The first film to tackle the issue of domestic animal abuse in the U.S. and how you can help. Speak Up. Step Up. Do Something.
Please begin by watching our first trailer by clicking PLAY above...
Most of the Gucci interviews have been shot. We have collected an amazing number of original artifacts, clippings and video from Gucci's life. We have also added two recent animal abuse cases to the story, those of Queenie and Desmond. Editing has begun. But we want the film to have an even further reaching scope...
A DOG NAMED GUCCI is the story of a puppy set on fire & the man who rescued him. Together they changed Alabama's abuse laws.
He was hung by his neck, punched repeatedly, doused with lighter fluid, and set afire. That should have been the last thing a ten-week old puppy named Gucci would ever experience. His last contact with humans. His final moments of life.
But Doug James, standing on his porch nearby, heard the puppy’s cries and ran to help. He scared away the cowardly thugs who had perpetrated this heinous crime, and at the request of Gucci’s 15-year-old runaway owner, took the dog in for the night.
Thus began a 16-year odyssey of devotion and perseverance.
When Gucci was rescued by Doug, it seemed impossible that the badly burned pup would make it through the night. But Gucci, a Chow-Husky-mix, would live for sixteen years as Doug's companion. As Gucci recovered, Doug did everything in his power to see that the dog’s three assailants were punished. However, the laws in Alabama were not on Gucci’s side. At worst the guilty would receive slaps on the wrists. That was not enough in the eyes of Doug James.
Together with local legislators, and with Gucci always faithfully by his side, Doug would see the “Gucci Bill” passed, changing the laws in Alabama and making domestic animal abuse a felony. He would witness Gucci go from being a survivor . . . to a rock star.
Gucci’s story captivated the state of Alabama in the mid-90s. And now, when every other day a new tale of outrageous animal abuse pops up on the news or on Facebook, we are going to make it a story that captivates the world. We are going to show that one person can make a difference. Especially when they have a tail-chasing pup by their side.
A DOG NAMED GUCCI is a feature-length documentary that is bringing the amazing story of Gucci and Doug James to life: from that horrible night of abuse, to the numerous operations to repair Gucci’s severely burned eyelids, to the legislation passed in his name to help prevent such a thing from ever happening again.
As you can see in our trailer, we have already interviewed Doug, Gucci’s human companion for all of those sixteen post-trauma years. We have also interviewed almost everyone else involved with the case: from John Crowder who paid all of Gucci's vet bills, to the veterinarians who helped Gucci recover, to the investigators who worked the case, to the legislators who helped Doug and Gucci change the virtually non-existent abuse laws in Alabama.
But beyond Gucci, the film will also examine the bigger picture of domestic animal abuse in America, the laws in every state, and what you can do to help change them. We are also choosing six other abuse cases to help us illustrate the problems. Thus far the stories of Queenie from Long Island and Desmond from Connecticut will also be included in the film.
Learn more about Queenie here.
Learn more about Desmond here.
If you love animals, and you wouldn’t have read this far if you didn’t, you will fall in love with Gucci. Watch the video above, the shot of Gucci at the end will break your heart.
But we want to show how Gucci's struggle is only the tip of a very big iceberg of abuse. Horrible torture of our most loyal friends happen daily. These are vicious crimes that so often go unpunished. Just go to Facebook and search "Justice for" and add the name Desmond, Ike, Mijo, or Jetta, the list is disturbingly endless. Hopefully A DOG NAMED GUCCI will be a step in the right direction towards ending such abuse forever.
Why We Are Making This Film
After three rock documentaries, I felt the need to do something slightly different. I wanted to make a difference in the world. But when you spend so long on a single film it needed to be about a subject I was as passionate about as rock 'n' roll. Shortly before leaving for a vacation for our 20th anniversary, my wife Kristine shared with me a story she read online. It was the story of Gucci. After reading about Gucci, and watching the news clips, I knew this had to be my next documentary project. The day before leaving on that vacation I emailed Doug, telling him of my passion. By the time Kris and I arrived at our destination, he had already written back. He too felt it was time Gucci’s story be shared with the world.
Who We Are
Director Gorman Bechard is a lifelong dog lover (if you have any doubt read his eulogy to his dog Kilgore Trout here) who has three feature-length documentaries to his credit. These include Color Me Obsessed, a film about The Replacements, which Rolling Stone called one of "The Seven Best New Music Documentaries of the Year." Spinner went one step further and named the KickStarter-funded film "one of the best music docs of all time," calling it "the ultimate testament to music nerd fandom and how important the right band can be to the people who love them." And the Village Voice said it was "a rock version of Rashomon."
He directed the Archers of Loaf concert film, What Did You Expect? The Archers of Loaf Live At Cat's Cradle, which along with Color Me Obsessed was released nationally on DVD on November 20th, 2012.
Bechard is also the filmmaker behind the forthcoming Every Everything, the Music, Life & Times of Grant Hart, which has just been mixed, and is being submitted to film festivals as you read this. Previously he directed the award-winning narrative features Friends (with benefits) and You Are Alone.
Producing the film along with Bechard is Patricia Clark, who served on the production team for a long list of shows at VH1 and received two Daytime Emmy Awards for Best Talk Show while working on the Rosie O'Donnell Show. She is one of the producers of the independent film My Brother Jack and recently produced the music video Byways of the Lifeless for the Dublin, Ireland indie rock band The Autumn Owls. Trish also produces the annual 48 Hour Film Project in New Haven.
We have a proven track record and nearly thirty years of experience making feature films. This film will get made, it will play film festivals, be distributed, and you will receive your backer prize.
Where Your Money Goes
The money you donate to A Dog Named Gucci will go towards paying for (among other things): transportation and lodging expenses so we can travel to other parts of the country to film the other subjects we will be including in the film, as well as a few additional Gucci interviews with people who were no longer in Alabama. Beyond that we will need a sound mix, color correction, and those pesky film festival submission fees. We we are asking for $5000 which is the minimum we need to shoot the additional interviews. We are finding stories that are leading us to other dogs, rescue groups, hero judges and prosecutors, and human companions across the country. So the more we raise the more we can broaden the scope of the film.
Now you might ask yourself: "why not just wait and get the dvd when it's for sale at Best Buy or Amazon?" Well, for one thing, backers of Color Me Obsessed received their DVD copies 15 months before it became available in stores! But remember, if you pre-order the DVD (or any of the other rewards) now, you are helping to get the film made. Your name will be in the credits. And the rewards you receive will be coming right from our hands.
What Happens If We Don't Reach Our Goal
If we fail to reach our funding goal, we get absolutely nothing. That means you keep any money you've pledged to donate. We only get that money (and your credit card is only charged) if and when we successfully fund our project. So please give what you can, because every little bit helps.
Follow us on Facebook
We've set up a Facebook page. Please pay us a visit and "like" the page. Feel free to share photos of your dogs. Or share your feelings on this timely subject. Or share any of our links...
As John Crowder says in the film: Speak Up. Step Up. Do Something.
5/5/2013 update: we've added two rewards for fans of my novels: a ONE-OF-A-KIND proof of the about-to-be released paperback edition of GOOD NEIGHBORS, and an uncorrected proof of my novel NINTH SQUARE (only 5 of these were printed). They will be inscribed and signed. See photo below:
Risks and challenges Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
Combine the fact that 80% of the movie is filmed, and editing has already begun with our track records, and the risks are inherently low. We have completed every film project we've started. And the passion that we feel for this project is consuming. However, there is always the possibility that getting a needed interview will take longer then expect, or fall through completely. Depending on the availability of interviewees, the delivery of rewards could slip a couple of months later than promised. Likewise, if the project ends up being incredibly successful, delivery might also take longer, as we're a very small team. Of course, that's one problem we would welcome. And as we've always done in the past, we will send out rewards in order of when you backed the project. So, if you back first, yours will be the first DVD in the mail.
Have a question? If the info above doesn't help, you can ask the project creator directly.
seconds to go
Pledge $1 or moreYou selected
FEEL GOOD PACKAGE: You'll feel good and generate some amazing indie film karma by backing a very special film project, and will receive a SPECIAL THANKS TO listing, and regular backer updates.Estimated delivery:
Pledge $15 or moreYou selected
THE ROMANTIC COMEDY PACKAGE: ok, you love dogs, but are not into documentaries, and still want to help. You will get a DVD screener of our feature comedy FRIENDS (WITH BENEFITS) which features tons of deleted scenes and other cool extras, as well as a SPECIAL THANKS TO listing, and regular backer updates.Estimated delivery:Add $8 USD to ship outside the US
Pledge $20 or moreYou selected
1 backer All gone!
A one-of-a-kind proof of the about-to-be-released paperback edition of my novel GOOD NEIGHBORS. This is the one that really dealt with animal abuse. It will be inscribed and signed and mailed right out. (Check the reviews on Amazon.)Estimated delivery:Add $12 USD to ship outside the US
Pledge $20 or moreYou selected
1 backer Limited (1 left of 2)
An uncorrected proof of my New Haven novel NINTH SQUARE. It's about sex, murder and pizza! It will be inscribed and signed and mailed right out. Only 5 of these exist. (Check the reviews on AmazonEstimated delivery:Add $12 USD to ship outside the US
Pledge $20 or moreYou selected
THE COLOR ME OBSESSED SWAG PACKAGE: (for those who've been asking) You will receive an 11" x 17" Color Me Obsessed poster, along with a 10" x 3 1/2" "Kinda Brilliant, Kinda Dumb, Kinda The Replacements" bumpersticker, a SPECIAL THANKS TO listing, and regular backer updates. (If you want poster signed, just ask.)Estimated delivery:Add $12 USD to ship outside the US
Pledge $25 or moreYou selected
DVD PACKAGE: You will receive a signed DVD screener of A DOG NAMED GUCCI months before it's available commercially, along with a SPECIAL THANKS TO listing in the end credits, and regular backer updates.Estimated delivery:Add $8 USD to ship outside the US
Pledge $25 or moreYou selected
POSTER PACKAGE: You will receive a limited edition 11” x 17” A DOG NAMED GUCCI poster, a SPECIAL THANKS TO listing, and regular backer updates.Estimated delivery:Add $12 USD to ship outside the US
Pledge $50 or moreYou selected
DVD & POSTER PACKAGE: You will receive a limited edition 11” x 17” poster, along with a DVD screener, a SPECIAL THANKS TO listing, and regular backer updates.Estimated delivery:Add $15 USD to ship outside the US
Pledge $100 or moreYou selected
THE FOR REPLACEMENTS FANATICS ONLY PACKAGE: Choose ANY interview from Color Me Obsessed, and we'll send you a digital download of that ENTIRE interview uncut. (You can get as many of these as you'd like, just double up on your pledge, i.e. $200 gets you two, $300 gets you three...we'll send you an email after the campaign ends to find out your choice(s).) You will also receive a DVD screener of A DOG NAMED GUCCI, a SPECIAL THANKS TO listing, and regular backer updates. (NOTE: the interview links will be emailed by the end of June 2013.)Estimated delivery:Add $12 USD to ship outside the US
Pledge $100 or moreYou selected
DVD & SUPER POSTER PACKAGE: You will 11" x 17" posters for COLOR ME OBSESSED, WHAT DID YOU EXPECT?, FRIENDS (WITH BENEFITS), YOU ARE ALONE, as well as a limited edition 11” x 17” poster for A DOG NAMED GUCCI, along with a DVD screener, a SPECIAL THANKS TO listing, and regular backer updates. (Note: the posters to the older films will ship within 60 days of this project being funded.)Estimated delivery:Add $25 USD to ship outside the US
Pledge $250 or moreYou selected
0 backers Limited (6 left of 6)
THE COMPLETE DVD COLLECTION PACKAGE...receive DVD copies of SEVEN of Gorman Bechard's feature films: COLOR ME OBSESSED, WHAT DID YOU EXPECT?, YOU ARE ALONE, PSYCHOS IN LOVE, FRIENDS (WITH BENEFITS), and EVERY EVERYTHING. Each DVD is loaded with extras and will be signed by the director...PLUS get a DVD screener of A DOG NAMED GUCCI, a SPECIAL THANKS TO listing, and regular backer updates. (Note: You will receive the first 5 listed within 60 days of this project being funded, and Every Everything approximately in June, and A Dog Named Gucci approximately in October.)Estimated delivery:Add $25 USD to ship outside the US
Pledge $500 or moreYou selected
2 backers Limited (8 left of 10)
ASSOCIATE PRODUCER PACKAGE: You will receive an ASSOCIATE PRODUCER credit during the film’s main title sequence and on IMDB. You will also receive a POSTER, DVD screener, and regular email updates.Estimated delivery:Add $15 USD to ship outside the US
Pledge $2,000 or moreYou selected
1 backer Limited (4 left of 5)
EXECUTIVE PRODUCER PACKAGE:You can really let the world know how you feel about animals. You will receive an EXECUTIVE PRODUCER CREDIT ON THE FILM'S POSTER, during the film’s main title sequence, and on IMDB, along with an invite to the Film’s official World Premiere, POSTER, DVD screener, and regular email updates.Estimated delivery:Add $15 USD to ship outside the US
Pledge $2,500 or moreYou selected
0 backers Limited (1 left of 1)
FILMMAKER FOR A DAY: You get to interview director Gorman Bechard for the behind-the-scenes video that will be used online and as a DVD extra. (NOTE: You will need to get yourself to New Haven, CT, where the film is being edited, but we will provide a room at the cool Hotel Duncan, where YOU ARE ALONE was filmed, and pizza from one of the three world-famous pizza palaces showcased in our upcoming PIZZA, A LOVE STORY doc. This day will happen sometime in the summer'fall of 2013.) PLUS...You will also receive an ASSOCIATE PRODUCER credit during the film’s main title sequence, and on IMDB, an invite (for you and a guest) to the Film’s official World Premiere, as well as a POSTER, DVD screener, and regular email updates.Estimated delivery:Ships within the US only
Pledge $3,000 or moreYou selected
0 backers Limited (4 left of 4)
THE PERSONAL SCREENING PACKAGE: A personal screening of A DOG NAMED GUCCI for you and your friends at your home, along with a Q&A with director Gorman Bechard. (You must be located in the continental U.S.) PLUS...You will also receive an ASSOCIATE PRODUCER credit during the film’s main title sequence, and on IMDB, an invite (for you and a guest) to the Film’s official World Premiere, as well as a POSTER, DVD screener, and regular email updates. (If you'd like an EXECUTIVE PRODUCER credit instead, please add $1000 to the total.)Estimated delivery:Ships within the US only
Pledge $5,000 or moreYou selected
0 backers Limited (2 left of 2)
THE "I LOVE ANIMALS" PACKAGE: you love the idea of this film and REALLY want to help the cause and help change abuse laws all over the country. You will receive an EXECUTIVE PRODUCER CREDIT ON THE FILM'S POSTER, during the film’s main title sequence, and on IMDB, along with an invite to the Film’s official World Premiere, POSTER, DVD screener, all SIX of Gorman's other DVDs (listed above), signed copies of all six of Gorman's novels, and regular email updates. (Note: as mentioned above, you will receive the other DVDs, as well as the books, within 60 days of this project being funded.)Estimated delivery:Add $50 USD to ship outside the US
Pledge $10,000 or moreYou selected
0 backers Limited (1 left of 1)
THE MOST YOU CAN BACK PACKAGE: You will receive everything in the "I Love Animals" package above...except that your name as EXECUTIVE PRODUCER will be listed first on the list of executive producers on the poster, AND you will have your OWN SEPARATE TITLE CARD in the films credits!Estimated delivery:
- (28 days)