Halo: Landfall was a group of three short live action films created in collaboration with Bungie Studios, Neill Blomkamp, Weta Digital, and Origami Digital LLC. These films were the Halo franchise's first foray into live-action films, followed closely by the "Museum" series of films. These Halo shorts were intended as promotional material for the then-upcoming Halo 3 game, drawing interest to its release.
Kept under tight wraps, the set was announced unexpectedly on July 10, 2007 with the release of the first video, Halo: Arms Race on the front page of Bungie.net. Arms Race featured several shots of characters as well as special effects and set props, but little real action. The film was also shown at E3 2007, and with it came promises of additional shorts.
Arms Race was a live-action trailer that went up with another film one long month later. Combat, released on WETA's website in August 2007, telling the story of two ODSTs fighting off Brutes while trying to retrieve an object - later revealed as a targeting laser - on the battlefield during the Battle of Earth.
A third film, Last One Standing, was released on September 24, just hours before the release of Halo 3. This film was released first on the Discovery Channel's website, as part of their promotion for an unrelated show, Last One Standing. This film continued the story of the two ODSTs in Combat, featuring more weapons, special effects, and live-action combat between the Marines and Brutes. A few Marines are killed, but take many Brutes down with them. It ends with the sight of a fireball descending into the atmosphere, a scene which is also the beginning of Halo 3, which explains how the UNSC was able to predict where John-117's landing would be, as the mission was to affix trajectory on his descent using a laser-guided tracker.
On October 26, 2007, all three films were edited together into one seven-minute mini-movie, and were released simultaneously on Bungie.net and Xbox Live Marketplace. The mini-movie is titled Halo: Landfall.
List of short films
Behind the scenes
The shorts featured fully integrated props and costumes created by WETA Workshop. These included a fully functional M12 Warthog LRV complete with working chain gun, four-wheel drive, and airbags. The props also featured M6G Pistols, BR55HB SR Battle Rifles, an SRS99D-S2 AM Sniper Rifle, and an M41 Rocket Launcher. Additionally, costumes for the projects included two full ODST uniforms and at least half a dozen Marine uniforms (one a Corpsman variant) for actors to wear. It has not been specified how much these cost or what the future plans for them may be.
Currently, many of the props used in the shorts are on display in the lobby of Bungie Studios. On September 2, 2009, Kirkland police were alerted that someone had been seen on the street with an AK-47, and they subsequently investigated the Bungie headquarters. The weapon turned out to be the Sniper Rifle prop that was used in Halo: Landfall.