Showing posts with label Chico Bandito Series. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Chico Bandito Series. Show all posts

Apr 14, 2010

Chico Bandito: Lost Episode

About a year ago I considered getting back into making a new Chico Bandito episode. What resulted was this short, an unofficial fifth episode that I decided not to share.

The only reason this episode is technically unofficial is because there is a conclusion in the works to give this on-again-off-again series the proper closing I feel it deserves - a real escape story, not just a stepping stone. This 'lost' episode saw Chico make it outside in a garbage bag as part of his original scheme, only to discover that things were more bizarre than before.

I felt that the series needed to take a greater departure if I was actually going to make it last - as it turned out, I tired of the project to try new things anyway. Chico was becoming more of a chore and losing novelty after the first 4 shorts. Without much to go on, I didn't want to force myself to make the series more than it needed to be.

I decided it was worth sharing this episode still because it was complete and even just as a test, there are elements that I like in my editing here. Had the series continued with Chico outside, you can imagine that things would've become far more comic, playful, and I suppose 'trippy'.

Like I said, there are loose plans for a conclusion to give the series (episodes 1-4) the proper ending and send-off. I think not having the project as a complete unit has held me back from really doing anything else with these, and coming back to the project after a long break may actually make the Chico Bandito conclusion a far more significant undertaking.

Keep an eye-out for the final chapter and complete post sometime this year. In the meantime check out the lost episode below and revisit the old Chico Bandito episodes by scrolling the original posts here.

Sep 24, 2009

Chico Bandito Marionette

June 2008

Associated Post(s):

Whether this series of shorts is complete or on the verge of a final conclusion is unclear. Chico Bandito, the marionette who hangs in the laundry room, is either doomed to remain hanging next to the washer or just a short step from breaking free. The series which began last summer represented both a shooting and editing exercise in which a large amount of staging went in to developing simple plot lines. Episode 4 is a great example of this. Another episode may emerge at some point, but my mind hasn't been made up - hence no official or complete project post yet. If anything, I think I'd like to see Chico make one last stand. He's a one of a kind marionette that my dad got in Mexico in the 1980's.

Jan 8, 2009

Chico Bandito: Episode 4

This latest episode was filmed over the Christmas holidays, and is my first brand new short to debut in 2009. The Chico Bandito series can now be seen in HD directly on my YouTube account, which offers an excellent viewing experience, however, it's still nice to see things unfold here on the blog.

Episode 4 has been the most time consuming of the series to produce, and I expect that trend to continue with the episodes to come. Not only are the schemes getting bigger, but I'm trying new things each time and also trying to work my way along to the big conclusion. Like I've mentioned previously, this is all an exercise in editing, staging and movement as there's no dialogue to explain things throughout. It makes Chico's escape all the more universal. Plus, it's simple, clean and I like the structure of making serials as the concept is already there.

I can't say what's going to come next exactly, but it's sure to be good. In the meantime, enjoy the fourth installment of Chico Bandito!

Dec 28, 2008

Chico Bandito: Episode 3

This next installment in the series is the final episode that I had made before deciding to revamp my approach to completing Chico Bandito earlier this month. Which is to say, that all the episodes that come after this one will all be first time debuts.

Episode 3 was originally uploaded on September 28, 2008 and helps to clarify how despite his ability to get down, Chico Bandito continues to end up hanging on the wall. In the first episode it's easily assumed that Chico is walking out of the laundry room which helps tie into the outdoor start in episode 2. What episode 3 helps to establish is that Chico is constantly dreaming of his outdoor escape, but is significantly limited in his means of escape. This results in his first actual scheme at getting out, as well as further revelations between Chico's dream and the real world.

One of my core guidelines in creating the series was that no episode was to be longer than 3 minutes. Episode 3 is only 2 minutes and 21 seconds long, so stick around! The next chapter of Chico Bandito starts now!

Dec 26, 2008

Chico Bandito: Episode 2

On July 13, 2008 the second episode of the Chico Bandito series was completed and uploaded. I think what stood out the most about this episode initially, is that I'd been promoting the series as 'a quest to a escape from the laundry room' and immediately we open with Chico outside. 

I won't give anything away because I'd like you to see it for yourself, but this is also the episode that introduces 'the bird' character into the mix.

From a critical point of view, the second episode was an attempt to up the ante both visually and story wise. It continues to sit in the back of my mind when I'm coming up with concepts for new episodes, for ways to try and keep the laundry room fresh and dynamic. Remember, with this series containing no actual dialogue I'm trying to tell a story with edits, movement, and sound effects. It's actually the fun of making the episodes, as each one poses a new creative challenge.

While their aren't many ingredients in the recipe for Chico Bandito episodes at the moment, part 2 is a fun short and helps to develop Chico's dilemma a little bit more. The story continues, enjoy Chico Bandito: Episode 2!

Dec 20, 2008

Chico Bandito: Episode 1

Chico Bandito originally debuted on June 3, 2008 as an individual short film. The idea for the series actually came about weeks later when I was messaged by several members of my Fandrix Films group who enjoyed the short and said they'd like to see more. 

I'd actually considered the idea since finding Chico because he was an original hand-made character that you wouldn't find just anywhere, but it was those conversations that really convinced me to make the series.

Episode 1, as it's now known, is basically an open-ended premise detailing the laundry room and the wall that Chico has been hanging from for so long. The concept was pretty much established for me, as Chico Bandito has been hanging on that exact wall since I was a kid. My dad brought him back from a vacation in Mexico in the eighties, and the seller gave him the name Chico Bandito. Who would've guessed that so many years later I'd be making movies about Chico and his escape. I guess if he could really think or move on his own, he would've done this much sooner.

Without further delay, Chico Bandito: Episode 1 starts now!

Dec 18, 2008

Chico Bandito: Series Preview

The story of the little marionette that could, we hope. For the back story on the Chico Bandito series and the plans for developing and completing this project, read here.

And we begin . . .

Dec 16, 2008

Chico Bandito: A Fresh Start

Numerous false starts, several uploads, rocky promotion, and now all the posts and videos have been removed. Chico Bandito is a short film series that I started in June 2008 with a single episode. It's a dialogue-free dramedy that focuses on a marrionette named Chico Bandito and his quest for freedom in escaping from a laundry room. It's polished, it's simple, it's charming, and now it's gone - for the moment.

With three episodes complete and one in the works, the series has struggled to find views largely because of the delays between installments. Despite 3000 views, my decision to remove the episodes today was inspired by a few things. First of all, with a new widescreen format on youtube I can now upload the videos in their orignal aspect ratios - awesome! Secondly, the scattered release of the episodes has made it difficult to promote the series. I'm going to take some time to seriously look at how to re-release the old episodes, and promote the brand new ones to complete the series. And finally, I can see the potential of the project not only in its style and look, but in the impression the series can make as a complete unit. Because I believe strongly in the concept, and because there was excitment from those who saw Chico Bandito in the beginning, I feel I owe it to myself to take a full step back in order to charge forward.

Promotion continues to be one of the biggest struggles. Despite having a strong online presence in multiple online venues, despite taking a very assertive approach to my personal work, despite how hard I push sometimes; it's tough to break into the big numbers to get people to pay attention. A fresh approach with this project feels thrilling, because with a bank of videos waiting to be released I can focus more on promotion and creating momentum. There's a lot to do still, but I'm excited about taking some new steps.

For those of you who are interested, and for my sake I hope a couple of you are, the very first episode of Chico Bandito can still be viewed for the time being on I uploaded the short to their online film contest, and if you login you can give the short a thumbs up vote to help it gain popularity. At the very least, it's worth a free viewing! See it here. Thanks for reading, and thanks for you help.