Presenting : our Dark Matter season 2 mystery concept sketch of the week. What’s going on up there?  Who are those guys?  What is that room?  What’s the deal with those green things?  Any guesses?

Today was a day fraught with audition screenings, tattoo discussions, and much spinning of creative wheels on this script I’m trying to complete before next week. I have been battling this scene for going on three days now and the usual breakthrough methods haven’t helped.  They are, in order of efficacy: 1) driving around, 2) bourbon, 3) ignoring the problem until the solution arrives in a panic-fueled inspiration.  Tick tick tick.  Meanwhile, every other aspect of production continues to speed headlong toward next week’s start of official prep!

Speaking of every one being incredibly constructive – in this case, literally – check out the work-in-progress modeling being done on the Hyperion-8 Galactic Detention Facility by VFX Supervisor Lawren Bancroft-Wilson and the gang –


They’re, to refresh your memories, the same people who brought you…


And –


And –


Set walk-thru today!  Pictures tomorrow!

I feel like my head is about to explode.  And it’s only Tuesday.  I’m juggling revisions and rewrites on six different scripts, casting, prepping, and trying to figure out the most efficient way to schedule a bursting-at-the-scenes action-heavy Episode 202.  Also, fantasy football.

But mostly fantasy football.

Anyways, before I resume script revisions on Episodes 201 and 202 (while simultaneously trying to swing a deal for a Tier 1 QB), I thought I’d take a moment to show off some of the graphics that will adorn the monitors in same episodes.


Hyperion 8 monitors 1

Graphics by Second Assistant Art Director Kelly Diamond!

Hyperion 8 Warden's screen

Hyperion 8 Warden's screen 2

Graphics by artist Victor Mare!

Can’t wait to see them up and running in glorious HD!

Last week, I asked you all to play producers by assisting me in selecting the design for the Ishida Imperial shuttle (to be introduced in season 2).

There were 11 options to choose from, all skillfully conceived and illustrated by artist Bartol Rendulic under the direction of Dark Matter Production Designer Ian Brock. Between this blog, Facebook, and twitter, we received tremendous feedback – and votes!

It came down to two candidates, #1 and #11 but, in the end, one just proved the slightly more popular choice.

Ladies and gentlemen, I submit your choice for the Ishida Imperial shuttle in glorious color!

ISHEDA Imperial Shuttle-1_18nov,2015_BR copy

It will undoubtedly see a few more tweaks as it makes its way through visual effects modeling and texturing but, all in all, I think it looks pretty kick-ass.

P.S. I made sure to upload a hi-rez version of the photo so you can use it as your desktop wallpaper.


Recently, someone lamented the fact that I haven’t posted food porn or dog pics for quite a while.  Lately, it’s been nothing but Dark Matter this, Dark Matter that.  So, tonight, I’m going old school with this throwback entry.  Pictured above, Akemi shows off her new sweater purchase at dim sum.


After coming across the food-themed instagram account of my co-worker, Natalie Cooper (CoopDuJour: https://www.instagram.com/coopdujour/), Akemi was inspired to – ask me to make a reservation at Toronto’s top dim sum restaurant: Lai Wah Heen.

To ensure lunch didn’t conflict with fantasy football, we dined nice and early at 11:00 a.m.  The food was delicious, but it was the presentation that truly impressed.  Check out the lobster dumpling pictured above.


The deep-fried Berkshire pork dumplings with garlic chip ears.


Crispy-skin pork belly!

And now, onto the dog pics!

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With our second walk-thru of the new sets (at the new stage) scheduled for this Tuesday, I thought it might be nice to show you all what the Art Department and Construction have been working on for our season 2 opener.  Structures, shapes, textures and details – it’s all coming along nicely.  More than anything, I want you all to compare these early stages of the various builds with what you’ll eventually see onscreen in, oh, about seven months from now…


Well, this one’s a tight squeeze.  Any guesses as to what we’re looking at?


We stress the importance of ceilings and floors – but check out the wall details.


As work progresses, more detail will be added in the way of paints, textural elements and lights.


Future walls for another section of the facility.


Sliding doors are of course, de rigeur.


The aim is to create varied corridor looks.  It’s a BIG place.


Ajax’s cell-to-be.  All the conveniences…


It’s the little touches that lend it that sense of realism.


We’re building a two-level structure that will be cast and crew accessible.  Pretty damn amazing.


Your home away from home – for the duration of your sentence.


The view out your swanky room.  This too will change.

So far, so amazing.  Production Designer Ian Brock, his team, and the Dark Matter construction department never fail to impress.


Well, well, well.  Look who came by for their season 2 fitting.  Why, it’s none other than Alex Mallari Jr. (Dark Matter’s FOUR), back from a multi-month working vacation in Russia…which might explain the shoes (provided he didn’t steal them from the costume beside him).  Also in for a fitting following an equally busy hiatus was Melissa O’Neil (Dark Matter’s TWO).

We’re getting the band back together!

Yesterday was our first Episode 201 Preliminary Playback/Graphics/Rear Projection meeting of the young season.  A few of the visual delights we discussed:


What are you in the mood for?  A Binary Burger?  Hyperion Hen?  Some cosmic kebabs?  Just make your selection, slide your plate under the nozzles, and Bon Appetit!


And, of course, you’re going to need one of these in Hyperion-8.  Your money’s no good here!


One of the honking big-ass wall monitors in Warden Treihan’s office.  On Sunday nights, all the guards come over to watch The Walking Dead on the big screen.

Looking ahead to next week: Preliminary episodes 201/202 schedule meetings, set walk-thru #2, background inmate photo look-see, and, of course, I continue work on five different scripts.

Feeling opinionated?  Here are the candidate designs for the Ishida imperial shuttle.

IKEDA Imperial Shuttle sketches 1-4_16nov,2015_BR

IKEDA Imperial Shuttle sketches 5-7_16nov,2015_BR

IKEDA Imperial Shuttle sketches 8-11_16nov,2015_BR

So, which version do you prefer?

Thanks to illustrator Bartol Rendulic for the amazing design work!


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