By Erik “PK” Blackwell
Filmmaker Alek Gearhart is back with his latest production “The City With Two Faces,” the continuation of the Joker Rising storyline. Dylan Hobbs reprises his role as the infamous Joker, born from Gotham City’s brutal underworld, he quickly becomes known for his violence and unique brand of crime.
Gearhart, of Smoking Alien Productions and Elroy Pictures, brought us a new interpretation of how The Joker from DC’s Batman universe was created. Drawing inspiration from Christopher Nolan’s Batman trilogy which featured a more realism based approach in character development, Gearhart took it further in a quest to portray an even grittier and more realistic world in which the Joker would have been born, not holding back on the violence and language that we’d expect from a psychopath of Joker’s caliber.
I truly enjoyed Gearhart’s take on the creation of the Joker and many other well known Batman villains, bringing them to life in a contemporary setting without going over the top the way Nolan did in his cannon trilogy.
What set Joker Rising apart from many fan films, was that it was a full fledged feature length movie. And while many commentators took issue with the low budget aspect of the film, I looked past that and saw how the filmmakers and the actors truly put their hearts and souls into the movie. I think that’s what Hollywood has been forgetting for the longest time – you don’t have to have multimillion dollar special effects as long as you have a good script and solid actors who can truly bring their characters to life.
Continuing the story
“The City With Two Faces” is as I said, the continuation of the Joker Rising storyline, where we saw the Joker born from violence and heartbreak. Now we’re introduced to the the next chapter, meeting “Two-Face.” Little is known about the film’s plot at this point aside from it focusing on three main characters, Joker, Harvey Dent/Two-Face, and Batman. You may think that you already know what is going to happen, and that’s the exciting part, you don’t. Gearhart has broken from standard rehashed cannon with characters we thought we knew, being introduced with different background stories and different goals.
As we saw in the first movie, a surprise to many was that Joker (then known as Cyrus) was a simple drug dealer and enforcer. Who despite his apathy and psychosis, falls in love with a prostitute named “Harley.” It’s only when his first true love is murdered before his eyes, and he’s subsequently brutally tortured by a man he once thought an ally, does The Joker become reality.
What drew me to Gearhart’s film was the acting and the storytelling, that’s why I’m excited to see this continuation. Admittedly the production values weren’t perfect for Joker Rising, but after seeing the trailer for The City With Two Faces, I can tell that Gearhart is doing his best to take it up several notches in attempt to make this a wonderful fan made trilogy. The City With Two Faces is being broken up into two feature length films, with this being part one of the story. But just based on the trailer, I can already see the potential of this movie, and I’m truly looking forward to seeing how it develops.
Like Joker Rising, Gearhart’s latest film is supported with crowdfunding. He’s currently running an IndieGoGo campaign trying to raise at least $15,000 to help cover the costs of production, and if his efforts pay off, we may be treated to a spectacular example of indie film-making.
The City With Two faces is a continuation of the feature length Fan Film Joker Rising (as seen on youtube) That was a film about the Joker’s Origin. But now that the Joker has been born he is free to terrorize Gotham in new and more demented ways than ever.
The City with Two Faces will be two films. Part 1 and Part 2. This will be the first feature length fan film trilogy ever made. We desire to continue in the same vein as the first. It will be dark but will be story and character driven.
If we can raise the funds for this I believe that we will be ushering in a new era of fan films that feature amazing performances, character development, and mind blowing stories.
We are a group of indie filmmakers who are dedicated to the craft and stories. A promise that we can make is that once the proper budget is raised we will immediately go into pre production then into production without any hang ups. We know what we are trying to achieve and how to do it. The first film, JOKER RISING, was written in March 2013, cast in April, and filmed over 8 days in early June. The final cut of the film was released at the end of July. That is our work flow and we intend to maintain it for these next two films. This is the promise we make to you- that these films will be filmed and completed in a timely manner.
We will also have a video production blog going that will be released on the facebook page every other week to show you where the project is.
What We Need & What You Get
We are asking for 15 grand, which is a lot. We understand. But both of these films will be 90 minutes long or more and will feature numerous characters, sets, action scenes, effects, an original score and more. We are trying to make two epics. Every dime we receive will go to the production of these films.
On the right side are listed the many perks that are available for donators of this project. There is a plot in the film where people are becoming obsessed with the joker and begin to emulate him. This is why at the 5 dollar level and above we are asking that you (if you’d like) send us a pic of you with the Joker Make up on (without the actual scars) we will put it in the film. This will be part of the plot and will be another way to be featured in the film. Send all pics and questions to firstname.lastname@example.org
The Funds Will Go To The Following:
Pay for incredible actors, catering, batman suits, large sets- including a bat cave, practical effects, digital effects, make up artists, props, blanks for guns, room and board for actors who live far away, transportation, and to the creation of the final dvd’s for these films.
Your contribution will help bring to the world the first full length fan film trilogy and hopefully usher in a new era of DIY filmmaking. You will be apart of something epic and ground breaking.
We thank you all for your consideration and for possibly being apart of filmmaking history.
Other Ways You Can Help
We would be grateful for any help you can give. Whether it be through donations or even just getting the word out about this page or our Facebook page.
The City With Two Faces @ IndieGoGo
The City With Two Faces @ Facebook
The City With Two Faces @ YouTube