“What kind of movie is it?”

A simple question, best answered simply. In describing Darkening Sky, “A horror/thriller with elements of sci-fi” comes close, and seems to be the approach being taken in marketing the film. But I prefer, “A psychological thriller wrapped in a story about alien abduction.” A bit narrower, yes, but more accurate. Darkening Sky actually has more in common with Shutter Island or Black Swan than, say, Communion or Fire In The Sky (or more recently, The Fourth Kind). Yes, there are wild UFO theories, and even aliens, but to call it a movie about alien abduction would be like calling Black Swan a movie about ballet (spoiler alert?).

Darkening Sky was conceived with the idea that people who do horrible things usually don’t regard themselves as horrible. For them, their actions and responses might seem perfectly reasonable. Or at least defensible, given the circumstances. So, what if a man obsessed with proving something false (i.e., alien abduction) was forced to deal with circumstances that left no other possible explanation? And what if that obsession was a bit more — let’s say, “complicated” — than he is letting on? That sounded like fun to me! And that’s the story I tried to tell.

Which brings us to the problem of Expectations. Mixing genres is all well and good, but once a film is released to the wild for viewing byeveryone, it introduces the potential problem of building anticipation for one thing, but delivering something else. Managing expectations is of course easier when millions of dollars are being thrown at marketing. But a little indie film might understandably have a tougher time of it. Fair enough. So far, early reviewers of Darkening Sky seem willing to critique the movie on its own merits, which is great. One thoughtful reviewer described it as, “…mixing that genre [ufos] with another which shall remain nameless so that I don’t spoil the movie.”  Well put! And no spoiler necessary.

– VB

Darkening Sky DVD Released

The Darkening Sky DVD has been released and is now available at Amazon and other retail outlets.


Okay, so it looks like we’re lots of places right now (U.S.)…

Check your cable provider’s Movies ON·DEMAND (or InDemand, or whatever they’re calling it in your zip code) and have a watch!


Angelinos: If you missed the festival screening, Darkening Sky is available for a limited time via TimeWarner Cable’s OnDemand service. Check it!


Here is a “moving still” from Darkening Sky (inspired by these fine folks). 




Okay, so we signed our distribution deal for Darkening Sky at the end of 2010, and officially wrapped up the process of delivery earlier this month.

The film will be available through select cable outlets (InDemand, etc.) over the next few months, with the official DVD release slated for later this year. News as it develops, here and on our Facebook page. Stay tuned!


laurel-leaves_hollywoodff-200xThis just in: Darkening Sky been selected to participate in the 2010 Hollywood Film Festival.

The festival runs Oct. 22-25 at the Hollywood Arclight. Yay! Our first festival, and it’s right here in town, at one of the nicer venues to see movies.

Specifics (date/time) coming soon. Hope to see you there!

hey what happened?

Rider Strong in scene with Guy

Rider Strong in scene with Guy

Yeah, what happened to that wicked-fast post-production pipeline that had us hitting benchmarks (First cut! Final cut! Color locked!) and expecting final delivery sometime a few months ago? Nothing! We did it! Whew.

But what followed immediately. . .

Kinky Dangers

…is what you get if you feed “Darkening Sky” into the always fun Internet Anagram Server. It’s also what you might find at Victor’s blog (including a new ramble about process).

Rider Interview on ShockTillYouDrop.com

In most films concerning extraterrestrial threats, the protagonists are always looking to the stars. The upcoming Darkening Sky, however, asks its hero to look inward.

As star Rider Strong explains, “These movies are usually about somebody investigating something because they want to prove aliens exist. With my character [Eric Rainer], he’s literally writing his thesis on the fact that it’s all myth. But he’s forced into it and goes deeper and deeper against his will. It harks back to X-Files and I’m the ultimate skeptic. I feel most of these movies are about having to prove [UFOs exist], because this starts happening, he starts questioning his own sanity.”

Read more…