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WHEELS is an indie feature film that follows a Brooklyn teenager as he pursues his dream of becoming a DJ.
419 backers pledged $58,235 to help bring this project to life.

About

WHEELS, A Film By Paul Starkman project video thumbnail
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$58,235

419

SYNOPSIS

WHEELS is an indie feature film that follows MAX, a teenager from Brooklyn who wants to be a DJ. As the sole provider for his sick grandmother, Max has dropped out of high school and works at a supermarket to make ends meet.

Max fantasizes about DJ life. He daydreams about rocking parties all over New York and breaking into the underground scene. By night, Max hones his skills under the mentorship of MONTY, a renowned DJ who sees Max's potential but pushes him to take the craft more seriously. Max stashes away every spare cent to buy his own turntables.

When Max's brother, TERRY, shows up after a three-year prison sentence for grand larceny, Max finds himself at a crossroads between trust, obligation, loyalty, and pursuing his dream. 

DIRECTOR'S STATEMENT

In the early 90s, you could find me doing one of two things, obsessing over movies or wearing out mixtapes I recorded of my favorite NYC hip-hop radio shows. Fast forward to 1995 when I wrote the first draft of WHEELS and was able to marry my two passions — film and music. 

It's 20 years later...Oh man, I can't believe it! After working for two decades in the entertainment industry, I feel I am now in a great place, both professionally and artistically, to take WHEELS from the page to the screen. The script has evolved tremendously over the years but the underlying elements and themes remain — a boy who wants to DJ, brothers trying to connect, and a mom-and-pop radio station that’s being left behind by the changing times.

This film takes place in the present, but I want to flavor it with the feel of the past. WHEELS will play on a viewer's nostalgic sensibilities, like when a classic song comes on the radio and for a brief moment it takes you back in time. I've chosen to shoot the movie in black & white and score the soundtrack with early hip hop beats. I want to bring the vibe of old New York to life. 

As a former documentary cinematographer and a director of fast-paced competition reality shows, I've learned how to manage a large crew, block scenes quickly, and visually portray the heart of a story. I see WHEELS as a street film about someone who hasn't had the opportunity to go where he sees himself. We all struggle to balance family and financial obligations while remaining true to our personal dreams. WHEELS is a coming of age film about navigating those challenges through passion, love, and taking control of your life. 

WHEELS is a labor of love. I hope you see the potential in this project. Thanks for checking us out. 

THE TEAM

FUNDING

We started this campaign with one goal in mind — creative autonomy. Kickstarter is the perfect platform to help us feasibly make this movie on a low-budget. WHEELS is structured to keep costs to a minimum. For example, many of the scenes will be shot in free public spaces, we are building a small but mighty crew, and we are recruiting friends and family to help support basic needs such as crew lunches (Lookin' at you Mama Starkman). We are taking an "all hands on deck" approach to this project. 

We are dedicating our time and personal resources to get the ball rolling.  $50,000 from Kickstarter is the bare minimum we need to make this film a reality. Here is the breakdown:

TIMELINE

  • Prep begins in December 2015
  • Production - Summer of 2016
  • Post-Production - Fall of 2016
  • Enter festivals and seek distribution

Risks and challenges

There are always risks when making a passion project. Currently, our largest challenge is casting. We want to find the right person to play each character, and that takes time. As we begin prep, we will keep all of our backers updated as to who's joined the cast.

While our cast may be up in the air, our crew is set. We have assembled a core production team with a wide breadth of creative and business experience and a common skill — the ability to tell a beautiful story. Every single penny, no matter what the amount, has a significant impact on the overall success of this low-budget feature.

We're here to make the best possible film we can. With your support, we're ready to rock. A BIG THANKS FOR SUPPORTING OUR PROJECT.

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Support

  1. Select this reward

    Pledge US$ 5 or more About US$ 5

    SHOUT OUT: Special Thanks in the Credits

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    15 backers
    $
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  2. Select this reward

    Pledge US$ 10 or more About US$ 10

    SNAP SHOT: Personalized Digital Thank You Photo Signed by the WHEELS Cast and Crew

    + Special Thanks in the Credits

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    10 backers
    $
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  3. Select this reward

    Pledge US$ 25 or more About US$ 25

    SHOWTIME: Digital Download of WHEELS

    + Personalized Digital Thank You Photo Signed by the WHEELS Cast and Crew

    + Special Thanks in the Credits

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    65 backers
    $
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  4. Select this reward

    Pledge US$ 30 or more About US$ 30

    INSIDE LOOK: Weekly Behind The Scenes Video Updates During Production from the WHEELS Cast and Crew (Total of 5)

    + Digital Download of WHEELS

    + Personalized Digital Thank You Photo Signed by the WHEELS Cast and Crew

    + Special Thanks in the Credits

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    Estimated delivery
    37 backers
    $
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  5. Select this reward

    Pledge US$ 50 or more About US$ 50

    THE BOOM BAP: Max's Mix - A digital mixtape of music that inspired the movie.

    + Weekly Behind The Scenes Video Updates During Production from the WHEELS Cast and Crew (Total of 5)

    + Digital Download of WHEELS

    + Personalized Digital Thank You Photo Signed by the WHEELS Cast and Crew

    + Special Thanks in the Credits

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    Estimated delivery
    72 backers
    $
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  6. Select this reward

    Pledge US$ 75 or more About US$ 75

    THE BUILDING BLOCKS: Hardcopy Storyboard from WHEELS Conceptualization Personalized with a Message from the Director

    + Max's Mix - A digital mixtape of music that inspired the movie.

    + Weekly Behind The Scenes Video Updates During Production from the WHEELS Cast and Crew (Total of 5)

    + Digital Download of WHEELS

    + Personalized Digital Thank You Photo Signed by the WHEELS Cast and Crew

    + Special Thanks in the Credits

    Less
    Estimated delivery
    Ships to Only United States
    13 backers
    $
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  7. Select this reward

    Pledge US$ 100 or more About US$ 100

    SNEAK PEAK: Private Invitation (+1) for a Backers-Only Launch Screening of WHEELS in NYC. Travel and accommodations not provided.

    + Max's Mix - A digital mixtape of music that inspired the movie.

    + Weekly Behind The Scenes Video Updates During Production from the WHEELS Cast and Crew (Total of 5)

    + Digital Download of WHEELS

    + Personalized Digital Thank You Photo Signed by the WHEELS Cast and Crew

    + Special Thanks in the Credits

    Less
    Estimated delivery
    105 backers
    $
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  8. Reward no longer available

    Pledge US$ 250 or more About US$ 250

    THE VINYL: A Used Record from Set Signed by the WHEELS Cast and Crew

    + Private Invitation (+1) for a Backers-Only Launch Screening of WHEELS in NYC. Travel and accommodations not provided.

    + Max's Mix - A digital mixtape of music that inspired the movie.

    + Weekly Behind The Scenes Video Updates During Production from the WHEELS Cast and Crew (Total of 5)

    + Digital Download of WHEELS

    + Personalized Digital Thank You Photo Signed by the WHEELS Cast and Crew

    + Special Thanks in the Credits

    Less
    Estimated delivery
    Ships to Only United States
    Reward no longer available 20 backers
    $
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  9. Reward no longer available

    Pledge US$ 250 or more About US$ 250

    THE TOKEN: A Prop from the WHEELS Set Signed by the Cast and Crew

    + Private Invitation (+1) for a Backers-Only Launch Screening of WHEELS in NYC. Travel and accommodations not included.

    + Max's Mix - A digital mixtape of music that inspired the movie.

    + Weekly Behind The Scenes Video Updates During Production from the WHEELS Cast and Crew (Total of 5)

    + Digital Download of WHEELS

    + Personalized Digital Thank You Photo Signed by the WHEELS Cast and Crew

    + Special Thanks in the Credits

    Less
    Estimated delivery
    Ships to Only United States
    Reward no longer available 20 backers
    $
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  10. Select this reward

    Pledge US$ 500 or more About US$ 500

    BACK TO SCHOOL: Private invitation to three live 45 minute Google +/Periscope Film Workshops hosted by WHEELS creators where you will have the opportunity to ask all of your filmmaking questions from industry professionals.

    Workshop 1: Directing for Dummies hosted by Director Paul Starkman

    Workshop 2: The Perfect Shot hosted by Director of Photography Ariel Boles

    Workshop 3: Make it Flow, an editing workshop hosted by Neal Usatin

    + Private Invitation (+1) for a Backers-Only Launch Screening of WHEELS in NYC. Travel and accommodations not included.

    + Max's Mix - A digital mixtape of music that inspired the movie.

    + Weekly Behind The Scenes Video Updates During Production from the WHEELS Cast and Crew (Total of 5)

    + Digital Download of WHEELS

    + Personalized Digital Thank You Photo Signed by the WHEELS Cast and Crew

    + Special Thanks in the Credits

    Less
    Estimated delivery
    7 backers
    $
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  11. Select this reward

    Pledge US$ 750 or more About US$ 750

    BACKSTAGE PASS: Set visit and lunch with members of the Cast and Crew. Travel to NYC and accommodations not included.

    + Private invitation to three live 45 minute Google +/Periscope Film Workshops hosted by WHEELS creators where you will have the opportunity to ask all of your filmmaking questions from industry professionals.

    + Private Invitation (+1) for a Backers-Only Launch Screening of WHEELS in NYC. Travel and accommodations not included.

    + Max's Mix - A digital mixtape of music that inspired the movie.

    + Weekly Behind The Scenes Video Updates During Production from the WHEELS Cast and Crew (Total of 5)

    + Digital Download of WHEELS

    + Personalized Digital Thank You Photo Signed by the WHEELS Cast and Crew

    + Special Thanks in the Credits

    Less
    Estimated delivery
    0 backers
    $
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  12. Select this reward

    Pledge US$ 1,000 or more About US$ 1,000

    CASTING CALL: Be an extra in the film! Lunch provided. Travel and accommodations not included.

    + Private invitation to three live 45 minute Google +/Periscope Film Workshops hosted by WHEELS creators where you will have the opportunity to ask all of your filmmaking questions from industry professionals.

    + Private Invitation (+1) for a Backers-Only Launch Screening of WHEELS in NYC. Travel and accommodations not included.

    + Max's Mix - A digital mixtape of music that inspired the movie.

    + Weekly Behind The Scenes Video Updates During Production from the WHEELS Cast and Crew (Total of 5)

    + Personalized Digital Download of WHEELS

    + A Digital Thank You Photo Signed by the WHEELS Cast and Crew

    + Special Thanks in the Credits

    Less
    Estimated delivery
    5 backers
    $
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  13. Select this reward

    Pledge US$ 5,000 or more About US$ 5,000

    LIGHTS, CAMERA, ACTION: Private photo shoot of your choosing by Director Paul Starkman and DP Ariel Boles (Engagement, Family, Baby, et al). Limited to the Tri-State area in a mutually agreed upon location. The shoot will last up to 6 hours.

    + Private invitation to three live 45 minute Google +/Periscope Film Workshops hosted by WHEELS creators where you will have the opportunity to ask all of your filmmaking questions from industry professionals.

    + Private Invitation (+1) for a Backers-Only Launch Screening of WHEELS in NYC. Travel and accommodations not included.

    + Max's Mix - A digital mixtape of music that inspired the movie.

    + Weekly Behind The Scenes Video Updates During Production from the WHEELS Cast and Crew (Total of 5)

    + Personalized Digital Download of WHEELS

    + A Digital Thank You Photo Signed by the WHEELS Cast and Crew

    + Special Thanks in the Credits

    Less
    Estimated delivery
    2 backers
    $
    Kickstarter is not a store.

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Funding period

- (30 days)