Robotech Academy, a new animated series based on Carl Macek's last project at Harmony Gold Read more
Funding for this project was canceled by the project creator on August 2, 2014.
About this project
In 1985, the animated series known as Robotech hit the airwaves in the United States and became an overnight sensation. Combining fast-paced giant robot action with some genuinely mature drama, it was a breath of fresh air for many children who had gotten tired of the usual cartoons on TV at the time. For many fans, it was their first exposure to Japanese anime, and is often credited with starting the anime industry in the US. It spawned over twenty novels, hundreds of comics, video games and dozens of home video releases all over the world.
Carl Macek, the producer of Robotech, was recently working with Harmony Gold on Robotech: Academy. This new series set in the Robotech universe follows several new cadets in their adventures around the universe. We are reaching out to our fans to make this a reality!
Robotech Academy occurs concurrently with the unfinished Sentinels storyline of the Robotech saga. By this time, the Earth has been ravaged by decades of interplanetary war.
The Robotech Expeditionary Force, commanded by Admiral Rick Hunter aboard the SDF-3, has departed for the homeward of the Robotech Masters, to draw the battle away from Earth.
The officers of the Expeditionary Force have placed their greatest treasures, their children, in the Robotech Academy. Based on a moon in orbit around Mars, the academy was created as a safe haven for these young cadets.
However, as the Academy also functions as a research center for advanced Robotechnology, it becomes an inviting target. The story focuses on a fresh class of young characters, including child prodigy Wally, and the swashbuckling teen pilot Lindsay, who is an old rival and associate of Jack Baker.
Their lives are turned upside down when the Academy is attacked by alien fanatics who call themselves the Children of Zor, trying to reclaim the lost secrets of Robotechnology, which they believe to be rightfully theirs. Unbeknownst to the new class, this treasure trove of Robotechnology just happens to be hidden right under everybody's noses throughout the Academy, in places such as the campus museum.
In an unexpected maneuver that saves the lives of the young student body, an experimental spacefold drive is activated, which suddenly transports the cadets away from the battle.
However, they end up in an uncharted, distant region of the galaxy, and their supply of "protoculture" which is used to power the spacefold drive, is extremely limited.
Valuable clues to lead them out of their predicament have been left behind by none other than the originator of Robotechnology itself, Zor. They discover the path that Zor's ship once had taken before it eventually crashed on Planet Earth. This next generation of heroes must rise to the challenge, facing mysterious aliens and making difficult choices as they rely on their wits. They have to scavenge prototype mecha hidden across the campus and journey past a series of alien worlds to find their way back home, or at least rendezvous with the Robotech Expeditionary Force.
And you'll also see familiar faces from the Robotech leadership, such as Rolf Emerson, Anatole Leonard, Doctor Lang, and...
The Robotech Academy Kickstarter will allow us to gauge how much of a new Robotech series we could actually produce based on Carl's original premise. We are setting our initial goal at $500,000 which will allow us to create an entire 24 minute pilot episode. This will help us cover character design, mecha design, 3D modeling, 3D animation, 2D animation, screenwriting, sound engineering, music composition, casting, voice acting and recording. This will also afford us a foundation on which to build future episodes.
Thanks to new technological advances, we're able to get our fans involved in ways Carl had only dreamed about before. Back in the 90's Carl Macek mused that the internet could be used to raise funds for new shows. Now with Kickstarter we're able to offer rewards such as attending a premiere of Robotech Academy, attending recording sessions with the actors, and even having your likeness animated and appear in the final footage! For anyone who wanted to be an anime character, now's your chance!
UPDATE: WE HAVE ADD-ONS!
We're looking forward to working on Robotech Academy with contributions from you, our fans!
Risks and challenges
As with any production, we are assuming the usual risks with a Kickstarter project like this. To mitigate these risks, we're setting our goal at a realistic amount in order to meet our commitment.
We are currently aiming to have the project completed by July of 2015. We will keep you informed every step of the way.
THANK YOU FOR JOINING US ON THIS EXCITING JOURNEY!
Important Information about Rewards:
- Travel and lodging costs are not included in any reward
- Some rewards may require additional paperwork
As you know, anyone who backs a project has a voice in its outcome. By reaching out to Robotech fans to get directly involved, this offers a unique opportunity to produce Robotech Academy more closely to Carl Macek's original vision while also offering cool rewards to our backers.
I read somewhere online that an episode of anime costs $145,000 to make. Why are you asking for $500,000?
Back in 2010, a report popped up online that quoted data from a Japanese research company called Media Development Research Institute, which cited a figure of $145,000 (in 2010) to produce a single episode of a thirty minute anime.
What is often overlooked is that this figure represents production costs for a pre-existing series, but does not factor in everything else necessary to get that series started in the first place. There are a huge amount of set-up costs that come with creating and distributing a new series that is overlooked. For an ongoing series, the producers have already done the one-time costs of building assets and can cover the costs over the life of an entire season (or multiple seasons!), giving the illusion that a single episode costs a lot less to produce.
It takes more than a pile of lumber to build a house – you’ve got to plan it out and then bring in the right people to make it happen. Creating a pilot episode for a new series requires pre-production and design work for characters, backgrounds and mecha, building a new sound effects library, scoring new music, etc. On top of that, we have to factor in the cost of mastering and manufacturing DVDs/Blu-rays, digital distribution fees, Kickstarter fees, Amazon Payments fees, not to mention the cost of shipping all this great stuff to you. None of these costs factor into the MDRI figure since we’re looking at a very different type of distribution model.
We are working together with Jesús Barrero, the Spanish voice actor for Rick Hunter and Luke Skywalker, to bring a Spanish audio track to Robotech Academy
Why should we support Harmony Gold when they sent cease & desist letters to the Project Valkyrie fan film?
Because Creavision, the team behind the Project Valkyrie fan film, is working on Robotech Academy! We had to send them a C&D because of outside legal obligations, but we recognized their talent and are excited to have them involved.
We are looking into options for including subtitles.
If you love all things Robotech, you'll want to take part in the KickStarter for Robotech Academy! At Harmony Gold, we're huge fans of Macross, and our company has supported the brand since the 1980s, during a time when it was almost impossible to find anime on TV in North America. However, we want to make it clear that Harmony Gold licensed the exclusive rights to distribute Macross and its derivatives outside of Japan. The company has acquired these rights through all the official and legal channels in good faith, and we have protected these rights successfully for the last 30 years.
Several of the reward tiers say "HG reserves the right of refusal at its sole discretion." Does that mean Harmony Gold can just take our money and refuse to give us our reward?
It's a standard disclaimer to cover us legally in case somebody decides to be silly, for example if somebody bought the opportunity to have their likeness illustrated into the show and then submitted a picture of themselves dressed as a famous dictator. Another example would be if somebody bought the chance to name a character and only submitted names that sounded like dirty words. Or what if they are invited to a recording session and then decide to make farting noises during recording? Obviously we can't allow for something like that.
Where possible, we will be calling back original Robotech voice actors to be involved in Robotech Academy!
Any funds that exceed the goal will be put towards the production, including the possibility of increased running time!
You will only be charged if the Kickstarter successfully meets its goal.
Add together the cost of the add-ons you want, including the shipping costs for international shipping. Click on the "Manage My Pledge" button, and add the cost of your add-ons to the pledge you already have. Once the Kickstarter is over, we will contact you about which add-ons you wanted.
- (35 days)