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CrastersBabies
03-21-2013, 03:20 AM
Many of you have probably read about the television show, Veronica Mars, successfully obtaining enough fan support (financially) to greenlight a movie.

LINK (http://gawker.com/5990411/1-million-in-less-than-five-hours-fans-propel-veronica-mars-movie-to-record+setting-fundraising-highs)

The site, Kickstarter, has also allowed other creative ventures to happen with fan support, including video games and other multimedia projects.

Is this a gamechanger in terms of funding television series and movies (and perhaps books, comics, music) that might not otherwise see the light of day due to studio gatekeeping?

Where do you think this is going?

jvc
03-21-2013, 03:33 AM
Hmm, perhaps we may see a return of Stargate:SG1. :e2woo:

JimmyB27
03-21-2013, 03:39 AM
Screw Stargate, that had what, 10 seasons? And a whole load of spinoffs. What about Firefly?

shadowwalker
03-21-2013, 05:45 AM
I don't know that much about it, but I guess it would just be another way of getting (and allowing a greater variety of) backers/benefactors/investors. Same methods, different medium, greater results?

Dreity
03-21-2013, 07:32 AM
I think it's a great way to push more "different" stuff to the mainstream awareness. People really do want to see something new. Since indie artists are in the best position to make whatever they want instead of what is "safest", getting funding directly from their target audience helps gives them a head start on developing a loyal fanbase.

I'm mostly familiar with how it's helped the gaming industry and a few niche film production companies. I'd be interested to see how it affects the book industry.

Celia Cyanide
03-21-2013, 07:52 AM
I don't know what I think about this. So far kickstarter hasn't changed much for filmmakers. Veronica Mars already has a fanbase and a means of distribution. Most of us don't. If we get money to make a movie through a crowdfunding website, there isn't much we can do with it. I think the issue re: studio gatekeeping isn't so much about what gets made, but what gets distributed, advertised and seen.

Indie filmmakers having been doing there own thing since before crowdfunding existed. The fact that this movie is going to go somewhere has more to do with the creator and the position he is in than it does with kickstarter.

CrastersBabies
03-21-2013, 07:54 AM
Perhaps, but without a crowd-sourcing platform (and the internet/means to run it), this would all essentially be door-to-door selling.

Unproven artists (especially in the gaming industry as Dreity stated) have met with some pretty interesting success because of Kickstart.

Celia Cyanide
03-21-2013, 08:00 AM
I have yet to see this among indie filmmakers.

Dreity
03-21-2013, 09:10 AM
Dead Gentleman Productions/Zombie Orpheus Entertainment has so far funded a web series and and a full length movie through Kickstarter. They did have a fanbase before they started using Kickstarter, and there are a lot of factors contributing to their success, but I'm pretty sure it increased significantly post-campaigns.

Celia Cyanide
03-21-2013, 09:23 AM
Dead Gentleman Productions/Zombie Orpheus Entertainment has so far funded a web series and and a full length movie through Kickstarter.

What is it? What are they doing with it?

Dreity
03-21-2013, 09:39 AM
Knew I should have added links to my previous post, my bad.

Here's the link to their Kickstarter page for The Gamers: Hands of Fate. (http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/zombieorpheus/the-gamers-hands-of-fate)

And here's the page for season two of JourneyQuest (http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/zombieorpheus/journeyquest-season-2?ref=live).

Celia Cyanide
03-21-2013, 10:22 AM
How is that different than any other kickstarter campaign for film or web series?

CrastersBabies
03-21-2013, 10:57 AM
I don't think anyone is saying that someone can just run out, slap up a kickstart page and get 2 million for a movie (with no reputation, information, or such).

I, for one, think it's great for people who already have a reputation of some kind (for example, the creator of the Birthright D&D world joined up with a video game designer and has a nice kickstart page going to fund a CRPG that they created together).

I just find this whole thing really interesting. I know a filmmaker who put up a live action short on youtube (got close to a million hits) and I'm wondering, "Wow, could this guy potentially get something else funded?" I don't know. That's why I'm asking.

I know there will be doubters or folks who might be sensitive about this topic, but I'm interested in discussing the potential.

Celia Cyanide
03-21-2013, 05:22 PM
What I'm saying is that you can get things funded on Kickstarter and Indiegogo, but that's just the first step. The real problem we face is distribution. Someone might get funding for a project through crowdfuding, but what they really need to do is be able to sell it.

With the technology we have today, films are cheaper than ever to get made. I got something I wrote made through crowdfunding. At $25 a pop, I think it would have been a lot less hassle for me to just save $25 per pay check and fund it myself. Getting things made isn't really the problem we're dealing with.

Shadow_Ferret
03-21-2013, 07:28 PM
For us casual movie goers, I doubt we'll even notice any difference whatsoever.

CrastersBabies
03-21-2013, 07:31 PM
For us casual movie goers, I doubt we'll even notice any difference whatsoever.

I think you're right, Shadow, but I'd love to see it change things in that arena as well. I think the public is continually growing more and more frustrated with how studios are managing the entertainment industry: useless sequels, remakes, ill-conceived ideas. Maybe they'll stand up and start taking note. I don't know.

I'm an admitted idealist about this, I'm hoping. :)

Shadow_Ferret
03-21-2013, 07:34 PM
Where does a movie based on Veronica Mars fit into that list of things currently wrong with the current system? :D

CrastersBabies
03-21-2013, 09:42 PM
Where does a movie based on Veronica Mars fit into that list of things currently wrong with the current system? :D

The studio wasn't going to do it from what I recall. Someone wasn't paying up or moving the ball forward. Probably the same asshats who cancelled Firefly. (haha, kidding! Kinda)

Someone was saying, "Ehhhh, I dunno..."

Then BOOM, the audience speaks.

I wonder if the audience will get any credits on the film, now that I think about it. Like, unpaid producers. =D

Celia Cyanide
03-21-2013, 11:51 PM
The studio wasn't going to do it from what I recall. Someone wasn't paying up or moving the ball forward. Probably the same asshats who cancelled Firefly. (haha, kidding! Kinda)

Someone was saying, "Ehhhh, I dunno..."

Then BOOM, the audience speaks.

I wonder if the audience will get any credits on the film, now that I think about it. Like, unpaid producers. =D

I think what the Ferret meant was that a movie about Veronic Mars does not really qualify as an original idea. (At least that's what I thought of when I read his post) It's based on a TV show, which makes it more of a sequel or remake.

I think it's great that they were able to get the funding and prove there is a market for it. But it doesn't really mean much for indie filmmakers.

ETA: They may get credit, depending on what was included in the packages they purchased when they pledged their money. Lots of indiegogo and kickstarter campaigns do include things like this.

BunnyMaz
03-22-2013, 12:18 AM
I think Kickstarter already has changed entertainment.

Personally, I've added my paltry funds to the Hello Harto video tour, an amazing printed comic book series drawn by a disabled artist who draws with his mouth, a couple of small-scale table-top card games including one recent one I saw thanks to the Nerdfighteria crowd, the fund for a printed book by one of my favourite webcomic artists (I'll give Zoombie three guesses as to who that one is) and to the Tropes VS Women fund.

Outside of entertainment, I've contributed to a fund for a crowdsourced satellite to be launched and anti-rohypnol coatings for drinks glasses.

I've also contributed to the funding of an in-development game by a small development team I love, which wasn't offered on Kickstarter, by saving up and purchasing an alpha version of their game - a move they were inspired to take after seeing how successful crowd-sourced funding through venues like Kickstarter can be.

I think it's fantastic that small developers, designers and creative types can get support for their ideas. There's so much less reliance on big businesses taking on your work.

CrastersBabies
03-22-2013, 01:08 AM
Bunny, you are out there! That is cool. I love this idea of helping people build their dreams. Kind of takes the "it takes a village" deal to another level. And, I imagine you feel a different type of pride when you see the finished product.

BunnyMaz
03-22-2013, 01:36 AM
I like the fact that I can contribute to things I care about while still being dirt poor. I might only be able to pay the $1 minimum some of the time, and only get up to the $5 next level on rare occasions, but I'm still part of the flood of tiny, incremental things that makes it happen.

It's also quite affirming - nice to see the whole every-person-makes-a-difference thing happening before your eyes.

Celia Cyanide
03-22-2013, 02:10 AM
I think Kickstarter already has changed entertainment.

How? You say this, and then you give examples of projects you've donated to. But how is this "changing the face of entertainment"? I'm asking because I really want to know.

I've been doing indie movies for more than 10 years. People have always been making their own movies. This is just a way to defer to cost with pledges. It isn't making it any easier for us to get our work out there. That's what we would need to change the face of entertainment.

BunnyMaz
03-22-2013, 02:53 AM
I never said the change it's made was specifically that it made it easier to get your work out there, though. You still have to promote and people still have to hear about you. But it HAS changed the kind of media that can be successful. In the past, if you wanted to create something and have it shared with the world, you were pretty much entirely dependent on the large companies deciding they liked your idea and being willing to throw their resources at it. Now, people can share their project ideas with the world and, if their idea is something enough people agree sounds cool, they can make it!

A decade ago, things like The Vlog Brothers and Nerdfighteria, Sci Show, The Brain Scoop, My Drunk Kitchen, Order of The Good Death, and Table Top, those sort of shows would never have reached a TV audience. Would never have had the chance to become well-known, or had easy ways to fund their work.

The internet has given people access to new venues to share their work, and Kickstarter has created a new bottom rung on the ladder for people who could never have got the money for their ideas before. People who's ideas would have been too experimental for big companies to risk throwing money at, who's personal income simply wouldn't have stretched to pay for the sort of facilities needed to create professional-quality work.

An excellent example for me is the small game developer Introversion. Introversion has, as far as I can tell, three people in it. The two developers and their artist. Now, these guys create wonderful games. Darwinia, Defcon, and Uplink are beautiful, fun, engaging and unique games with strong fanbases. But in spite of their popularity, these guys have never managed to make it big. The one largest stumbling block delaying their game development has always been that these guys are living on the bread line, and quite literally couldn't put together the funds and resources to make their next game.

Now, they didn't use Kickstarter, but Kickstarter gave them an idea. They saw how successful the crowd-sourced funding model was and did their own version - pretty much exactly the same as Kickstarter, but with them receiving ALL the money. They're selling the alpha version of their current in-development game, Prison Architect, with optional higher tiers of funding that entitle buyers to perks, regular updates to the game as they develop it and crowd-sourced bug-tracking by the alpha buyers. My and my other half have supported them through this, and the difference it's made has been amazing.

This model of crowd-sourced development has allowed them to dedicate their time and resources to the game, provided them with a passionate fanbase helping them to source bugs and prioritise the updates the fans care about the most, and has meant production of the game is running at a MUCH faster pace than their previous works.

If Kickstarter and Indiegogo hadn't made crowd-sourced funding a thing, they could never have done something like this. That right there, is a transformation.

***

Or consider the artist I mentioned, and his comic book. This is a severely disabled person living on the meagre disability benefits he can get, who learned to create amazing art using his mouth. Check out his work, here (http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/1644376829/dark-zoey). He wanted to create the first issue of his planned comic book so he could self-publish it and hopefully get the attention of a publisher like say, Slave Labor Comics, to take it on, but he didn't have access to the resources he needed to create that first issue. Without crowd-sourced funding, his dream would have never even got off the ground. He could never have created that first issue, printed it and got it shipped to fans.

Celia Cyanide
03-22-2013, 02:59 AM
I never said the change it's made was specifically that it made it easier to get your work out there, though. You still have to promote and people still have to hear about you. But it HAS changed the kind of media that can be successful. In the past, if you wanted to create something and have it shared with the world, you were pretty much entirely dependent on the large companies deciding they liked your idea and being willing to throw their resources at it.

In the world of film, this has not been the case.

BunnyMaz
03-22-2013, 03:17 AM
Well, film isn't the be-all and end-all of the world of entertainment. Kickstarter might not have directly benefited you, but it has changed entertainment as a whole.

And you could still use it to your advantage. Say, you and your fellow film-makers get an idea for something you want to make, but the scope of it is such that you struggle to find ways to adequately portray what you have in mind just using your own resources. Now, you can obtain more resources by appealing directly to the fans who already know and support you from your decade of previous work.

Hell, if you check out the film and video section for Kickstarter you'll see plenty of Indie film-makers sourcing for their work.

Celia Cyanide
03-22-2013, 08:34 AM
Well, film isn't the be-all and end-all of the world of entertainment.

No, but it is the topic of this forum, which is why I am focusing on it.


And you could still use it to your advantage. Say, you and your fellow film-makers get an idea for something you want to make, but the scope of it is such that you struggle to find ways to adequately portray what you have in mind just using your own resources. Now, you can obtain more resources by appealing directly to the fans who already know and support you from your decade of previous work.

I have used it before.


Hell, if you check out the film and video section for Kickstarter you'll see plenty of Indie film-makers sourcing for their work.

I know. They post it every day on their facebook pages and on my facebook page, and send it to me in messages, and invite me to "events" to convince me to pledge money to it. It leads to more and more films getting made that go nowhere and are seen by no one.

Wiskel
03-22-2013, 05:27 PM
I was listening an interview with Danny Boyle on the radio this morning. He commented that he usually tries to stick to films with budgets of less than 20 million as below that mark the studios generally let him keep creative control.

I don't think kickstarter will ever let an indie film maker challenge Universal with their first film, but it might help them get their first film made and allow them to keep the creative control to get their film made, not simply remain as filmmaker to a larger studio's film approval committee.

Physical distribution is in flux right now. The current generation like downloads a lot more than me and two generations further down the road who knows what will be left of dvds and books on real paper.

Kickstarter might solve some issues with funding and creative control.

Downloading could solve the distribution problem - the day when my tv is my computer isn't too far away, they can already talk to each other.

Youtube and viral marketing could take care of the advertising and brand awareness stuff.

There's no reason filmmakers can't make use of these, but it might require a change in mindset.

Felicia Day (geekandsundry) is a great example. About the only thing she hasn't done yet is make a film herself. She's made webseries, written comics around The Guild, marketed t-shirts, made a few music videos, and the geekandsundry stuff can easily rival a lot of tv output.

She didn't start by making a fortune from one project, but people do now buy dvds and downloads of the stuff she started out putting on youtube for free. In fact, all the new stuff is still there for free on her youtube channel.

It's not just her, either. We've seen musicians release albums with a "download and pay what you want" pricetag, and the old concept of shareware in computing was based on the idea that if you made something good, some people would send you the suggested price.

It isn't kickstarter that will change the face of filmmaking, it's one or two creative filmmakers who simply use it to their advantage - but they'd better hurry up. If they don't, Felicia Day will probably beat them to it.

Craig

CrastersBabies
03-22-2013, 07:58 PM
Craig, I liked the way you put that. I, for one, like that there is a potential tool out there to help artists, especially given the fact that an artist's value seems to be slowly dwindling. Solid post. Thanks.

Celia Cyanide
03-22-2013, 08:39 PM
Has anyone here besides me actually used it, and/or worked on a project that used it to get funding?

Wiskel
03-22-2013, 09:32 PM
Has anyone here besides me actually used it, and/or worked on a project that used it to get funding?

Does it matter?

A tool is as good as the most inovative and creative person to use it.

I'm not claiming to be that person, but I did pay attention to your posts, Celia.

Maybe the filmmakers ought to be kickstarting new and inovative methods of film distribution if that's the problem you think needs solving. Netflix are doing that for tv programs, Felicia Day did it for webseries, itunes and spotify did it for music, amazon are doing it for books, steam did it for videogames, flicker did it for photosharing, twitter did it for distributing up-to-the-minute information on what your cat's doing.

The independant filmmakers look to be behind the curve here.

Craig

Celia Cyanide
03-22-2013, 09:44 PM
Does it matter?

A tool is as good as the most inovative and creative person to use it.

It matters to me, yes. People here are claiming that kickstarter is helping artists, and I would like to know if anyone feels they have been helped by it. I think it's a perfectly valid point of view for me to say that I have used it and I don't like it. I hate having to go around asking for money. I hate it that I get cast in a film, and the director, the one who cast me, tells me to tell my friends and fans to give him or her money so that I can act in it. I hate it that my fans have given money to projects for movies that never came out.


Maybe the filmmakers ought to be kickstarting new and inovative methods of film distribution if that's the problem you think needs solving.

Just about everyone I know is trying to come up with something. If you have any ideas, let me know. We don't have midnight movies anymore, like John Waters did. Video rental was a big money maker for low budget filmmakers back in the 80's. It's not now.

Wiskel
03-22-2013, 09:57 PM
People here are claiming that kickstarter is helping artists, and I would like to know if anyone feels they have been helped by it.

Celia, what everyone on these forums shares is a creative streak. None of us want any creative type in any business to have a rough time, but we all know trying to earn a living from creative endeavors is tough. No-one's trying to say your experiences aren't important, or that it's fair creative types end up in those situations.

Kickstarter is a tool for moving money around.

Any tool can be used by good or bad people for altruistic or selfish reasons.

Kickstarter, as a tool, can only help people to help themselves. It means that someone who does have that great idea to solve the problems you talk about has a chance of getting funding to develop them.

I'm just saying I'm not going to blame the tool because no-one has had that great idea yet.


Craig

Celia Cyanide
03-22-2013, 10:08 PM
Kickstarter, as a tool, can only help people to help themselves. It means that someone who does have that great idea to solve the problems you talk about has a chance of getting funding to develop them.

I'm just saying I'm not going to blame the tool because no-one has had that great idea yet.

The question posed here is: Will Kickstarter change the face of entertainment?

If and when someone does have that idea, it will be that person who changed the face of entertainment. Not Kickstarter.

CrastersBabies
03-22-2013, 11:06 PM
Confused here, Celia. I'm just not sure what you want to get from this conversation. Apologies. I might have misunderstood something.

My question (since I am the original poster) is will kickstarter (as a tool) change entertainment. I think it will. I think it has. If there is something more you'd like me to clarify so you're not getting frustrated with other posters (which is feels like you are, but I could be wrong), then I'd be happy to do so.

If you want to take the conversation down another path, well, that's up to you. It happens all the time on message boards. I'm not such an original posting tyrant that I can't go along with how the wind is blowing, so to say.

:)

Celia Cyanide
03-22-2013, 11:17 PM
My question (since I am the original poster) is will kickstarter (as a tool) change entertainment. I think it will. I think it has. If there is something more you'd like me to clarify so you're not getting frustrated with other posters (which is feels like you are, but I could be wrong), then I'd be happy to do so.

The only thing I would like you to clarify is how you think Kickstarter has changed entertainment. It's just a tool for fundraising. That is all. So I'm not really clear on how it has made any impact on entertainment more than any other means of fundraising. It's not as if the only options for filmmakers are a) studio backing or b) Kickstarter.

I was also just wondering if anyone who thinks it's a good tool, (or not) has actually used it for fundraising for their own projects, or has worked on projects with people who have used it for fundraising.

I have, and my experience has generally been negative. I have had much better experiences on projects that utilized other means of fundraising.

I'm speaking particularly about filmmaking, because it's what I know. It's possible it has had a real impact on other art forms. But I'm saying that I haven't seen any impact on filmmaking. And that it's usually a drag.

Wiskel
03-23-2013, 12:57 AM
The question posed here is: Will Kickstarter change the face of entertainment?

.

Then my tongue in cheek, literal answer to your literal interpretation of the question is that Kickstarter will have to evolve into Skynet to change the face of entertainment.

Once kickstarter becomes sentient and sends a terminator back in time to murder James Cameron before he makes Titanic, then it will have changed the face of entertainment in a literal way. If it can take down Michael Bay too then it deserves to become our robotic overlord. I just hope the experience of being in the matrix is as good as it looked in the film.

:Hug2:

Sorry. You woke my mischevious side. :evil I can't think of any other way to answer your point. If people take the credit for good things and kickstarter takes the blame for the bad behaviour of people who use it and the absence of a solution so far then I'm in a no-win debate here.

Sorry your experiences of it haven't been great.

Craig

Celia Cyanide
03-23-2013, 01:27 AM
If people take the credit for good things and kickstarter takes the blame for the bad behaviour of people who use it and the absence of a solution so far then I'm in a no-win debate here.

Sorry your experiences of it haven't been great.

I'm not blaming Kickstarter for the bad behaviour of other people. I'm just saying I don't think it's any more useful than anything else as a fundraising tool. I don't see it creating opportunities for filmmakers. I don't see it getting any movies made that could not have otherwise been made. I think it's much more hassle than it's worth.

CrastersBabies
03-23-2013, 01:48 AM
The only thing I would like you to clarify is how you think Kickstarter has changed entertainment.


I'm speaking particularly about filmmaking, because it's what I know. It's possible it has had a real impact on other art forms. But I'm saying that I haven't seen any impact on filmmaking. And that it's usually a drag.

If it's entertainment, then I feel that's already been explained.

If it's filmmaking specifically, I'm no expert there, but others seem to have their finger on the pulse.

These types of platforms substitute a traditional intermediary (traditional record companies for example). These platforms link new artists, designers, project initiators with committed supporters who believe in the persons behind the projects strongly enough to provide monetary support.

If the term "kickstarter" (as a brand) is tripping folks up, I use it because it's in the news lately. A lot. If there are other similar funding platforms out there, I'm interested. Gofundme is another one.

I wasn't trying to promote kickstarter. I feel like it's the first thing people think of when they think of crowd-funding websites, same as people think of "Facebook" or "Twitter" first when they're asked about social media. But, honestly? Debating the semantics of my original terms is getting to be a bit exhaustive. It wasn't in the spirit of my post to do that and if I'm letting you down as a poster because of it, then my apologies.

I think everything else you mention has been addressed. Sorry I'm not more help.

kuwisdelu
03-23-2013, 01:51 AM
When I think of industries that have most benefitted from Kickstarter from my perspective, entertainment isn't really at the top of the list.

CrastersBabies
03-23-2013, 01:56 AM
When I think of industries that have most benefitted from Kickstarter from my perspective, entertainment isn't really at the top of the list.

Possibly, but I seems to be going that route. What non-entertainment ventures have you seen, kuwis, that have benefitted? I'm interested in learning more.

Celia Cyanide
03-23-2013, 02:00 AM
If it's entertainment, then I feel that's already been explained.

I just don't think it has, I'm sorry. I've only seen examples of things that have been/are being funded this way. I don't see that as actually "changing" anything.


If the term "kickstarter" (as a brand) is tripping folks up, I use it because it's in the news lately. A lot. If there are other similar funding platforms out there, I'm interested. Gofundme is another one.

I wasn't trying to promote kickstarter. I feel like it's the first thing people think of when they think of crowd-funding websites, same as people think of "Facebook" or "Twitter" first when they're asked about social media. But, honestly? Debating the semantics of my original terms is getting to be a bit exhaustive. It wasn't in the spirit of my post to do that and if I'm letting you down as a poster because of it, then my apologies.

So by Kickstarter, you are referring to all crowdfunding websites? I was assuming that from the beginning, actually, and I'm not a fan of any of them.


I think everything else you mention has been addressed. Sorry I'm not more help.

So far, no one seems to have addressed whether or not they have actually used it to fund a project. Is there anyone who has?

CrastersBabies
03-23-2013, 02:10 AM
I just don't think it has, I'm sorry. I've only seen examples of things that have been/are being funded this way. I don't see that as actually "changing" anything.

Sorry I can't help you. I feel like you're looking for something specific and I'm too dense to give that to you.


So by Kickstarter, you are referring to all crowdfunding websites? I was assuming that from the beginning, actually, and I'm not a fan of any of them.

I was referring to Kickstarter because it was in the news with Veronica Mars. I thought, "wow, this could change things." So I made a post.

And yes, it's very obvious that you are not a fan. So much so that the nerves feel very high on this thread and I'm a bit reluctant to engage any further because I'm simply not giving you what you want in this conversation. I could be wrong. That's fine. I'm just feeling a wee bit badgered right now. No biggie.


So far, no one seems to have addressed whether or not they have actually used it to fund a project. Is there anyone who has?

I haven't. But perhaps others have. I'm interested. I've been asking about it.

kuwisdelu
03-23-2013, 02:24 AM
Possibly, but I seems to be going that route. What non-entertainment ventures have you seen, kuwis, that have benefitted? I'm interested in learning more.

Mostly tech and consumer products.

The best iPad keyboard I own by far came from a Kickstarter project.

Of course, this is biased, since most news I follow is tech-related, so most of the influential and successful Kickstarter projects I've come across are tech-related.

ETA: With entertainment, it seems like the major bottlenecks are marketing and distribution more so than funding. Things like curated app stores are probably changing entertainment (particularly far games) for more than new ways of raising funding, because they solve the marketing and distribution problem.

Celia Cyanide
03-23-2013, 02:26 AM
And yes, it's very obvious that you are not a fan. So much so that the nerves feel very high on this thread and I'm a bit reluctant to engage any further because I'm simply not giving you what you want in this conversation. I could be wrong. That's fine. I'm just feeling a wee bit badgered right now. No biggie.

I apologize. I don't know why I'm not making sense to anyone else, but I will try one more time to explain my position.

I have made movies before. I have made stuff with crowdfunding, and I've made stuff with money I saved from my job. It doesn't mean crowdfunding is changing entertainment, it doesn't mean my job is, and it doesn't even mean I am. It just means I made something. Big whoop. It doesn't really effect anyone at all. Except possibly me, and not even me that much.

The example you used in the OP with Veronica Mars is a special case. It's a movie based on a successful network TV show. It doesn't really represent the vast majority of filmmakers using crowdfunding.

kuwisdelu
03-23-2013, 02:41 AM
I apologize. I don't know why I'm not making sense to anyone else, but I will try one more time to explain my position.

Makes sense to me. *shrug*

CrastersBabies
03-23-2013, 02:45 AM
I apologize. I don't know why I'm not making sense to anyone else, but I will try one more time to explain my position.

I have made movies before. I have made stuff with crowdfunding, and I've made stuff with money I saved from my job. It doesn't mean crowdfunding is changing entertainment, it doesn't mean my job is, and it doesn't even mean I am. It just means I made something. Big whoop. It doesn't really effect anyone at all. Except possibly me, and not even me that much.

The example you used in the OP with Veronica Mars is a special case. It's a movie based on a successful network TV show. It doesn't really represent the vast majority of filmmakers using crowdfunding.

Ahh, I think this makes more sense now. I'm so sorry, Celia. I think it was me, lol.

So, maybe you're referring more to the success of a project after it's been funded? Like, if I were to go and put up a kickstarter for 2k because I want to write straight for a full month. I can see why that won't change much. Could the problem be marketing and promotion? A way to get the finished result out there? Or, is this just a fancy way of commissioning things on the web?

I do have a lot of questions. Right now, I see the big news stories (Veronica Mars). Established fan bases and such. Or, a game designer who makes a name for him/herself and wants to venture out on their own. Will these ventures require some pre-established fanbase? That could be its limitation.

Am I getting back on the right track? haha.

For the record, I have a lot of questions about this. I think about shows like Firefly that could potentially be revived (though Whedon has already stated it won't happen).

Regardless of what the limits are now, I'd be very interested to see if there is a way to use these platforms for folks like you (and me and other writers). Maybe there's not, but I'm curious. Very curious.

BenPanced
03-23-2013, 03:48 AM
I apologize. I don't know why I'm not making sense to anyone else, but I will try one more time to explain my position.

I have made movies before. I have made stuff with crowdfunding, and I've made stuff with money I saved from my job. It doesn't mean crowdfunding is changing entertainment, it doesn't mean my job is, and it doesn't even mean I am. It just means I made something. Big whoop. It doesn't really effect anyone at all. Except possibly me, and not even me that much.

The example you used in the OP with Veronica Mars is a special case. It's a movie based on a successful network TV show. It doesn't really represent the vast majority of filmmakers using crowdfunding.
You made perfect sense. It's not going to change the face of entertainment; it's only going to change how that entertainment gets its funding.

CrastersBabies
03-23-2013, 03:54 AM
You made perfect sense. It's not going to change the face of entertainment; it's only going to change how that entertainment gets its funding.

Thanks for coming along and hitting me over the head with that. (LOL)

I don't know what happened to my brain, all. Apologies again. :D

Celia Cyanide
03-23-2013, 05:29 AM
Ahh, I think this makes more sense now. I'm so sorry, Celia. I think it was me, lol.

You're obviously not the only one who didn't get it! :) I don't know why, maybe I shouldn't be doing this at work. I'm home now...anyways...



So, maybe you're referring more to the success of a project after it's been funded? Like, if I were to go and put up a kickstarter for 2k because I want to write straight for a full month. I can see why that won't change much. Could the problem be marketing and promotion? A way to get the finished result out there? Or, is this just a fancy way of commissioning things on the web?

Yes, this is exactly what I mean. It probably makes more sense now that kuwi has given his examples. The products he named that came from Kickstarter campaigns...those campaigns helped people raise money to get products they could sell. For a filmmaker, it isn't that way. We can make a movie, but it's difficult to to nearly impossible to sell it.


For the record, I have a lot of questions about this. I think about shows like Firefly that could potentially be revived (though Whedon has already stated it won't happen).

Yes, and I do think that's one way in which it could make an impact on entertainment. However, I can't help but be annoyed that it only seems to be working for people who already have a ridiculous ammount of clout in the industry. :) The people making the Veronica Mars movie had a roadblock in getting it greenlighted. But once they make it, they won't have to worry about it being released. They know it will.


Regardless of what the limits are now, I'd be very interested to see if there is a way to use these platforms for folks like you (and me and other writers). Maybe there's not, but I'm curious. Very curious.

You've probably noticed that I'm pretty skeptical about it, because I've been dealing with it for a few years now. When I first saw it, I thought it was really cool, and a creative way to raise money, but I've grown weary of it.

For one thing, it's really hard for us, even those who have somewhat of a fan base, to offer something of real value in exchange for monetary support. We can offer "perks" and we can follow through with our promise to make the movie. And they can watch it. But we probably just post it for free on the web, and they could have seen it anyway. :)

For another, as I said before, we can't sell what we make. You can get a film out there and promote it yourself, but it's so difficult for us to make any money on it. This makes people reluctant to donate money to our campaigns. It doesn't usually turn into, "Hey, look, we got that film off the ground, and we really got something going" It's usually more like, "Hey, we finished this, and it turned out pretty good. Does anybody wanna give us some more money, so we can make another one?"

I could actually see something like this working for a novelist. Maybe you really could write a publishable book, if only you had the time, and a bunch of money to buy food while you did it. If you could convince people that you would be able to do it, that could yield real results.

But for me, as a filmmaker, it feels more like self-publishing, and then asking all your friends to buy your book. It's not self-sustaining, and it doesn't really lead to more opportunities.

I'm really sorry if I came off as bitchy. My feelings on the subject are very complex. It's basically a combination of frustration at not having a forum for my work, guilt for having taken money from people, and annoyance at being asked every day for money from people. I got funding for something I wrote through indiegogo, and I got a bunch of messages from people I didn't know asking me how I did it. The truth is, I don't even know.

Sheryl Nantus
03-23-2013, 05:29 AM
Regardless of what the limits are now, I'd be very interested to see if there is a way to use these platforms for folks like you (and me and other writers). Maybe there's not, but I'm curious. Very curious.

There's threads here about writers using Kickstarter. Some work and some don't - the problem is that unlike a comic book or a board game or a movie you can't judge what a novel is going to end up as from a sample.

A comic book can give a few pages and you can judge the artwork. A board game can show off the rules and make a video showing gameplay. A movie or mini-series can show the production going on and display samples of the final product.

Writers... it's not the same thing. You can throw up a few pages of "finished" product but that's no guarantee the entire book will be good. There's a reason why agents want to see the entire manuscript before signing an author - they need more than the first five pages to see if the author can not only write the first few pages but keep the story going.

And if you put up the entire book... well, that goes without saying.

Can authors use KS? Sure - but I don't think they'll be as successful as other artists unless they have a big platform and a fan base who knows they'll deliver quality work.

jmo, ymmv.

Celia Cyanide
03-23-2013, 05:41 AM
Writers... it's not the same thing. You can throw up a few pages of "finished" product but that's no guarantee the entire book will be good. There's a reason why agents want to see the entire manuscript before signing an author - they need more than the first five pages to see if the author can not only write the first few pages but keep the story going.

Yes, that's very true. There are probably a lot of us here on this board who could write a few interesting pages. Certainly enough to make people want to read more. That doesn't mean we'd all be able to keep that quality going for a whole book, and have the payoff at the end.


And if you put up the entire book... well, that goes without saying.

But I'll say it anyway...if you have the whole thing written, forget about Kickstarter, you should be submitting already!


Can authors use KS? Sure - but I don't think they'll be as successful as other artists unless they have a big platform and a fan base who knows they'll deliver quality work.

And even then, who knows? Would you donate money so that Stephen King could eat while he sat home all day writing his book? I most certainly would not, and I love Stephen King.

I found it interesting, although not at all surprising, that Bjork had a failed Kickstarter campaign. If I wanted to support Bjork, I would buy the albums she already has out. I would not pledge money to a hypothetical project she will do if she gets enough money.

JBClemmens
03-23-2013, 07:03 AM
Kickstarter has helped my friends, Mana, get their Project Reality Web series off the ground. I think it's a positive force. But on another matter, [U]The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo[U] is on TV now. Does anyone else who has read the book have trouble watching the movie?

CrastersBabies
03-23-2013, 08:14 AM
You're obviously not the only one who didn't get it! :) I don't know why, maybe I shouldn't be doing this at work. I'm home now...anyways...




Yes, this is exactly what I mean. It probably makes more sense now that kuwi has given his examples. The products he named that came from Kickstarter campaigns...those campaigns helped people raise money to get products they could sell. For a filmmaker, it isn't that way. We can make a movie, but it's difficult to to nearly impossible to sell it.



Yes, and I do think that's one way in which it could make an impact on entertainment. However, I can't help but be annoyed that it only seems to be working for people who already have a ridiculous ammount of clout in the industry. :) The people making the Veronica Mars movie had a roadblock in getting it greenlighted. But once they make it, they won't have to worry about it being released. They know it will.



You've probably noticed that I'm pretty skeptical about it, because I've been dealing with it for a few years now. When I first saw it, I thought it was really cool, and a creative way to raise money, but I've grown weary of it.

For one thing, it's really hard for us, even those who have somewhat of a fan base, to offer something of real value in exchange for monetary support. We can offer "perks" and we can follow through with our promise to make the movie. And they can watch it. But we probably just post it for free on the web, and they could have seen it anyway. :)

For another, as I said before, we can't sell what we make. You can get a film out there and promote it yourself, but it's so difficult for us to make any money on it. This makes people reluctant to donate money to our campaigns. It doesn't usually turn into, "Hey, look, we got that film off the ground, and we really got something going" It's usually more like, "Hey, we finished this, and it turned out pretty good. Does anybody wanna give us some more money, so we can make another one?"

I could actually see something like this working for a novelist. Maybe you really could write a publishable book, if only you had the time, and a bunch of money to buy food while you did it. If you could convince people that you would be able to do it, that could yield real results.

But for me, as a filmmaker, it feels more like self-publishing, and then asking all your friends to buy your book. It's not self-sustaining, and it doesn't really lead to more opportunities.

I'm really sorry if I came off as bitchy. My feelings on the subject are very complex. It's basically a combination of frustration at not having a forum for my work, guilt for having taken money from people, and annoyance at being asked every day for money from people. I got funding for something I wrote through indiegogo, and I got a bunch of messages from people I didn't know asking me how I did it. The truth is, I don't even know.

This makes a LOT of sense and I really can't disagree with anything you said. (You were not bitchy, btw.) There seems to be a problem with distribution. I mean, you make a film, then what? I mean, as a non-film guru who enjoys shorts and indie films and documentaries, I feel pretty limited in regard to how I can view more of these projects. For example, every time Oscar time comes, I want to see the shorts and the docu-shorts, but how? Sometimes, I see them running these, marathon-style, at our local art-house, and occasionally HBO or another station might air them. If I consider myself a general viewing audience-goon, I'm pretty clueless.

Hmm, stuff to think about here.

CrastersBabies
03-23-2013, 08:16 AM
There's threads here about writers using Kickstarter. Some work and some don't - the problem is that unlike a comic book or a board game or a movie you can't judge what a novel is going to end up as from a sample.

A comic book can give a few pages and you can judge the artwork. A board game can show off the rules and make a video showing gameplay. A movie or mini-series can show the production going on and display samples of the final product.

Writers... it's not the same thing. You can throw up a few pages of "finished" product but that's no guarantee the entire book will be good. There's a reason why agents want to see the entire manuscript before signing an author - they need more than the first five pages to see if the author can not only write the first few pages but keep the story going.

And if you put up the entire book... well, that goes without saying.

Can authors use KS? Sure - but I don't think they'll be as successful as other artists unless they have a big platform and a fan base who knows they'll deliver quality work.

jmo, ymmv.

I totally see your point. Let's say you already have a fanbase and the publishing house you were working with goes belly up. Nobody takes care of you. You're left in the wind. You have 2 books left in a big series and your fans are like, "What the what?"

I think that might be something that would work with authors and writing, but again, we're back to the notion that this might only really work for pre-established artists and concepts.

Wiskel
03-23-2013, 03:12 PM
but again, we're back to the notion that this might only really work for pre-established artists and concepts.

Take a step back and think bigger.

A film needs money and people to be made. Here, it's true that people with influence will get funding easier than people at the start of their career - but Celia says making films with enough creative control isn't a problem and she'd know better than me, so lets stop thinking about kickstarter funding films and get it to fund distribution.

I was a member of netflix for as long as it took to watch every episode of Breaking Bad. Netflix is also distributing films, some I'd heard of, some I hadn't.

I watched a whole bunch of low budget horror films I'd never heard of. I didn't watch a single film I'd heard of before on the grounds that once I left netflix I'd still have a shot at seeing them on tv or dvd, but I'd lose access to the obscure ones.

Kickstarter could fund anything with enough support. Why not a netflix for low budget horror? Use it to get the servers and streaming technology, offer sponsors free acess for a period of time based on their donation, charge everyone else a small monthly subscription.

Draw people in with a commitment to showing some of the films they'd watch at the cinema anyway, so their subscription is offset against cinema tickets, or dvd rentals / purchases / downloads.

Get the rights to stream a few classic films I'd struggle to find on dvd easily. I would instantly sign up to any service that would let me watch the old Keanu Reeves film The Night Before right now, or Christian Slater's Kuffs. I love both and I can't find them. Prior to that I spent years trying to find Night of the Comet before it finally got a DVD release. Netflix delighted me by letting me watch Dreamscape again. It's so long since I saw that I'd forgotten it existed.

Then rotate in/out, or have as permanent fixtures all the films that need exposure. Either just to give the makers credit and build their brand / cv, or stick the dvd on sale for a limited release or offer downloads after six months on horrornetflix when it goes off rotation to get a little money in from the people who loved it.

You could even put the making of documentories up, or stream chats with up and coming creators / actors / writers. Make it a community.

An altruistic horrornetflix could even split the profit between the filmmakers offering films to the service.

I picked horror as horror does have a cult fanbase and it's Celia's area if I understand correctly, but my personal tastes go further. I overlap horror, creature features and sci fi with my more mainstream tastes. Put them under one roof and I'm there.

Hell, charge me per genre if you like, as long as it's a reasonable cost and there are new films every few weeks I'd be there.

I reckon viewing kickstarter as a way for Steven King to pay his grocery bills while he writes is the least creative use for it I could imagine.

Money is just money, and money without a great idea solves nothing, but a great idea without money might be exactly what crowd funding is there for. If what small films need is a place to be seen that doesn't rely on me stumbling upon it on google, build that.

Craig

BenPanced
03-23-2013, 11:47 PM
This makes a LOT of sense and I really can't disagree with anything you said. (You were not bitchy, btw.) There seems to be a problem with distribution. I mean, you make a film, then what? I mean, as a non-film guru who enjoys shorts and indie films and documentaries, I feel pretty limited in regard to how I can view more of these projects. For example, every time Oscar time comes, I want to see the shorts and the docu-shorts, but how? Sometimes, I see them running these, marathon-style, at our local art-house, and occasionally HBO or another station might air them. If I consider myself a general viewing audience-goon, I'm pretty clueless.

Hmm, stuff to think about here.
The best parallel I can come up with are the endless threads and articles about how self-publishing is changing the face of publishing.

Celia Cyanide
03-24-2013, 04:25 AM
Kickstarter could fund anything with enough support. Why not a netflix for low budget horror? Use it to get the servers and streaming technology, offer sponsors free acess for a period of time based on their donation, charge everyone else a small monthly subscription.

Draw people in with a commitment to showing some of the films they'd watch at the cinema anyway, so their subscription is offset against cinema tickets, or dvd rentals / purchases / downloads.

Get the rights to stream a few classic films I'd struggle to find on dvd easily. I would instantly sign up to any service that would let me watch the old Keanu Reeves film The Night Before right now, or Christian Slater's Kuffs. I love both and I can't find them. Prior to that I spent years trying to find Night of the Comet before it finally got a DVD release. Netflix delighted me by letting me watch Dreamscape again. It's so long since I saw that I'd forgotten it existed.

Then rotate in/out, or have as permanent fixtures all the films that need exposure. Either just to give the makers credit and build their brand / cv, or stick the dvd on sale for a limited release or offer downloads after six months on horrornetflix when it goes off rotation to get a little money in from the people who loved it.

You could even put the making of documentories up, or stream chats with up and coming creators / actors / writers. Make it a community.

An altruistic horrornetflix could even split the profit between the filmmakers offering films to the service.

Ideas like this are interesting. I do think that the internet is going to be the new way for independent filmmakers to get their stuff out there, but I don't really know where, or how it's going to work yet.

On netflix, there are 4 films listed that I have acted in. Only one is available. The other three say "save." They're on DVD, Netflix does not have them, but they're still listed. One of those three I know was there at some point. I don't know what happened to it.

I tried to submit a movie I made to netflix. I mailed it in, and it got returned to me, because the PO box was closed. I called netflix and had a very confusing and hilarious conversation.

me: Hi, I sent in a movie I made, and it got returned to me.

netflix: What's your account number?

me: I don't have an account. I sent the movie in as a submission.

netflix: If you don't have an account, where did the movie come from?

me: I made it.

netflix: What do you mean, you made it?

me: I wrote and directed it.

netflix: You did?!?

me: Yes. [I showed here where to go on the website to find where to send in DVD copies of movies for submission]

netflix: This is so cool! I had no idea people made their own movies and sent them to us!

me: So what should I do?

netflix: I don't know anything about it, because I'm not cool enough to even know how to make a movie, but the boss says just to send it again.


I sent it, and it got returned to me, unopened. As far as I know, the PO Box has never been reopened, and we've all pretty much assumed they stopped taking independent submissions. Anybody I know who has a movie on netflix doesn't seem to know how it got there. It's great, because everybody has it, and people see it, even if you don't get paid for it. But we can't really get anything up there anymore.

Something I won't get into, because it's complicated and boring, is that independent filmmakers don't make money from DVD distribution deals. There are exceptions that you've heard about, that so and so made a movie for super cheap, and it made a ton of money. But the reason a story like that is newsworthy is because it doesn't happen very often.

The truth is, I like to make stuff. I don't know enough about marketing and sales to come up with a solution for it. But I think it's out there.

ETA: You are right about horror. Believe it or not, I have people I've never met who know who I am and seek out my work. Which is amazing, because it's hard to find! I might even have more fans if it were easier to see my stuff. Who knows?

the wrong idea
03-24-2013, 06:06 AM
A non-exhaustive list of things that Kickstarter will not help with as far as entertainment is concerned:


Distribution problems that can't be solved by having a finished product and a few thousand dollars
Funding projects run by people who haven't proven themselves capable of successfully completing it
Funding things that don't absolutely need and won't visibly benefit from funding, as far as the audience is concerned
Creating things whose target demographic does not include "people on the internet who have spare cash"
Creating things that don't provoke discussion and don't have a dedicated and enthusiastic core audience


Most films and novels fail on two or more of the above, but two specific points are the real killers: Distribution for movies, and no visible benefit for novels. Celia pretty much covered the former; for the latter, the simple fact is that it's hard to get funding for something you could create in your spare time and intend to sell when it's done. You might be able to use Kickstarter to cover initial printing costs for a self-published novel, but I doubt that's what most people here would be aiming for.

The "proven capable" thing is tricky too, because that typically means you've done it before, and if so why do you need funding this time? The best case scenario, as far as Kickstarter goes, is either a proven track record of creating things combined with a good pitch for something bigger and better than your previous work, or a proven track record based on outside funding that's no longer available.

But really, the last two items on the list are the crux of the matter once you go beyond relatively small projects. Things like Kickstarter reward nearly the opposite of "mass market" appeal--it's better to have a moderate number of people really enthusiastic about your project than to have a lot more people mildly interested, and those enthusiastic people need to be people who might actually use Kickstarter. A widely-read blog to advertise with, a pre-existing and devoted internet fan base, a niche market starved for content, that sort of thing.

Celia Cyanide
03-26-2013, 04:57 AM
Great post. I also wanted to add that by no means is funding a film easy. Even the really low budget stuff costs us a lot of money. Even when you have people working for free because they want to volunteer their time, you still have to feed them, and that costs money.

Filmmakers certainly can raise money through Kickstarter. The problem is that without the proper distribution channels, we can get something made, and then end up right back where we started from. People will often donate money to kickstarter campaigns in hopes that people will be able to get somewhere with it. You could make a movie, and it could even turn out pretty good. But then you're back to square one with your next one, and you're back to begging for money again. And people are not going to be as enthusiastic about donating to you a second time.

Hendo
04-14-2013, 11:50 PM
Screw Stargate, that had what, 10 seasons? And a whole load of spinoffs. What about Firefly?

Another firefly movie would be good. There is a large fan base so I could totally see kickstarter raising the necessary funds. The great part about kickstarter is you even get people who weren't fans contributing. I donated to the Veronica Mars campaign eventhough I never watched the show (although I might now since I helped fund the movie :Thumbs:)

Celia Cyanide
04-15-2013, 01:54 AM
I have 2 questions:

1) does Joss Whedon actually want to bring back Firefly?

2) Why did you decide to contribute if you didn't watch the show?

katiemac
04-15-2013, 02:26 AM
I have 2 questions:

1) does Joss Whedon actually want to bring back Firefly?

2) Why did you decide to contribute if you didn't watch the show?

I read an interview with him shortly after the Kickstarter campaign made its goal. Joss said he had two very immediate thoughts: one, he was happy for the show because he's a fan; two, a bit of sinking dread because he knew it would reignite Firefly discussions.

That's not to say he was disappointed fans still want more of the show, but he's tied to other projects (Avengers, SHIELD) and has other things he wants to make (Dr. Horrible, movies like Much Ado) and the battle to do more Firefly would very much be that... An enormous battle.

I could certainly see Joss using it successfully in the future, but I'm not convinced it would be for Firefly.