L5 (2012) HD

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Stanley Von Medvey
hard sci-fi, short, sci-fi

The crew aboard the spaceship Argo has just awoken from hypersleep to a nightmare. Having spent the last twenty years searching for a new home to salvage humanity from a dying earth they return home and find something has gone terribly wrong. They have been mysteriously impelled 200 years into the future and find not a trace of any human life. The Argo's Commander, Dr. Richard Adams is determined to find some answers and, aided by the ship's surgeon, Rod Lewis, and onboard Artificial Intelligence, Clarke, decides to explore the one clue to the massive floating O'Neill colony named L5. After an exploratory skiff goes missing inside the colony, Adams and Lewis venture inside themselves to find the answers they seek, nothing can prepare them for what they are about to find.

Director: Stanley Von Medvey
Writer: Tom Ptasinski
Producers: Tom Ptasinski, Adam Nelson

Official Website
Join L5 on Facebook!


L5 is a completely crowd-funded production, through the generosity of donors from sites such as kickstarter and indiegogo, the creative team of L5 has spent a year bringing the story to life.

Our goal with L5 was to create a compelling, high-production-value science fiction on a small budget. After endless hours in post production were volunteered by a talented team of visual effects artists all over the world, and with the spit and vinegar of home grown construction methods for building props, sets and costumes, as well as the unrelenting support of our families and the local art and business community in the Chicago area, the result was accomplished inside a budget of $15,000.

Now we need your help!
You've seen what we can do with so little. We want to multiply that, and do even more. We want to build a unique production environment that will enable us to continue creating more episodes of L5, as well as other original science fiction content.


The money we raise with your support will go towards seeding a brand new, cloud based production system. It will fund a proof of concept for a cloud based intelligent task management technology, allowing us to pursue the investment we need to create a global film and visual effects production system. It will allow us to research the best open-source VFX pipeline, taking advantage of all the existing free tools, while allowing us to develop new ones. This system will drive the cost of making high-end visual effects down, allowing us to produce L5 and other content cost effectively. Our stories are just huge, and we need an equally huge and innovative approach to film making to pull it off. Combined with the local film production talent in Chicago, we believe we can make anything, on a fraction of the budget.

We want to offer these services to up and coming film makers and productions, giving creative and talented people the most bang for their production budgets by opening up a tool set that was previously inaccessible to all but the most well funded productions.

Help us usher in a new renaissance of science fiction!


Stanley Von Medvey

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Chad Burns

on March 23, 2012 at 2:53am

Stanley Von Medvey, Tom Ptasinski and myself are going to be on a internet radio show in a little bit. We'll talk a lil L5, and general nerdiness It's kinda last minute, but should be fun. Come check it out.
Show starts at 8PM central, and we'll be on...LIVE...from 9 to 10. we might be starting a show of our own soon...

Chad Burns

on March 21, 2012 at 9:11pm

Hello All!
Wanted to point you all to a little video message from Stanley and myself.
http://youtu.be/waSOiOx4afs on Youtube.
http://vimeo.com/38868240 on Vimeo.

Chad Burns

on March 21, 2012 at 3:52pm

Thanks! If you did enjoy, please join us on Facebook and have a say in the future of L5.


on March 21, 2012 at 12:50pm

Too bad it's flash based. Won't stream on my iPad. :( I downloaded it and converted it to M4V and played it via Apple TV on my big screen. It looked wonderful. Much better graphics and acting than I expected for such a low budget.

The editing was top notch as was art direction.

Chad Burns

on March 20, 2012 at 4:19pm

@ MulderC
This is something we have considered, if there is an interest. I'm going to add a poll/survey to the Facebook page at http://www.facebook.com/groups/L5Fans/
Please, if anyone has interest in seeing eBooks or anything like that between episodes, go vote and help shape the future of L5.


on March 20, 2012 at 4:15pm

Is the licensed software really necessary? I'd rather invest my time (and maybe even some self-directed IRA funds) in a free-software pipeline.

The fans want a story... What about just shooting more live-action, and doing 1990's level wireframe CG, and get the story fleshed out. Imagine how you want to look, draw it by hand, and do something cheesy to show it with some live action, and get us a story and some episodes in 320x240.

Then come back and remaster the whole damn thing after the pipeline is done in iMax glory.. (oooh.. there's a business plan.. sell the iMax 4k by 4k version directly to the owners of iMax theatres after you have a rabid fanbase) .. Look how many people paid way too much money for the disaster that George Lucas called 'remastering'


on March 20, 2012 at 2:45am

I feel like something needs to be done to keep the fan base of L5 happy while all of this is taking place. Could you flesh out the universe with short stories or something while we wait?


on March 19, 2012 at 6:19pm

Hey everyone! So so sorry for the delayed response. It's challenging to manage the online presence with our tiny team, since most of us including myself are freelance artists living at the margins of making ends meet. I am now coming up for air from the backlog of freelance work I've had to take on since production ended, and will be doing my best to respond in a more timely manner to everyone's questions.

As Nisse pointed out, the subtitles are now out and available thanks to Zefram's hard work! We appreciate everyone's patience.

Regarding a donation target - because donations go towards funding research into a production pipeline, we cannot ethically give a specific dollar amount for a target. The reasoning is that we exhausted a great many resources creating this pilot episode, pulled so many one off favors to make it happen, that without a very significant amount of money, episode 2 would be unlikely without establishing our production system first. Generally, successful Vodo campaigns make an average of $20K-$30K or so (during the first couple months). This wouldn't begin to cover the expense of a second episode. We do however have a specialized visual effects production pipeline that we want to engineer, and are in the process of developing pitch materials and metrics to present to investors. Part of the money we raise through Vodo will go towards key software license purchases that will enable this research. If the studio is funded and built, among the first intellectual properties we will pursue is the completion of L5. As you can see however, there is no 100% guarantee that we will get investment, even with our research funded. It's a gamble for us. Generally, if a specific funding goal is presented, the internet community is encouraged to reach that goal. People have more incentive to reach deeper and donate more. We don't think it's fair to do that to people unless we could guarantee production of episode 2 with funds raised. In other words, we don't want to get you emotionally invested and throwing money at us for something that's a gamble even for us. Therefore, we will leave the funding open ended, any little bit helps us assemble a stronger presentation for investment, helps us get better metrics and tools to make a robust case to venture capitalists. Our dream is to create a way of making movies that the world has never seen before.

Thank you everyone for your enthusiasm, your donations, and your continued support of L5 and our efforts!


on March 19, 2012 at 6pm

Thanks, Jean/Monteque -- I couldn't have done it without you :-)

But the official English subs have just been posted (Yay!), and that fixes everything.


on March 19, 2012 at 5:24pm

i agree with you that they must set a donation target, otherwise how people could know how much they need?

i agree that the production team must be more active online


on March 19, 2012 at 1:43pm

Official subtitles are up on addic7ed.com, big thanks to Zefram at italiansubs.net!



on March 18, 2012 at 11:59pm

Just donated $50.
- Please set finance goals so that we can see what we are working towards. Multiple goals = multiple finance goals.
- Please give more info on the Free Software / Open Source side of the cloud. Will it be 100% Free Software? I don't want to encourage people to donate otherwise.
- Please give more info on the terms under which you will offer the new cloud processing system to other film-makers. I'd like a pledge about not being for-profit, or else a list of some strict guidelines you'll adhere to in order to support others rather than exploit them.
Lot of scepticism in my requests, but overall great job and keep it up.


on March 17, 2012 at 10:09pm

So are there plan to continue the series ? Will we ever see ep2 ? Chad Burns is the only guy alive around and it's kind of easy to fall into impression that you guys stopped developing. Just a little bit of dialogue and small drops of info on that part would be nice (also called PR, no offense).


on March 17, 2012 at 8:31pm

Hi _G6_. I haven't made the english subtitles. Some other guy translated my danish subtitles into english, but gave me credit. xD... But anyway thanx for the new and improved english subtitles xD.



on March 17, 2012 at 6:59am

Here's a srt file with a corrected version of Monteque and IceDuck's original English subs.


There are still one or two [inaudibles] and places where I had to guess what the actors were saying, but I think it's 99% correct. I hope this will be helpful to those of you trying to figure out what's going on.


on March 16, 2012 at 8:26pm

@CHAD BURNS: Ah, thanks for the pointer to 11:55, now I see where that is located in the station, which does explain the presence of (some) apparent gravity. As you say, lessons learned — it would help intuitive understanding if the far shot of the platform started much further out and zoomed in, to explain that point.

However, the collapse speed is still far too rapid; it looks like a full gee, whereas lunar gravity would give a far more sluggish impression. It would still be terrifying — it would have a real sense of inevitability, like you get at the front of a roller coaster in the very front of the train on the first dropoff. And the lateral effects would be significant, since the free-falling objects would move in a straight line in the inertial reference frame, which would appear to be a spiral in the rotating frame of the station.

Still, this is nitpicking, and I recognize the significant efforts that have gone into realistic physics. Nonetheless, I would be happy to offer consultative advice in the future! :-)


on March 16, 2012 at 4:04am

@CHAD BURNS: Yes, they were in contact with the station but the lateral force from sliding down the slope shouldn't be that strong. I think the most confusing part of that shot is that they're depicted as sliding straight down along platform rails. They should be moving slightly to the side where they would be caught by the groove side wall which then effects the full lateral force on them.


on March 16, 2012 at 12:28am


True. My bad. But i still don't have a clue how did they emerge where they did in the cylinder - from inital entering the habitat that happened on-axis.

He said about the sond that it dropped like a stone, but it was unclear where and how. It all seemed like one linear dark tunnel in the shot.

I had to think for a moment how the sond could have "dropped like a stone" even when it was essentially free.

It dropped realtive to habitat structure, which was rotating at caonsiderable speed and acceleration, so when sond lost its motor regulation, it became effectively a stone which collided with rotating megastructure.

Cool. :o)

Chad Burns

on March 15, 2012 at 8:01pm

Drow is correct...the platform is quite a bit 'down' from the center axis, and can be seen in the shot from outside the colony at ~11.50. And as pointed out...it is not a vertical plane...but a slope, so there is contact with the body of the station to impart force. Also the falling objects are in a 'groove', which limits their oblique movement.
All that said, it would seem we did a less than totally effective job showing where the event occurred than we would have liked. Lessons learned and all that.


on March 15, 2012 at 7:02pm

save that, by the time they enter the interior of the colony, they've already moved away from the central axis. first, at around 11:57 we get a good view of the interior, which shows the structure they'll be standing on later at the far left. second, while they're standing on the platform, the central axial structure is clearly visible well above them. they're nowhere near it.