Funded! This project was successfully funded on May 1, 2012.



New Update! An interview with our Puppet Operator / Builder, Zachary Tolchinsky! Meet this awesome person in our "UPDATES" section above!!


    “String” is a story blended with fantasy and reality. It is about a magical puppet, and its relationship with a little girl.

    The story follows Ferina the puppet, and its journey in the human world. Ferina encounters Lily, a poor little girl who has been abused by her monstrous father. From Lily’s life, Ferina experiences all kinds of human emotions, and finally realizes that freedom is not about cutting strings, but instead about offering and trusting them to someone for which you love and care.


    We've all experienced watching a puppet show, and I remember being amazed by how lively they were, even with strings attached. This film combines that childhood fantasy, with the darkest corners of our society.  Here’s how we are going to make it happen:


    This is a 20 minute short film that I’ve been working on for over a year. Now we are in the stage of pre-production. It is going to be a 6-day shoot, and the production will begin in May 2012.


    We are building three kinds of puppets for Ferina - marionettes, rod puppets, and dummy puppets. Each puppet has its own specific use for certain shots of the film. The cost of building these puppets and operating them will be at least $3000. Please help us bring Ferina to life!


    There are going to be several locations in this film. A SHACK and a THEATRICAL SPACE are going to be built on a stage at our campus. Other than that, there’s a PARK, and a few STREET locations, and we will need to buy permits for each.


    How can we take you to a place between fantasy and reality? The answer is with our brains, our hands, and a lot of PRODUCTION DESIGN! The environment in this film will not only be visually beautiful, but will also contribute to the narrative, almost as an additional character. We have a very strong image in our heads, but we need your help to bring it to the big screen!


We are a group of young and passionate artists, in love with filmmaking and storytelling. Summer of 2010 we were fortunate enough to meet at Art Center College of Design.  Since then, we've been working on each other’s projects for nearly two years. We have great relationships, both creatively and professionally. Now we are asking you to join this team, so that together we can tell a beautiful story!


Every penny of your support will go directly toward production costs.

This includes equipment rentals, production design costs, location fees, artist fees, and food for a cast & crew of 30 for six days.

Making sure not to compromise the elements central to this project, we've created the lowest budget possible. Relying heavily on donated work and time, we were able to come up with a budget of $22,500.  I've been able to save $10,000 of my own money, but the reality is I need your help and support to make this happen.

We need to reach the goal of $12,500.  If we do not reach that full amount, any money donated will be refunded and unfortunately, the project will not be made. Please do whatever you can to help! Spread the word for this beautiful film, and just as Ferina comes to life, you'll play a necessary role in bringing this short film to life.

If you have any questions regarding to the story or the production, please feel free to email to the Director Lei Tao:

I would be more than happy to answer your questions!! 



Have a question? If the info above doesn't help, you can ask the project creator directly.

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    19 backers

    Highest gratitude for bringing this puppet to life!

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    36 backers

    All the above! + A private link to watch “STRING”! + A specially designed "Thank You" e-mail sent from the Director.

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    27 backers

    All the above! + A DVD of the finished film, with exclusive “BEHIND THE SCENES” content.

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    24 backers

    All the above! + A POSTER of the film signed by principle cast & crew, and a “SPECIAL THANKS” credit at the end of the film.

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    4 backers

    All the above! + A special designed HAND-WRITTEN CARD with Director’s drawings signed by principle cast & crew. Along with a set of PRINTED STILLS.

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    All the above! + Invitation to the PREMIERE of the film + A hardcopy of the script signed by principle cast & crew.

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    2 backers

    All the above! + A visit to the actual film set (lodging and plane ticket not provided). Come see how we make Ferina come to life! + A PAINTING of your portrait by the Director, combined with any elements you want on your face. You name it, I’ll draw it :)

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    1 backer

    All the above! + An “Associate Producer” credit. You are so awesome that our main characters will record a "Thank you" video for you, and put it in the BEHIND THE SCENES content and provide a link.

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    0 backers Limited (3 left of 3)

    All the above! + An “Executive Producer” credit in the film. More importantly, you get one of the original Ferina puppets!! What's more exciting than that?!?

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    0 backers Limited (2 left of 2)

    All the above! But instead of getting one of the Ferina Puppets, you get to keep the Original “Marionette” version of Ferina. + If you live in LA, the Director and the Producer will pay a visit to your place for a private screening and Q & A. Invite as many friends as you like, or keep us to yourself!!

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Funding period

- (35 days)