Last week some amazing fans of the Nancy Drew games posted a fun video trailer of Alibi in Ashes onto their YouTube Channel. We loved what they created and wanted to share it with you, so we interviewed them to get the inside scoop! Check out their interview below:
Her Interactive: Where are you from?
Emily: We, all the creators and actors in the YouTube series of game trailers by NDfan0123, live in the Sacramento metro area.
Her Interactive: How are you related to all the actors in the video?
Elise: We are a group of family and friends. On Fridays, we have piano lessons in our home. That is when our instructor’s daughter, Rebecca and our friends Gabriel and Elijah, join us, Emily, Jake, Ian and I for lessons. This is our core cast and our biggest film day. Occasionally, we have an opportunity to bring in new faces; mom, dad, and once a fencing club mate acted as Dr. Craven. He was a really good sport. He didn’t know his role required pasting on polyester fiberfill with spirit gum right before class but he did it anyway.
Her Interactive: What is your inspiration for these videos?
Emily: One of the HeR Interactive newsletters had a link to a You Tube video by Buhbing spoofing Blackmoor Manor. Rebecca and I enjoyed it so much that we searched for every Nancy Drew PC game video available. We were intrigued and sometime later were inspired to give it a try. After looking at all the approaches, it was decided that using the game audio and translating all the CG images into live action was in our range.
Her Interactive: What is your favorite video to date?
Elise: The core creators, Emily, Rebecca and I like the Captive Curse trailer. The trailer has a cohesive story line and our costumes and props were especially accurate. Jake likes it best as well because he enjoyed playing Karl. Elijah liked acting as Johnny Rolle, so his favorite is the Ransom of the Seven Ships. Ian, after 45 minutes of coaching finally learned to shrug in the Haunted Carousel (you can see his efforts in the credits), so that’s his favorite.
Her Interactive: How many people does it take to make a trailer?
Elise: It frequently takes two people to film action shots, like rolling the vase around in ASH, but the more faces we have to portray the game characters the better. At least one person on the team has to be able to edit video; for us that is Emily but I’m learning.
Her Interactive: What are your favorite behind the scenes moments?
Emily: Learning to green screen has been really interesting. Getting Ian to do the Il Fantasma stunts for the Phantom of Venice took a lot of creative problem solving. The horse scenes in the Secret of Shadow Ranch also required some invention. It took one painted, battery-operated Barbie horse, 10 pieces of fishing line and an hour of patient editing to make the footage work.
Her Interactive: Do you have a favorite Nancy Drew game?
Elise: Naming a favorite is pretty hard but I am a puzzle lover and like Danger on Deception Island best. Emily enjoys the suspense, setting and characters of Shadow at the Water’s Edge. Rebecca’s favorite, for similar reasons, is the Haunting of Castle Malloy. Elijah hasn’t played all the games yet, but from the ones to date, Trail of the Twister, with all the driving is his favorite.
Her Interactive:What do you like about making Nancy Drew videos?
Elise: What’s not to love?! Setting the stage, inventing costumes, being the characters, especially when it requires a wig, being a yurei, a banshee or “das monster in the hall” are all enjoyable steps to creating a video.
Emily: Editing is also fascinating. I had zero experience before taking on the Nancy Drew trailer challenge and have learned new skills with each video. We’ve had to upgrade our software and add memory to make it all work. By the way, thank you HeR for having such great musical scores. We can always find music with the right mood from one of the games.
Her Interactive: Was there a really tough scene that you had to shoot?
Emily: Every trailer has at least one difficult scene. Making live action versions of CG mini games often presents creative challenges. We use a lot of clay, fishing line, double stick tape and cardboard. Fire and explosions are particularly tough to make look convincing.
Elise: Trying to lower Quigley Kim out of a tree on a rope bruised us all. Ouch. Next time, we’ll invest in a real harness.