Halo Legends: Wikis

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Halo Legends

Halo Legends promotional poster
Directed by Frank O'Connor
Joseph Chou
Produced by Bonnie Ross
John Ledford
Studio Studio 4°C
Production I.G
Casio Entertainment
Toei Animation
Bones
Warner Bros.
343 Industries
Distributed by Warner Bros. Pictures
Release date(s) February 16, 2010
(home video)
Country Japan
United States
Language English

Halo Legends is a collection of seven animated short films set in the Halo science-fiction universe. Financed by Halo franchise overseer 343 Industries, the stories were created by six Japanese production houses: Bones, Casio Entertainment, Production I.G., Studio 4°C, and Toei Animation. Shinji Aramaki, creator and director of Appleseed and Appleseed Ex Machina, serves as the project's creative director. Warner Bros. released Legends on DVD and Blu-ray on February 16, 2010.

The idea for an anime compilation existed for years before there was momentum for the project. 343 Creative director Frank O'Connor produced story outlines or finished scripts that the production houses animated in a variety of styles.

Contents

Development

Frank O'Connor, creative director of the Microsoft branch that oversees the Halo franchise, was heavily involved in developing the stories that appear in Legends.

To oversee development of the entire Halo franchise, Microsoft created an internal division, 343 Industries, to manage the Halo brand.[1][2] Frank O'Connor, 343's creative director, said that such a move was vital: "If you look at how George Lucas held on to Star Wars, not just to make money from action figures but to control the direction the universe went in, you can see why we think it's pretty vital."[3]

Halo Legends's origins came from 2006's The Halo Graphic Novel; O'Connor said that the idea of an anime compilation existed for years before there was momentum for the project. Most of the animation studios Microsoft approached were available for the project. Most studios were "afraid" of creating their own stories, even if they were familiar with the series, so O'Connor sent them possible story treatments. Microsoft was deeply involved in making sure story details were correct and writing the scripts for the stories—O'Connor estimated that 50% of the dialogue in the final products were verbatim from the original scripts.[2] While all the stories save one are considered canon, O'Connor noted that some discrepancies were the cause of artistic interpretation.[4]

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Animation

The animation studios were given wide latitude in their animation styles.[1] "We realized very early on [that Halo] could take interpretation," said O'Connor, saying that the look-and-feel of the universe persisted even through differing artistic styles.[2] In developing their stories and styles, the anime studios were supplied with access to Halo's story bible and art assets.[5]

One of the artistic styles that is the most radical departure from traditional animation styles is in "The Duel", by director Hiroshi Yamazaki whose addition to the Legends DVD employs a filter that makes every cell look as though it was hand painted by watercolors. His goal that he was aiming for in this project was, "to make audiences understand there should be other styles of animation beyond the existing two primary kinds of animation presented – precisely cel-drawing 2D style and CG 3D style. I wanted to show that creators are not limited, that they have many options for different (animation) styles to create stories."[6]

Cast

Major voice recording was done by Seraphim Digital Studios (formerly known as Amusement Park Media), the dubbing studio known for producing dubs of anime for ADV Films.[7][8]

The cast below is for the English version and comes from SXAniMedia.[9]

Episodes

Most of the episodes were originally broadcast on Halo Waypoint on the specified date. The episodes range in length from ten to twenty minutes.[4]

Title Studio Waypoint airdate
"The Babysitter" Studio 4°C November 7, 2009
"Babysitters" follows a squad of four Orbital Drop Shock Troopers or Helljumpers. The squad is composed of Private O'Brien, Dutch (from Halo 3: ODST), Master Sergeant Cortez, and Corporal Checkman. O'Brien is being replaced as the squad's sniper by Cal-141, a SPARTAN-II, and is now the backup. The squad is sent into a Covenant zone under the cover of a meteor shower to eliminate a Prophet. Produced by Eiko Tanaka and directed by Toshiyuki Kanno. 
"The Duel" Production I.G November 21, 2009
Produced by Mitsuhisa Ishikawa and directed by Hiroshi Yamazaki, with creative supervision by Mamoru Oshii follows an Arbiter named Fal who does not want to follow the Covenant religion. One of the Prophets accuses Fal of heresy. Fal will not yield and the Prophet is forced to send another Elite to kill his wife in order to drag him to a trap. 
"The Package" Casio Entertainment December 5/12, 2009
On board a cloaked human ship, a group of elite supersoldiers called Spartans (John-117/Master Chief, Frederic-104, Kelly-087, Arthur-079 and Solomon-069) are briefed by an intelligence officer about their mission. A Covenant fleet is momentarily trapped in the system, and is carrying an important "package" the Spartans must retrieve. The ship decloaks and deploys the Spartans in small ships called Booster Frames. Solomon detects the package on one of the ships, but discovers too late that it is a ruse; Solomon is killed when the ship is destroyed. Master Chief deduces that their target is actually in the Covenant flagship. Arthur is killed trying to cover Kelly during the battle, and the rest of the Spartans board the Covenant ship. Making their way through thick Covenant defenses, Master Chief manages to recover the package—human scientist Catherine Halsey in cryonic hibernation—and the two escape via a Covenant escape pod. The remaining Spartans are recovered by the stealth ship and leave the system. 
"Origins" Studio 4°C January 1, 2010
On board the ship Forward Unto Dawn , the artificial intelligence Cortana and Master Chief are stranded after the events of Halo 3. Cortana muses on her existence and what she has learned about the noble and ancient race known as the Forerunners. Cortana narrates past events: thousands of years ago, the Forerunners were a great civilization, but they came under attack by the parasitic Flood. The Forerunner underestimated the Flood, by which time it had spread, gaining the knowledge of the life it consumed. Though the Forerunners fought bravely, but realized it was a futile fight. After trying other methods, they developed a weapon of last resort; an array of ringed megastructures or Halos that would destroy the Flood and their food supply—every sentient creature in the galaxy. While the Flood and Forerunner were wiped out by the Halo Array's activation, the Forerunners reseeded catalogued life throughout the galaxy. 
"Homecoming" Bee Train N/A

Produced by Bee Train productions Inc. with Production I.G and executive produced by Koichi Mashimo, written by Hiroyuki Kawasaki and directed Koji Sawai.

Focused on the tragedies involving the SPARTAN-II recruitment in 2517, and the SPARTANs coming to terms with their origins. 
"Prototype" Studio Bones N/A

Prototype follows a marine sergeant nicknamed Ghost who leads Hades Squad, a demolition team charged with implementing the Cole protocol - destroying sensitive information and materials during UNSC retreats to prevent them falling into covenant hands. His nickname of Ghost stems from the complete lack of emotion he shows, highlighted in particular by his last mission - in which his entire platoon was wiped out, with him being the only survivor. For this reason he is distrusted by his squad.

His squad are operating on the planet Algolis, attempting to destroy a prototype weapons facility that is about to be taken by the Covenant. Not wanting a repeat of his previous mission, he disobeys orders to destroy a prototype heavy powered armour suit - instead he commandeers it and proceeds to provide cover for his squad to allow them to evacuate. Despite dealing massive damage to Covenant forces, his ammunition and shield are soon depleted and he loses an arm to a grenade. Seeing the last evacuation ships fly away, he uses the suit's powerful self destruct to annihilate all nearby Covenant forces - and completing his mission to destroy the suit.

Animated by Studio Bones, Directed by Tomoki Kyoda Yasushi Muraki, featuring production designs by Shinji Aramaki
"Odd One Out" Toei Animation N/A
Animated by Toei Animation Company written and directed by Daisuke Nishio, Odd One Out is a parody story of Halo universe and is not canon.[10] It follows the adventures of Spartan 1337, a member of Master Chief's unit who suffers both from a severe ego and horrendous bad luck, although still a fairly competent fighter in his own right. He finds himself accidentally stranded on a planet after falling out of his transport. The planet is inhabited by dinosaurs and a group of stranded kids, the two oldest having near superhuman strength. The covenant test their latest weapon, a bestial warrior called Pluton. 1337 and the kids fight back, but are overpowered. However, the kids' ship (whose AI they refer to as "Mama") launches the beast into slipspace. When Cortana senses it, she tells Master Chief to leave it, as it is happy. 1337 makes for the rendezvous point, before being carried off by a pterodactyl. 

Release

Halo Legends was originally to be released on February 9, 2010, but its launch was pushed back a week to February 16. The compilation comes in three different retail packages: a standard DVD release with all the episodes, a two-disc special-edition which contains additional commentary, and the Blu-Ray edition, featuring the special-edition features and a summary of the Halo storyline.[11] The companion soundtrack was released by Sumthing Distribution on February 9, 2010.

The film's United States premiere was held at the AMC Metreon in San Francisco on February 10.[12]

References

  1. ^ a b Fritz, Ben (2009-07-22). "Video game publishers Microsoft, Ubisoft invading Hollywood's turf". Los Angeles Times. http://latimesblogs.latimes.com/entertainmentnewsbuzz/2009/07/video-game-publishers-microsoft-ubisoft-invading-hollywoods-turf.html. Retrieved 2009-07-22. 
  2. ^ a b c Hryb, Larry (2009-12-09). "Show #343: Interviews with members of 343 Industries about Halo and more". Major Nelson Radio. http://www.majornelson.com/archive/2009/12/09/show-343-interviews-with-some-of-the-343-team-about-halo-and-more.aspx. Retrieved 2009-12-09. 
  3. ^ Fritz, Ben (2009-07-23). "Video game companies move onto Hollywood's turf". Los Angeles Times: p. 2. http://articles.latimes.com/2009/jul/23/business/fi-ct-videogames23?pg=2. Retrieved 2009-12-27. 
  4. ^ a b "Frankie's Halo Legends Q&A Session". Halo.Bungie.Org. 2009-07-23. http://nikon.bungie.org/misc/frankie_legends_qa.html. Retrieved 2010-01-23. 
  5. ^ Kolan, Patrick (2010-03-01). "Halo Interview: Legends, Movies and the Next Six Years". IGN. pp. 1–2. http://xbox360.ign.com/articles/107/1073289p2.html. Retrieved 2010-03-02. 
  6. ^ "Interview With Hiroshi Yamazaki". Fancoredaily.com. http://fancoredaily.com/?p=1381. Retrieved 2010-02-14. 
  7. ^ "Microsoft and Warner Brothers tap Seraphim Digital Studios (formerly ADV Studios) for Halo Legends English Adaptation". SXAniMedia. http://www.sxanimedia.com/2009/11/microsoft-and-warner-brothers-tap.html. Retrieved 2009-11-05. 
  8. ^ "Former ADV Dubbing Studio Voices Halo Legends Project". Anime News Network. http://www.animenewsnetwork.com/news/2009-11-06/former-adv-dubbing-studio-voices-halo-legends-project. Retrieved 2009-11-08. 
  9. ^ "Halo Legends Voice Cast Announcement". SXAniMedia. http://www.sxanimedia.com/2010/02/halo-legends-complete-english-and.html. Retrieved 2010-02-03. 
  10. ^ Goldstein, Hilary; Erik Brudvig (2009-07-23). "SDCC 09: Halo Panel Live Blog". IGN. http://xbox360.ign.com/articles/100/1006627p1.html. Retrieved 2009-07-24. 
  11. ^ Sinclair, Brendan (2010-01-07). "Halo Legends slips to Feb. 16". Gamespot. http://www.gamespot.com/news/6245077.html?sid=6245077&part=rss&subj=6245077. Retrieved 2010-01-25. 
  12. ^ White, Cindy (2010-02-05). "IGN Presents Halo Legends Premiere". IGN. http://bluray.ign.com/articles/106/1067221p1.html. Retrieved 2010-02-08. 

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