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SFMZ's Super8 Fan Poster
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J.J. Abrams had the idea to start a film by showing a factory's "Accident-Free" sign long before he came up with the rest of the idea of the film.

Super 8 was actually the combination of two ideas; one for a film about kids making their own movie during the 1970s, and another for a blockbuster alien invasion film. Worried that the former idea would not attract enough attendance, Abrams combined the ideas.

Abrams and Spielberg collaborated in a storytelling committee to come up with the story for the film. The film was initially reported to be either a sequel or prequel to the 2008 film Cloverfield, but this was quickly denied by Abrams.




SFMZ's Super8 Fan Poster
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Primary photography began in fall (September/October) 2010. The teaser itself was filmed separately in April. Super 8 is the first original J. J. Abrams film project produced by Amblin Entertainment, Bad Robot Productions, and Paramount Pictures.

Abrams wanted to find new faces to play the parts in his movie. He conducted a national talent search in order to find the child actors to play each of the leading roles.

Courtney (who was hoping to land a part in a commercial) was picked out of many boys because Abrams found something "different" in him. Riley Griffiths sent Abrams a tape of himself in order to land the part of Charles.


Filming took place in Weirton, West Virginia, from September to October 2010. To promote the film, Valve Corporation created a short video game segment and released it alongside the Windows and Mac versions of Portal 2.

Abrams' original plan was to film all of the sequences for the film-within-a-film, "The Case", in Super-8 using Pro8mm stock and cameras.

However, this approach proved unsuccessful, as visual effects house Industrial Light and Magic found it impossible to integrate CGI into the footage due to the format's graininess. For sequences involving CGI, cinematographer Larry Fong used Super-16 instead.


The score for the film was composed by Michael Giacchino, Abrams' long-time collaborator. The soundtrack was released on August 2, 2011, by Varèse Sarabande. It won the 2012 Saturn Award for Best Music.

During the ending credits, the songs "My Sharona", by The Knack and "Don't Bring Me Down" by Electric Light Orchestra are featured. "Don't Bring Me Down" as well as The Blondie song "Heart of Glass" and The Cars song "Bye Bye Love" are also featured in the film. All music composed by Michael Giacchino.

Like Cloverfield, an earlier J. J. Abrams-produced film, Super 8 was promoted through an extensive viral marketing campaign. The first trailer for the movie was attached to Iron Man 2, released in May 2010.

The trailer gave the premise of a section of Area 51 being closed down in 1979 and its contents being transported by freight train to Ohio. A pickup truck drives into the oncoming train, derailing it, and one of the carriages is smashed open while a Super 8 camera films.


Fans analyzing the trailer found a hidden message, "Scariest Thing I Ever Saw", contained in the final frames of the trailer. This led to a website, Scariest Thing I Ever Saw, which simulated the interface of a PDP-11 and contained various clues to the film's story-line.

The computer was eventually revealed to belong to Josh Woodward, the son of Dr. Woodward, who is trying to find out what happened to his father. Another viral website, Rocket Poppeteers was also found, which like Slusho from Cloverfield plays no direct part in the film but is indirectly related.

The official Super 8 website also contained an "editing room" section, which asked users to find various clips from around the web and piece them together.

When completed, the reel makes up the film found by the kids in Dr. Woodward's trailer, showing the ship disintegrating into individual white cubes, and the alien reaching through the window of its cage and snatching Dr. Woodward.




Resources: Wikipedia.org, imdb.com





Detailed Plot & Screenshots


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The reason Charles cast Alice in the film, was because he actually liked her. As they examine the film, their thoughts become turned when they see parts of a strange creature emerging from one of the wrecked train cars. As they wonder what it was they just saw, air raid sirens begin to go off.


They emerge outside to find the town being evacuated, with everyone being asked to report to the local Military base. Word is that a dangerous fire is headed towards Lillian, and could cause terrible damage if it reaches the town's chemical plant.


Joe and Charles get on a bus, and are transported to the base. There, Charles is reunited with his family, while Joe goes to look for his Dad. However, he instead finds Louis, who tells Joe that he saw Alice being taken away by a creature, but nobody believes him.


Joe then rounds up Charles and their friends, with the intent to get back into town and rescue Alice. Bribing the town's camera-store owner to helping them, he manages to get them into town. They first go to the Middle School. Dr Woodward had a specially padlocked storage area behind the school where he hid confiscated items from his class.


Joe assumes that there may be additional information as to his past, and the group finds numerous films, tapes, and records stored in there as well, that could help them find out more about the creature and how to possibly defeat it.


Breaking into the school, they use a film projector in one of the classrooms. Through the materials, they learn that the creature is sub-terranean, and mainly wants to just go home.


However, General Nelec was more intent on keeping the creature for Army purposes. They also found its ship contained technology that when disassembled, 'shattered' into the little white cubes that the group saw at the crash site.


Due to Woodward's interactions with the creature, he was able to gain a telepathic link to it, and notes in his findings that due to the hostilities directed towards it, it has grown hostile in nature to humans as well. The boys soon hear noises in the school, and are soon found by Nelec and his men. The group confiscate the items, as well as Joe's Mom's locket.


The boys are put on a Military bus and are headed back to the base when the creature attacks the bus. The boys manage to escape while the creature attacks the other Military Officers and kills General Nelec. In the aftermath, Joe is able to obtain his Mom's locket.


Meanwhile, Jackson has managed to escape his captors, and after creating a diversion, gets to the other base where the townspeople are being kept. He finds one of Joe's friends there, and after hearing of Joe's plans to rescue Alice, finds her father and takes him along.


The boys meanwhile, have made it back into town, but suddenly find themselves in the middle of a war zone, as tanks and other Military weaponry are going haywire, firing random shots and destroying property. As the boys attempt to escape, Martin is injured.


Charles stays behind to tend to his wounds, as Joe and Cary rush off to the cemetery. Joe tells Cary about the strange things he saw and heard from the garage. Breaking down a door, they find a large hole, dug down several stories deep.



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