Phoenix Wright Reenactment of Alex Jones Trial
After watching a clip from the insane Alex Jones Cross trial, I thought it would be funny to make a Phoenix Wright reenactment.
Unfortunately, by the time I had a chance to make this, I had been beaten to the punch. However, it was still fun to make. Here’s my version.
I originally saw the clip on a humorous legal edutainment Youtube channel Legal Eagle. What was nice was that this video had a manually generated transcript, including the clips from the trial. I was able to copy that from Youtube and make my own “script”.
With the dialogue in a usable form, I needed to figure out how I wanted to do the animation. For the most flexible results I could have manually edited the sprites in a generic video editor, but I didn’t have the time for that. This Wiki https://aceattorney.fandom.com/wiki/List_of_Ace_Attorney_case_makers has a pretty good list of some of the tools people made for doing this very thing. They vary a lot in features and some are more focussed on being able to make actual games. I ended up choosing https://objection.lol/maker since it had the right balance of features and ease of use for my taste.
I was now faced with the data entry challenge of copying my script into the objection.lol GUI. As a programmer I of course balked at this and wrote a program to do it instead. objection.lol is pretty slick and actually has a lot in common with the Card Conjurer site I used to make my custom magic card deck. objection.lol has a import/export function that saves your “trial” to your local machine. However, it slightly obfuscates it’s format by converting it with base64 encoding. I literally just copied and pasted the text from the saved file into https://www.rapidtables.com/web/tools/base64-decode.html to see that it was a fairly straightforward JSON format.
I made a simple script to generate the JSON for the frames from my transcript: https://gist.github.com/axlan/426bf6cf54cb07629af6651a5bfc94c8. This inserts the characters I chose for each of the “actors” along with their name and their dialogue.
I could have automated the base64 decode, JSON update, base64 encode, but this was a one off so I just manually updated and encoded the files.
With this imported into objection.lol. I was able to manually set the poses, music, actions, pauses, etc.
The only additional step I took outside of the GUI was to make the “evidence” to be presented as pop ups in the trial. I took screenshots of the evidence from the original video and fit them in pixilated boarders:
Once I was done, I just submitted my case and generated the video.
Here’s my shared result on objection.lol: https://objection.lol/objection/4165720