My Last Day in Normandy
Directed By Dave Smith
Completed on July 10, 2001
Released: July 13, 2001
Voice Cast: Roger Wakeman, Ben Fortier, Jeff Ching, Kelly Bison, Mike Pfister, Andrew Murphy, Dave Smith, Bryn C. Doherty, Bruce Smith, Andrew Farrar, Matt McGowan, Zach Smith, Sam Smith
This is my ultimate masterpiece of 3D Movie Maker – My Epic, and it has a long story behind it.
It all started one day sometime in the fall of 2000. I was trying to get better at my 3DMM action animation. My dad was watching Saving Private Ryan so many times, over and over. So it kind of made me want to re-create my own 3DMM vision of the Normandy D-Day beach battle. I made a real intense scene of war action on the beach. I showed this to Ben Fortier, who of course as a fellow friend/fan of my movies, loved what I had made. Ben was more of a writer than directed of 3DMM movies, so he started up a story. He loved war stuff, and knew a lot more than I did about war, so it was perfect for him. I continued to make the scene more brutal and intense, and finally he wrote an opening scene for me to work on.
It was working out nice already, and then he wrote another and I directed some more bits. I would send him what I made, and he would tell me his thoughts on it. I’d fix it up real good, and he would send me another scene. It was starting to build nicely at this point. The story goes a little something like this – a team of commandos arrive to Normandy beach on D-day, with a special operation. The movie follows the group through France, until they get to this army base ran by an extremely psychotic Nazi.
I knew it was going to be amazing, so right away I had to start gathering up some voice actors. Ben of course played Eric, the smart soldier. Jeff Ching, even though he wasn’t the greatest voice actor in the world, I got to play King, who was a good soldier, but a little forgetful and discombobulated after the death of his twin brother. Andrew I got to play Manning, who was kind of the dumb and scared soldier. I was shocked when this happened, but when I contacted Kelly Bison, one of the few female 3DMMers in existence, she actually responded back and sent me the female voice parts. She did an amazing job and I was extremely thankful for her doing it. MidbackMan a.k.a. Mike Pfister didn’t have a great German accent, but an amazing booming voice, good enough to play the head Nazi. We got Bryn C. Doherty, a British 3DMMer for the British soldier, and a few others with small parts. My dad does a scream when a soldier gets his balls crunched, which is hilarious. My Uncle Bruce got to do the voice of one of the Germans, and nailed it perfectly. But one thing remained… who could play the central character of Jack Malloy? Then I found him.
While watching several 3DMM movies, I came across Roger Wakeman. And I really, really liked his voice, and felt like it was perfect for the main character. I was extremely impressed with the final results of his voice parts. He only messed up one line and it was during the speech at the end of the movie. But it didn’t matter. It was too good for words. The cast was complete. It took a lot of months to work on it, and to get everything right. I was becoming obsessed with making it perfect. I didn’t care what the 3DMM elitists on the message board thought.
The film turned out so good, I couldn’t believe I made it. I couldn’t stop wanting to show people. What made it work, was working with Ben. He gave me the criticisms I needed to know, and it helped make the movie even better. Of course there are plenty of flaws – but not a whole lot. While the story is hokey at times, and the historical inaccuracies showing, it still somehow worked. For someone who was 15 years old, written by a 13-year old, you couldn’t ask for something better. The Predator soundtrack by Alan Silvestri helped too.
After the released, I should’ve known it was going to get mostly average reviews. But fuck those assholes! I worked my ass off on this one. It almost took me a whole year to make! I was very proud of this film, and I still am to this very day. At the time I released this, I felt it should be my last movie. I knew after this I could never make a better movie.