We’ve individually introduced our principal cast members: Karrie Shirou, Ariel
Hancock, Paul Birchard, Lex Quarterman, Veronika Kurshinskaya, and
William Roberts, as well as pilot episode guest star Sergei Oleinik.
These are joined by a number of other very talented cast members in the pilot episode:
Melodee M. Spevack
Melodee is well known in the anime and SF fan community, so this part probably
qualifies as a “cameo” performance. She’s the one doing the storybook
intro narration in the prolog — as Georgiana Lerner relating the story
in much later life. And she does it brilliantly. We wanted to get a very
particular feeling for this archetypal storybook style — this is
really a prolog for the entire series. It also establishes an important
story fact — however bad things get, we know they made it to tell the
We had originally planned for this to be the only narration
in the show, but she’s so good, it makes me wonder if we should rewrite
a little so we can ask her to come back and do some more!
Karen is actually playing a named character – Communications Technician Tina
Harris, USAF – from Iridium Station. In this episode, she’s just a voice
over the radio, but we’ll get to know her better in episode 3,
“Cyborg”, and probably some later episodes as well. She really gets the
tone exactly right for this part. We found Karen through the Texas Film
Sophie Le Neveu
Sophie plays a couple of different roles in the pilot episode. She’s the talk show
host and one of the “Street Interview Women” in the media montage. Sophie is
originally from Britain, though she lives in the USA today.
Jami works as an actress and voice-over artist in Ohio, but also as a
high-school science teacher. She’s been very enthusiastic about our
project because of the accurate space technology and science. I’m hoping
she’ll be able to share Lunatics! with her students before too long.
Kristina is a recent emigre from Russia, now living in Los Angeles. She
plays the part of the space suit technician that helps Georgiana and
Hiromi at Baikonur.
Miki is the voice of the Japanese reporter in the press conference scene (in
both Japanese and English versions). She’s also, very importantly, the
one responsible for translating Hiromi’s lines in that scene into
David is a fellow filmmaker, directing his own project, “ZHackers” — a story
about geeks fighting zombies on the University of Illinois campus. He’s
also a pretty talented Python programmer involved in the Novacut
video-editor project. In our production, he provides voices for one of
the talk-show guests, and also “Astronaut #3” (the one busy with the
tablet computer the whole time).
Nadezhda Dmitrieva and Shamil Aminov
Nadezhda and Shamil were actually cast and recorded by Konstantin Dmitriev, best
known for “Morevna Project”. So I don’t really know them, but they did a
very good job on these couple of lines in Russian, as the mother and
son passing through the train in Kazakhstan (at one point we did
consider doing these lines in Kazakh, but opted for Russian as a easier
and still plausible choice).
Terry Hancock, Janet Hancock, Sylvan Hancock, and Nicholas Hancock
Lastly of course, I filled in a few lines myself, and also drafted my mother
and two sons to do a few one-liners that we hadn’t managed to fill yet.
As the Space Station controller voice, I got to reach deep into my roots
to produce the sort of genuine Texas accent I’ve otherwise spent many
years losing by watching British TV and moving to California for awhile.
Janet (my mother) is one of the street interview voices. Sylvan is
Astronaut #1 (the irritable one) and Nicholas is the boy on the street
who also wants to go into space.
And that’s the full cast we assembled to finish the voice recording for
“No Children in Space”, which has a lot of smaller parts due to all of the
traveling that it covers. I’m very pleased with the results we were able to achieve —
aside from a few small quibbles, I think we’re done with this part, and
that’s why we’re crowd-funding mainly to do the animation so we can
match this great voice work!