September 16 , 2008
A lot had happened since last update, most notable to be mentioned, is Johnny Wu will be speaking on September 24th at Mayfield Branch Library on Finding Distribution. Then on September 25th, The Rapture will be screening at a multiplex theater in Columbus at 7pm. A great review by Cinema-Crazed.com founder Felix Vasquez Jr. can be found at his website, Felix also review A Joker's Card back in 2005 and he also writes for FilmThreat.com
May 19, 2008
On behalf of The Rapture LLC, I would like to thank you all for your support in bringing in a wonderful May 10th-11th weekend event! A sold-out crowd enjoyed the premiere screening of The Rapture at the Ohio Independent Film Festival, held at the Cleveland Public Theatre’s Gordon Square Theatre on May 10th. We were pleased to hear people laughing at all the right spots – and to hear a few gasps of surprise during the final confrontation between Mia and Job – and we greatly appreciated the cheers and applause at the end. We received many compliments afterward, including a statement from the Cleveland Film Commissioner that he enjoyed the movie very much and was pleasantly surprised by how good it was.
At the reception party, in a wonderful studio provided by Peter Sampson & Cynthia Graham, 400+ people enjoyed the night with free food and drinks and great musical performances – as well as a great MC in Christopher Axelrod, who kept things moving along.
In addition to thanking everyone involved in making The Rapture itself, I would like to take this opportunity to thank several people who worked very hard to make the premiere party a success:
- Tyler Zak manned the BTS (behind-the-scenes) camera like a pro.
- Tommy Rodgers gave us a great DJ show.
- David Shaw donated the use of the video projector that enabled us to show footage on the projected screens.
- Jeff and Jaime gave yeoman service as our security force, helping make sure minors weren’t drinking and that the night went off without a hitch.
- The JACL’s Icho Daiko Taiko Drummers gave a fantastic performance!
- So did the band The Morning After!
- Amy & Brian did a great job as our bartenders.
- Rion Gilpin got us a ton of donated food and drink.
- Ray Elkin ran the kitchen (preparing some of the dishes himself), and set up the food.
- James Orosz helped keep the containers filled so we didn’t starve.
- …And, in addition to being a fantastic Master of Ceremonies (of course!), Chris Axelrod also called on his contacts to procure additional food and beverages for the evening.
Each of the above served as volunteers, and without them, the night would not have been possible. Our sincerest thanks to all.
Overall, it was a great night. Now many people are asking whether we can do even better for our next event. All I can say is: We’ll try! J (The premiere for our current comedy zombie short, Jean Claude The Gumming Zombie, will be less of a “production unto itself”, given that it’s a short film rather than a full-length feature.)
According to the Ohio Independent Film Festival, 84 tickets were sold for the second screening of The Rapture on the next day (May 11th, Mother’s Day), but about 60 showed up. The audience still chuckled at the jokes, though not as intensely as the premiere screening’s audience, and the applause at the end seemed to show that they sincerely enjoyed the movie. During the subsequent Q & A, Robert Banks Jr. graciously asked a ton of great questions about the film, including whether or not there would be a sequel…
So, in all, everyone had a great time, which is what this is all about. Although independent filmmakers may pick a few nits here and there, and the movie might not be everyone’s cup of tea, it appears clear that most people enjoyed it. In fact, we actually sold 4 DVD sets at the Reception Party! (More about these later.)
For those who couldn’t make it to the festivities, here are some video highlights, starting from the OIFF then leading into the after-party, click here to watch
If you would like to help support the film, please let everyone know that various merchandise is available for sale, such as the official poster autographed by ALL cast & crew that were at the reception party, the DVD set, CD soundtrack, other posters, T-shirts, etc. Please feel free to forward the link below to any interested parties, and let them know that they can help support the film. (We still have a load of bills to pay off, and every sale helps…!)
On to other news:
The Rapture will have an opportunity to be shown to fellow filmmakers in Las Vegas this Memorial Day weekend, during a party called IndieMeet, which is graciously put together every year by Johnny’s buddy Mike Conway. (You have probably seen Mr. Conway’s movies at Hollywood Video, Blockbuster, or Best Buy.) Johnny and a few cast-and-crew members were originally planning to attend and talk about their experiences on the shoot, but it turns out the scheduling just didn’t come together. So only the DVD sets will be in attendance: One copy for Mr. Conway to keep, and two to be raffled off to fellow filmmakers. (As this is a gathering of 40+ filmmakers, you may image how many of them will be nit picking the film…! But all is good; we will survive.)
What’s next? Well, we are still working on our comedy-horror short, Jean Claude the Gumming Zombie, for which a lot of the shooting is complete. It has already been accepted to Ohio Comic Con for this October, so there is pressure to get it done. (That’s a good thing. Johnny loves pressure, as anyone who was on the set of The Rapture knows!) On May 31st we will be shooting a zombie scene with about 15 - 20 zombies running around. This will be shot at Creative House Studios, Inc. the wonderful location provided by Peter & Cynthia for the Rapture premiere party. We will be one of the first productions to utilize the HUGE green screen facility you can see in the video highlights.
We are also currently in pre-production on a film adaptation of Trail of Bodies, Kreig Vens’ second book. Things are moving pretty quickly on this project, and we hope to start auditioning roles this summer. Let’s hope all works out.
And lastly, we are working on the thirty-second spot for my43.net. Yes, it’s been pushed back a few times due to our busy schedules, but we hope to start rehearsing with the actors on fight sequences and playing around with wire-work, etc. starting this coming August.
Well, that’s it for now, folks. Thank you again for your continued support!
April 15, 2008
The support of friends and family wouldn't be able to make The Rapture possible, and one of them, has been a long time supporter, he always there for us and he is a great performer as well, check Christopher G. Axelrod
November 1, 2007
Hi, Everyone! Here's the November, 2007 update for our film "The Rapture", which has at long last reached the very final stages of post-production.
There are several bits of exciting news, so keep reading!
- The American Film Market started one day ago (October 31), and our final trailer for "The Rapture" is already doing extremely well, there. (If you haven't checked the trailer out yet, it's available at http://www.rapturethemovie.com/trailer.htm . Or just go to the site's main
page.) Several possible buyers have approached our representative, Mr. Phil Gorn, including distributors in Italy (interested in the TV rights), Japan, Thailand, North America, and South America. Because of this strong interest, a nearly-finished "screener copy" (full-screen wmv format) was sent to Mr. Gorn so he can use it during the negotiation process.
- "The Rapture" is now entering "film festival" stage. We already have a confirmed screening at the prestigious 2008 Wreck Beach International Film Festival in Canada and the OUTer Sci-Fi Film Festival in Austin, TX. We have no doubt there will be more to come as we start actively submitting it to sci-fi conventions, so stay tuned!
- I am pleased to announce that the Ohio premiere of "The Rapture" will be at the Ohio Independent Film Festival, which will run from May 7th to 11th, 2008. (No other Ohio screenings are planned at this time.) We will have a very special night, and depending on the crowd we may have a second screening. W After the screening there will be a reception at Peter Sampson's office, where we plan to have live bands performing. The music will feature local band "The Morning After" (including cast member Jacob Cook), whose music we were fortunate enough to use in the movie! I know it's still a long way away, but it will all be worth the wait! Feel free to start letting people know about the premiere. More details will be made available as they are finalized.
- This Saturday, November 3rd, our composer Aryavarta Kumar will lead a live musical performance of "Chimera", an adaptation based on his score for "The Rapture". He will be accompanied by the Northeastern Ohio Taiko group "Icho Daiko". The performance is part of the Holiday Fair, a fundraising event for the Cleveland Chapter of the Japanese American Citizen's League. The event is FREE and open to the public. It will be held at St. Ignatius High School from 3 PM to 7 PM. (Performances start at 3 PM.)
- I am still in need of someone who knows Adobe Photoshop tm and is willing to help me "paint out" objects in two remaining shots of the film. The task
is painstaking but otherwise not overly difficult. I expect each of the
two shots to take about one to two full days to complete, and I need to get them finished ASAP. Any help I can get would be much appreciated.
- Roles have been cast for our upcoming horror-comedy short film, "Jean Claude The Gumming Zombie", which we expect to be shooting late November and December. Though still under construction, the web site is "semi-up-and-running". You can check it - and our fantastic cast! - out at http://thegummingzombie.com .
- 2008 will be the year of promoting "The Rapture" while prepping for our next feature film, "Trail of Bodies". To anyone wishing to play a role in "Trail of Bodies" or get involved in some other capacity: Please let me know as soon as possible. Some of the roles are being cast as we speak.
That's it for now. More information will be forthcoming once the premiere date and location(s) have been set!
October 12, 2007
AFM 2007 Trailer. The Rapture is done, so we were asked to provide a new trailer with new wings design and such for the American Film Market (Oct 31-Nov 7) and the Eurasia Film Market (Oct 22-25) so here it is, my sales representative loves this trailer, so I think it can be a go. :) Hope you enjoy this. This is what WonderPhil Productions' Mr. Phil Gorn has to say about the latest trailer:
El Rapture es mucho caliente!
The Rapture demonstrates the fierce independent film spirit is alive & well. It proves the indie filmmaker can make a film - even an effects-driven film - with a shoestring budget.
August 1, 2007
Interview with Cox Cable for On Demand Channel
Here's a short interview of Johnny Wu and Kyle Znamenak for Cox Cable On Demand Digital Subscribers' Channel 1 under the local filmmakers. This will be aired starting August 2007 on Wednesday at 7am and 7pm, check it out on Cox or if you missed it, here's the video :)
July 28, 2007
More screening coming up! Yay, A Joker's Card was invited to be shown at the 2nd RadCon Fan Film Festival in WA, which will be in Feb 2008, and if you live in PA, this coming August 4th, it will be shown at The Short Film Screening at The Little Theater 7141 Germantown Avenue in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. It will begin at 2pm, in addition of having A Joker's Card shown this August 4th, The Raptures trailer and preview clips will be shown as well.
July 27, 2007
Yay, A Joker's Card was invited to be shown at the 2nd RadCon Fan Film Festival in WA, which will be in Feb 2008, and
if you live in PA, this coming August 4th, it will be shown at The Short Film Screening at The Little Theater 7141 Germantown Avenue in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. It will begin at 2pm, in addition of having A Joker's Card shown this August 4th, The Raptures trailer and preview clips will be shown as well.
More visibility for the films!
July 2nd, 2007
The Rapture July Update
Hello everyone! Just a quick update for those who have been waiting for "The Rapture". (The movie, not… uh… the other one.) J..
- As of July 1st, it's been one year since the start of principle photography. Delays in the completion of post-production are mostly due to problems with the computer graphics (cg) wings that needed to be produced. Delays in that process have prompted us to part ways with our original animator, but we're confident things are getting back on track now with some recent additions to the post-production crew. Specifically,…
- We would like to formally welcome Mr. Chris Yanc of Cleveland and Mr. James Ditmar of Michigan to our CG Animator group for "The Rapture". Mr. Yanc is our new CG Supervisor, and has already largely re-designed the wings, both to enhance their visual appeal and to better suit them technically to our plans for Midael's character. He will be working closely with Misters Wu, Geier, and Luhtala. Mr. Ditmar will help Mr. Yanc and others to animate and render the remaining scenes, utilizing the new wing design. We are looking forward to their participation, and are proud to say that the newly-designed wings are a significant improvement over what you've seen so far. So stay tuned! (Note: if you are interested in helping on cg work, please let me know as well)
- We have included several additional songs from local Cleveland band The Morning After in the film, and (of course!) we thank them for their participation. If you haven't already checked out their myspace page, it is http://www.myspace.com/themorningafter21
- Australian Nelson Clemente has agreed for us to use his song You, Me, Us, We in the film. The song was written by him and composed by James Tauber. You can check him out at http://www.myspace.com/nelsonclementemusic Thank you Nelson and James for allowing us to use your music!
-The latest trailer for "The Rapture" had a surprise screening at the "Peep Show", part of the Greater Cleveland premiere of "Broken" on June 23, 2007 at The Lorain Palace Theater, 617 Broadway in Lorain. Producers Jeff Yanik and Andrew Schofield and about 200 attendees enjoyed the "Broken" premiere, and were treated to an unannounced appearance of the "Rapture" trailer on the big screen.
- The Indie Gathering Film Festival (August 3-5, 2007) will be showing the preview clips and the trailer on August 4th (Saturday) at 7:15pm at the Screening Room A. If you haven't seen the clips in their full-screen glory, take a little time and check them out. In addition, I and several filmmakers involved in "The Rapture" will be participating as panel discussion members. I'll also be in charge of adding additional panelists, so if you think you would like to sit on a panel, let me know. The posters for "The Rapture" WILL be posted at the festival. More information about The Indie Gathering can be found at http://www.theindiegathering.com
(PS: Congratulations to Anthony Spadaccini for wining short films awards at this festival! If you don't know who Anthony is, he plays the main punk during the flashback scene of "The Rapture".)
- If you own one of those smartphones (that run Windows Mobile 5.0 for cellphones), you might want to go to http://www.rapturethemovie.com and download the specially-created smartphone HOMESCREENS. (Two are available, based on the posters designed by Tony Samangey). Go grab yours!
- We recently hosted our 2nd producers' film review, and for this one we also invited several key crew/cast members to attend. It was held at Li Wah restaurant and utilized their sound system. In all, about 20 of us enjoyed a wonderful dinner and filled out a small survey about the film, afterward. We have noted that in addition to fixing up/completing the cg wings, we have to re-mix the sound in several scenes and perform additional tweaking on the foley/sound effects. Our Sound Engineer Mr. Kirk Gaughan will get into it right away J The ADR that we have integrated so far came out fairly well, except for one area near the end of the film. In general, though various aspects of the film are definitely still "in process", most appeared to enjoy what they saw. Some updates were also given to those present, regarding what's been happening with the film as it has made the film market rounds.
- Speaking of film markets, our sales rep Phil Gorn of WonderPhil Productions just returned from a film market in Italy, which he visited as part of his process of drumming up interest in "The Rapture". During his recent visit to Cannes, "The Rapture" garnered attention from several major and minor distribution houses. Several film reps have given us their impressions based on the trailer and preview clips, and all are eagerly waiting for the finished film. A number of reps have been trying to persuade us to sign with them after our special agreement with Mr. Gorn runs its course.
- Kyle Znamenak and James Geier, Exec. Producers and board members of The Rapture LLC, are currently developing the script for our short film project, as well as that for our next planned feature film, "Incarnate". We also are in pre-production on our 3rd feature film "Trail of Bodies", based on the book by award winning writer Kreig W. Vens. (Mr. Vens will be involved directly with us for that feature, which is planned for production after "Incarnate".) We are also working with Channel 43 for the My43.net TV spot that I won thanks to the votes from you.
- A final FYI: A company in LA can print 24x36 -size posters at $8.50 each with a minimum order of 5. If anyone is interested in getting a poster, let me know; if there's sufficient interest, we can place an order for a couple batches.
That's it for now!
The Rapture LLC
June 16, 2007
- More excitement, now you can download desktops screens for your computer's background, go here to grab your desktops!
- Got a Windows Mobile v5 smartphone? wanna have your homescreen with The Rapture on it? Click here to donwload the zipped xml file that you can put it into your wm5 smartphones and use it as your Home Screen!
June 3rd, 2007
Hello, everyone! Here's the latest update on The Rapture.
- ADR (Additional Dialogue Recording) is finished! We're currently working on putting the final touches on the sound, including syncing the ADR sound with the original video, adding sound effects, integrating the music (which is awesome), etc.
- Enclosed are two new movie posters for your enjoyment. (Thanks to Tony for designing and executing them!) You can also order large-size posters at the web site, click here!
- If you want to check out some of the scenes, feel free to swing by the editing location and take a sneak peek at what you'll be seeing soon. (For your eyes only! Don't you feel special...?) :)
- We received a lot of positive feedback when our trailer made the rounds at the Cannes Film Market recently. Soon, we hope to see whether any good "concrete" results come from it. ;) That's it for now.
- Additional songs from great Cleveland band The Morning After are going to be included in the film. Look for them when it is released! More info on the band is available at
- Also check out the band 6 Days to Nowhere, whose song "Seems Like Salvation" will be showcased in the film as well.
- Because you are already familiar with the story of our movie, here are two preview clips for your enjoyment, click here!:
- More songs will be signed shortly!
May 12, 2007
Thanks to everyone's vote, A Joker's Card's trailer that was considered as finalist on my43.net won, and now Johnny Wu will be writing, creating and directing a spot for Channel 43 and their website my43.net. In addition, today's newspaper The Plain Dealer, Wu was feature under Arts/Entertainment section. A lot of mentioning of our current project The Rapture, check it out!
May 1st, 2007
Check out the band The Morning After!
We are excited to announce that one of the songs from our Cleveland local band The Morning After will be included in the movie 'The Rapture'. Their song '2AM' fits perfectly during a series of scenes (as well as being extremely enjoyable in its own right).
'The Rapture' is an Anime-styled sci-fi independent film shot in Ohio. Its primary musical score is written and produced by local composer Aryavarta Kumar. Additional music from local bands may be included as appropriate, with The Morning After's '2AM' being the first such example.
For more information about The Morning After, check out their Myspace page at: http://www.myspace.com/themorningafter21
For more information about, and samples of, Arya's music, check out his Myspace page at: http://www.myspace.com/aryavarta
April 30, 2007
We received a lot of compliments from several people, here I'm posting a few of them:
“Your trailer is awesome” from Brady Bowen, Spotlight Pictures, LLC
"The Rapture that was filmed in the City of Port Clinton is outstanding. The movie was filmed on location in beautiful Port Clinton on the shores of Lake Erie. It's a story with real people and contains action and history of our town. I would urge everyone to see this movie. The characters describe the entire account of the theme and its full of action and story lines. We would like to thank the crew and characters for using our City as its location and urge everyone to see one of the best action filled movies of its kind. Certainly an award winning film." Dr. Thomas M. Brown, Mayor, Port Clinton, Ohio
April 10, 2007
1. Remember that cool gloves Mr. Big worn at the boat scene? Well, it was created by our cast/crew buddy James Orosz and it just got accepted into the 35th Annual Juried Student Art Show – April 17-May 7, 2007 @ the Tri-C East Campus, congratulations to James, the opening reception is on Tuesday, April 17, 2007
2. We are excited to announce that The Rapture is now signed officially with WonderPhil Production as our sales agent to take our latest trailer for The Rapture to Cannes Film Market and to American Film Market, recently we received various sales agents calling me non-stop to try to sign a deal with us, after a discussion among the board members, we opted to go with WonderPhil Productions as they’ve already representing A Joker’s Card. The trailer (remember the one that won 2007 Bronze Telly a few months ago which was also being told by several sales agents that it is a really good domestic trailer) has been re-mixed for Cannes and AFM, you can check it out also online here at media page..
3. We have added new merchandises at CafePress check it out!
4. The film just went through a session discussion with board members and producers and it is now trimmed down to 1hr and 40 mins! J
5. We have partnered with Ticketweb.com to help increase visibility and ticket sales preparation for the big premiere that is coming up SOON!
That’s it for now, I hope all had a great week, see you next time!
March 10, 2007
Some quick update, at this time, we are almost finishing the 1st rough edit for the film, it came out about 1 hr and 53 mins so far, scores and cg are currently being worked on, however it will take a bit of time, due to the fact there are over 300 visual fx in this film that require careful work. But we are excited! If anyone interested in donating to the film, please do not hesitate to contact me and donations is good!
March 5, 2007
The Rapture's recent trailer, edited in November 2006, was just being announced as a 2007 Bronze Statuette winner at the 28th Annual Telly Awards under TV Programs, Segments, or Promotional Pieces - Movie Trailers category. (Bronze Winners are awarded a Bronze Telly statuette. Designed by the same firm that makes the Oscar and Emmy, the Telly statuette weighs more than 4 1/2 pounds). It's everyone's hard work that paif off! (This is the 3rd Telly that Johnny Wu has received in projects he has involved in)
Founded in 1978, the Telly Awards is the premier award honoring outstanding local, regional, and cable TV commercials and programs, as well as the finest video and film productions. And now, for the first time, the Telly Awards also honor your work created for the Web. The Telly Awards annually showcases the best work of the most respected advertising agencies, production companies, television stations, cable operators, and corporate video departments in the world. The Telly Awards is a widely known and highly respected national and international competition and receives over 13,000 entries annually from all 50 states and many foreign countries.
January 27, 2007
A 30s commercial was cut from the award winning Trailer that will be aired during the break for the Ohio Boxing Show that aired on Fridays, Saturdays and Mondays at SportsTime Ohio TV Channel. This is an Ohio channel that can be seen on Cable or Sattelite TV to over 2million viewers, please visit SportsTimeOhio.com for channel and schedule information.
Janurary 04, 2007
Get your Rapture merchandise now!
The Official Rapture the movie Cafe Press site is now online! Go there to buy all your official Rapture merchandise! CafePress
December 20, 2006
An interview with Johnny Wu for CoolCleveland.com
Marilyn River, Agency Director for Stone Model and Talent Agency just requestion 15 copies of the current trailer for The Rapture, she is sending it out to other agencies as within the movie, at least 3 actors are with them. She is also going to take some to LA this coming January 2007 for the International Model and Talent Association's competition.
November 6, 2006:
We are excited to say that Red Giant Software has been extremely helpful in providing
their support and knowledge during the post-production aspect for our movie.
We are using their color correction packages (Magic Bullet Editors and Colorista) and InstantHD software in our film.
October 30, 2006:
The official AFM trailer is now up - CLICK HERE!
September 29, 2006:
Various video clips from The Rapture is also available at video.google.com.
The video log 2 bts: http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=-5727391547458491995&q
Viral teaser: http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=854493936218895408&q
Teaser scene: http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=-3128498560577308410&q
Bts video log 1: http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=-9191711630550959567&q
September 1, 2006:
We now have a rough cut of about 42 mins of the film. Two of the scenes will be reshot (pickup shots) this month in September The pickup shots will enhance the look, we have also decided to reshoot one of the scene entirely to bring out the best of the look and feel.
We also have a professional color grader that will be working on this (Aaron Shaw) so what you see here will be 10 times better when it is released.
On September 17, at the next IndieClub meeting, we will try to get a teaser scene out for everyone, so if you can make it to the Indie Club meeting, look at it there, or wait till it is online (obviously quality suffer with online version)!
And, starting this week, the director Johnny Wu and a few editors will start working on the fight sequences and triming down the ones already made, while they will be working on the CGI part (for the wing, for the tail, for the other effects and the opening title scene). There will be a session for ADR as we would also like to have the best audio!
August 5, 2006:
The teaser trailer for The Rapture will be played on Saturday evening at The IndieGathering Film Festival!
July 14, 2006 onwards - Post-Production:
We will be using editing software from DV Film and Adobe plus Red Giant Software to edit the film. Check back for more updates!
July 1-13 2006 - Principal Photography:
We will be shooting The Rapture over 13 days using HD cameras! The shoot was a success - pictures can be seen here!
June 24, 2006 - Rehearsals:
We had rehearsals today, check for video/photos here!
October 15, 2005 - Open Auditions:
After four hours open audition, we invited a few back for 2nd read which included talented actors: Brian Richeson, George Michael Tutie, Jason McAleer and Matthew Veltri. We also invited Annie Kitral to play Dr. Gutierrez to read with us in hope that we can get a good flow among these 4 whom are auditioning for the role of Midael and Job/Abaddon.
It was an extremely difficult decision, we came to the conclusion to offer Brian Richeson for the role of Job/Abaddon and George Michael Tutie for the role of Midael, we also had cast several other cast members.