UPGRADE REQUIRED

By David HEWLETT, Jane LOUGHMAN

MONKEYS & PARROTS - as PROD

Documentary - Development 2018

"Upgrade Required" is a documentary that follows the online exploits of an incredible young man with a devastating neuromuscular disease, exploring a future that will see disabilities such as his rendered obsolete by technology.  

    • Year of production
    • 2018
    • Genres
    • Documentary, Science-fiction, Social issues
    • Countries
    • CANADA
    • Languages
    • ENGLISH
    • Budget
    • 0.6 - 1 M$
    • Duration
    • 90 mn
    • Director(s)
    • David HEWLETT, Jane LOUGHMAN
    • Writer(s)
    • David HEWLETT, Jane LOUGHMAN
    • Producer(s)
    • Jane LOUGHMAN (Monkeys & Parrots)
    • Synopsis
    • “I may have a disability but otherwise I am just human, and that is not enough anymore. An upgrade is required.”

      Upgrade Required is a documentary that follows the online exploits of an incredible young man with a devastating neuromuscular disease, exploring a future that will see disabilities such as his rendered obsolete by technology.  

      The driving force behind this quest is Quinton a highly intelligent and ambitious 21 year-old with Spinal Muscular Atrophy type 2. SMA type 2 is a degenerative neuromuscular disease that has weakened Q's musculoskeletal system to such an extent that he can now only barely move his fingers. But as the extraordinarily resilient Q sees it, those fingers can still move a mouse, and thus they can change his world. From a bed in the basement of his parents house on Vancouver island, Q harnesses the immense reach of the YouTube community and the Internet itself, to confer, contribute and collaborate with our planet’s best scientists, engineers, biohackers and robotics experts. You see, Q is not content to merely survive this brutal disease and endure the severe physical limitations it has forced on him. Q wants to be a cyborg... and thanks to YouTube and the Internet, that’s what he’s going to become!

      Q’s quest serves as the jumping off point for Upgrade Required’s exploration of the radically different approaches and technologies, as well as the potential benefits and dangers inherent in bionics and human enhancement.

      Current advances are the stuff of Science Fiction, a huge inspiration for Q. He consumes the genre in every form from books to television and film, with the same voracity as the volumes of scientific textbooks and papers that help him put his inspiration into action. Science Fiction and the YouTube community brought filmmaker David Hewlett and Q together in the first place. Thus Upgrade Required is a “SciFi”-styled documentary that utilizes the same visual effects artistry and technologies Q so loves, to help us tell his story. We will use these techniques to explain and explore the medicine, biology and technology necessary to capture Q’s vision of the future. The film will make the most of the incredible talents of today’s Visual Effects artists and graphic designers to bring Q’s visions of his future, to life.

      Join us as we follow Q and his incredible strength, enthusiasm and resilience, on his inspirational quest to become something more than human. A quest to eliminate his disabilities through technology, and to gain the mobility and freedom that so many of us take for granted.
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