The idea of Wastelander Panda was conceived by Victoria Cocks and Marcus McKenzie during a university lecture. A joke at first, the concept became more serious over time, and they began to entertain the idea of a TV series.
Victoria, a first time writer/director, teamed up with Producer Kirsty Stark and DOP Vivyan Madigan at Epic Films to develop the concept further. Hoping to one day make a full-length Wastelander Panda TV series, they decided to start small, making a three minute Prologue to test the idea.
On January 24th, 2012, the Wastelander Panda Prologue was released online.
Within three days, the Prologue had over 100,000 views and had been seen in 150 countries around the world. Harnessing this success, and with amazing support from fans, the team then developed three new Wastelander Panda web chronicles, designed to be released as part of an interactive website.
Some of the team’s highlights and achievements so far have included:
- Raising over $25,000 in a Pozible crowdfunding campaign, thanks to 353 amazing supporters.
- Being funded by the South Australian Film Corporation, making them the first project in Australia to be funded by a government screen agency based on the backing of an online ‘market,’ rather than a traditional broadcaster or distributor.
- Meeting Wastelander Panda fans at AVCon, the Adelaide Tropfest screening and the Garden of Unearthly Delights.
- Having Gearbox Software include an easter egg of Arcayus in Borderlands 2, with Gearbox CEO Randy Pitchford then mentioning Wastelander Panda in Game Informer.
- Shooting three new Wastelander Panda films over 17 days in November 2012, in Adelaide and the Flinders Ranges.
- Being invited to attend SXSW in March 2013 to present a panel about the story world and online strategies behind Wastelander Panda, after huge support from our fans during the Panel Picker process.
From this point forward, the team’s goal is to continue making more Wastelander Panda. They currently have outlines drafted for an extended web series, as well as a full-length, one hour TV series.
They would love to tell the entire story, and hope that you’ll want to see more too. If you loved the episodes, please take the time to share them with friends.