Interview with Nuno Bernardo – creator of new sci-fi series Collider

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Collider is a new sci-fi entertainment project that will manifest itself in film, online and comic books. The story follows a group of people who find themselves in a post-apocalyptic world and in 2018. The group are from different timelines and no one knows how they got there.

The name “Collider” comes from the fact (a coincidence?) that one of the group is a scientist who worked on the large Hadron Collider in 2012.

There are three names to follow with the Collider project; Nuno Bernardo – the CEO of the company behind the project, Mike Garley who created the comic and Iain Robertson is the BAFTA winning actor who’ll be staring in the Collider webisodes.

Nuno Bernardo, CEO of beActive, and creator of Collider has kindly agreed to a Q&A style interview with Geek Native.

We’ve tried to sum up the Collider story in the introduction above but would love to hear it in your own words. Imagine you’re in a queue at a Sci-Fi convention and had only little bit of time to explain Collider to the guy in front of you – what would you say?

Collider is a sci-fi story about second chances: what would you do if you could go back in time? To serve this premise we put 6 random characters in a post-apocalyptic future and give them a mission: revert the energy in the Large Hadron Collider to go back in time and save mankind. To achieve that they will need to learn how to work together, to use their different skills and survive a hostile environment and the creatures called the ‘Unknown’.

In terms of plot, settings and characters – who is the mastermind behind Collider? Was this a personal project from yourself or did a team of people work on it?

I developed the original concept and the characters and then I worked with our head of development at the time, Catriona Scott in the process of developing and improving the storyworld and the plot. Then we worked with Steve Attridge, who wrote the first drafts of the script of the upcoming feature film and Mike Garley, who wrote and coordinated the development of the Comic Books. Paulo Gomes developed the story of the Game and then Catriona Scott wrote the scripts of the Webisodes that we are releasing now featuring Iain Robertson.

Is Collider a pro-science series or does it explore the dangers that super science may bring to us?

There’s a line in one of the Webisodes that sums our view. Sometimes, mankind goes a little too far and scientists start to play God. I’m Pro science but sometimes we need to be careful with some types of experiments.

What helped inspire Collider? Any books, films, games or music that have provided influence and inspiration to the series?

The initial idea for Collider was setting up the story in the future but a future that ran at the same time as the present, and our characters could live in both timelines but couldn’t interact with people in the present time. That was too complex a concept to show visually, so we then went with a more linear story, with the future happening in the… future. I’m big fan of the Terminator saga and that could be credited as one of the inspirations, and also I like the dynamics of Lost (the TV Series) of putting a few random characters in an isolated, closed space. This is the reason that sometimes I use the line “Lost meets Terminator” when pitching Collider.

What’s the goal of Collider? Is the ultimate target a feature film or is Collider a method to explore what transmedia can do for sci-fi?

Our goal is to create a storyworld that connects with the fans of the genre and establish an entertainment brand that could live for years, with more books, graphic novels, feature films, TV Series, games, licensed products and everything in between. We are platform agnostic and our primary goal is to tell good stories that engage with an audience.

Some readers may not be familiar with the term “transmedia”. Could you introduce the concept for us?

Transmedia is a new storytelling form where the story is told on different medias and allows audiences to be part of the storytelling process, through different levels of interactivity. Transmedia doesn’t mean putting the same story (ie a TV episode) on different platforms (TV, Intertnet, Tablets, etc) but putting different parts of the story in the different mediums. Done right, Transmedia gives the audience different choices of connecting with the story: in just one media, for example, reading just the Novel or watching the TV version, or connecting with the story on several different medias thereby getting a more deeper overview of the plot and characters. A third level of involvement for the audience happens when they start to interact, to participate and be responsible for the way the story goes.

Does the growth of technology make transmedia easier or harder? Do issues like Android fragmentation, for example, bother you?

The growth of technology allows us to reach a wider audience and provide content to platforms or services that audiences like to use. The big issue is that nowadays we use so many different platforms and social media services, from Twitter to Facebook and Pinterest, different mobile platforms, from iOS to Android or endless systems to deliver Apps to connected TV devices. This increases development times and budgets and fragments the audience, because we have the audience in different services at the same time and until now, no way to put a person on a Connect TV device interacting, at the same time, around our story, with someone that is on a mobile device. To overcome these challenges, at beActive we’ve been developing a platform called Transmedia Dashboard that will simplify the distribution of this type of content and create a more engaging social experience to the audiences (whatever devices they decide to use to access the content).

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