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Panic Attack Director Federico Alvarez Lands a Film at Ghost House

by
November 29, 2009
Source: Film Junk

Panic Attack

The web can do wonders for your career. Film Junk is reporting (translated from El Pais) that Uruguayan filmmaker Federico Alvarez, who unleashed his hugely popular short film Panic Attack (watch it right here) a few weeks ago online, has landed a directing gig at Sam Raimi's Ghost House Pictures. Alvarez has signed on to direct a sci-fi film that they're hoping will be the next District 9. They're giving him a $30 to $40 million budget, however it does not sound like Alvarez is creating a feature-length version of Panic Attack. He will write the script and come up with an original story that will probably involve giant robots.

I never featured Alvarez's Panic Attack on the site because I honestly just wasn't that impressed. Everyone else on the web went ape shit for it, calling it the next big thing and just awesome. I thought the CGI was a little shabby and besides that it had no story or goal or anything besides mass destruction (and despite it started out focusing on some little kid). Those are my thoughts, though, and I bet with a $40 million budget, Alvarez will be able to do a lot more (and he'll write a good script first before starting). Again if you haven't seen it, check out the Panic Attack short right here, at least so you can know what all the buzz is about.

According to the original article, Alvarez spoke with Raimi on the phone and the two seemed to hit it off. Raimi will help "shield" him from the business side of things so he has the freedom to "make the movie he wants." If we hear anything else, we'll certainly let you know. Is this something to look forward to?

Update: This news has finally hit the trades and we have some new details on the project via Variety. They don't say much else that we didn't already cover above, but they do say that Alvarez pitched this as "an alien invasion film" to Ghost House and Sam Raimi. Additionally, Alvarez will not be writing his own screenplay. Ghost House will be hiring "a high-end scribe to turn the idea into a feature," putting more faith in their own writers to write a story that Hollywood will like than a newcomer from Uruguay. Also, for those who don't know, Alvarez has also been directing commercials, although this short was his first fictional feature.

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  • http://blog.myspace.com/shero_rauf Shero
    After seeing the clip I think he deserve a chance to prove himself for a full length film ..based on that clip : A bit from everything Big Robots (Aliens) with Spaceships : The day the Earth Stand Still ,Transformers, War of the Worlds , Independence Day ... and Panic, distraction as in Godzilla , D-War ... + ... the Camera Shake as in .. Cloverfield .... The question is what the story will be ... the only original story left is that those robots has been made by Human being ... who are out of control ... !!!! ;-) .. even that been made before in the movie The Mist ... but they were Organic ;-) not Robots !! :-)
  • JJ Abrams
    Very mediocre and nothing we haven't seen done better. I don't see how this translates into a feature directing gig ... especially if this guy is writing.
  • jake the snake
    mediocre? no, it was pretty decent for four minutes. bring it on!
  • YK
    Entertaining yes, but in more an ID4 way than Alive in Joburg.
  • Voces
    he made it with 300 dollars.. more respecto, please
  • Cody
    ^^ If thats true I say give the guy a shot...and for four minutes that was awesome imagine what he would do with 2 hours.
  • http://img222.imageshack.us/img222/2408/blackbabyjesus.gif Crapola
    @ Voces: Yep I doubt you could even get a sandwich in Hollywood for $300! - I think he could make apretty good film with $30million, possibly even less, the key is the story, Night Watch was made for $4.2 million and looked really good.
  • Eric
    how very independence day / war of the worlds of him.
  • Dude
    I enjoyed the 4 minute short for what it was, and if his budget was what #5 suggested, then the negativity should stop and the dude should be given a chance and a little more respect.
  • http://blog.myspace.com/shero_rauf Shero
    Voces said : he made it with 300 dollars.. more respecto, please No disrespect but I believe that rendering those 3D stuff need at least a computer that cost at least 1000-3000 Dollars !!! maybe more ... ;-) ... without speaking about the 3D program itself that cost at least 500 - 2000 Dollars !!! Are we speaking about official making of that 4 minutes or .... !!! One other thing : ;-) I am sure making that CGI shots took him at least 3-6 months ..... I bet he spend more than 300 dollar just for caffeine ( Pepsi, Cola and coffee ) ...
  • Goudos
    After a summer of ho-hum CGI (Transformers 2 and GI Joe) and still being less than blown away by Avatar, I am willing to give somebody new a shot. The short looked good enough and the editing did help invoke some sort of emotional impact; not sweeping, but better than most anything starring Tom Cruse or Will Smith these days. So, good job on the short, Alvarez. Now, the question is can Alvarez write a good story and, most importantly, direct real people in order to get real emotions? That's what makes a great movie, good CGI just makes a good trailer.
  • Batman
    Mechs...who doesn't like mechs? Very awesome indeed.
  • http://digaphobia.com Mark
    God, I hate when I hear an older film's score (in this case 28 Days Later, but often Requiem For a Dream, or American Beauty) in a different trailer or a film. It totally takes me out of what I'm watching and reminds me of zombies running and cities abandoned. I would have appreciated the thing a lot more had he chosen something less recognizable.
  • http://www.worldquests.com/wowguide/ robert
    this is short film like japan film world of warcraft and gold
  • Madnezz344
    looks like a made for tv movie very weak
  • Victor
    I saw it and pretty much have the same view that Alex has; mindless entertainment and explosions- just another michael bay. Are you kidding?! Make a real human film with real emotions, and a touch of magic, not too much and you have a winner. Paranormal A. has got to be the most provocative film this year.
  • samuel j
    i say we give the guy a chance. ill be watching out for him.
  • Topher
    I just enjoy hearing that sometimes, when u get that creative tick and have to make something out of it, it can pay off. I think he deserves the chance. One love for the underdogs!
  • xerxex
    the heads of the film studios need to get more of these short film directors, they usually can make a good movie.
  • Timothy
    I liked the beginning of the clip, before the (poorly designed) robots were clearly scene. The first minute or so had atmosphere, style, and wonder. After that, it became just a montage of destruction with no rhyme or reason, to the point that I didn't even finish it. And it's only five minutes long.
  • Dave
    I agree with #16 ... this shows that maybe he can handle special effects, but a feature film is usually about something called "people", and relationships, and this does not demonstrate any ability to handle actors or story.
  • daniel
    That mediocre reviews I've read, this guy made a short with $ 300 in Uruguay because it can, is cheaper. For hobby with friends with no intentions of anything and had been producing creativity to something that brought great film
  • Carlos
    I am from uruguay too and for those who dont believe in the 300 bucks budgets. he obviously had allready the computer, programs you can download for free in 1000s of pages. (only in n. america you pay rediculous prices for programs) . he spend the money for the extras when they are running around. it took a day traveling with the people around the city and take the shoots. hopefully he will do fine. uruguay is also an excelent shooting place, research a bit, they did great part of miami vice here in uruguay
  • Carlos
    ah, and he sad he spend something like 1 dollar for fx downloadable smoke and explosions.
  • Santiago
    This "short" was actually made as a music video people. It´s a terrific one at that, and it only cost 300 dollars to make. The short was all about seeing our boring little city being invaded by aliens, something that left every uruguayan in awe. This movie is the most exciting thing that has ever happened to Hollywood for me :D
  • paul A. Robles
    Buenisimo, valio la pena verlo ojala que haga una pelicula pronto
  • Aguvicwi
    Muyy buenaa es Uruguaya cmo nosotros aguantt es lo + ... Voos sos locoo viitee ,, jajajjaja Chhaauu Byyee
  • Richmond18
    just so you know, the reason why that video was so impressive, and why he was offered a movie deal, is that he made Panic Attack on a budget of just $300!!! THAT'S why there is a massive uproar about it.
  • EnzVonKastell
    First at all, I'm sorry, my English is too bad. I'm from Uruguay and I work as assistant in publicity. The idea of the director was to show all his skills in fx for catch clients (for publicity); he hasn't imagined that success and he looks surpriced for the situation. I'm sure he can do it better than panic attack. And he's done several short-films before and -believe me- he's good.
  • http://richardcummings.info Richard Cummings
    I spend a good amount of time in Montevideo Uruguay and have seen this film too many times because for like 3 months they were showing it before every movie in Uruguay. It was fine the first time but after that it was enough. I am happy for him though!
  • Safin
    48 GO GREEN The Ultimate International Eco Film Fest The Film competition To Save The Planet! 48 Go Green is a 48-hour short film festival with a difference. With the power to inspire and to change the world, 48 Go Green was born out of the creativity of the world’s filmmakers, the passion of its story-tellers and the immediate need to save our environment. Anyone, anywhere on earth can enter and be a part of one of the biggest global film festivals of 2011. All you need is a camera, a can-do attitude and a spark of creativity and you could find yourself attending the prestigious screening of your VERY OWN film at Cannes Short Film Corner and the NAB Show in Las Vegas! 48 Go Green is brought to you by executive producer Francesco Vitali & producer Christos Siametis in association with the founders of the 48 Hour Film Project, Mark Ruppert and Liz Langston. The 48 Go Green has joined forces with the original 48 Hour Film Project to bring a unique and inspirational opportunity to ecologically-minded film enthusiasts around the globe. Inspired by our planet’s natural beauty and the creativity and passion of filmmakers around the world what better way to explore the environmental challenges we face than to channel that adrenaline, enthusiasm and intense creativity into powerful and thought-provoking short films? 48 GO GREEN OFFERS PARTICIPANTS THE ULTIMATE PRIZE OF ALL - PROJECTING YOUR MESSAGE TO HELP SAVE OUR ENVIRONMENT. Also at stake is a total of $15,000 of prize money to the winning filmmakers who will have their films screened at Cannes International Film Festival in the prestigious Short Film Corner and at the Las Vegas NAB show from April 9th – 14th 2011. First place offers a cash prize of $5,000 with $2,000 going to the runner up and $1,000 for third place filmmakers. The top 16 films will be prestigiously screened at the Las Vegas NAB show. This year there will be no committee of judges. Instead the public will vote on their favourite film in the competition. Message from Executive Producer Francesco Vitali: “We want your film to be loved by the people who love films, by people like you who know how to pick up a camera, by colleagues who themselves write scripts, or who themselves have collaborated in any way on the completion of a film, or at very least by people who are fans of films in general. The public has emotions and the instinct as it has the responsibility of its opinion.” "So what are you waiting for? Assemble your team of creatives, your camera-equipped eco-warriors and prepare to make a stand against the destruction of our planet by creating the most powerful cinematic message, a 48 Go Green Short Film! http://www.48gogreen.com
  • Lyne Mario
    For a 4 min short film it's bound to be very pro messing as a FUTUR carreer way to go my friend we're all behind you 100% from Canada go for it show us what you can do with the reel equipment and good luck.... Your the real thing you've got the goods and the talent and a beautiful carreer ahead of you! Ciao Lyne

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