Saturday, April 27, 2013

I'm Okay with Zach Braff Using Kickstarter to Fund His New Film "Wish I Was Here"

When Zach Braff started his campaign, I thought, well, here we go again. Another Veronica Mars-type campaign. I rolled my eyes knowing he would get his funding pretty fast and probably a few mill above what he's asking for. That was just me being jealous as I'd love to fund one of my movies for multi-millions in just a few days. But then, I shrugged my shoulders and thought maybe some day I can once I am as successful as Zach and I moved on to my own projects staring me in the face.

I was then reeled back into Zach's campaign by all the "controversy" that is now being stirred up by his use of Kickstarter to finance his next film. Some people are hating the fact that he would use Kickstarter because he's a celebrity and should have the means to either find the money or pay for the film himself. And he's making Kickstarter even richer.

I'm a little surprised by this controversy. Zach Braff is an indie filmmaker. He made a well-received indie film for $2.5 million and now he wants to make another indie film. It's true he has had a lot of success with his acting career and with his first indie feature. But I don't see how that's a valid reason for not using a fundraising tool for making his next indie film. Haven't we always been brow-beaten to never use our own money to fund our films? Why should Zach?

Not to mention, fans who contribute to his film are his fans, cultivated by him from his solid work as an indie filmmaker. It's not like he's stealing fans or their money away from other filmmakers, as some have implied. In fact, I bet the exposure Zach's campaign brings to crowdfunding will lead to a greater comfort level for the masses to contribute to films through crowdfunding sites like Kickstarter.

Plus, he's giving an opportunity to his fans to be involved in his film. This is huge for people who are not in the film industry. He's giving access to those who want to be part of film. And that's awesome. I bet the person who gets to watch the film with Zach and give his/her thoughts to him will remember that day for the rest of his/her life. He's offering a once-in-a-lifetime experience.

Now, I get that people are annoyed that someone with his celebrity and finances would take the "easy" route to funding. And I understand the fear that Kickstarter and IndieGoGo etc are going to turn into celebrity havens where the little guys are once again kicked to the curb. I see the perceived injustice of it all but I'm just not seeing it in this case with Zach's project.

He's an indie filmmaker trying to make an indie film. It's not like he's making a broad comedy for the studio system. I think we should support a fellow indie filmmaker and be proud of his success. We would all love to be in his shoes and you know what? Some day you just might and wouldn't you want to know the indie film community has your back?

1 comment:

Brizdaz (Darren) said...

It's probably easier to get a sequel to a cult film,or a movie version of a popular TV show funded,than to get a totally new show up and running like Rae Dawn Chong is trying to do with her project that appears like it won't get the funding in time,and that's only 25 Gs.

The Celebrant - a television pilot about a woman who serves her community in the Seacoast as a "Celebrant" a spiritual witness to life and everything in between.

So,not all celeb projects produce windfalls of cash.