimages, Nordisk Film & TV Fond, Screen Queensland, Media development, several pre-Sales and spend related financing like DFFF in Germany and Australian tax-offset (Qape).

 

Ana Vasile était rédactrice et assistante en charge des publications du Transmedia Lab de janvier à novembre 2011.

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