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(May 19, 2017)
Chrome, the action adventure female superhero sci fi streaming mini series is slated for release September 7, 2017. Chrome the series, directed by Timothy Hines, starring Katie Tomlinson, Susan Goforth and Anthony Piana, was created with flavors of the classic 1927 Metropolis, golden era serialized pictures like Rocket Man and the bright surreal colors of Mad Max: Fury Road.
The new official Chrome trailer is now online on YouTube and Vimeo and is breathtaking to say the least.
You can watch it here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0Tn7ypLfpWs
The one of a kind picture is a boundless epic with a story that portends deeper meaning mounted on the skeletal structure of an all out action movie.
The plot of Chrome is, in the early days of the 22nd Century, the human population reaches a staggering 12 billion. Global disease, famine and suffering have spread on an unimaginable scale. In the wake of epic brutal wars over food, water and medicine, an oppressive planetary government has formed called Gesomnus.
A vast robot workforce is increasingly relied upon to perform the daily tasks that hold together what remain of the decaying infrastructure. The taskmasters are cruel to their robot slaves. Human injury inhibitors prevent the robots from fighting back. Rumors spread of a robot who has appeared who can face down the masters. They call her Chrome.
Hines, along with producers Susan Goforth, Donovan Le and John J. Gallo had a journey to bring Chrome to the screen that was an epic itself.
The year was 1995 when movie director Timothy Hines, (10 Days in a Madhouse), was diagnosed with incurable cancer. Given months to live, he sat down and wrote the science fiction movie he wished he could see. Free of worry about marketing and box office, he wrote the story with a purity that only a man believing he was about to die could do.
?I wanted to leave a legacy of the movie I would have liked to have made, says director Hines from his Los Angeles offices. ?Then I got the second biggest shock of my life. It was a mis-diagnosis.
It turned out the doctor had mistaken a non-life threatening illness called sarcoidosis for cancer, a disease that eventually went away with the help of simple steroids. So now Hines had a script for an impossible, expensive, epically huge picture with a Twilight Zone twist ending.
A story where robot slaves were the good guys and the humans had fallen into a dystopian lock step totalitarian system ruled by a brutal world government known as Gesomnus. Not the easiest sell at a time when James Camerons first Terminator movie had just burst on the scene with the exact opposite view.
?I shopped the picture to everyone, laments Hines, ?From HBO, Disney, Universal to Spielbergs then Amblin Entertainment. Everyone, absolutely everyone loved the script. But I was told over and over that it was too gigantic in scope. And with a tricky idea of robots as the heroes pitted against humans with extinguished hearts.
The movie was optioned and languished in development hell again and again. Then producer John Bertolli at the Weinstein brothers action sci-fi company Dimension read the script. Like everyone else, he loved it. Only Bertolli wanted to make Chrome into a movie, right after his picture with the debut of Tupac Shakur finished filming. But Tupacs movie never did finish as Tupac was shot to death and the resulting chaos put Chrome back into the netherworlds.
Flash forward to 2001 when Hines was about to shoot the first big budget remake of War of the Worlds since the classic George Pal 1950s version. Hines movie was planned to star Michael Caine and Charlize Theron. Shooting was to begin on September 13th, 2001.
But two days prior, the World Trade Center was blown up in a terrorist attack and Hines movie was shut down.
?Nobody wanted a movie with buildings being blown up by attacking aliens. Our turnaround was reported all over the world alongside the Arnold Schwarzenneger movie, Collateral Damage, for the same reasons, says Hines.
Left with soundstages of sets and a full production crew ready to go with a picture, Hines pitched Chrome to his remaining investors and it took.
Director Hines elaborates, ?The world was in shock and nobody in America was doing any kind of business. If I didnt do something with all of this expenditure of time and money, partner producer Susan Goforth and I were going to go down in flames. So I had everyone read Chrome. I reasoned that it would only be a retooling to mount Chrome in the shell of the abandoned War of the Worlds. Well, lets just say I am now grateful I truly had no idea how much of a challenge that would be.
When we were finally ready to shoot, months had passed, dozens of new sets had been built, over 70 robotic costumes and thousands of props had been created. So we jumped in. Oh my, it turned out to be a daunting shoot with hundreds of daily pyrotechnics, dozens upon dozens of stunts, a mountain of mechanical effects and a few hundred actors and extras.
The sets were built on soundstages and in a city block long closed brewery. The film was shot digitally with a good high resolution camera for the time and wrapped after 20 weeks of filming. But Chrome was not yet meant to be. When filming was completed, Hines shopped the picture all over Hollywood again.
Legendary miniature effects people like Mark Wolfe and the effects camera operator from Star Wars, Dave Hardberger were ready to go. But the funding needed to create composites and miniatures for virtually every shot was far reaching outside of plausible. So Chrome again was shelved.
Then Hines and Goforth re-envisioned War of the Worlds in its original setting of England in the late 1800s and shot a period picture of the Wells tale true to the book. Unscrupulous distributors wanting to beat Stephen Spielberg to the punch released the rough cut of the movie to Wal-Mart and basically everywhere on DVD before it was finished. Susan Goforth expounds, ?We had animatics in place of final effects. Tim still hadnt chosen between takes in the film and what we planed to be a one hundred minute movie was released in a form 3 hours long.
?I was reminded of when the great director, Robert Wise, known for The Sound of Music and The Day The Earth Stood Still faced an impossible deadline with the very first Star Trek feature film and it too was laborious, rough and slow,' adds Hines. "But our version was a disaster. Eventually I retooled it as a 'what if it really happened war story' called War of the Worlds the True Story which got rave reviews and somewhat redeemed us as artists.
Before Hines remade his H.G. Wells movie into a solidly watchable movie, investors graced Hines with the funding to finish Chrome. Hines and his effects crew set up shop in an industrial district of south Seattle where they built massive 1/6th scale miniature sets to compliment the live action footage they had shot for Chrome a few years earlier. Months of photography took place and then they set out to edit and composite the work.
But Chrome was still not meant to be. During editing and post FX work, Hines close friend and co-producer, John J. Gallo suddenly died on Thanksgiving night, 2009 from a rare blood infection due to a common cold.
?I can never express the devastation of Johns loss. The heart was sucked out of us. I was still grieving the death of my mother who had passed away just prior and that was it. I was all ?Chromed out.
Above: Producer John J. Gallo Top Left.
Again the picture was shelved and in time Hines turned his focus to the story of pioneer journalist, Nellie Bly who worked for Joseph Pulitzer as she went undercover in Blackwells Island Lunatic Asylum for Women where she exposed rape, abuse and murder.
The picture, starring Caroline Barry as Bly and co-starring Christopher Lambert, Alexandra Callas, Julia Chantrey and a great cameo by Kelly Le Brock, did gangbusters for an art house movie, premiering at Geena Davis Bentonville Film Festival, and then at the Cannes Film Festival and 19 weeks in US theaters, finally making it to Comcast Pay Per View, DirecTv and all VOD platforms such as iTunes, Vudu, Amazon and Google Play. International rights were sold all over the world through TriCoast Worldwide and the picture was picked up for DVD sales through Wal-Mart, Best Buy and major retail chains by Broad Green Pictures in the US.
Coming off the success of 10 Days in a Madhouse, Hines and Goforth were finally able to return to Chrome. Re-conceptualized in the changing marketplace as a six part Mini Series, Chrome will hit the small screen across the world on major streaming platforms such as iTunes, Vudu and Amazon September, 7 2017.
Hines sums up, "There has never been a movie like Chrome put to the screen and there never will again. It is a truly one of a kind picture where we evolved its creation with the emerging technology, starting out with antiquated technology and ending on state of the art, but never lost the classic retro feel intended from the ground up."
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