Local filmmakers say their project at Salt Lake Comic Con merges ‘Ocean’s 11’ with ‘geek culture’

Posted at 10:02 PM, Sep 30, 2015
and last updated 2015-10-01 00:02:30-04

SALT LAKE CITY -- Salt Lake Comic Con this year proved more than just a pop culture gathering, as it’s also a movie set.

A pair of Salt Lake City filmmakers spent three frantic days shooting ‘The Comic Con’ movie in the middle of the convention.

“Five con artists, that we have, that get in bed with a casino owner in Atlantic City and so they come out to Salt Lake Comic Con to steal the five rarest comic books of all time,” said Tyler Pollock, the producer for the movie.

Think "Ocean’s 11" set at Salt Lake Comic Con. Trying to arrange actors, photographers and crew members on short notice was like a caper itself.

“We didn’t know that we were going to film at Salt Lake Comic Con until two weeks, right before the Con started," Pollock said.

Though it was a rush to get everything together, they said filming at Salt Lake Comic Con gave them something impossible to replicate.

“You end up having tens of thousands of extras that otherwise you wouldn’t be able to get, and it gives us amazing scale,” said Steven Heumann, the writer and director.

With a small budget of around $20,000, the pair was able to get access to just about everything at the convention. About one-third of the movie has been filmed, enough to make a trailer they hope to use to entice a million dollar investment to finish the film.

Salt Lake Comic Con is more to the movie than just a setting. It represents a key demographic the filmmakers say they are trying to reach: geek culture.

“Geek culture is anything," Pollock said. "So, if you’re a complete nut about anything, I mean I’m talking cars, I’m talking about Disney, I’m talking about, heck, even paint or construction. Everyone has an obsession about something, and that’s what geek culture is."

Of the five main characters, only one is into ‘geek culture’. Part of the plot is his effort to engage his fellow conmen (and women) into the world of characters, superheroes and witches. The filmmakers are hoping that gives them a broad appeal, allowing everyone a window into a growing phenomenon.

If all goes according to plan, it’s those fans that may be the first to see the movie.

“Our hope is to actually have the full-on premier at next year’s comic con,” Heumann said.

To learn more about ‘The Comic Con’ movie, visit their Facebook page.