Bianca Kajlich, Greg Grunberg and Clare Kramer produce this doc of wheelchair athlete Andre Kajlich's impossible Race Across America.
Bianca Kajlich, Greg Grunberg and Clare Kramer produce this doc of wheelchair athlete Andre Kajlich's impossible Race Across America. Read more
About this project
Joyrider is the documentary of wheelchair athlete André Kajlich, his struggles and perseverance, and his attempt to be the first solo hand-cyclist to compete in the 12 day, 3,000 mile Race Across America.
Alcohol and a train accident led to André's double amputation; and while he continued on a downward path for many years, family and endurance competition ultimately brought him back to life. The Race Across America now sets the stage for André to not only accomplish what many once thought impossible, but to prove that major setbacks in life cannot hinder ambition. Joyrider is the story of a man's search for purpose and redemption.
We've been filming André's life the past two years and now need your support to help film his journey across America. But in the end, it's more than just a race... It's a story of choice; a young man's journey to heal what was broken and find his joy. We deeply believe in the positive impact this documentary. Come join our crew.
For André this is not a matter of making history – it’s a drive that comes from a deeper place. In 2003 André was attending university in Prague. After an epic drunken night out he ended up on the tracks facing an oncoming subway train.
He was almost destroyed. One leg required amputation above the knee, the other at the hip, and there was little hope he would walk again. There were dark days, but over the next five years André only concerned himself with resuming life as usual, claiming “life isn’t always a willing experience; you just have to keep moving forward.”
From the seeds of that struggle grew a newfound perspective and perseverance. After entering the world of endurance sports on a whim in 2010, he became the USA’s Paratriathlete of the year in 2012. He’s taken the gold at the Panamerican Championship in Edmonton, the National Ironman 70.3 Championship, and the Ironman World Championship in Kona. He’s an Ultraman triathlete, and was even the first to complete the grueling Brazil135 Ultramarathon in the Mantiqueira Mountains.
The Race Across America (RAAM) is a 3,000 mile, 12 day ride that climbs 170,000 feet, crosses 12 states, and loses almost half its entrants between the start and finish lines. Comprised of solo riders and teams, RAAM has never before been completed by a solo hand-cyclist.
Three time solo RAAM winner and adventurer Wolfgang Fasching compared the race to climbing Mount Everest saying, "Everest is more dangerous, but RAAM is much harder".
RAAM is seen as a pinnacle of athletic achievement, a true test of speed, endurance, strength and camaraderie. There is no race that matches the distance, terrain and weather. Riders on this race battle fatigue, dehydration, harsh weather, sleep deprivation, even delusions. We’ll be along with him the whole way documenting the race, the support team, and the intense physical toll the race takes on André.
Bianca Kajlich - Director
Both shaken and humbled by André’s accident, Bianca says the event “made me realize we’re so critical of ourselves and our bodies and we don’t realize the miracle that occurs with every step we take.” Originally a Washington native, Bianca now lives in Los Angeles with her husband, Michael and their daughter, Magnolia.
Clare Kramer - Director
Clare grew up in Delaware, Ohio, and is a graduate of New York University's Tisch School of the Arts, where she earned her BFA. Over the last 22 years Clare has been an actor, director, producer, and contributor on NPR and CNN. She resides in Sherman Oaks with her four children.
Pablo Durana - CinematographerPablo is a freelance cinematographer with a passion for documentary films and outdoor adventure. Pablo has covered the first ever Afghan women's mountaineering expedition, hippos in Colombia, the drug wars of Ciudad Juárez, Michelle Obama in Liberia, paragliding across the Alaskan range. He has also collaborated on several acclaimed films, including Life According to Sam and Oscar-winning documentary short, Inocente.
Greg Grunberg - Producer
Alongside his long-time collaborator Brad Savage, Greg currently produces TV & Film projects through their company, Bandwagon Media. Greg is best known for his roles as Matt Parkman on Heroes, X-wing fighter Snap Wexley in Star Wars: The Force Awakens and as Commander Finnegan in Star Trek Beyond.
Brad Savage - Producer
Brad’s career in the entertainment business (which started at age two) has featured an assortment of acting, producing, post production, editing, writing, marketing, advertising, and directing roles for media outlets including TV, feature films, theatre, commercials, Game Shows, and reality tv projects. Brad and close friend Greg Grunberg are co-owners of Bandwagon Media, a creative media production company they started in 2009. He is currently living in Los Angeles with his wife. Their son, Keaton, is also an actor and producer.
We've tried to keep it simple while building in flexibility, gratitude, and recognition - of you! From small things like perks exclusive to modest support to custom racing jerseys and your name in the credit roll, we firmly believe in giving the biggest shout of thanks to every measure of support!
Every contributor will get our digital JoyBlog for André's Race Across America. Daily progress updates from the road, delivered right to your inbox. This will be backstage access to the lives and challenges not just of André but of the team that supports him.
Fulfillment of our commitment to you is also of primary concern. Most of the perk delivery dates are scheduled for January 2018. We figure it's the most reasonable time frame for delivery of our final cut. Most of the physical items will ship prior to September, but we want to be realistic. In any case - we will always be direct and honest with you...
André is a once-in-a-generation athlete with a story we want to help him share. Join us!
Risks and challenges
Filming is always a tricky business, and we know that. What we’re asking for with our Kickstarter is your help to make this shooting experience smart and safe. Backup gear, plenty of Gatorade and protein bars, and extra gas cans for the Winnie make for safe travels.
Our biggest task is to ramp up our preproduction and get on the road for the June 13th start date. Make no mistake, we will be rolling cameras before then and all along the trip, but we know that’s a short window to get everything in place! Luckily, we have a strong team and will be ready for day one.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
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