Once again, Story was the primary focus of this week. Gabe and Ethan met with a member of the Screenwriting faculty to talk over our script, and he raised several great points about how to fully flesh out our characters’ motivations. This was a problem we had struggled with since the beginning, so we took his advice and overhauled several of our scenes.
Most notably, we’ve changed the character Lake to be Dyer’s nephew, adding a layer of emotional value to his motivation. This also changed the primary character conflict — Dyer no longer believes that Lake killed his own men, and instead is determined to search for him in the mountains to find his nephew and learn about what happened in his camp. He is driven by guilt that he wasn’t there to protect his family, and a genuine concern for his well being. Danforth continuously repeats that they shouldn’t be going after him, and should be fleeing in the opposite direction as quickly as possible. This results in an ironic twist when Danforth goes insane, since it was ultimately Dyer’s fault for pushing him to venture into the mountains with him.
Reworking the script does mean that we need to backtrack on a few levels (bringing the voice actors back in, for example), but we believe it was worth it to address our story concerns early. We will be pausing progress on the shot list, storyboards and animatic while we refine our story further. That being said, several of our scenes were left untouched, and since layout has been completed we will be pushing forward with production in the meantime. We still intend to start animating as soon as the rigs are complete.
Apart from the story changes, we worked on our presentation, continued modeling assets, completed our first round of layout, continued with look development, and continued rigging. We hope to be animating within the next two weeks, pending faculty approval.