Headlines > News > Film based on ANSARI X PRIZE in development: "First Flight"

Film based on ANSARI X PRIZE in development: "First Flight"

Published by Sigurd De Keyser on Fri Aug 6, 2004 8:05 pm
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Brian FeeneyXPrizeNews.org reporting: It came to our attention that there is a film in development based on the ANSARI X PRIZE.
Till now we got no reaction from ContiFilms if the project is still in development.
The movie is about a team.. making an attempt ending in total failure… not really good advertisement…
On the downloadable test film, there is nasa standing on the vehicle + only 1 person and 1 seat in it… so not based on real X PRIZE guidelines.

Film Description:
The age of civilian space flight is upon us. From big corporations to backyard hobbyists, the race is on to develop and fly the first civilian space craft. First Flight tells the exciting story of one team’s quest to win that race. What they lack in financing they make up for in passion, ingenuity and inventiveness. Can they succeed where so many have failed? Hang on and enjoy the ride!

First Flight has been coined the “Top Gun” of the new millennium. This sexy, romantic, adventure is based on actual events. The setting: “The X-prize” a ten million dollar competition for the first civilian team to construct a rocket/airplane capable of manned space flight, there by opening the door to economic space travel. Part Top Gun, Apollo 13, and The Right Stuff, our story follows the most unlikely team of adventurous aviators to succeed. Full of action, romance, and cutting edge visuals, First Flight is a very inspiring, timely and unique story waiting to be told.

A short test film was recently completed to illustrate the visual intensity of the flight sequences.
Windows Media – High Quality – File Size 26 megabytes
Media/Effects: Picture1 Picture2 Picture3 Picture4 Picture5 Picture6 Picture7

About the Writer/ Director/ Visual Effects Artist: Joseph Conti
Filmmaking first appealed to Joseph Conti at an early age. In High School he was given an opportunity to create his own films. Not only were these first films successful, but ground breaking for their use of inexpensive visual effects. He eagerly pursued this interest by attending film school.

A graduate of the University of Bridgeport with a BFA in Motion Picture Cinematography, Joseph successfully married his background in story telling with his love of visual effects to become a leading supervisor/producer in the motion picture industry. Joseph’s ability to create cutting edge, yet inexpensive computer animation, combined with his vision and design talents, has made him a regularly sought after Hollywood talent.

Joseph’s visual effects wizardry can be seen in many of today’s motion pictures, episodic TV and commercial projects. He was in on the ground floor of such modern TV and movie classics as “The Legendary Journeys of Hercules” (saving the show over 1.5 million dollars in the first season alone), Steven Spielberg’s “seaQuest DSV” (where he built a custom visual FX facility for Amblin Entertainment saving over 4 million dollars). Feature Film Projects such as “Black Hawk Down”, “Courage Under Fire“, “The Siege” and the opening sequence of the hit movie “Men In Black” (which often gets mistaken for work produced by George Lucas’s ILM). In addition, Conti was the creator of visual effects for Michael Jackson’s music video “History” the most expensive musical video ever produced. Additional visual FX credits include: “Kate and Leopole”, “Stewart Little,” “House on Haunted Hill,” “The Astronauts Wife,” and TV shows like “Star Trek: The Next Generation,” “The X-Files,” “Snoops,” and “Unsolved Mysteries”.

Now he has stepped behind the camera to develop and direct his own projects, exploiting his experience and knowledge to bring his visions to life. Mr. Conti has just completed his first movie titled “BUGS” for Universal Studios and the Sci-Fi Channel. His first attempt at developing his own content for TV and the big screen lead to an option deal with Columbia/Tri Star Television, to whom he sold a TV series concept about a mission to mars titled “PATHFINDERS”. The independent production company, American Outback Films, immediately optioned his next project titled “First Flight”. Each project Joseph designs offers a mix of live action drama and exciting visual effects, each conceived and created by Conti himself.

He has spent $35,000 on the First Flight test movie on what many studios have estimated would cost $1 million. His efficient production philosophy includes using a local crew and being creative with the tools. He bought props, such as a space helmet and a fighter jet ejection seat, off eBay. He estimates the seat would have cost $20,000 to build; he paid $1,000. A local air force base gave him access to its F-16 fighter jets.

Conti’s own post set-up revolves around NewTek LightWave software (and some Eyeon Digital Fusion and Photoshop) on several 1 gigahertz Athlons, which he purchases for less than $1,000, and which render huge amounts of animation. “I look at films like Titan AE; they spent $100 million and Fox had to write the whole film off as a loss, and I think ‘How did they spend so much money?’ I don’t get it,” he says.

Conti continues to work out of his home in New Mexico, just outside Albuquerque and close to Santa Fe, which houses a motion picture-quality soundstage, equipment and many filmmakers. It doesn’t hurt that he teaches at a local university and is helping develop a core of new animators. He is working with state politicians to fund animation and film projects created in New Mexico.

He is one of the few talents that has stayed away from the big companies, charting his own course by successfully putting together hardware, software and talent to produce work within reasonable budgets.

For more information please visit: www.contifilms.com

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