Your outlandish TV/movie concepts?

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Idhan
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Your outlandish TV/movie concepts?

Postby Idhan » Sun Jul 19, 2009 6:46 am UTC

What ideas do you have for TV or movies that you fantasize about seeing but which you know would never actually exist?

I'll start:

1. Title: PRÆFECTVS MVNICIPII

Capsule summary: TV series: The Office meets the Dark Ages.

Plot: An oblivious, overly optimistic, well-meaning noble in 7th century Ravenna (Michael Scott-like) is given a fictitious appointment (clumsily forged by the exarch with an imitation of the Emperor's seal) as prefect of a long-lost town of Canvo in southern Gaul near the Mediterranean, which has not actually been part of the Roman Empire for over 200 years. He boldly sets off to the town, with every intention of bringing good governance and improving the lives of the town's inhabitants, his knowledge of the town based on a 400-year old census which claims the town has three times its current populaton. Hijinks ensue.

Characters:

Mark Bass (Marcus Bassus): An ambitious, dim-witted, idealistic nobleman from Ravenna, recently appointed prefect of Canvo, which he does not realize is actually a more polite form of exile (given that Canvo is actually in a state of de facto anarchy, and isn't a Roman province). He is determined to help the people of Canvo (sometimes expounding on how he regards "all the little plebeians as my children."). He is somewhat unaware of a variety of salient facts, such as the fall of the Roman Empire. Sometimes capable of far more intelligence and self-awareness than he usually exhibits.

John Vincent (Ioannes Vincentius): The local priest of Canvo, who reluctantly served as acting authority of the town until Mark's arrival. He did not enjoy the responsibilities accompanying his position of temporal power, and is actually supportive of Mark's attempts to replace him, but he feels compelled to avert Mark's harebrained schemes when they threaten the welfare of the town. He is something of a frustrated Renaissance Man stuck in the Dark Ages. He has many interests, including classical Greek, mathematics, history, medicine, and science. Of his myriad interests, religion happens not to be one of them, and he often finds himself making up doctrine as he goes along or mangling Biblical verses. Something of a womanizer, with a bad habit of having affairs with disturbed women due to seeing himself as a rescuing "knight-in-shining-armor." He is also a vegetarian, and something of a perennial pessimist, seeing the world as being in a downward spiral which has no reason to stop, finding little comfort in the eschatological promises of Christianity.

Claudia Theodora (same): The heiress of a family of latifundia-owners-turned-manorial-lords, she is the richest inhabitant of Canvo. She has lived an idle life which has left her somewhat isolated. Middle-aged, overweight, childless, and unwillingly single, she has a tendency toward alcoholism, and lavishes affection on her collection of horses, cats, and dogs. She had a brief affair with John Vincent. As the owner of a significant plurality of the real estate of Canvo, her cooperation is frequently required by Mark for his plans for the town. The fate of her estate after her death is somewhat indeterminant at this time. She frequently takes up new hobbies, from poetry to pottery, only to abandon them after a short time.

Chief Ludovic: The chieftain (/duke/DVX) of a nearby tribe of Goth-like people, the Anvals. From Mark Bass's perspective, the Anvalli are Foederati of the Roman Empire, owing allegiance to the Emperor in Constantinople and, indirectly, his vicar in Canvo (Mark). From Ludoric's perspective, all of that is absurdly outdated, and the Anvals are rulers of the region, with Canvo being a tributary town (albeit under a hands-off, indifferent form of subjugation). Ludovic is a tough, free-spirited ruler, with a tense relationship with the Arian priest Alberic. In spite of himself, he develops something of a crush on Mark. He is uneducated and illiterate (a fact that he sometimes clumsily attempts to hide among better educated people), but has a good grasp of practical politics and military strategy.

Amalazintha: Ludovic's wife and queen, married for more-or-less political reasons. (Amalazintha isn't really into Ludovic, and Ludovic isn't really into women period.) Classically educated, and of Ostrogothic heritage, she has a pragmatic mind for the details of management and administration which elude Ludovic (and, for that matter, Mark and other characters of the series). She is obsessed with improving the quality of agriculture, construction, etc. She is a pious but not fanatical Arian Christian. She is intrigued by the developments in the East, and has followed the rise of Islam, and, misunderstanding the real nature of the newfound Muslim faith, believes that Islam is akin to Arian Christianity (in revering Jesus without identifying him precisely as God). She secretly hopes for Arab conquest, hoping to become a local administrator for the Caliphate, along with a restoration of the deteriorating standards of civilization by a strong, unified empire.

Alberic: A zealous, sanctimonious Arian priest of the Anval tribe. He regards Nicene (Athanasian) Christians (including Mark and the other people of Canvo) as heretics, and regards himself as a crusader for orthodoxy. He is judgmental and misogynistic, and wears the resentment with which most people regard him as a badge of his own holiness, viewing himself as "too good for the fallen world." He fantasizes about being martyred, and sometimes his interactions with others (such as Ludovic) seem to be attempts to provoke them into martyring him. Whenever he meets John Vincent, he is even more infuriated by the latter's indifference to theological matters and religion than he is by his (nominal) adherence to Catholic Orthodoxy.

Other characters might also exist, but those are the ones that come to mind.

Possible Storylines:

-An long defunct aquaduct runs from a reservoir through Anval territory to the center of Canvo. Mark wants to restore it to functionality, and looks for the resources and construction expertise needed to restore the aquaduct, as well as negotiating with the Anvals to allow the construction through their territory.

-A ship of Arab slavers appears on the Mediterranean coast, threatening to make incursions into the Canvo region. Amalazintha may be in for a rude shock. (Given the light-hearted tone of the series, the issues with lots of people being dragged into slavery, and the improbability of a Dark Ages town in Mediterranean France being able to mount an effective defense, I think the slavers might have some issues of being less than fully competent themselves.)

-Hysteria over witchcraft envelops the town, while the heroes investigate, attempt to maintain calm, and perhaps began to suspect the influence of the Dark Arts themselves.

-Claudia gets sick, and it begins to seem that she will die. Her will becomes a matter of more immediate concern, as people contend for her estate (with some advocating leaving it to the Church, various distant relatives appearing, some people calling for it to be divided among her serfs, etc.)

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Re: Your outlandish TV/movie concepts?

Postby PatrickRsGhost » Sun Jul 19, 2009 11:34 pm UTC

One show I envisioned, but doubt would ever get off the ground, was a cooking show centered around the slow cooker. The host would show how to prepare various meals for the slow cooker, how to convert some meals that require baking or stovetop cooking, and prepare them for the slow cooker.

Another concept I had for either a TV crime drama series, or else a book series, would deal with a criminal who is an avid fan of a certain music genre, or perhaps a particular band, and commits crimes centered around songs of that genre, or band. I think this would be best for a book series, or else just a single book. I may have to toy with this one for a while when I have time.
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Re: Your outlandish TV/movie concepts?

Postby Mighty Jalapeno » Sun Jul 19, 2009 11:51 pm UTC

First off: Do we have any copyright if we post here? Because I've had it with things I publish online becoming major movies 2-3 years later.

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Re: Your outlandish TV/movie concepts?

Postby Idhan » Mon Jul 20, 2009 3:21 am UTC

Mighty Jalapeno wrote:First off: Do we have any copyright if we post here? Because I've had it with things I publish online becoming major movies 2-3 years later.


I'd guess probably not -- at least with regard to basic concepts that can be posted in a page-long post. Maybe if you wrote a 40 page-long script, which was later turned, word-for-word, into the script of a movie or pilot episode, then that might be copyright violation, but broad conceptual outlines of the sort I'd expect people to post on this thread can probably be poached without anything being provable.

UPDATE: I am not a lawyer, BTW.

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Re: Your outlandish TV/movie concepts?

Postby Idhan » Tue Aug 25, 2009 2:21 am UTC

I'd like to see a sort of post-apoc series along the lines of the Fallout series -- fallout shelter vault-cities, hallucinogen-toking tribal shamans, twisted remnants of the world before (maybe an ancient ghoul surviving from before the war, who rules a town of ghouls claiming to be "president of the United States of America," who jails ghouls whom he suspects of being "communists." (One of the ghouls he jails is as out of touch as he is, proudly proclaiming ACLU membership.), power armor, bits of retro-futuristic 50s-style design, all that good stuff -- and, of course, a band of heroines and heroes on a quest to save everything.

I also had some ideas for Star Trek episodes that I kind of wish had been made

Voyager:

-The Voyager encounters Yet Another Federation Starship in the Delta Quadrant. This one has abandoned the Prime Directive entirely, and is building an empire; the captain and upper-level officers contend that they are not just ruthless survivors, but that the Prime Directive is flawed on moral ground, turning a blind eye to the suffering of people who are not fortunate enough to have discovered warp technology yet. (I personally think that the Prime Directive is probably a necessary rule (or at least something like it), lest the Federation turn into bloody imperialists with claims of benevolence like the French Mission Civilisatrice/Japanese Greater East Asian Co-Prosperity Sphere/American Operation Iraqi Freedom/etc., but it'd be cool to see its assumptions challenged by someone pointing out that it means ignoring bronze age humanoids dying of plagues and such because they aren't advanced enough to qualify for Fed concern.)

-The Voyager somehow gets damaged, and is forced to dock in an alien planet. The aliens are technologically sophisticated, hospitable and friendly, but when they find that the dry-docked Voyager is equiped with advanced weaponry, they claim that their law prohibits any ship from having both offensive weapons and warp drives, claiming that any such ship is a dangerous "potential instrument of interstellar aggression." They claim not to be pacifists, but just that weaponry should be limited to planetary installations and sublight ships, while warp-speed ships should be for commerce and transportation. Janeway and crew have to negotiate the release of Voyager, while the aliens try to come up with "helpful" compromises, like stripping the Voyager of all weapons while providing upgrades to its warp drive and shielding. ("Your ship is only armed for self-defense? I cannot deny the possibility, Captain Janeway, yet we have observed many wars between parties all of whom claim never to fight save in self-defense. Your own account has the Federation fighting in wars against its neighbors -- Cardassians, Romulans, and... what were they called, Klongirs? You claim it was never the Federation that fired the first shot -- and I think you probably believe it, and your ship's history logs no doubt confirm that account. I have my doubts, however. You say that the Federations has expanded from five planets to hundreds over the course of 200 years, through nothing save peaceful settlement and diplomacy?")

-Any ST (maybe Voyager, maybe TNG, etc): The crew finds a desolate planet, apparently destroyed by some catastrophe. At one of the poles, untouched, they find a solar-powered installation filled with cryogenically frozen heads, filled with various protective anti-crystalization fluids (dimethyl sulfoxide and such). The heads are sufficiently intact to be restored with Federation medical technology. I'm not sure where to go from there, but as a seed, I'm thinking it could go in a number of directions.

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Re: Your outlandish TV/movie concepts?

Postby cephalopod9 » Mon Aug 31, 2009 7:49 am UTC

I want there to be a channel that is entirely slow motion pyrotechnics and time laps flowers blooming, with maybe some decent music in the background. Advertisements would be allowed if they fit the format. Actually, I think it should be an all around rule that commercials in some way acknowledge what they're interrupting, instead of just being a jarring and incongruous attention grabber.
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Re: Your outlandish TV/movie concepts?

Postby tin » Mon Aug 31, 2009 4:35 pm UTC

Myself and a friend have a running joke about creating Miami Lobster - an animated 70's cop show based around the sexy exploits of a crime fightin', jive talkin' lobster in a Miami harbour. After sitting in on my friend's jamming session, we've have decided on the theme tune which involves copious amounts of wah wah pedal abuse. Oh, and we decided that Miami Lobster will have a handlebar moustache.

It will be magnificent.
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Re: Your outlandish TV/movie concepts?

Postby Ivora » Tue Sep 01, 2009 10:46 pm UTC

The Raccoon City Chronicles. :D

Its about the individuals who escaped the horror of that late summer of '98. The infestation started with the rats in the sewers and it went on from there... :shock:

WHY ISN'T THERE A SHOW ABOUT THIS?! :cry:

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Re: Your outlandish TV/movie concepts?

Postby artifex » Thu Sep 03, 2009 1:38 am UTC

Ah, I love fantasizing about plot concepts-- here are a couple:

-The Dusk Continent:
In a universe consisting of an infinite flat Earth, there's a continent which is shrouded in a perpetual dusk and covered by a lush bioluminescent jungle. The dominant civilization is a vaguely Aztec culture with advanced steampunk-style technology. In it's capital city- a single vast, ramshackle structure- the ghosts of it's citizens persist for hundreds or thousands of years, pursuing intellectual and artistic goals, while the living handle the physical labor.

Three factions vie for power there: the ancient government, called the Lords, who are a corrupt oligarchy, a guerrilla insurgency, which intends to implement a republic, and to reinstate the human sacrifice of convicted criminals, and a small contingent from the Sun Empire, a distant civilization spanning five continents, with 1950's level technology and a similar culture. The Lords rely on massive loans provided by the Sun Empire, while the Empire plots to annex the civilization, and gain it's technological secrets, using the insurgency as a pretense. The insurgency, in turn, has to rely on the legitimacy of the Lords if it hopes to form a stable government.

Into all this steps Tom Silvey, formerly the Sun Empire's most respected television newsman before lying on the air to protect a friend. He's come with a small and loyal crew to film a documentary on the slightly abnormal continent in a last-ditch effort to save his career. Unbeknownst to him, however, he's about to become a valuable chess-piece to not only the factions on the continent, but to the supernatural forces that underlie them...



-The Advisory Board:
A surreal alternate-reality drama centering around an Illumaniti-like conspiracy portrayed in a mostly sympathetic light. Everything on the social fringes or at the social heights of this world is exaggerated to surreal proportions. CEOs struggle with the emergent wills of their corporations, which are willing to sacrifice thousands of human lives to survive. A UAE prince lives in a floating pleasure-city atop the world's largest oil rig. A new religion in Africa isn't reported by the Western media. The moon landing was indeed faked-- to comply with an agreement with an alien intelligence. The Summer of Love was the sabotaged attempt to implement something homeless people have been planning since the Great Depression. And so forth...

At it's highest level, the conspiracy itself consists of seven carefully chosen men and women, who struggle to maintain some sense of morality while secretly controlling the world. When the man responsible for both Vietnam and Iraq is found dead, a new girl is brought up from the lower ranks to fill the vacancy. Although she's seen as merely an idealist by the other shadow dictators, there's something they don't know about her. Deborah Leer thinks she can fix the third world. All she needs is twenty trillion dollars and several hundred thousand construction workers...

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Re: Your outlandish TV/movie concepts?

Postby Midnight » Sat Sep 05, 2009 9:44 pm UTC

Mighty Jalapeno wrote:First off: Do we have any copyright if we post here? Because I've had it with things I publish online becoming major movies 2-3 years later.


bright minds think alike. plus some movies take longer than 2-3 years to make, so maybe you're just incredibly (un)lucky and/or psychic.
uhhhh fuck.

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Re: Your outlandish TV/movie concepts?

Postby capawe » Sun Sep 06, 2009 8:11 am UTC

Mine is about a futuristic amusement park where dinosaurs are brought to life through advanced cloning techniques. I call it "Billy and the Cloneasaurus."

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Re: Your outlandish TV/movie concepts?

Postby aleflamedyud » Sun Sep 06, 2009 12:14 pm UTC

I batted this about as a videogame idea once...

Post-eco-apocalypse, much of advanced humanity has left for the stars, Firefly-style. Here back on Earth, the remnants of humanity struggle to use what advanced (and I mean advanced, not 20-minutes-into-the-future) technology remains to rebuild and restabilize an ecosystem capable of supporting a modern-style civilization while also trying to uncover the exact history of the eco-cataclysm and the Exodus from Earth. A great deal of history has been lost in the process, so the cultures that emerge will be very mix-and-match based on what sort of practices work in people's situations.

A few major features:

Garden cities: arable land with a healthy ecosystem (plants, insects, soil etc.) is one of the most valuable commodities, and so cities are built in concentric rings around agricultural sections. Agriculture also serves as a major industry, so major that the inner rings of a city will sometimes be demolished or moved if the population grows so quickly that additional food is badly needed.

Eco-settlements: smaller towns and villages are placed throughout the countryside to "anchor" the ecosystems in human-friendly ways, and of course to farm.

Between these environments, through the dangerous wilderness, travel...

OUR HEROES: old-fashioned trading caravans. Their job is to take things between cities and villages, and to enforce the laws since people have reverted to city-states controlling the surrounding countryside. Oh, and don't forget nomadic bandit raiders!
And so the show is about the stuff that happens to these people as they try to do their jobs. As they work, history is happening: the city-state system is slowly eroding as various nomadic groups ally with disaffected peasants to win control of villages and towns and thereby create what we would call small countries, each one under the control of a guerrilla-insurgent army. Our heroes are in fact employed by a major city-state, and so they do have to arrest or even kill insurgents when they find them.

Our caravan consists of:

The Guard: He's the Captain, and he's also very much a cop. Likes his uniform and likes protecting everyone, but also too much a fighter to live a contented life in city, town, or village. He comes from a village, though, and is a bit racist to...

The Storyteller: A combination of a wondering preacher and a spy, the Storyteller's job is to keep large sums of useful wisdom in their head. Valued as counselors and employed as clergy. Our storyteller is a woman who joined the caravan out of a nomad-raider tribe because she preferred a more peaceful life than raiding villages could provide, and she never lets on whether she's keeping secrets about her former life and people or just doesn't have any.

The Trader Brothers: A trader's got to be a bit of everything, and these guys are. They carry the heavy loads. They actually do much of the actual selling and bartering, because big intimidating guys reduce theft rates. One was taught to be deadly serious about assassinating guerrilla leaders, and the other practices medicine with a black sense of humor.

The Mechie: Combination engineer, computer/electronics specialist, and mechanic. Looks like a little nerdy mousy girl, and resents the fact that everyone thinks she's an accountant. From a very rich city in a warm climate. Technically dating the assassin guy when the two can get time to spend only with each other.

What do they do? They keep everything working from day to day, bringing supplies to the people who need them to keep pests under control or have fresh drinking water.

And there's a setting and a five-man band. Where's my millions of production money?

In other news, I have far too much spare time.
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Re: Your outlandish TV/movie concepts?

Postby thicknavyrain » Sun Sep 06, 2009 12:21 pm UTC

capawe wrote:Mine is about a futuristic amusement park where dinosaurs are brought to life through advanced cloning techniques. I call it "Billy and the Cloneasaurus."


Wow, you should totally get Stephen Spielberg to direct that.

Personally, I'd like an internet comedy series about sky pirates in a steampunk universe. Yep, that's right, I'm keeping it that vague.
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Re: Your outlandish TV/movie concepts?

Postby Sana » Sun Sep 06, 2009 7:25 pm UTC

It's about a killer robot driving instructor who travels back in time for some reason. Ron Howard's attached to direct.

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Re: Your outlandish TV/movie concepts?

Postby tin » Mon Sep 07, 2009 10:13 pm UTC

Sana wrote:It's about a killer robot driving instructor who travels back in time for some reason. Ron Howard's attached to direct.


I would most definitely watch this.
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Re: Your outlandish TV/movie concepts?

Postby PatrickRsGhost » Wed Sep 09, 2009 3:55 pm UTC

thicknavyrain wrote:
capawe wrote:Mine is about a futuristic amusement park where dinosaurs are brought to life through advanced cloning techniques. I call it "Billy and the Cloneasaurus."


Wow, you should totally get Stephen Spielberg to direct that.


You can keep your silly dinosaur movie and that hack director Spielberg. A Mr. George Lucas and I are collaborating on an entire series of films that take place in space, dealing with a bunch of rogue good guys fighting a whole bunch of evil bad guys that build this machine that can destroy entire planets. The leader of the bad guys was once a good guy, and still has ties to the good guys. The good guys will find their new leader in the most oddest of places, and will also team up with a criminal that is wanted by several different agencies and his crew.

Of course every good movie needs a damsel in distress, and this one has an awesome hairdo, and is connected in an odd way to both the new leader of the good guys, and the leader of the bad guys. She and the new leader will have a thing for each other, as will she with the criminal.

Somehow a huge slug, a bunch of animatronic teddy bears, Bigfoot, and a few other weird creatures factor in to the story as well.
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Re: Your outlandish TV/movie concepts?

Postby thicknavyrain » Wed Sep 09, 2009 5:04 pm UTC

PatrickRsGhost wrote:You can keep your silly dinosaur movie and that hack director Spielberg. A Mr. George Lucas and I are collaborating on an entire series of films that take place in space, dealing with a bunch of rogue good guys fighting a whole bunch of evil bad guys that build this machine that can destroy entire planets. The leader of the bad guys was once a good guy, and still has ties to the good guys. The good guys will find their new leader in the most oddest of places, and will also team up with a criminal that is wanted by several different agencies and his crew.

Of course every good movie needs a damsel in distress, and this one has an awesome hairdo, and is connected in an odd way to both the new leader of the good guys, and the leader of the bad guys. She and the new leader will have a thing for each other, as will she with the criminal.

Somehow a huge slug, a bunch of animatronic teddy bears, Bigfoot, and a few other weird creatures factor in to the story as well.


HEY! That one's been done! Family guy had a whole episode that was like very much like that...

Honestly, you're fooling no one(!)
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Re: Your outlandish TV/movie concepts?

Postby TheAmazingRando » Thu Sep 10, 2009 1:42 am UTC

I want to see a big-budget heist movie set in the present day that revolves around infiltrating a space station. I can't imagine anyone pulling it off in a way that isn't so-ridiculous-it's-awesome.

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Re: Your outlandish TV/movie concepts?

Postby Zohar » Thu Sep 10, 2009 5:22 am UTC

I watched GI Joe yesterday with a couple of friends and we talked about why, with hundreds of millions of dollars in their budget, they can't hire a decent writer. The obvious question is "why bother?". Anyway, then it came to me, a movie I'd really like to watch, no matter what it was about. All it needed was two people working on it:

Warren Ellis to write the script, Quentin Tarantino to direct.
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Re: Your outlandish TV/movie concepts?

Postby Jesse » Thu Sep 10, 2009 9:05 pm UTC

I actually just pissed myself.

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Re: Your outlandish TV/movie concepts?

Postby Zorlin » Thu Sep 10, 2009 10:55 pm UTC

d33p the avenger: movie edition.

you know you fucking want it.
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Re: Your outlandish TV/movie concepts?

Postby steewi » Fri Sep 11, 2009 1:20 am UTC

Zohar wrote:I watched GI Joe yesterday with a couple of friends and we talked about why, with hundreds of millions of dollars in their budget, they can't hire a decent writer. The obvious question is "why bother?". Anyway, then it came to me, a movie I'd really like to watch, no matter what it was about. All it needed was two people working on it:

Warren Ellis to write the script, Quentin Tarantino to direct.

Fuck yeah.

Warren Ellis writes, Quentin Tarantino directs: River Tam Beats Up Everybody.

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Re: Your outlandish TV/movie concepts?

Postby SecondTalon » Fri Sep 11, 2009 1:48 pm UTC

Tarantino writing, Ellis directing would still be a step forward for the GI Joe movie.
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Re: Your outlandish TV/movie concepts?

Postby fersrs » Tue Sep 22, 2009 1:40 am UTC

An animated show, each episode would be based around a musical composition and animated with the genre and origin of the song in mind. There would be one recurring character, but there wouldn't be an dialogue in the show other than the lyrics, if the song had any.
ex. The Moon Over the Ruined Castle would tell the stories of different people looking at the same castle and how they perceived its destruction, but each of their stories are connected with each other.

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Re: Your outlandish TV/movie concepts?

Postby axilog14 » Tue Sep 22, 2009 4:47 pm UTC

My blog wrote:a modern team of fedora-wearing heroes... only written as a bunch of wannabe hero-geeks who figure in this hypothetical TV pilot of mine involving the San Diego Comic-Con


Okay, it's basically The Big Bang Theory meets Mystery Men with more token minorities. Oh, and in the first episode someone saves Robert Downey Jr's life.
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Re: Your outlandish TV/movie concepts?

Postby cephalopod9 » Thu Sep 24, 2009 10:34 pm UTC

steewi wrote:
Zohar wrote:I watched GI Joe yesterday with a couple of friends and we talked about why, with hundreds of millions of dollars in their budget, they can't hire a decent writer. The obvious question is "why bother?". Anyway, then it came to me, a movie I'd really like to watch, no matter what it was about. All it needed was two people working on it:

Warren Ellis to write the script, Quentin Tarantino to direct.

Fuck yeah.

Warren Ellis writes, Quentin Tarantino directs: River Tam Beats Up Everybody.

...I wonder if the reach of the forum is such that we could influence this to begin happening. Tarantino seems fair affable with the nerd community, and I keep forgetting who Warren Ellis is because my sponge brain holds names poorly.
Surely at least one someone on the forums knows at least one some one in or near the movie industry.
I wouldn't mind pitching in a dollar or two, if a few thousand other people feel the same we might be able to afford 5 or 10 minutes of Summer Glau's time.
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Re: Your outlandish TV/movie concepts?

Postby Idhan » Sun Sep 27, 2009 1:12 am UTC

It occurred to m that there is no Hollywood movie that I can think of about the life of Buddha. This would have the advantage of not being as heavily mined as Christianity-oriented Hollywood productions.

Anyway, I'm envisioning a movies about the life of Buddha which is historically semi-accurate, but is based on sort of early '90s aesthetics and spirit. I mean, the people of Kapilavastu are driving ox carts, not '88 Toyota Corollas, clothing is classical, etc. However, there would be some Nirvana, R.E.M., etc, in the soundtrack. Siddhartha would sort of have a "grunge" feel to him. Suddhodana would be a kind of yuppie-ish politician type -- a decent man, who really tries his best as the Shakya president (IMHO "president" or "chief" is probably as good a translation as "king" for Suddhodana's position among the Shakyas) to keep relations with Kosala peaceful, improve irrigation, etc, but who's the kind of shallow, extraverted, back-slapping "ex-frat boy" type who doesn't really understand his son, and whose son thinks he's a total douche (before becoming enlightened and learning to love everyone (even those far, far less lovable than Suddhodana), etc. I envision the Shakyas trying to get one of their princesses to marry Prasenajit (before they resort to the trick with Vasavakhattiya), with the genuine princess refusing in a Valley Girl type speech. "Like, ohmigod, Prasenajit? No way."

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Re: Your outlandish TV/movie concepts?

Postby PatrickRsGhost » Sun Sep 27, 2009 2:39 am UTC

Idhan wrote:It occurred to m that there is no Hollywood movie that I can think of about the life of Buddha. This would have the advantage of not being as heavily mined as Christianity-oriented Hollywood productions.


There was a movie about the life of Buddha called Little Buddha, starring Keanu Reeves as Prince Siddhartha/Buddha. In the movie, a Buddhist Lama goes in search of the reincarnation of his teacher, the Lama before him. He runs into three separate candidates, including a little boy in Seattle, Washington. When the Lama meets the boy, he gives him a book that tells the story of the Buddha, which comes to life as segues between the main story of the movie.

It's not as wide-known as The Passion of the Christ was, mainly because the production company was an indie company, and the director was not someone we'd all recognize, like Spielberg, Mel Gibson, or any other big shot. It didn't receive the best of reviews, nor was it shown in every single movie theater. It was shown in the smaller, more locally-run theaters, that usually show more of the indie movies. I remember my parents and I going driving all the way to Atlanta from where we lived at the time, which took a little over an hour, just to see the movie.

What I would like to see, in similarity to what you've talked about doing, is perhaps a movie that retells a familiar story in the Bible or some other holy text, in a more modern surrounding. Off the top of my head I can't think of one. Sure, there was Evan Almighty, where God floods the world, and Evan plays Noah, but the concept was still the same.

I'm thinking more along the lines like in the story of David and Goliath, where the young boy takes down the giant with just a small stone and a slingshot. Perhaps in a more modern version, have someone who works for a small company manages to take down a much larger company that both specialize in the same things, or perhaps a single homeowner goes up against a major developer who plans to abuse the local government's power of eminent domain to tear down a small community's homes, just to build a large mega-mall or shopping center that may house a major mass merchandise retailer.
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Re: Your outlandish TV/movie concepts?

Postby Philwelch » Sun Sep 27, 2009 4:39 am UTC

PatrickRsGhost wrote:Another concept I had for either a TV crime drama series, or else a book series, would deal with a criminal who is an avid fan of a certain music genre, or perhaps a particular band, and commits crimes centered around songs of that genre, or band. I think this would be best for a book series, or else just a single book. I may have to toy with this one for a while when I have time.


That would be a lot cooler if it didn't already happen in real life with Charles Manson, the Beatles, and "Helter Skelter".

Mighty Jalapeno wrote:First off: Do we have any copyright if we post here? Because I've had it with things I publish online becoming major movies 2-3 years later.


So are you under the delusion that you can make these movies yourself, or do you not want to see your ideas committed to film at all? ;)

cephalopod9 wrote:I want there to be a channel that is entirely slow motion pyrotechnics and time laps flowers blooming, with maybe some decent music in the background.


In the realm of "channels to fall asleep to" you'd face stiff competition from the Weather Channel.

Zohar wrote:I watched GI Joe yesterday with a couple of friends and we talked about why, with hundreds of millions of dollars in their budget, they can't hire a decent writer. The obvious question is "why bother?". Anyway, then it came to me, a movie I'd really like to watch, no matter what it was about. All it needed was two people working on it:

Warren Ellis to write the script, Quentin Tarantino to direct.


Has Tarantino ever directed a project he didn't write? I just don't see this working out, especially since Tarantino's writing is such a large part of what makes his films so interesting.
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Re: Your outlandish TV/movie concepts?

Postby Vanguard » Sun Sep 27, 2009 4:26 pm UTC

Pretty much this.

I'll post some here. Spoiler'd for length.

Spoiler:
From a Documentary crew based in Connecticut, they (fearfully) documented the introduction of the Vanguard's leader.

1996
A small disturbance in New York when civilians (around a hundred) witness an odd red portal at an intersection. A being is forcefully pushed into the street, and the 'portal' fades. Some damage is caused. Eyewitness's report that he seemed to be on his way to a 'goth club' with how he was garbed, and some even marveled how his face kept hidden even when direct light was shown into his hood. Only 'red eyes' showed. He seemed to stagger for a moment before wandering to the sidewalk where the robed figure questioned a man on his location and the date. He walked off without a word.

1997
Robed man was sighted after the sacking of a major skyscraper that was owned by a known criminal empire. The man did nothing but smile his red teeth at the camera in the distance and[strike] jumped [/strike] LEAPED away. Later that year, the same empire crumbled after several of its leaders were mysteriously butchered.

1999
After a couple years, a mysterious man who is thought to be the same robed man appears. He wore a trench coat, shades, a top hat, and carried a cane. He questioned many on the current affairs of the world. All the while, more criminals and murderers are killed, even mysteriously executed in prison cells.

2001
After the events of September 11, the robed man seemed to use the cultural chaos to his advantage. He was able to wreak havoc while the public paid more attention to the middle eastern threat. The authorities seemed to know better.

2002
Robed man made his presence public as he threw subtley out the window. He fought many people in public buildings, several eyewitness claim he was looking for a person, or unknown object. This happened fairly often, and civilians claimed to have seen 'magic' from the man after seeing fiery projectiles, or summoning an assortment of weapons out of thin air including a massive six-foot sword and even some oddly shaped SMGs.

2003
It became apparent that an otherwordly war was brewing when a new faction called the Blackguard (who seemed to dress the same as the robed man, but were clearly not his allies) showed themselves. They proved supreme swordsmanship ability when they attacked the robed man, and the battled lasted a fair amount of time. They attacke often, and all over the country.
The more time passed, the more would somehow show up. They accosted and murdered officials to find out the location and information of the robed man.

2004
Almost immediately after New Years, a strange and oddly unstoppable broadcast was seen all over the world, and in their respective languages. The robed man finally introduced himself as the letter "M". He seemed to be dissappointed with 'humans' and vowed to help repair the world they had broken. He gave a tally of Earth's unseen enemies and included mentionings of vampires and demons, much to the confusion of the public. He ended on the note that criminals were also to fear for their 'souls', and it cut to black with a strange but ornate "V" symbol... It stayed for several minutes and then cut to normal broadcasts.


That's just a preview, and only tells you about the leader.

V for Vendetta came pretty close.
But V was one guy, the Vanguard is an army.
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Re: Your outlandish TV/movie concepts?

Postby artifex » Mon Sep 28, 2009 4:22 am UTC

PatrickRsGhost wrote:
Idhan wrote:What I would like to see, in similarity to what you've talked about doing, is perhaps a movie that retells a familiar story in the Bible or some other holy text, in a more modern surrounding....

...I'm thinking more along the lines like in the story of David and Goliath....


The TV series Kings was loosely adapted from the Biblical book of Kings.

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Re: Your outlandish TV/movie concepts?

Postby Technical Ben » Mon Sep 28, 2009 8:05 pm UTC

artifex wrote:Ah, I love fantasizing about plot concepts-- here are a couple:

Spoiler:
-The Dusk Continent:
In a universe consisting of an infinite flat Earth, there's a continent which is shrouded in a perpetual dusk and covered by a lush bioluminescent jungle. The dominant civilization is a vaguely Aztec culture with advanced steampunk-style technology. In it's capital city- a single vast, ramshackle structure- the ghosts of it's citizens persist for hundreds or thousands of years, pursuing intellectual and artistic goals, while the living handle the physical labor.

Three factions vie for power there: the ancient government, called the Lords, who are a corrupt oligarchy, a guerrilla insurgency, which intends to implement a republic, and to reinstate the human sacrifice of convicted criminals, and a small contingent from the Sun Empire, a distant civilization spanning five continents, with 1950's level technology and a similar culture. The Lords rely on massive loans provided by the Sun Empire, while the Empire plots to annex the civilization, and gain it's technological secrets, using the insurgency as a pretense. The insurgency, in turn, has to rely on the legitimacy of the Lords if it hopes to form a stable government.

Into all this steps Tom Silvey, formerly the Sun Empire's most respected television newsman before lying on the air to protect a friend. He's come with a small and loyal crew to film a documentary on the slightly abnormal continent in a last-ditch effort to save his career. Unbeknownst to him, however, he's about to become a valuable chess-piece to not only the factions on the continent, but to the supernatural forces that underlie them...


-The Advisory Board:
A surreal alternate-reality drama centering around an Illumaniti-like conspiracy portrayed in a mostly sympathetic light. Everything on the social fringes or at the social heights of this world is exaggerated to surreal proportions. CEOs struggle with the emergent wills of their corporations, which are willing to sacrifice thousands of human lives to survive. A UAE prince lives in a floating pleasure-city atop the world's largest oil rig. A new religion in Africa isn't reported by the Western media. The moon landing was indeed faked-- to comply with an agreement with an alien intelligence. The Summer of Love was the sabotaged attempt to implement something homeless people have been planning since the Great Depression. And so forth...

At it's highest level, the conspiracy itself consists of seven carefully chosen men and women, who struggle to maintain some sense of morality while secretly controlling the world. When the man responsible for both Vietnam and Iraq is found dead, a new girl is brought up from the lower ranks to fill the vacancy. Although she's seen as merely an idealist by the other shadow dictators, there's something they don't know about her. Deborah Leer thinks she can fix the third world. All she needs is twenty trillion dollars and several hundred thousand construction workers...


Have you seen Last Exile or Wonderful Days?
I'd watch both with a pinch of salt and a big bucket of "suspended disbelief", As there are plot holes. Also they suffer from the usual Anime cliche. (in the same way American action movies suffer from there own cliches.)
Both touch on "conspiracy" and those in rule being corrupt. However, those in power always seem to have inexplicably gained super human power.
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Re: Your outlandish TV/movie concepts?

Postby TechiesGoBoom » Fri Oct 09, 2009 7:46 pm UTC

My idea for a TV series: It starts off as some every day medical drama, then, in the middle of the second season, the main character is..... a WEREWOLF. I think it would be hilarious to completely alienate a fanbase like that just to see how they might react, and I would find it amusing.

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Re: Your outlandish TV/movie concepts?

Postby Idhan » Mon Oct 12, 2009 8:21 pm UTC

Sort of the opposite of my original idea of setting an Office/Parks & Recreation type show in the Dark Ages (PRÆFECTVS MVNICIPII): take something like Merlin, and set it in a far less mythologized historical setting: have it be about a sorcerer working for Mexico under the presidency of Benito Juarez trying to thwart the designs of Emperor Maximilian, or a sorcerer in the employ of Tomas Masaryk, trying to save Czechoslovakia from the sinister designs of German occultists, etc.

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Re: Your outlandish TV/movie concepts?

Postby podbaydoor » Mon Oct 12, 2009 10:09 pm UTC

Written by Clumpy, archived here: viewtopic.php?f=22&t=11335

A group of FORENSIC DETECTIVES is sitting in a large board room, going over unseen photographs. The camera pans over the room, to the grim face of DR. WOLFSHEIM, the program head.

DR WOLFSHEIM: "We are tracking a dangerous maniac - every time he kills, he adopts the surname of his victim. First his name was "John Jacob". Then he killed Doctor Flaversheim Jingleheimer. "

[A BEAT AND CAMERA ANGLE CHANGE]

DR. WOLFSHEIM: "Dr. Schmidt, I'm putting you in charge of the investigation. We need to stop our friend before his name has a chance to grow any longer."

INSPECTOR SCHMIDT nods grimly.

---

NIGHT - INSPECTOR SCHMIDT is working at his drawing room computer, beads of sweat dotting his brow as he feverishly searches through documents, images, databases. A beat. The music rises as sudden comprehension dawns on his face. The music rises to a crescendo, and, as the camera draws nearer and nearer to the man's face, the music comes to an abrupt halt:

INSPECTOR SCHMIDT (WHISPER): "His name is my name too."

A window breaks downstairs. SCHMIDT darts toward the window. Follows a random sequence of violent images - the type usually seen in movie trailers: Too blurry to see clearly, a shrouded figure swings an electric eggbeater. Someone jumps off of a roof. A fire hydrant explodes. Work with me here.

---

Finally, everything fades to black. Spooky childrens' voices start singing.

CHILDREN: ". . . whenever he goes out, the people always shout. . . there goes John Jacob Jingleheimer Schmidt. . ."

Through each beat of the pre-chorus ("LA LA LA LA LA LA LA LA!!!" ) a letter drops into place until the screen reads "July 2008" in blood-red letters.
tenet |ˈtenit|
noun
a principle or belief, esp. one of the main principles of a religion or philosophy : the tenets of classical liberalism.
tenant |ˈtenənt|
noun
a person who occupies land or property rented from a landlord.

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Re: Your outlandish TV/movie concepts?

Postby BlackSails » Mon Oct 12, 2009 11:59 pm UTC

I want a gritty TV series based on the last vestiges of humanity resisting an alien invasion. Aliens came, for some unknown reason. We fight, and for about a week, all of humanity is united. We use our nukes to disable their most powerful weapons (like their warp drive) and kill most of them. Our anti-missile shield is repurposed against the aliens, saving a few small groups of people. I imagine no more than a few hundred aliens surivive, with maybe a few small ships not capable of FTL, or too damaged to do so. Also too damaged to get some big rocks to land on earth. (or maybe that would defeat the purpose of them coming here)

The last group of humans maybe has a few submarines left in the seas, with nukes. They are being saved for the day of revalation. The aliens perhaps lived on a world with much higher gravity, so they are unused to atmospheric flight and undersea movement.

First season would revolve around finding out why the aliens came to Earth (macguffin is probably the only realistic way to go). Maybe they are the last remnates of their race and wanted to come live here.

You could explore some moral issues, like what it means to be human. I imagine the resistance performing vivisections on aliens to learn more about them. Is this inhumane? Is it ok to place the survival of our species above theirs? Is it right to execute people for choosing to work with the aliens?

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Re: Your outlandish TV/movie concepts?

Postby Idhan » Tue Oct 13, 2009 9:38 pm UTC

Take your typical, cackling mad scientist. He has a lab full of bubbling beakers, Van de Graaff generators, Jacobs' Ladders, etc, and a head of frizzy white hair. He has a hunch-backed assistant. Call him Theodore Barenstein. He wants to create armies of zombie minions, super-weapons, create life from inanimate matter, etc.

In reality, he doesn't have a castle, though. He has an office and lab in a University of Pennsylvania (or whatever) department of Biomechanical Engineering (or something), he spends most of his time getting his applications for NSF grants rejected (no, working for the DoD wouldn't do), reviewing other people's papers, serving on various committees (like, maybe a chairman search committee which has been looking for a chairman for the past twelve years), etc.

Most other people in the department are fairly normal, but are unable to recognize that Ted is a complete loony. He can go into a cackling speech about how "Soon I'll show them all! Muhaha!" and others in the department might react by speculating that maybe he has Asperger's over lunch.

I'm thinking that maybe he could have a nemesis in the department who's also a mad scientist. Call him S. V. Bhattacharya. Sid, as most people in the department call him, isn't a cackling madman on the surface. He has a goatee, but other than that, he seems like a sociable, friendly guy. He has a wife and two kids. He drives a Prius with a Darwin fish and an faded Obama/Biden '08 bumper sticker on the back. He always brings something tasty to department picnics. He co-edits a journal on biomedical engineering. He always has a few entertaining topical jokes at the ready. He has fairly extensive office hours and is always at the ready to help confused undergraduates.

Yet deep down inside, he is more insane than Ted could ever be. he would never tell anyone, but he hates the whole world and wants to destroy it (himself included). He wants to create a singularity that would swallow the Earth. He wants to create a supervirus that would destroy humanity. He wants the sun to go supernova and burn the Earth to a crisp. He is, deep down, a nihilist who regards the entirety of existence as a grievous error.

Ted wouldn't try to stop Sid out of any form of public-spiritedness: he's too self-absorbed. However, maybe Sid might try to steal some of Ted's ideas for doom weapons and such, leading to Ted inadvertently saving the day out of professional jealousy.

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Re: Your outlandish TV/movie concepts?

Postby BlackSails » Tue Oct 13, 2009 10:24 pm UTC

That sounds like fringe crossed with the office.

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Re: Your outlandish TV/movie concepts?

Postby SecondTalon » Wed Oct 14, 2009 2:24 pm UTC

PatrickRsGhost wrote:I'm thinking more along the lines like in the story of David and Goliath, where the young boy takes down the giant with just a small stone and a slingshot. Perhaps in a more modern version, have someone who works for a small company manages to take down a much larger company that both specialize in the same things, or perhaps a single homeowner goes up against a major developer who plans to abuse the local government's power of eminent domain to tear down a small community's homes, just to build a large mega-mall or shopping center that may house a major mass merchandise retailer.
I hate to be all negative, but..it's been done. Pretty much every sports movie is this. There were dozens of teen movies in the late 70s to early 90s (but mostly in the 80s) who's plots can be summarized as "Group of less-wealthy but quirky teens enjoy X, which is about to be purchased by the parents of the rich'n'snooty teens. Quirky teens have madcap adventure to raise enough money to save X. Depending on the rating, someone's getting flashed.".. this happened at summer camps, at ski resorts, at rec centers, at common fields, and so on.
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Re: Your outlandish TV/movie concepts?

Postby Idhan » Fri Oct 16, 2009 4:16 am UTC

Sort of a black comedy concept: specifics (nations, places, names, etc) could be changed.

The future USA in this vision is a plutocracy. Legal control is all in the hands of the richest 200,000 or so people (considerable variation within that 200K between lesser and greater plutocrats). The 400 million or so rest are basically serfs who generally have a lower-middle class-ish lifestyle. The US is also an imperial power which exercises control over a broad swathe of territory outside the US, like the Caribbean, Central America, Philippines, etc. Earlier climate disruption hit these areas resulting in a widespread collapse of public order (hundreds of effective "little Katrinas"), which is taken by almost all Americans (commoners and plutocrats) to be proof that they are savages incapable of civilization who should be grateful for American guidance.

Janice is a mercenary for the LifeLine company. LifeLine's business is basically to harvest organs from fairly young, healthy people with good antigen compatibilities from people in places like El Salvador to give them to American plutocrats with failing organs. Another operation in El Salvador, meanwhile, has basically turned part of the country -- "the Red Zone" -- into a radioactive waste dump.

LifeLine has an official policy stating that they never harvest from the Red Zone, but Janice does some investigation and finds that a subcontractor providing Warm Bodies (in-company term for people who have had the frontal cortex of their brain destroyed with a captive bolt stunner and their bodies put on a truck for transport to operating rooms in the US) has been operating in the fringes of the Red Zone to find compatible organs for some of the more difficult-to-match antigen patterns.

Then it becomes a sort of whistleblower movie -- Janice is threatened by her bosses, told she'll lose her job and end up living a short life working in the Death Mines, she persists, finds anonymous sources verifying company knowledge at the top levels, etc. In the end, she prevails, and the movie has her going back to her job secure in the knowledge that she's harvesting "clean" organs gathered from outside the Red Zone.

The thing is, throughout the movie, all of the questions are kept ridiculously narrow: basically, is LifeLine endangering and defrauding its plutocratic clients by giving them organs that might be tainted by radioactivity? There's no questioning of the basic principle of harvesting organs from people in poor countries, or the dumping radioactive waste on them, or of the structure of American society: they're not even presented as being issues at question. A lot of passion is in the evils of LifeLine's fraudulent sale of tainted organs, with a great deal of righteous indignation about fraud and such, but no one even seems to notice that there might be any broader issues at stake.


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