Cool Videos: Check out this $10,000 Aquaman fan-film from 30 years ago
Back in 1984 UCLA students Thomas Farr and Jeff Klein scrounged up $10,000 of their own money and made what is possibly the first Aquaman fan film, AQUAMAN: THE CAST OF THE ANGLER. Once they polished off their script they sent it to the DC Comics president at the time, Jenette Kahn, and amazingly, she signed off on it!
It’s just as silly as you’re imagining it is but there’s also something very neat, dare I say cool, about getting the chance to see a fan film from thirty years ago. Check it out and you'll see a starfish used as as throwing star, Aquaman lift a bad guy up by his balls, and a lot of banana peels. They really knew how to fan-film* back then.
Thomas Farr had this to say:
Jeff Klein and I made this during film school for 10 grand. We won Best Fantasy Film from the Los Angeles Film Teachers Association and Best Picture CSUN Film Showcase. DC Comics gave us permission to shoot the film (Thanks Jenette Kahn DC Comics 1979-2002) The movie was pirated and sold as a TV pilot. I accidentally found it at a comic book convention in the 90's (as a double feature with another super hero pilot). After the film was screened we had a few Hollywood companies approach us wanting to make Aquaman into a show. New World Pictures brought us into meeting, optioned the material, and basically didn't talk to us afterwards. The show never happened. Jeff and I will always be proud of the film. We had written a million dollar script so we shot a few scenes as a trailer/short. No money for effects it has a "Six Million Dollar Man" look with the feel of the old Batman series of the 60's. We were ahead of our time. We always knew this could be a great property. Hoping the new movie is fun and exciting. There were scratches in the film when I transferred recently. So, one day when I have the money I will try and take out in post. Or see if Jeff's print of the film is still around and see if it is in better shape.
Jeff Klein and Thomas Farr never made another film but the actor who played The Angler, Thomas Dewier, went on to become a fairly prolific Hollywood stuntman appearing in films like TEENAGE MUTANT NINJA TURTLES, BATMAN RETURNS, DAREDEVIL, IRON MAN 3, STAR TREK INTO DARKNESS, and many more.
*Yea I used fan-film as a verb, what of it?