If you haven’t seen this already, scroll down and watch it. Go. Now. If you have seen it, holy shit, right?
Director Julien Mokrani and an extraordinarily talented cast and crew have created what I think we all have to agree is the definitive motion-picture version of Ben Templesmith’s comic series Welcome to Hoxford – or the first part of it, anyway.
Hoxford isn’t Mokrani’s first fan film labour of love – he and writer / producer Samuel Bodin spent two years working on Batman: Ashes to Ashes, a $15,000 tribute to Batman’s quasi-vampiric nature. On the strength of that project, Mokrani and Bodin were able to entice actors Jason Flemyng (X-Men: First Class, Hanna, Snatch), Arben Bajraktaraj (Harry Potter – Order of the Phoenix and the Deathly Hallows) and Dexter Fletcher (Kick-Ass, Band of Brothers, Lock, Stock and Two Smoking Barrels), plus director of photography Thierry Arbogast (The Fifth Element, Leon: The Professional, La Femme Nikita) and special effects makeup artist Jean-Christophe Spadaccini (The Bourne Identity, The City of Lost Children).
And why in the world would Mokrani and his colleagues invest their time, energy and money in a film that will never make a legal dime? “Welcome to Hoxford ran around in my head for over a year”, Mokrani says. “One day it was too much, I had to make it!”
Despite his passion and skill, he wasn’t able to get official sanction from Hoxford creator Ben Templesmith, who said he’d enjoyed Ashes to Ashes but was contractually obliged to avoid even thinking about talking about the idea of considering having anything to do with a fan-made Hoxford film – presumably because the rights are currently managed by Circle of Confusion, who Mokrani says are only interested in talking to major studios. Circle, come on. Quit fucking around and let Mokrani and company have a stab an official Welcome to Hoxford film – if this 20-minute production is any indication, they’ll treat it right.
You can see production stills and a whole lot more at welcometohoxford-thefanfilm.com. I’ll just stay here and watch Warden Baker eat that… “steak”… over and over. Somehow I can’t look away.