Funded! This project was successfully funded on November 10, 2012.

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Hollywood studios are ending distribution on film. Without digital projection, we will not be able to show new release films in 2013!

Our audience is helping us to make this technological leap so that we can continue to fulfill our mission far into the future.
Our audience is helping us to make this technological leap so that we can continue to fulfill our mission far into the future.

Beginning in January 2013, the distributor of many of Ragtag Cinema's highest grossing films such as Little Miss Sunshine, Black Swan andBest Exotic Marigold Hotel  will replace 35mm film with the Digital Cinema Package (or DCP) as their exclusive format for the distribution of movies. Other major distributors have indicated they plan to finalize this conversion in the following 6 to 12 months.  This means that, in less than a year, film as we have known it will nearly cease to exist. Without the proper projection equipment to exhibit movies in the new digital formats, Ragtag's economic viability will be severely compromised. Ticket sales from these high-profile films pay the operational costs of the cinema and enable us to show smaller independent and foreign films as well. Additionally, these ticket sales also provide the funding necessary to host the many free screening events we offer in collaboration with other arts, civic and educational groups throughout the year.  But there's even more!  These bigger films provide financial support for our educational outreach program.  In short, the 10 or 12 most-popular films each year facilitate the special programming that further enriches our community's culture. Without those "big" (by indie film standards) features, our mission-based programs are at risk.

Ragtag Cinema's larger theater seats 135
Ragtag Cinema's larger theater seats 135

The primary reason for this conversion is economic savings for the  distributors. It is much more affordable for them to make digital hard-drives of movies instead of film prints.  However, the digital projection systems required to exhibit DCP are very costly for theaters.  Ragtag Cinema has been quietly saving for this conversion since 2010, knowing this conversion would take place sometime in the not-too-distant future.  Now that nearly every cineplex in America has gone digital, the tipping point has been reached.  In recent months, the studios began to send a clear message that cinemas who have not yet converted to DCP technology will no longer have access to new release films.  Now that a deadline has been clearly defined by the distributors, we must work aggressively to achieve this goal by the end of 2012. 

Ragtag Cinema's small theater seats 75 in a comfy atmosphere reminiscent of our 1-screen space from our early years of operation.
Ragtag Cinema's small theater seats 75 in a comfy atmosphere reminiscent of our 1-screen space from our early years of operation.

 We are fortunate to have started raising funds earlier than many independent theaters, and have already completed the first phase of this conversion.  In February of 2012, Ragtag Cinema purchased and installed a DCP compliant projector for our large theater for $80,000.  But a full digital system is required to exhibit movies in DCP format.  This means we need another $20,000 to purchase the server and sound system that must accompany that projector. We will also need to purchase a complete system for our smaller theater within the next few months.  Estimates for that installation start at $60,000.

Thank you Chelsea Myers (L) for creating our Kickstarter Film and Greg Orloff (R) for creating Lumen (C), our campaign mascot.
Thank you Chelsea Myers (L) for creating our Kickstarter Film and Greg Orloff (R) for creating Lumen (C), our campaign mascot.

  Like nearly every independent theater in this country, we now find ourselves racing to raise the funds necessary to make this technological leap.  We must literally transfer our projection system into the age of the robots.  Thus we have created a campaign for the need to convert to 21st century technology with the theme "RAGTAG NEEDS ROBOTS."

Risks and challenges Learn about accountability on Kickstarter

We are members of a group called The Art House Convergence, which is a consortium of 100+ independent theaters. We've been talking with our peers over the past few years about how to address this challenge.
We've also researched the distributors' offers to help theaters with plans to provide financing, but these options aren't available without some strings attached. Taking this route would certainly diminish our reputation as a truly independent cinema. Our programming would be limited to some degree, by the distributor serving as the middle man. It is important for the continuation of our mission, that we fund this new technology independently.

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    63 backers

    NUMBER 5 IS ALIVE: name recognition at ragtagfilm.com/robots

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    113 backers

    LUMEN LEVEL: Ragtag robot sticker pack; name recognition on ragtagfilm.com/robots

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    232 backers

    WALL•E LEVEL: 1 ticket to any regular Ragtag Screening; Ragtag robot sticker pack; name recognition on ragtagfilm.com/robots

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    MARVIN LEVEL: ticket to special screening event at Missouri Theatre (one of our final 35mm first run screenings); name recognition on ragtagfilm.com/robots

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    141 backers

    C3PO LEVEL: film strip time capsule - own a piece of film history preserved in a clear cylinder, so you can show your grandchildren what movies were like before the digital age; ticket to special screening event at Missouri Theater (one of our final 35mm first run screenings); name recognition on ragtagfilm.com/robots

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    NEPTR LEVEL: Ragtag Robot tote bag; ticket to special screening event at Missouri Theatre (one of our final 35mm first run screenings); name recognition on ragtagfilm.com/robots

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    Spend a screening behind the scenes at Ragtag. Greet guests and tear tickets with our box officer, intro the film to the audience, and then step into the booth and see a film from the projectionists' view.

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    2 backers Limited (8 left of 10)

    Give the Ultimate Holiday Gift. Donate $100 in the name of that person who has everything. They'll receive a holiday card from Team Ragtag and you'll receive a the tax deductible donation letter and your favorite independent arthouse cinema buys a digital projection system and continues its wonderful programming in 2013 and far beyond. Truly the gift that just keeps on giving.

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    128 backers

    CURIOSITY LEVEL: film strip time capsule - own a piece of film history preserved in a clear cylinder, so you can show your grandchildren what movies were like before the digital age; Ragtag Robot tote bag; ticket to special screening event at Missouri Theatre (one of our final 35mm first run screenings); name recognition on ragtagfilm.com/robots

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    Are you a film lover who wants to reach cinephile level? Have you always wished you could chat with Steve or Jon or Paul or David, or any of the Ragtag Staff to learn more about films you'd love if only you knew they existed... For a $100 pledge this week, you can spend an hour with the Ragtag employee of your choice. We'll help you develop a list of great films to rent that will make this the best Missouri Winter ever!

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    The "Waiting for Guffman" Seat: Many of you know that this film was the first feature shown at our old location on Tenth Street. Wouldn't it be awesome to have a seat saved in your name every time you come to see a movie? Just call the box office at least 30 minutes prior to showtime of any film (except during T/F) and we'll reserve your favorite seat for you, from December 1, 2012-thru November 30, 2013. We're only offering this to ten backers and you only have until 5pm Saturday, Oct.13 to choose this reward!

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    Mix and mingle with the film industry guests of True/False 2013 at the Film Maker Happy Hour , Friday March 1, 2013

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    34 backers Limited (166 left of 200)

    GORT LEVEL: matted, limited edition, vintage pre-Hitt Street era Ragtag calendar; ticket to special screening event at Missouri Theatre (one of our final 35mm first run screenings); film strip time capsule - own a piece of film history preserved in a clear cylinder, so you can show your grandchildren what movies were like before the digital age; name recognition on ragtagfilm.com/robots

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    ROBBIE LEVEL: ticket to special private reception AND screening event at Missouri Theatre (one of our final 35mm first run screenings); film strip time capsule - own a piece of film history preserved in a clear cylinder, so you can show your grandchildren what movies were like before the digital age; name recognition on ragtagfilm.com/robots

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    ROSIE LEVEL: Producer credit for a Ragtag Players skit at the special screening event listed below; ticket to special private reception AND screening event at Missouri Theatre (one of our final 35mm first run screenings); film strip time capsule - own a piece of film history preserved in a clear cylinder, so you can show your grandchildren what movies were like before the digital age; name recognition on ragtagfilm.com/robots

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    OPTIMUS PRIME LEVEL: numbered and dated gear from the Ragtag Robot; ticket to special private reception AND screening event at Missouri Theatre (one of our final 35mm first run screenings) PLUS on-screen name recognition at above referenced screening event & all screenings at Ragtag from that date thru Feb 27, 2013; film strip time capsule - own a piece of film history preserved in a clear cylinder, so you can show your grandchildren what movies were like before the digital age; name recognition on ragtagfilm.com/robots

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    1 backer Limited (5 left of 6)

    R2D2 LEVEL: limited edition numbered and signed Ben Chlapek screenprint rendering of the Ragtag Robot; ticket to special private reception AND screening event at the Missouri Theatre (one of our final 35mm first run screenings) PLUS on-screen name recognition at above referenced screening event & all screenings at Ragtag from that date thru Feb 27, 2013; film strip time capsule - own a piece of film history preserved in a clear cylinder, so you can show your grandchildren what movies were like before the digital age; name recognition on ragtagfilm.com/robots

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    3 backers Limited (9 left of 12)

    HAL LEVEL: cameo appearance in a 2013 Ragtag no-texting bumper; ticket to special private reception AND screening event at Missouri Theatre (one of our final 35mm screenings) PLUS on-screen name recognition at above referenced screening event & all screenings at Ragtag from that date thru Feb 27, 2013; film strip time capsule - own a piece of film history preserved in a clear cylinder, so you can show your grandchildren what movies were like before the digital age; name recognition on ragtagfilm.com/robots

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