Error 2000



Error 2000 aka Die Millennium-Katastrophe aka Computer-Crash 2000 aka Apocalypse.com


A prisoner in Berlin, a former employee of the computer corporation that supplied Y2K fixes to 90% of the world’s computers, claims to have initiated a program that will crash those systems one second past midnight of 1999 unless he is given a new trial.

The authorities and his boss defy his claim and stand firm despite the initial failures of computer systems advancing by time zones, including satellites the warden’s yachtswoman wife and daughter are using to navigate bad weather.

As it becomes obvious the prisoner can stop it but insists his demands be met and as more systems fail, pressure mounts for the true culprits behind the murder the extortionist was imprisoned for.

Personal Note

After writing Baltic Storm for them, Top Story asked if I would help with a script they were unhappy with which was already set for production as an Australian/German co-production.

In fact it was ready to start shooting in Australia in 18 days.

They wanted me to rework the material into a stronger story. I did my best, strengthening the characters and beefing up the suspense but surprises on set caused major last minute rewrites, making nonsense out of the dialogue and action.

The original story had been conceived as a prison with open bars, where inmates could see out from their beds. The prison they shot in had solid steel cell doors with a hatch opening controlled from outside. They shot those scenes with minimal changes so the story logic was broken.

I had written that one of the antagonists takes control in one scene by pulling a gun from under her skirt.

These very practical filmmakers went to a lot of trouble to find a holster or something to hold the gun in place while she walked around until finally they abandoned the idea of her having a gun.

Let this be a lesson to filmmakers. Never let reality interfere with filmmaking.

The woman reaches under her skirt. Cut to a reaction shot. Cut back to her with a gun in hand and the audience will accept it without doubt.

The show aired on SAT1 and received some critical acclaim.