Yeah, I’m responsible for this one. Infamy gained +100!
So here’s the Narutrix Re-ninja’d, which was pretty much the working title I never changed. I’ve also heard it called Enter the Narutrix and such too. It’s basically a typical AMV parody trailer; a mashup of an original movie trailer with anime footage stuck on top. In this case, it’s the final theatrical trailer for Matrix Reloaded (not Revolutions, people) synced to footage from the anime series Naruto, which involves Ninjas, special moves, mystical energy, sharp pointy throwy things, and NO ACCURSED CARS! Ahem.
For the uninitiated, this means I’ve got the original audio from the trailer, complete with music, sound effects, little speech clips, all the stuff that makes you want to watch that film you just saw a trailer for in the cinema really. Then, instead of the actual film of Neo slapping multiple Agent Smiths about, I’ve got little animated ninjas.. Um. Yeah.
To the experienced AMV viewer, it’s more of the same, yet another Matrix trailer parody with footage from the current most-popular-must-make-amv-from series of the last year or so. Naruto is amazingly popular, and despite all it’s faults and pitfalls, is actually quite stylish and a complete joy to edit from.
So yeah, not the most original and unique concept, but it made me laugh and that’s all I need to start making the thing ;) I’ve always been a fan of well-made trailers or adverts, so I’ve always planned to do at least one AMV parody, there may well be more ;)
If you’ve not seen/heard/cared about Naruto before, the concept is set in a world full of ninjas, there’s whole villages full of them, except they just don’t dress like ninjas. Black on black stealth suits? Nah. Bright orange jumpsuits and bright red dresses are in fashion for ninjas these days. That aside, they’re ninjas because of all the mystical energy they can focus and use to do special techniques. The main character, being the reckless muppet type, discovers the ability to clone himself and perform group smackage of the current opponent with just himself. Sound familiar?
Put this together with the line “So now he’s found a way to copy himself?”, and you get the idea. Also his best-friend/worst-rival archetype is very much a moody Neo type, he moods, he broods, he wears black. He also gets more ‘cool’ screentime than anyone else in the entire series ;) Add into the mix the token love interest as Trinity, the kung-fu lord above all Rock Lee as Seraph, random old wise woman as the Oracle, hard-ass slightly disillusioned ninja Anko as Niobe, and of course the wise-talking Third Hokage as Morpheus, and you’ve got yourself a cast.
I’ve rewritten this so many times and it still sounds stupid ;) So yeah, the Lee/Sasuke thing. I wanted Lee to be Seraph, but he doesn’t get any lines in this trailer, so I messed about with it – having Lee doing the opening lines made the Naruto/Lee battle blend much easier and all, but yes technically it does make it look like Sasuke and lee are both Neo ;) My bad. Apologies.
I kinda wanted it to be both to Naruto fans and people who may not like Naruto at all, simply because it was going to be aired to a room full of both.. So it had to be generic, non-spoilery, funny, and generally “yeah I’m using Naruto footage but it’s good anyway” :p
Timing is my specialty so it is pretty heavily focused on that; lipsyncing, punches connecting, things going boom, the usual. It follows the original trailer reasonably closely for the most part, but diverges at the end because the voice parts had stopped and it was just a chance to show off some of the better sequences from Naruto; I’ve kinda specifically avoided the cheesier or less well animated scenes where I could.
To clarify, it’s as much of a Naruto advertisement as it is a Matrix parody; you’ll see what I mean at the end :P Even for such a popular series I like to at least show a few teaser scenes to make more people go see it..
This video won over the popularity vote and the Judges’ decision at AmeCon 2004, and I was awarded a Rei-in-the-bathtub soap dish, yay ;)
Also it was awarded Best Trailer in the AnimeMusicVideos.org 2005 Viewers Choice Awards, and made it to the finals in Best LipSync too, which was unexpected to say the least.. It’s also been linked from BoingBoing which put my traffic through the roof, as well as ending up on iFilm’s Viral Video list.. I officially made something viral, yay?