About this project
UPDATE 5/13/2014: All backers $5 and over now receive a digital soundtrack of our ORIGINAL SOUNDTRACK!
Once Upon a Time in the 1970s is a retro sci-fi adventure featuring scientist heroes, robots, and rayguns. Check out Season One, which just went online, and help us make Season Two of our weird transistorpunk webseries.
For Season One, each “year” from 1972 to 1977 is an independent short arc or standalone film that tells small parts of the larger mystery. We were able to do a lot of worldbuilding with the early episodes, but we didn’t get into really telling the main story until the 3-part 1977 season finale. We kept the shorts a bit disconnected because budget and related scheduling limitations kept us from shooting a single long arc all at once.
Check out our Season One teaser trailer on YouTube:
Season 2 picks up in 1978, and it has been a rough decade for our heroes. Paranoia and government oppression grip the city as the children of prominent researchers go missing. The strange electrical anomaly that has long been a boon to industry is acting increasingly erratic, and our heroes are forced to choose between their loved ones and the fate of the continent as the 1980s loom.
This Kickstarter is specifically going to cover production costs for season 2 and allow us to make the season as a unified story. $8,000 isn't a whole lot for a project of this scope, but we have a lot of great people on board who want to see the story through to its epic conclusion. This goal is the minimum we need to get everyone in the same place, keep everyone fed, and ensure that our practical effects and production design are appropriately ridiculous.
Even if you can't help financially, please check us out on Facebook and Twitter at the links below:
The first season can be watched in its entriety on our Youtube or Blip.tv pages!
OK, GET TO THE ROBOTS AND RAYGUNS:
One of the things that set us apart from other series, and other low budget sci-fi in general, is our production design. We focus on puppetry, practical effects, and using vfx software to make practical effects look awesome. We're also totally in love with the 70s technology aesthetic - everything was so big and clunky during the transition from vacuum tubes to transistors (we like to self-define our genre as "transistorpunk").
Once Upon a Time in the 1970s has been a labor of love for years, funded out of pocket by taking on extra for-hire video work to pay for production costs. We've shown episodes of the series at comic conventions and film festivals across the country and are proud to finally bring it online. We just wrapped our weird, looping, season one story, and we have big plans for when we go back into production! We truly feel like we're bringing something unique to the science fiction genre and would love your support.
Many of our campaign rewards are based around our distinct production design. Our Blu-ray rewards come packaged in handmade repurposed 5 1/4 inch floppy disc cases. We also have vacuum tube spiders, rayguns, and more!
As for standard rewards, we have great retro pimpbot t-shirts designed by Matt Wiley and retro history postcards.
All tiers above $10 include a DRM-free HD download of the entire series, ad free, and cut together with all credits at the end to not break up the viewing experience.
One last thing we are crazy excited to announce is that we are doing an extremely limited edition print of a 2-6 player strategy/battle board game that we have been designing over the last year. We’re not sure we’ll ever do a wide release of this game due to production craziness, but we’re incredibly excited to offer a small number of them.
The game features 13 figures, over 200 cards in 6 unique decks, 2 boards, and more!
We love the idea of pitching "a complete night of entertainment" as a movie/game night tie-in!
UPPER TIER REWARDS:
Crazy production design has always been the cornerstone of our story, and while we enjoy having a raygun-filled display case in our living room, we’d love to part with these hand-crafted screen-used props to help cover the costs of the shoot.
At the $500 level, we are offering one of our hand-made rayguns used on screen in the series.
Finally, we're offering one of our robot puppets for your personal collection or future film/theater project. These robots are like children to us. To fund season 2, we will sell you our favorite child.
Producer Credit and Creative Input
We are also excited to offer producer credit for this season. Beyond being listed on IMDB and in the press as producer/executive producer for the series, if you support us at a producer level, we really are interested in your input and want to hear your opinions about the direction the show or its marketing/promotion. If a producer is interested, we'll set up monthly Google Chat sessions and keep you copied on emails about all aspects of preproduction, production, marketing, and distribution.
EXCEEDING THE GOAL:
Every penny beyond our $8,000 base goal will go into producing additional episodes, preposterously large robots, and (most importantly) compensating the cast and crew that have awesomely volunteered their time on this project.
WHO WE ARE:
We are Chris and Anne Lukeman and, together with a ton of amazing filmmakers, musicians, and actors, we released season one of our story.
We have released a number of supernatural comedy short films that have played at film festivals and comic conventions across the country. Between our various YouTube channels, we have over 400,000 views, and we are committed to playing with the boundaries of web video storytelling as the medium grows.
The first season of Once Upon a Time in the 1970s was a piece by piece experiment in storytelling and worldbuilding. From that, we want to take the story to its ridiculous and powerful conclusion.
Risks and challenges
There are always risks when making a film or webseries. You can lose an actor, a location can be torn down (yes, this has happened to us), or other projects can distract your crew.
We've built a really close community of friends making the first season, though, and we're sure we'll be able to find alternate locations or crew if needed. Also, the great thing about making a time travel movie is that it wouldn't be impossible to rewrite characters out of the story (or replace them with their younger or older selves) if necessary.
Aside from season 1 of this series, we've produced a feature film and dozens of short films over the past 10 years. We are 100% confident that, whatever we need to do, we will complete season 2.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
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