A STORY OF BIONIC FANDOM
A documentary filmmaker with a real bionic eye goes on a mission to find out how the 70’s TV show about a cyborg, The Six Million Dollar Man, changed science fiction and cybernetics forever.
THE BIONIC FAN
I, BIONIC is is an exciting, original documentary to be produced in conjunction with the release of the upcoming feature film, The Six Billion Dollar Man, starring Mark Wahlberg.
Rob eventually created the world’s first and only prosthetic eye-camera with a team of engineers…and now they call him Eyeborg. Armed with his proof-is-in-the-pudding cybernetic eye, Rob examines the impact his favourite childhood TV show has had on today’s TV series, movies, and real life cyborg technology.
I, Bionic is a fun, high-tech doc with celebrities, filmmakers, writers, producers, engineers, cyberneticists, and cyborgs revealing how the "Bionic Man" inspired them as well.
When Rob Spence lost his right eye from a childhood shotgun accident he was determined to replace it with a bionic eye just like his hero, Colonel Steve Austin, the main character from The Six Million Dollar Man. Steve was an elite test pilot who crashed an experimental jet and lost both legs, one arm and, of course, one eye. They would rebuild him into a superhero cyborg.
I, Bionic is a companion piece for The Six Billion Dollar Man. It takes a true story and seamlessly interweaves its roots in the upcoming feature film. By design it supports the film and provides associated buzzworthy content.
A big part of the story is Mark Wahlberg, the driving force behind the reboot, who may be the biggest Bionic Fan of them all. This is a well known passion project for him and, like Rob, the show obviously had a huge influence on him.
The narrative will unfold to organically include behind-the-scenes moments and clips from the film, interviews with the stars and filmmakers, as well as clips from the original TV series and discussions with its cast and crew. Additionally, it will all be grounded in fun cultural references, celebrity influences, top-of-their-field scientific perspectives and first looks behind cutting edge tech.
It follows the experiential journey of a boy’s enduring fandom, and unveils how it became the inspiration for a filmmaker with a camera eye and so many others.
Science Fiction Influence
The Six Million Dollar Man is credited as the first show to cement the superhero as a legitimate dramatic genre that has exploded in recent years. Previously, the “Zap! Pow!” tone of the 1960’s Batman TV show was the prevailing style.
The Bionic Man continues to directly and indirectly inspire a proliferation of cyborg and superhero content across all entertainment. From Darth Vader and the Terminator to Iron Man, Ghost in the Shell, and Cyborg, bionic characters in film, tv, comic books and video games are on the rise.
We meet and interview stars, producers, and directors influenced by the series. For example, Steven E. de Souza (Die Hard writer) was a writer for the 70's TV series who talks about its role in his career. And did you know Sandra Bullock was the bionic girl? There are endless interview possibilities of big names in Hollywood.
Mark Wahlberg & Lee Majors
The Steve Austins! Also TBD - actors from the feature film reboot.
Lindsay Wagner & Sandra Bullock
The Bionic Woman, and The Bionic Girl. Yes, Sandra was the bionic girl!
William Shatner & George Takei
These Star Trek icons were bionic guest stars and are great commentators on science fiction’s relationship with science.
Hugh Herr has designed replacement limbs for himself and others. In 2011, Time Magazine called him the “Leader of the Bionic Age”. As a fellow cyborg, Rob has an open invitation to visit him at his lab.
Steve Austin had his legs, an arm, and an eye replaced with super-powered cybernetics. Rob provides a survey of this bionic tech today by meeting with cyberneticists and cyborg friends. Things are moving quickly and this is a fascinating topic on its own that Rob is very familiar with. He asks his cyborg peers how much influence the show had on them. (Hint: A lot).
The doc will take a look at what is possible in the future as well. These ideas can likely use clips from the movie to illustrate what may be possible.
Missing both of his legs, Hugh Herr heads the Biomechatronic group at MIT. He has designed replacement limbs for himself and others and is at the forefront of neuro or “mind control” prosthetics. In 2011, Time Magazine called him the “Leader of the Bionic Age”. Rob has an open invitation to visit him at his lab.
Cornell professor and founder of Bionic Sight, where they are developing a device that can help blind people see by communicating with the brain in its own language. She and her team are very close to starting the first clinical trial (expected to start this summer). Rob has an offer to meet with her.
Co-founder of Open Bionics creating the Hero Arm, customized 3D printed prosthetic arms for children at a fraction of the cost of traditional prosthetics. 2018 honoree of MIT’s innovators under 35, Open Bionics is committed to providing their code on an accessible open source basis. Rob knows her from the cyborg world.
Smart guy superstar who is leading the pack on the Bionic Brain tech with his company Neural Lace. Elon feels that to keep to up with Artificial Intelligence - we need to become part machine ourselves.
Unique in the world, Rob’s wireless camera eye was a Time Magazine Top 50 invention. He was the subject of an episode of Showtime's Dark Net documentary series and he’s also been on the front page of Reddit twice - most recently in 2017 via a Vice article. He has accumulated 30+ Million video hits on different Facebook sites like Mashable, George Takei, Futurism and Lad Bible, he has done two Ted Talks on the topic of cyborgs (TEDxToronto and TEDxBrussels) and has been featured on the Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon. He currently works as a director/producer/editor at a content marketing agency in Toronto called Group SJR and spearheads the Eyeborg Project, an initiative to bring high-tech prosthetic eyes to one-eyed people everywhere.
Rob made the viral hit film called Deus Ex: The Eyeborg Documentary (over a million hits) to help video game publisher Square Enix market their award winning cyborg video game Deus Ex: Human Revolution. It was a runner up for a Webby award in the best branded video content category.