Clone is a short animated film that was created for BRAWL 2017, but was not completed in time for the deadline. The film introduces the character of Mark Walker and begins to dabble in the questions set up in Solarum.
"Stop it! Stop it! You're ruining everything!"
The film begins with two friends, Mark Walker and Dominik Dirkse, finishing up dinner as they talk about Mark's upcoming move. Mark Walker says that, since he's been accepted to the police academy in Anchorage, Alaska, he's going to be leaving his home in Billings, Montana. Dominik wishes him the best and leaves Mark's house.
As Dominik walks down the street, a Solarum Industries truck whisks past him before crashing into a mailbox. While the driver inspects the truck and the cargo within, Dominik takes a closer look. However, the driver spots Dominik and uses a ray gun to zap Dominik with an electrified beam of Maelstrom, evaporating Dominik. Before the worker can return to the truck, the experimental cargo ruptures, shooting a beam at Mark's house. The driver ducks for cover.
Back inside his house, Mark finishes taking a shower when he hears his treadmill running. Stepping out into his living room, Mark discovers a copy of himself running on the treadmill, a sight that scares both of them. Recovering from the shock, both Marks study each other, trying to figure out what happened.
Just then, a massive spotlight shines through the front window, blinding both Marks. Solarum troopers have surrounded the house, with one breaking in and zapping the clone of Mark. Just as Mark is about to be zapped, Cromwell Powell steps inside, assuring that Mark has a place in Solarum Industries' plans.
One month later at the police academy, Mark is exercising when he looks out a window and sees Cromwell Powell speak to one of his instructors.
Sometimes, Mustache Maniacs Film Co. movies are made with the intention of adapting a LEGO theme, some are made as an assignment, and some exist to explore an interesting original idea.
Clone was born from none of these. Instead, the earliest version of the film was based on a discussion that was held on one episode of The TTV Podcast, where the cast members discussed what would happen if they ever were cloned. Most agreed that they could not coexist with a clone of themselves, something that was explored in the early drafts of this film's script. However, drafts of this version of the film were looked down upon by studio executives, as they felt that the clones turning against one another was too forced and didn't mesh with the characters.
On June 19, 2017, it was announced that Mustache Maniacs Film Co. would be entering BRAWL 2017, with the entry being released on July 7, 2017, one week after the contest had ended. The announcement included some vague details about the film in terms of what technology would be used, such as mouth animation. Then on June 25, 2017, it was announced that the film in question would be titled Clone and that four new characters had opened for auditions.
The film itself was completed with a fairly uneventful production over the course of four days, with the extra time being used to edit the film and add a plethora of special effects, including the aforementioned mouth animation. The film was completed for the BRAWL deadline on June 31, 2017, but due to rendering times and a misunderstanding in the hour of completion, Clone was submitted 21 minutes too late for the competition, thus disqualifying it. The film was released publicly one week later on July 7, 2017.
While the film didn't get much attention, those who saw the film praised it for its special effects and darker atmosphere, as well as the integration of Solarum Industries in a more interesting way. A sequel, The Pen, was released in 2019.
- Dominik Dirkse (geekysonic)
- Mark Walker (shebeblythegreat)
- Solarum Worker (geekysonic)
- Solarum Trooper (geekysonic)
- Cromwell Powell (Andrew Bermudez)
- Billings, Montana
- Anchorage Police Academy
- Andrew Bermudez - Director, Writer, Producer, Animator, Editor, Voice Actor, Composer
- Teresa Bermudez - Assistant Writer, Story Adviser
- shebeblythegreat - Voice Actor
- geekysonic - Voice Actor
"Stop it! Stop it! You're ruining everything!"
Clone contains examples of the following tropes.
- Applied Phlebotinum: When the generator in the back of the truck malfunctions, it shoots out a beam at Mark Walker's house...and somehow clones him into two people.
- Artificial Human: The clone of Mark Walker is sort of this.
- Corrupt Corporate Executive: The character of Cromwell Powell.
- Darker and Edgier: While even Solarum was somewhat upbeat in its tone, this film decidedly takes Project U down a darker road for later films.
- Disintegrator Ray: Both the Solarum Worker and Solarum Trooper use these in the film.
- Extradimensional Power Source: The device in the truck, according to the official canon, is a generator that is self-powering. It's never stated where the extra power comes from, but it is implied to be this.
- Magic Pants: It's a weird variation in that size change isn't involved, but Mark Walker was cloned while in the shower. This is fine, except for the fact that his clone is wearing swim trunks. This makes no sense, since Mark would have been naked when he was cloned. Thus, this trope comes into play.
- No Body Left Behind: When both Dominik and Mark's clone are zapped, they disappear into a Maelstrom cloud, which then dissipates their bodies. The official canon states that the ray guns teleport the bodies to Dimension 525, where they are corrupted into stromlings and start attacking the Nexus Force.
- The Stinger: After the end credits, Mark Walker is seen at the Anchorage Police Academy while Cromwell Powell talks to one of his instructors.
- Shirtless Scene: As explained by the fact that he was cloned while in the shower, Mark Walker's clone appears shirtless throughout his entire appearance in the film.
- Super Window Jump: The Solarum Trooper enters Mark's house by smashing through the window.
- Take Our Word for It: What is that device inside the truck? What does it do? Why does it clone Mark Walker? The film never says, though the official canon states that it's a highly unstable, experimental self-powering generator (though this quite frankly still doesn't answer many of these questions).
- This is the first film to explicitly show that Cromwell Powell is actually evil.
- This is the first Mustache Maniacs Film Co. narrative film to feature full mouth animation.
- For the house interior, an entire house interior set was built that includes all of the rooms seen in the film. This was done to create a more believable layout.