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A live action short fantasy film featuring a unique cast of puppets by sculptor, fabricator, and puppeteer, Toby Froud.
A live action short fantasy film featuring a unique cast of puppets by sculptor, fabricator, and puppeteer, Toby Froud.
922 backers pledged $53,330 to help bring this project to life.

About this project

LESSONS LEARNED: A Practical Puppet Short Film project video thumbnail
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$53,330

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Lessons Learned will be a short film about a young boy who receives an intriguing birthday gift from his grandfather.  It is a gift that will stay with him for the rest of his life.

Having grown up with inspiring movies like The Dark Crystal and Labyrinth,it has been been a dream of mine to create such imagery with hand/cable controlled puppets. This film will also utilize a bit of modern technology to better immerse viewers into the world.

I need your help to make this movie come to life. If you are a fan of the Henson-Froud collaborations or perhaps just want to make a statement that puppet art is alive and desired, please consider a generous donation at one of the many pledge levels to help me reach my goal.

Be a part of the magic.  Partner with me on this journey to make the dream into reality!

My name is Toby Froud and I am a sculptor, fabricator, and puppeteer.   My love of puppets began at a very young age after my first film role as Toby the baby from Labyrinth. Growing up with Brian and Wendy Froud for parents, a draw towards puppets and fantasy was natural.  I'm excited to continue the Henson-Froud collaboration working with Heather Henson of IBEX Puppetry.  Heather Henson is the executive producer for Lessons Learned

Lessons Learned will be part of the Handmade Puppet Dreams series by IBEX Puppetry.  

Visit the Handmade Puppet Dreams Facebook page for updates: https://www.facebook.com/HandmadePuppetDreams

Over the years, I've had wonderful experiences working in the film making industry..  From getting my feet wet at Weta on the Chronicles of Narnia and King Kong to working for Laika on Paranorman and their new feature The Boxtrolls, I knew film making was for me. Along the way I've experimented with some short films, here are a couple for you to see:

Fumber and Ignatz - Two goblins philosophizing about... nothing! One of a series of quirky "philosophies of Goblins"shorts created in a tiny shed on Dartmoor in Devon, England

The Little Game - A man who finds a strange mechanical toy gets more than he bargained for.  An experiment in live action narrative.

My intention for Lessons Learned is to bring Froudian characters to life on screen with physical puppets, practical effects and very real props and sets.

Currently, I am building an amazing team of artists and performers that share the same passion for puppetry.  

Your support will help us bring this vision to the screen by covering equipment costs, space rental, paying incredible artists to do what they do best, and affording the best post production and sound design to further immerse you in this fantastical world.

Stretch Goal #1 Reached!! The Granny will come to be!

Working Brian Froud Design for the Granny.  (This is not the print reward, but give you an idea of the character)
Working Brian Froud Design for the Granny. (This is not the print reward, but give you an idea of the character)

Rewards

Sculpt for 8GB Hard Drive by Toby Froud
Sculpt for 8GB Hard Drive by Toby Froud

Correction on Reward: All DVD and Blu-Ray discs will be Region Free.

Grandfather, Boy, and Digby- One of a kind character Maquettes sculpted by Toby Froud, approximately 8 inches tall.

Exclusive Kickstarter Gift - "Goblin Thinker" sculpted by Toby Froud and cast in plaster.  Approx. 11inches tall, 6inches wide, and 7 inches deep. 

Limited Edition,full size,Stand-in Digby Puppet -   Picture is of the actual character from the film. Stand in version will be similar construction with hard plastic cast head and hand mouth control only.

Risks and challenges

There will always be risks and challenges when making a live action puppet film.

The puppets themselves can take on a life of their own. Using the materials I need to bring the characters to life makes the puppets quite delicate. Foam latex can rip, rods can bend, cables can snap, tension can weaken, and unpredictable forces of nature can occur. Using the best quality materials I can afford, hiring professionals for the build, and experienced puppeteers can help reduce these risks. We may even do a little dance for Mother Nature.

Schedule may also be a challenge while creating Lessons Learned. Working with schedules of the puppeteers, the technical crew needed, and visual effects, filming will need to be on a flexible timeline. We plan to be filming this fall and reach completion in February.

Another challenge will be the recording of sound for the film. The puppets' controls, puppeteering teams, and various effects will make live sound recording extremely difficult. We will need to pre-record all dialogue and then puppeteer to playback during production."

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  1. Select this reward

    Pledge $2 or more About $2.00

    For two-dollars, you will receive a digital, hi-res copy of the official movie poster and our thanks!

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    Pledge $10 or more About $10

    At the ten-dollar pledge level, you will receive the digital, hi-res movie poster, as well as an exclusive 'Lessons Learned' sticker.

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    Pledge $12 or more About $12

    For twelve-dollars, you get the above, as well as a DIGITAL PRODUCTION BOOKLET featuring exclusive artwork, images of sculpts, behind the scenes shots, the FULL SHOOTING SCRIPT, and storyboards.

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    Pledge $15 or more About $15

    At the fifteen-dollar level, you get everything above, PLUS a DIGITAL DOWNLOAD OF THE FINISHED FILM.

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    Pledge $25 or more About $25

    Twenty-five dollars gets you all previous rewards plus a LIMITED EDITION (Region 1) DVD COPY of the final film.

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  6. Select this reward

    Pledge $30 or more About $30

    Brian Froud Design Print. For a pledge of $30 you will receive an EXCLUSIVE 8x11 Brian Froud print of his design for a new character for Lessons Learned.

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    Pledge $45 or more About $45

    A generous donation of forty-five dollars gets you a signed LIMITED EDITION (Region A/1) BLU-RAY (featuring EXCLUSIVE CONTENT) plus sticker, Digital Downloads of Production Booklet, and Movie Poster.

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    Pledge $45 or more About $45

    Brian Froud Print plus Digital Downloads. For this pledge level you'll receive an 8x11 print of Brian Froud designed character to be added to the Lessons Learned film, a digital download of the finished film, digital production booklet, and digital movie poster.

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    Pledge $50 or more About $50

    T-SHIRT featuring Lessons Learned artwork on the front. Specify size: S, M, L, XL or XXL, plus sticker, Digital Downloads of Production Booklet, Film, and Movie Poster.

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    Pledge $55 or more About $55

    Brian Froud Print plus DVD. For this pledge level you'll receive an 8x11 print of Brian Froud designed character to be added to the Lessons Learned film, a dvd copy of the finished film, Lesson Learned sticker, digital production booklet, and digital movie poster.

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    Pledge $60 or more About $60

    T-SHIRT featuring Lessons Learned artwork on the front. Specify size: S, M, L, XL or XXL, plus LIMITED EDITION (Region 1) DVD COPY of the final film, sticker, Digital Downloads of Production Booklet, and Digital Movie Poster.

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    Pledge $75 or more About $75

    T-SHIRT featuring Lessons Learned artwork on the front. Specify size: S, M, L, XL or XXL, plus signed LIMITED EDITION (Region A/1) BLU-RAY (featuring EXCLUSIVE CONTENT), sticker Digital Downloads of Production Booklet, and Digital Movie Poster.

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    Pledge $75 or more About $75

    Brian Froud Print plus Blu-Ray. For this pledge level you'll receive an 8x11 print of Brian Froud designed character to be added to the Lessons Learned film, Blu-Ray copy of the finished film, Lesson Learned Sticker, digital production booklet, and digital movie poster.

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  14. Select this reward

    Pledge $80 or more About $80

    Brian Froud Print plus T-Shirt. For this pledge level you'll receive an 8x11 print of Brian Froud designed character to be added to the Lessons Learned film, Lessons Learned T-Shirt, Digital Download of finished film, Lessons Learned Sticker, digital production booklet, and digital movie poster.

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  15. Select this reward

    Pledge $90 or more About $90

    Brian Froud Print, T-Shirt & DVD. For this pledge level you'll receive an 8x11 print of Brian Froud designed character to be added to the Lessons Learned film, T-Shirt, DVD copy of the finished film, Lesson Learned Sticker, digital production booklet, and digital movie poster.

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    Pledge $100 or more About $100

    A custom sculpted Froudian 8GB USB FLASH DRIVE loaded with the Digital Movie Poster, Film, and Production Booklet.

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  17. Select this reward

    Pledge $105 or more About $105

    Brian Froud Print, T-Shirt & Blu-Ray. For this pledge level you'll receive an 8x11 print of Brian Froud designed character to be added to the Lessons Learned film, T-Shirt, Blu-Ray copy of the finished film, Lesson Learned Sticker, digital production booklet, and digital movie poster.

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  18. Select this reward

    Pledge $130 or more About $130

    Brian Froud Print & FlashDrive. For this pledge level you'll receive an 8x11 print of Brian Froud designed character to be added to the Lessons Learned film and a custom sculpted Froudian 8GB USB FLASH DRIVE loaded with the Digital Movie Poster, Film, and Production Booklet.

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    Pledge $140 or more About $140

    A custom sculpted Froudian 8GB USB FLASH DRIVE (loaded with the Digital Movie Poster, Film, and Production Booklet), LIMITED EDITION (Region A/1) BLU-RAY (featuring EXCLUSIVE CONTENT) and sticker.

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  20. Select this reward

    Pledge $150 or more About $150

    A custom sculpted Froudian 8GB USB FLASH DRIVE loaded with the Digital Movie Poster, Film, and Production Booklet plus T-Shirt (Please specify size) and Sticker

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  21. Select this reward

    Pledge $170 or more About $170

    Brian Froud Print, Blu-Ray & FlashDrive. For this pledge level you'll receive an 8x11 print of Brian Froud designed character to be added to the Lessons Learned film, Blu-Ray copy of the finished film, and a custom sculpted Froudian 8GB USB FLASH DRIVE loaded with the Digital Movie Poster, Film, and Production Booklet.

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    Pledge $200 or more About $200

    A UNIQUE, FABRICATED PROP BOX actually featured in Hall of Lesson in the film. Box will contain a signed LIMITED EDITION (Region A/1) BLU-RAY (featuring EXCLUSIVE CONTENT), a T-Shirt (Please Specify Size), and sticker.

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    Reward no longer available 30 backers
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    Pledge $500 or more About $500

    A Limited Edition Cast of an original TOBY FROUD GOBLIN STATUE, 'The Thinker' that will be displayed in the film. Only 10 of these will be made available! You'll also receive a signed LIMITED EDITION (Region A/1) BLU-RAY (featuring EXCLUSIVE CONTENT).

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    Reward no longer available 10 backers
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    Pledge $2,000 or more About $2,000

    GRANDPA! At the incredibly generous $2,000.00 pledge level, you will receive the ONE OF A KIND CHARACTER MAQUETTE of GRANDPA, the orginal character concept sculpted by Toby Froud. You'll also receive a signed LIMITED EDITION (Region A/1) BLU-RAY (featuring EXCLUSIVE CONTENT).

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    Pledge $2,000 or more About $2,000

    Oh BOY! At the incredibly generous $2,000.00 pledge level, you will receive the ONE OF A KIND CHARACTER MAQUETTE of the BOY, the original character concept sculpted by Toby Froud. You'll also receive a signed LIMITED EDITION (Region A/1) BLU-RAY (featuring EXCLUSIVE CONTENT).

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    Pledge $2,000 or more About $2,000

    That DIGBY! At the incredibly generous $2,000.00 pledge level, you will receive the ONE OF A KIND CHARACTER MAQUETTE of Digby, the original character concept sculpted by Toby Froud. You'll also receive a signed LIMITED EDITION (Region A/1) BLU-RAY (featuring EXCLUSIVE CONTENT).

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

    For the most generous $5,000.00 pledge level , you will receive a Limited Edition Stand-in Puppet of the character Digby with hand-mouth control only. (Image shown is actual movie puppet, stand in will be of similar construction with hard plastic cast head and movable mouth) You'll also receive a signed LIMITED EDITION (Region A/1) BLU-RAY (featuring EXCLUSIVE CONTENT), a T-shirt (please specify size), sticker, and digital download of the production booklet.

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Funding period

- (30 days)