WC3 Test Footage Gives Early Glimpse At Heart Of The Tiger (June 11, 2016)

ChrisReid

Super Soaker Collector / Administrator
LOAF recently happened upon some old VHS tapes with test footage of Wing Commander 3. These appear to be placement shots to explore the feasibility of the futuristic sets, camera angles and costumes. Since this predates actual filming, Eisen is portrayed by a Joe Garrity-lookalike stand in, and the other crew member is "Dallas." I like that background - it reminds me of the WC4's CIC!





Wing Commander 3 test footage! Fake Captain Eisen? Information Officer Dallas? Blue hats? They're all here!
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Original update published on June 11, 2016
 
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Bandit LOAF

Long Live the Confederation!
I do have video! I'm in the process of digitizing about 80 tapes belonging to Chris. I can't post them without his permission, but I will certainly ask!

Interesting alternate version of the Blair/Paladin dialog in front of the Concordia:

"Report: Concordia wreckage located on Vespus, off the Stendal coast in the Tesera Sea. Evaluation: she was lost with all hands expelling the Kilrathi from Olympus Sector. Salvage assessment: total loss."
"Evacuation is complete, Colonel. With all due respect, sir, we need to launch now. Intelligence estimates that the Kilrathi will reclaim this sector within twelve hours."
"Major, this is the second carrier I've lost in my lifetime. The universe won't drag to a halt if I pause to pay my respects... for them both. Has there been any word from Angel?"
"None, sir."
"Damn you, Tolwyn."
 

Mindcrime

Commodore
80 tapes!!!!! Oh man I really hope CR gives you permission. I would love to see this. Thanks Ben in advanced for asking him. Good luck!
 

AD

Finder of things, Doer of stuff
Well... if any of those tapes happen to have the original source WC3 cutscenes... I can think of a worthwhile project
 

AD

Finder of things, Doer of stuff
quality will probably suck though, remember that AD ;-)
It's hard to say... It really depends on how they mastered the tapes. They "reencoded" them once before to make better use of compression for the 3DO version, but we still have no idea what format they were done in before that or what resolution even. At the very least they shot it digital, and the way I understand that the old SGI systems worked meant that the backgrounds were incorporated at the same time the scene was shot. So if we have some kind of digital betacam style tape with all the finished cutscenes on them, the quality should still surpass whatever we have on the PC version as well as the quality of the 3DO version.
 

-danr-

Vice Admiral
I do have video! I'm in the process of digitizing about 80 tapes belonging to Chris. I can't post them without his permission, but I will certainly ask!

Interesting alternate version of the Blair/Paladin dialog in front of the Concordia:

"Report: Concordia wreckage located on Vespus, off the Stendal coast in the Tesera Sea. Evaluation: she was lost with all hands expelling the Kilrathi from Olympus Sector. Salvage assessment: total loss."
"Evacuation is complete, Colonel. With all due respect, sir, we need to launch now. Intelligence estimates that the Kilrathi will reclaim this sector within twelve hours."
"Major, this is the second carrier I've lost in my lifetime. The universe won't drag to a halt if I pause to pay my respects... for them both. Has there been any word from Angel?"
"None, sir."
"Damn you, Tolwyn."
Does this mean there were plans at some point that Paladin would only be a Major by WC3? Seems strange, the idea of him calling Blair 'sir'.
 

Quarto

Unknown Enemy
Does this mean there were plans at some point that Paladin would only be a Major by WC3? Seems strange, the idea of him calling Blair 'sir'.
I think more likely it means that this would have been a separate character. Probably a new character who may have only appeared in this one scene, and ultimately was removed in order to reduce the number of actors needed for the shoot. It's a fairly typical thing during script development - if you're not careful, secondary characters proliferate along the way, and at some point you need to start merging characters together, because it's simply cheaper to have one actor doing twenty lines than two actors doing ten lines. In this case, it's probably also worth taking into consideration that Paladin plays an important part later in the story - the moment the decision was made to have Paladin show up for the whole temblor thing, they must have also immediately realised that they just can't have him show up out of the blue at that point in the story, they need to introduce him early in the piece. So, they would have replaced the no-name major with Paladin... and then for an added bonus, would have realised that this gives them a possibility of having the Blair-punches-Paladin scene for additional character development.
 

-danr-

Vice Admiral
I think more likely it means that this would have been a separate character. Probably a new character who may have only appeared in this one scene, and ultimately was removed in order to reduce the number of actors needed for the shoot. It's a fairly typical thing during script development - if you're not careful, secondary characters proliferate along the way, and at some point you need to start merging characters together, because it's simply cheaper to have one actor doing twenty lines than two actors doing ten lines. In this case, it's probably also worth taking into consideration that Paladin plays an important part later in the story - the moment the decision was made to have Paladin show up for the whole temblor thing, they must have also immediately realised that they just can't have him show up out of the blue at that point in the story, they need to introduce him early in the piece. So, they would have replaced the no-name major with Paladin... and then for an added bonus, would have realised that this gives them a possibility of having the Blair-punches-Paladin scene for additional character development.
I had a feeling this might be the case, and we'll never know who the Major might have been now. I always thought Origin missed a trick by not drafting in Patsy Kensit to play Major Edmond...



...but I guess she went down with the rest of them just off the Stendal Mistral coast, and Rollins did just fine. Paladin was a super inclusion for a number of reasons; but for me he's special as one of the returnees that really cement the consistency of the storyline.

People often complain that WC3 feels like too big a jump and break from storyline and style, but the more I think about it, it actually stays quite true to the backstory. There are really quite a few mentions of things from the past, we're fighting the same war with some of the same ships, and a generous contingent of returning faces (Blair, Angel, Hobbes, Maniac, Tolwyn, Paladin, The Emperor and Thrakhath) and we even get to see our old carrier in pieces at the start.

Shame about old Edmond though ;)

Actually, what would have been rather cool is if she'd just been in that one scene, referred to only as Major and never explicitly named as Edmond. Hurrying Blair along and not being seen again, like a clandestine cameo.

...a bit like Spirit in the movie, who may well not be Spirit at all. There's a fleeting shot of a silent, smiling lady on the bridge of the 'Claw, who I naively assumed was her because she was slim, mid-20s, oriental and had a Tanaka look of wisdom about her.

I'm rambling here.
 
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