A long time ago, we used to be friends with a whip-smart teen sleuth named Veronica Mars. And now, thanks to a historic Kickstarter campaign, Mars is back in Neptune — this time on the big screen. In this week’s cover story, star Kristen Bell and creator Rob Thomas take EW along for the roller-coaster revival of the beloved cult TV series. Just a year ago, a big-screen revival of Veronica Mars was still a pipe dream. But after a groundbreaking and breakneck turn of events, on March 14 it will be a dream come true for tens of thousands of fans that made it come true by donating $5.7 million last spring to a Kickstarter campaign — organized by Mars creator Rob Thomas — to finance the revival they’ve wanted since The CW canceled the series in 2007. Even Veronica is pinching herself. “Never before have we had a platform that allows people to engage us and tell us what they want,” Kristen Bell told EW when we visited the set of the movie last summer. “We said, ‘Guys! Maybe we’re crazy, but we really want to do it again. Do you?’ And they answered!” Adds Thomas, “We’re guinea pigs for a whole new model of filmmaking. It would be nice to be a success.” READ FULL STORY
Tag: Kickstarter (1-10 of 12)
A single Jane Austen fan in possession of a computer must be in want of an MMORPG.
In today’s most entertaining bit of brilliant-or-bonkers, a new online role-playing game set in the virtual world of Jane Austen has reached its Kickstarter goal. Creator Judy L. Tyrer’s playable period piece Ever, Jane reached $109,563 of its $100,000 goal yesterday, with the help of 1,600 backers eager to increase their Bow and Curtsy skill or level up in Piano-Forte.
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The latest big name to come to the defense of Spike Lee’s crowdfunded project for The Newest Hottest Spike Lee Joint is the actual website that hosted his cash-raising efforts, Kickstarter. The company posted a defense of the director on their blog on Aug. 19 after Lee began amassing criticism accusing him of abusing the crowdfunding platform and hurting the success of lesser-known projects.
The day after This Is the End became the biggest comedy of the weekend, James Franco appealed to his fans to help secure financing for the latest of his more personal artistic endeavors. The renaissance man launched an Indiegogo campaign to raise $500,000 so he can adapt 10 short stories from his 2010 collection, Palo Alto, into three feature films. The stories are fictionalized tales that echo Franco’s own “coming of age” experiences growing up in the Bay Area, and he’s selected a quartet of promising NYU-educated filmmakers to bring them to the big screen. “I’m putting money into these projects because I believe in them, I believe in these filmmakers,” Franco says in the video appeal (which can be viewed below). “We just need a little bit more help.”
Half a million dollars isn’t much to make one film, much less three, but it’s currently unclear how much Franco himself is investing in the movies. (A representative for Franco did not immediately respond to EW’s request for clarification.)
One perk, though, of using Indiegogo’s Flexible Funding campaign, rather than an option like Kickstarter, is that Franco’s team will keep whatever monies are raised, even if they don’t reach their goal in 30 days. If there are ultimately any profits from the films’ sales, Franco intends to give 100 percent of them to Art of Elysium, a nonprofit he works with that unites actors, artists and musicians with sick children.
But it might not just be Franco-philes or dedicated patrons of indie cinema who ultimately make these films a reality; for just $5,000, you can be one of 15 backers who land a speaking role in one of the movies. So far, Franco has raised $25,720 — and gained one cast member — with 30 days remaining.
Watch Franco’s video below:
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The British Broadcasting Corporation sat down with the three leads from The Hangover franchise and talked about Kickstarter. This matters for two reasons: 1) The premiere online crowd-funding platform is amidst a complicated cultural moment — good for Zach Braff and Veronica Mars; bad for everyone else — requiring more discussion, not less; and 2) Bradley Cooper has no idea what Kickstarter is. To be fair, he’s an actor. Acting is his job. Knowing about stuff, or stuff.com, is not.
Rob Ford is the mayor of Toronto, Canada’s largest city. But he’s about to be better known — at least in the United States — for something else. According to Gawker editor John Cook, there is a video of Ford smoking crack cocaine, Marion Barry style. The cellphone video is being shopped — get this, by Somali drug dealers — to media outlets, but thus far, no one has met their six-figure asking price.
This is where you come in.
In the spirit of Zach Braff and Veronica Mars, Gawker is crowdsourcing an effort to purchase the video — Kickstarter style — so that everyone can view Ford’s disgrace on its website. READ FULL STORY
Producer Brian Grazer, and his company Imagine Entertainment, would very much like to crowd-fund the long-rumored Friday Night Lights movie. (The series, itself adapted from a film, ran for five seasons on NBC, ending in 2011.) “We made a terrific feature with Pete Berg, turned it into a terrific TV series and will now make a movie from that series. I’m not sure such a thing has been done before,” Grazer told Deadline. Grazer is out of the country and unavailable for comment, though Imagine told us that while discussions are ongoing, there are no plans yet.
Teenage witch Sabrina Spellman can solve almost any problem with good, old-fashioned pluck and a wave of her magic pointer finger… but she can’t make millions of dollars appear out of thin air.
On Monday, Melissa Joan Hart — the ’90s star best known for playing both Sabrina and sassy Clarissa Darling on two eponymous sitcoms — officially ended her attempt to fund a movie called Darci’s Walk of Shame via Kickstarter. Hart wanted to raise $2 million over the course of about a month; by the end of the campaign, she had rustled up only $51,605 from 315 backers.
Yipes. It’s one thing to fall short of a fundraising goal — but it’s quite another to raise just 2.5 percent of that goal. Given the smashing success of the Veronica Mars movie and Zach Braff’s Garden State followup — two other nostalgia-fueled projects that quickly raised and exceeded their own $2 million goals on Kickstarter — why did Darci’s Walk of Shame fail so spectacularly?
Among the projects that have recently launched campaigns on the crowdfunding site Kickstarter are an animated short called Samurai Chinchilla, a low-budget zombie film called I Am Alone, and a short film called Necrophilia: A Love Story, which is about exactly what it sounds like. But odds are you haven’t heard of any of those. What you probably have heard is that actor Zach Braff—inspired by the wildly successful Kickstarter campaign to fund a Veronica Mars movie—just raised nearly $2.5 million on the site in a few days to direct a follow-up to his 2004 movie, Garden State, titled Wish I Was Here. Such is the power of celebrity. READ FULL STORY
There are fans, and then there are stans — the rabid zealots who spend 12 months creating detailed replicas of a fantasy world out of Legos, or those who make it their mission to cook every single food mentioned in their favorite series, or who camp outside for hours in a blizzard in hopes of maybe getting a ticket to see the object of their devotion perform.
Steven Dengler, the man who pledged $10,000 to Rob Thomas’s Veronica Mars movie on Kickstater today, is… not one of those people, at least where Veronica is concerned. “I’m not a superfan in the sense of knowing every line from every episode or anything like that,” he told EW during a phone interview this afternoon. “In fact,” he continued, “if you put me in with your average group of superfans, I’d probably get bounced pretty quickly… I would call myself a small-f ‘fan’ of the series.” READ FULL STORY
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