Tentative Name: MADA
From Arabic to mean the utmost degree / end of the line

Some of the highlights of extremely early character concepts for the protagonist Mada. I need to put some time into clothing + push painting style further. She should be around 14 years old. In film, her process of becoming a beetle will be considerably sped up in comparison to the fabricated story if it were not compressed. Thus I will need to design both normal and the maximum extent of the transformation.

My inspiration for character design is pulling from much of what I surround myself in however I think this is also limiting me by having too many roads to go down. Though somehow, I imagine her a more idiosyncratic version (and dramatic) Anne Francis when she starred in Forbidden Planet. She is supposed to have a pet who is a cat that acts as a conscience, (and plot device) with the catch being that it does not in fact have a mouth. - But this character could be swapped out with an actual person.


  1. Trailers that deal with transformation of protagonist as story arc - nothing here is going to sit very well with the tone of your film, unless there is an element of body-horror in the mix (and perhaps why wouldn't there be?). I'm not sure in a trailer format you'd ever be shown the complete transformation, as they'd keep that back, but you'd have lots of foreshadowing etc. Anyway, for your reference :)


    The thing thing about trailers is that they often function as 'genre orientation' for audiences - i.e. they're structured to hook us in, to make us care, but also to tell us what we can expect from the type of film being presented. Good trailers - the best trailers - actually don't explain very much while opening up all possibilities for the film we might get to see; there's a couple of terms you might find interesting in terms of defining how your trailer can be about 'everything' while showing 'not everything':


    What this means for you is distilling your story's theme to its essence, as it's the essence is what the trailer needs to communicate; understanding which images/tableaux/dialogue are carriers of the 'whole' story will be key to you structuring the trailer cogently for others - and this is your primary job if you want audiences to share your world.

    As you'll recall, the actual filmic experience of Prometheus broke this fan boy's heart - but the trailer as an absolute work of art for all the reasons outlined above; the tone was set as portentous and doomy, the visuals moving between the epic and the human, and with snippets of dialogue expressing a sense of wonder, vastness - and then moving towards something more emotional and 'intimate' and 'about the human experience'. This was indeed an instance when the trailer transcended the film in its ability to transmit the storytelling ambitions of the film.


    (I just watched it again and I'm *still* grumpy that the film itself was total shite) :(

    1. Thanks for all this ! I thought I'd hit reply to your previous comment last night but I guess not (so I'll put it here too)

      So I completely agree ! It's all ideas with frankly ignorable context and no substance for an actual output right now. As for a genre, I had wrote in my unsent comment it might be psychological science fantasy so it is interesting for you to mention body horror as it's something that often goes together with this. - And it's something I'm totally up for doing!

      Completely on board with the idea of a trailer and it not being 3-4 minutes long. (More action in a shorter time etc because of the way trailers tend to be edited) Haha ! It is a shame how badly Prometheus was received but at the least what it did do right it did well.

      I love how you've put forward the definition of Synecdoche - I watched Synecdoche, New York a few months ago now but it's held such a grip on me. So I love this word that exists hahaha

      Now in terms of an "action plan" of sorts, I'll research some trailers and the ideologies behind them! (for example I know as of late a trend in over-abusing a fade to black inbetween each shot, lookin' at you Transformers..) - And thank you for the links you provided. I'd also thought Akira was a good example: http://66.media.tumblr.com/1b856003f30e30de6b27525656e47729/tumblr_mskk4vEgAC1shs83lo1_500.gif

      I'll get to an animatic !