I had the opportunity to talk with Jason Faller about the upcoming Mythica project, Stormbound.
1) Can you give us a quick rundown of Mythica: Stormbound project?
Stormbound takes place about 17 years after the storyline of the original 5 films, in the broken world left behind when Szorlok was defeated. We love stories about small places and lowly characters who are wrapped up in events that seem insignificant on the world stage, but are actually the nexus of events that are about to shake that world and turn it upside down.
Stormbound is no different. It’s set in a forgotten corner of the world, but it turns out that the most important things are about to happen there. We have new characters of course, but also quite a few characters returning from the originals, and some of the new characters turn out to be related in interesting ways to characters from the past.
2) How has it been working with Kickstarter to fund these films?
Ha, Kickstarter is wonderful but a lot of work. We have so many supporters and so many fans who help us, but it’s still a gripping experience every time, where we want to make the film but can’t if we don’t reach the right level of support.
This Kickstarter is no different. But we are working hard to get there. Interviews like this are one great way to get the word out to some new fans!
3) Can you tell us a bit about the Mythica: Stormbound story?
We are keeping it pretty tightly under wraps, because telling the story could lead to spoilers… but I think there are a few new details I can spill right here and now for the first time. We’ve already announced that Matt Mercer will return to the story in some capacity as Szorlok.
I’m sure fans have a lot of questions about how that’s possible, but it may not happen as anyone suspects. Though we’ve established that the dead are trapped in the Underworld, they nonetheless continue to exist…
As far as the basic story, it begins with a character known only as “The Stranger” who has a mysterious cargo that he’s carrying, but stops at a mountain tavern during a storm. I think that’s more than has been shared before now, and we’ll try to release more as we figure out ways to talk about the film without spoiling anything!
But like all the Mythica films before it, Stormbound will take some of its cues from RPG as a story model, and explores another side of the RPG experience. I like to think this one is closer to the old Ravenloft tone, with a touch of Western style, than let’s say Forgotten Realms or traditional style Dungeons and Dragons.
4) Will characters from previous movies be making a return?
Quite a few, and as we talk to cast members, the number could grow. I can’t say exactly who will return and in what ways, but there are plenty of surprises and familiar faces coming back.
5) What’s your favorite funny moment while working with Mythica?
So many funny times, but for some reason for funny moments I always remember the time in Mythica 5, The Godslayer, when Dagen loses his boots escaping from the sewers, and then has to run barefoot and be barefoot for some scenes in the forest.
Well it was dang cold at the time, and Jake Stormoen really did have to run around on ice and frozen rocks, hurting his feet. And there’s something about the suffering of Jake that is profoundly entertaining.
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I think maybe we did extra takes even after he’d gotten the scene right, just to hear him wail about it. So that’s my favorite funny moment, but I’m not sure Jake would agree…
6) What’s your most memorable moment with the film that’s not necessarily funny?
Well, we filmed a lot in the winter, and keeping warm wasn’t easy. Someone put a large propane heater in one of the production trailers, and left it running… caught fire, no one was inside, but when the fire reached the trailer’s own propane tanks, it made quite a spectacle.
We’re pretty sure it was one of the production assistants that caused it, but we like to blame Melanie Stone, because she took some pretty wicked pictures of herself enjoying the explosion and flames, in ways that implicated her, so who knows?
7) How long have you been working with the Mythica series – and in what roles?
I’ve been writing and executive producing the Mythica series with Kynan Griffin since 2013. But in terms of roles, we’ve worn a lot of hats. For instance, we also were the transpo team a lot of the time, so we hauled a lot of equipment and trailers around, first to set, last to leave sort of thing. We never had much budget of course, but we wanted to make the best films possible, so yeah, we wore a lot of different hats.
8) Do you try to concentrate more on special effects or the story?
Definitely the story. Effects are important to us because one of our main goals is to make the fantasy a reality. And that means realistic effects, so we do what we can to keep it real, even on our modest budgets. But the story is something that doesn’t require a big budget, and is the place we’ve really tried to make Mythica shine. Sometimes there had to be changes, often budget related, right up to the day of shooting, and sometimes that worked out great, sometimes not, but we tried hard to make the story great.
9) What are the plans for Mythica in the future? More movies? Video game?
Stormbound is intended to set up a whole new set of stories to continue building the Mythica universe. If we can produce Stormbound and it’s successful, we plan on a whole new generation of Mythica films to follow it.
Every part of the new script, which Justin Partridge is concepting and writing, is being written and rewritten as we ask questions like “how does this lead into the next film?” or “what’s going to happen to this character down the line?” or “let’s get the politics and magic system and settings fully defined”, because we’re building something not just for this film, but for more stories to come, and it’s worth getting it fully developed for the long run.
So yes, we’re planning for the long run. And we’d love to add video games and more literature… maybe someone will approach us to write a LitRPG into the Mythica world! Ha!
10) Anything else you would like to add?
Just that I’m excited to bring Mythica back with a great new story, with some amazing characters. We’re looking at the casting right now for some of the new roles, and we hope to announce some impressive actors if we get what we’re hoping for. 🙂 We’re grateful to platforms like yours helping us spread the word, and we believe all fantasy fans are going to love this one. Thank you!