Horizons: Filming a Monkey Island Movie (4)

September 4th, 2011 by | No comments

Let’s say that, through a miracle, you managed to make the third Monkey Island Movie a huge success. Everybody loves it, nobody thinks it’s similar to Pirates of the Caribbean and we’re happy. Hooray.

Good, but, the fans ask for more! They want Escape from Monkey Island: The Movie! So what are you going to do?

Well, besides bringing back the same actors (who, by now, should be filthy rich), you’re suddenly facing a problem: You have more extras than ever before. Well, not exactly extras, more like very unimportant roles but vital to the atmosphere of the movie (for example, the waitress in the LUA Bar).

Ok, let’ say you casted everyone, found an old man willing to play Ozzie Mandrill and Herman Toothrot’s actor is still alive. Good. Also, don’t worry about the old Teacher, Miss Rivers, I can talk with my old math teacher. That woman is a copy/paste phenomenon of Miss Rivers herself. At least, she was when I played the game. Don’t know if she’s still alive though, but we’ll think of something. Moving on!

But what about the scenery? We’re not talking about building a few cottages for the cannibals or renting a hotel for the Goodsoup family scenes… nonono, we’re talking about Planet Threepwood! We’re talking about having a big schoolhouse right on the beach! Did I mention that the same beach should be covered in boulders?

Well, if you had a choice so far, now it’s not a choice anymore: you must go CGI. Just thinking about building all that would cost you more than you could imagine and I honestly don’t see how you could rent yourself the Second Biggest Monkeyhead you’ve Ever Seen. Yes, okay, maybe some of those scenes were used in previous Monkey Island movies but, as a counter-argument, you DO need to make it all look fresh again. Otherwise, the public will be like: “Oh, they ran out of ideas and started re-using sets… boooring!”.

Music, you know what to do… Costumes, you can figure stuff out by now… But you are facing a lot of new effects here, from LeChuck’s constant transformations to the Giant robot Fight at the End! CGI again… I’m starting to understand George Lucas, honestly. CGI is faster and cheaper!

But it still doesn’t make up for bad story-telling.

Overall, you still need the same amount of work (if not even more) as you did for Curse of Monkey Island. Financially speaking, this is starting to look pretty grim, even with all the optimism in the world. The story itself may work in a video game, but as a movie… heh, you will lose money.

Giant Monkey Robot? …hm…yeah, you will lose money.

No worries, after you go bankrupt you still have to make Tales of Monkey Island! Fortunately, the situation is simpler here.

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Horizons: Grog (ingredients included)

March 19th, 2011 by | 3 comments

The word grog refers to a variety of alcoholic beverages. The word originally referred to a drink made with water or “small beer” (a weak beer) and rum, which was introduced into the Royal Navy by British Vice Admiral Edward Vernon on 21 August 1740. Vernon wore a coat of grogram cloth and was nicknamed “Old Grogham” or “Old Grog”. Modern versions of the drink are often made with hot or boiling water, and sometimes include lemon juice, lime juice, cinnamon or sugar to improve the taste. Rum with water, sugar and nutmeg was known as bumbo and was more popular with pirates and merchantmen.

By contrast, in Australia and New Zealand, the word has come to mean any alcoholic drink.

Read more to find out the ingredients!

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Horizons: Mad Jack the Pirate

March 5th, 2011 by | No comments

This week’s Horizons comes courtesy of a tip from plunderbunny481. She writes about a cartoon called Mad Jack the Pirate, which is “like BlackAdder, Monty Python, and Monkey Island rolled into one”. You can find the entire series on YouTube (please don’t sue us, we’re just linking to it).

In unrelated news, Bill Tiller has uploaded some cool concept sketches from the design document for Curse of Monkey Island. If you look closely, you may even be able to read some of the text! Here’s a list of the images:

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Horizons: Fashion in 1700

February 26th, 2011 by | No comments

Now why would we choose such a topic for “Horizons”?

No reason! Shut up and read!

Fashion in the period 1700–1750 in European and European-influenced countries is characterized by a widening silhouette for both men and women following the tall, narrow look of the 1680s and 90s. Wigs remained essential for men of substance, and were often white; natural hair was powdered to achieve the fashionable look.

Distinction was made in this period between full dress worn at Court and for formal occasions, and undress or everyday, daytime clothes. As the decades progressed, fewer and fewer occasions called for full dress which had all but disappeared by the end of the century.

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