After nearly four years of amazing national success, The Intergalactic Nemesis is prepared to boldly go where no live-action graphic novel has gone before.
On Wednesday, writer and director Jason Neulander announced upcoming plans to take the stage show into the digital realm. In anticipation of the September 5 premiere of the trilogy’s final installment, Twin Infinity, Neulander detailed how the creators will bring the show to the masses with a new web series, a spinoff podcast, a digital release of the comic and much more.
“The Intergalactic Nemesis is a total labor of love for those of us who do it,” says Neulander “and it wouldn’t exist at all if it wasn’t for the amazing support of the entire community of Austin.” Neulander discussed the success since the premiere of the first installment, The Intergalactic Nemesis: Target Earth, four years ago. “In the fall of 2010, we premiered right here at the Long Center and 2,200 people came out to see this brand-new form of entertainment that we entitled a live-action graphic novel.”
“The Intergalactic Nemesis is a total labor of love for those of us who do it and it wouldn’t exist at all if it wasn’t for the amazing support of the entire community of Austin,” said writer and director Jason Neulander.
The sequel, Robot Planet Rising, premiered in June of 2012, and has been seen by more than 70,000 people in more than 100 venues across the United States, the United Kingdom and Canada. But now, the show will be available to many who did not have the chance to see The Intergalactic Nemesis when it toured across the country.
The biggest boon to fans is the release of a new web series in a partnership with KLRU-TV. Beginning on July 7, serialized episodes of the first two performances will be released on YouTube every Monday for 17 weeks. The episodes will recreate the experience of live performances by showing images from the graphic novel along with the performances of the voice actors and the inventive Foley artists creating live sound effects.
The web series was funded through a successful crowdfunding campaign; the amount raised by KLRU was matched by PBS Digital Studios, an initiative that creates high-quality original video content for online platforms. The first season of the web series version of The Intergalactic Nemesis will also be available at no cost on klru.org and on the PBS app for AppleTV, Xbox and Roku.
The Intergalactic Nemesis is also coming to the Alamo Drafthouse this summer. In the spirit of the vintage Flash Gordon serials that screened before movies in the 1930s, members of the cast will perform 10-minute installments of Twin Infinity at the Slaughter Lane location on weekends. The first episode will be released along with the premiere of Dawn of the Planet of the Apes; subsequent episodes will be attached to other major blockbusters for the rest of the summer.
In addition, Neulander announced that issues of the graphic novel are available online at ComiXology for only $0.99. And, The Intergalactic Nemesis will team up with local podcast network, OneOfUs.net, to release a spinoff podcast series called SALT, which is based on secondary character Jean-Pierre Desperois. The first season will consist of 20 half-hour episodes that will be available as an e-book when the season wraps up.
Finally, in conjunction with the Twin Infinity premiere on September 5 at the Long Center, KUT will broadcast the entire radio play trilogy in primetime. Target Earth will be broadcast in two installments on September 1 and 2 at 8 pm; Robot Planet Rising will be broadcast in two installments on September 3 and 4 at 8 pm; and Twin Infinity, which was recorded before a live audience at KUT's Studio 1A, will be broadcast at 7 pm on Sunday, September 7.
It’s the culmination of a partnership that goes back to the play’s early beginnings in 1996. Using live performances taped at Little City Espresso Bar & Cafe that were recorded on a 4-track cassette tape, KUT would air the serial every Sunday morning.
Throw it all together, and it seems that Neulander and his creative team have plans to keep this Austin production around for a while. “I think it’s going to be a game-changer,” says Neulander, “in terms of public awareness, in terms of sustaining the business and in terms of keeping the live-action graphic novels touring for many years to come.”
Tickets are available for the first two installments, Target Earth and Robot Planet Rising, which are currently playing at the Long Center through July 6. Guests can also purchase tickets for the final installment, Twin Infinity, which plays at the Long Center September 5 and 6.