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My name is Mark Ross and I am the director of Curse of the Phantom Shadow. It was my childhood dream to shoot an old school action adventure film that paid homage to the source material of Indiana Jones and Star Wars. As a kid who grew up in the 1970s and 1980s I was a huge Star Wars and Indiana Jones fan.

I spent a significant part of my formative years reading such magazines as: Starlog, Cinefastique,  Fangoria, CineMagic, Cinefex, Filmfax, and Famous Monsters of Filmland. 

My father was a 16mm film collector. I used to go with him to film auctions. He and I used to wait impatiently for the newest issue of Film Collector's World to arrive. As a kid I was exposed to a ton of vintage Hollywood movies. (Hence my affinity for all things retro.)  I am pretty sure I was the only 7 year old on the block who knew who the Andrew Sisters were.

When I was about 8 years old, my dad gave me my first movie camera, a Sanyo Super 8mm. My dad wasn't just a film collector, but a former cinematographer for a major East Coast University and a home movie fanatic. By the time I was in the 4th grade my dad taught me not only how to hold a camera and shoot footage, but how to do stop motion animation.  I spent countless hours in our basement animating Star Wars figures, Star Trek figures, soda bottles, Legos, etc. I was just like one of the kids in the JJ Abrams movie, Super 8.

In my elementary school mindset I believed I was making the next major epic blockbuster. The reality of it was that I spent a lot of allowance money on grainy jerky animation that was barely viewable by family. LOL. The memories were the real treasure.

Curse of the Phantom Shadow is my homage to:

 

  • Dick Tracy

  • Batman

  • Spy Smasher

  • Flash Gordon

  • Buck Rogers

  • The Phantom

  • The Shadow

  • Republic Movie Serials

  • Captain Midnight

  • Pulp magazines of the 1930s, and 1940s

  • Comic Books

  • Radio Dramas

  • Little Big Books

  • Secret Decoder Badges

  • Pinup Girls

Both George Lucas, and Steven Spielberg used these items as source material for Star Wars and Indiana Jones. Additionally, I love comic books, and I always wanted to invent my own comic book character. (Who here, besides me, remembers Condorman? LOL)

Curse of the Phantom Shadow has been my six year attempt to create a pilot/concept film for a potential television series or film trilogy. Over the last six years, I have often worked without a crew, and built numerous custom props in order to realize my childhood dream.