Explore what lies behind reality — on the cheap!

Edward wasn’t able to make it to the convention due to illness and Leopoldo had no interest in participating a second time, so it was left to me and Adam Buckner to pull off the filmmaking workshop this year. We were all set to go with another idea (which I’ve since forgotten) when someone suggested doing a parody of The Matrix. I couldn’t resist. Edward’s wife Katrina agreed to play “Zero” (our version of Keanu Reeves’ Neo), and Janet Borkowski would be “Amorphous” because she looks nothing like Laurence Fishburn. Rounding out the cast was my roommate at the time, Erik Prill, as Agent Jones.

Friday night at the convention, I sat in our hotel room and rewatched The Matrix on the in-house video to come up with material to use. Ten minutes before we were to begin shooting on Saturday morning, I had my wife Kate Waterous take notes as I dictated the entire script. Adam did a great job directing, and we quickly moved from location to location to film the spoof. In our version of The Matricks, Zero drinks from a red Coke can (instead of a blue Pepsi can) and finds out from Amorphous that all of fandom is a construct by evil computers to enslave humanity. There’s even a revelation of the truth about chocolate ice cream! Eventually, Zero and Agent Jones fight it out, sadly without the multi-million dollar budget afforded the Wachowski brothers on their epic (the bullets here are on a stick and the actors have to freeze in place as the camera whirls around them). For a second time, scheduling forced us to shoot the entire movie “in camera” with no editing, although later we did add some music and sound effects.


  • Zero: Katrina Martin
  • Amorphous: Janet Borkowski
  • Agent Jones: Erik Prill


  • Produced by Adam Buckner, Ryan K. Johnson, and Brian D. Oberquell
  • Directed by Adam Buckner
  • Written & Photographed by Ryan K. Johnson.
  • Post-production audio by Erik Prill