Schmovie, taking a play on words to a whole new level
Auburn alumnus Bryan Wilson and his wife, Sara Farber, created Schmovie, a board game that can be played at a family function or a college party.
In 2010, Wilson and Farber started the company, Galactic Sneeze, on the third anniversary of their first date.
"Galactic Sneeze is a Brooklyn-based fun-stuff think tank," Wilson said. "We invent toys and games and intellectual properties, then work to partner with other companies to help bring those to life."
Farber said they pitch their ideas to larger companies, or simply make the inventions themselves.
Wilson graduated from Auburn in 1998, and Farber graduated from Johns Hopkins University in 1996. In February 2011, Wilson and Farber began developing Schmovie.
"We ran the Facebook play-along version of the game for about a year and a half before launching the physical game," Farber said. "It was a great way to build buzz and test out some aspects of the game with a broad audience."
Farber said they received more than 30,000 Schmovie titles from fans. Schmovie is designed for ages 13 and up, and can include three or more players.
"Every round, one person is the Schmovie producer and they roll a genre die and figure out what the movie's going to be about," Wilson said.
The die has six different sides: sci-fi, horror, rom-com, drama, action and producer's choice. For producer's choice, the ruling producer at the time gets to pick the genre.
The next step is picking two premise cards. One deck of cards will tell the players who the movie is about, and the other deck tells the players what the movie is about.
"Then, all the other players have wipe-off boards and they write down titles for what they would call that Schmovie," Wilson said. "The Schmovie producer collects all of the cards, all the titles, shuffles them up so it's anonymous, reads them aloud and hilarity ensues."
The producer picks their favorite Schmovie title and gives that player a Schquid trophy. Wilson said the first person to collect four Schquids wins the game.
"In the movie business, you do something good, you get a gold trophy," Bryan Wilson said. "In the Schmovie business you get a gold trophy with wings and tentacles and maybe a top hat."
"Schmovie is unusual in that it just relies on the creativity of the players," said Bob, Bryan Wilson's father. "Every game is a little different."
Schmovie is available on Amazon, and select stores around the country. Bryan said that they are trying to get Schmovie to come to Auburn. Bryan said Schmovie works for different target audiences because it's great for kids and adults.
"If you ask an 8-year-old to give you the name of a movie about a smelly ninja, they've got a dozen names for movies." Bryan said. "If you're playing it with your college friends and you've had a few drinks, it can get as creative and as X-rated as the players want it to be."
Bob Wilson said his favorite part of the game is the ideas that people come up with, especially the kids.
Farber and Wilson run Galactic Sneeze out of their home in Brooklyn, N.Y., where they live with their 2-year-old daughter, Sadie.
For more information about Galactic Sneeze and Schmovie, go to GalacticSneeze.com.