UPDATE 04.07.12 -- We are both humbled and excited to announce that we've made our goal! We are absolutely touched by the support we've received from everyone who encouraged this campaign to succeed. Every single one of your contributions helped us surpass this milestone, and now we know with absolute certainty that "Battle Lizard" will very shortly see the light of day. A tremendous THANK YOU from Keegan, Eric and the Battle Lizard team for generously giving us the resources we need to finish our film!
Though we have succeeded in raising enough funds to complete the film itself, there are still many more aspects to the entire project that require even more funding out of pocket. As of today, we still have 5 days left. So, let's keep it going! That's 5 more days to raise funds to cover everything else, including our recent and final pickup day, the Kickstarter and Amazon fees (10%), official website design, festival submission fees, DVD / Blue-Ray printing, distribution, and costs to produce the Kickstarter video. That's close to $4,000 worth of additional expenses, on top of what we already raised to finish the film. We know it's a lot to strive for, but with the campaign still going strong, we really believe we can jump this final hurdle.
Help us over the next 5 days spread the word, post the link to facebook, twitter, blogs and newsletters. This is our final attempt to reach for the stars, and we're going to get there!
UPDATE 04.02.12 -- A big shout out to Edward Fonseca for coming aboard as our first official Associate Producer / Velociraptor! We're so amazed by all the contributions we've received so far from friends and supporters, we're confident that means things will start to pick up this week before the deadline. Edward, thank you for your courageous pledge and we look forward to seeing you at the Premiere!
UPDATE 03.26.12 -- Sweet! 1,600+ likes on the Battle Lizard Kickstarter page! Some AMAZING friends from around the world have bravely stepped forward and pledged to help us complete our film. We won't forget your generous offer. Thank you.
There's still a ways to go - more than 80% within 17 days - but we KNOW it's possible. If everyone else who liked our page pledges $10, we'd reach our goal instantly. It's that easy!
So in the meantime, we're working hard to press forward. We have a little pick-up shoot day scheduled for Thursday - we'll make sure to take some pictures to share with you here and on facebook. We almost have old Mr. Battle Lizard fully 3D-modeled and painted, we just need your support to breathe some life into him and finish the story. So...
Let's do this! 17 DAYS LEFT AND COUNTING.
UPDATE 03.15.12 -- Shouting out a big Thank You to our first backers. It's the confidence we've needed to continue painting our 3D model of old 'Mr. Battle Lizard'. We have a little over 10% of our $15,600 goal pledged, with only 27 days left to go, but we're putting 100% faith in our supporters. Already with 900+ Facebook likes, just think, if every one of those likes donated $15 right now, Battle Lizard post-production would be a GO! Thank you for taking us these few important steps closer.
THANK YOU for taking the time to visit our Kickstarter page. We know there are a billion other interesting ways to spend your cyber-time and we're glad you chose us to liven your day!
Hopefully our video was fun to watch and communicated the heart of our message. We're not asking anyone to help fund a pipe dream or reach unrealistic goals. We're asking everyone, our fans and movie lovers alike, to help us complete a film that's already in the can.
When we started this project almost a year ago, we had just enough cash in our pockets to finish principal photography. We knew the remaining funds needed for post-production might never come from our day jobs. So like any brave artist unwilling to compromise, we decided to take that leap of faith and go ahead and shoot. Now we’re beginning to understand what they mean by ‘risk equals reward’.
Many of you have already sent us kind messages or posted compliments about our previous short, Porcelain Unicorn. So many in fact, it's taking a while to personally thank all of you. We hope the success of that film and its resonance with people around the world set a precedent for our future work. Although our next project is quite different in subject matter and tone, we are equally as passionate about it, and we strive to have the same impact through a larger cinematic experience.
So what is 'BATTLE LIZARD'?
Well, that's the affectionate working title of our newest project. It’s the 5-minute segment of a grander story set during a time-twisted post-apocalypse, where a calvary soldier (played by Gil Darnell) tries to lure his steed out of hiding so they can confront their fate together. And by ‘steed’, we mean dinosaur.
We definitely have more than one reason for making this film. For starters, we want to tell the kind of stories we love, and in the classic style we always loved watching them - no unnecessary sex or violence, no preachy themes, no ‘found footage’. Just quality cinematic storytelling. More specifically, we want to create something that aspires to ‘Big Hollywood’ stature, and here’s why: when the time comes to raise financing for feature films that are culturally significant or personal to us, like Porcelain Unicorn, we want investors or studios to feel secure taking that creative risk, having proof that we understand our audience.
So what exactly are you donating to? Well, in a nutshell, our post-production - the other half of our film. Like the video explains, we have to complete visual effects, sound design, score, mixing, coloring and various publicity and marketing materials, without which a film never sees the light of day. The good news is we’ve been working at this filmmaking thing long enough to know realistically how to make the most of our talent and resources. We also know what it means to aim for the stars, and actually reach the stars. Like creating an estimated quarter-million dollar (market price) ILM-quality visual effect package for the cost of a new Honda Civic, with automatic windows. It’s a killer deal made possible by the tireless dedication and ingenuity of our industry friends.
Where’s the money going specifically? We’ve budgeted exactly what we need to finish ‘Battle Lizard’ down the dollar. Below you’ll find a breakdown of how we plan to allocate your donations and tackle each element of post-production at the highest quality possible (because we won't settle for anything less)...
• Visual Effects: This makes up the vast majority of our budget, a whopping $8,500, and even that’s not everything we need. But there’s an advantage to living in Los Angeles, the entertainment capitol of the world, and that is our neighbors. We have an A-list visual effects duo already working tirelessly to bring our ‘Battle Lizard’ to life. Together we’ve set the bar high, planning to match the technical quality of Jurassic Park or Peter Jackson’s King Kong, as opposed to what you might find on your typical science fiction-themed channel. And so far what we've created is headed in that direction.
Visual effects for any film is like an entirely separate and complex production in itself, made up of its own hierarchy of departments, only everything happens on the computer. Aside from sculpting, rigging, animating, texturing and lighting our dinosaur, we also have to work on...
• Background – Mattes
• Rotoscoping/Garbage Matte/Wire Removal
• Match Moving
• Particle Simulations and Elements
In short, creating a photo-realistic dinosaur is no simple task. It’s like giving birth to a living, breathing creature!
• Original Score: As former musicians, we truly believe 50% of any good movie is a great score. That’s why we’re dedicating $3,500 to record with a live orchestra in a reputable recording studio. No synthesized instruments allowed! Our composer has already begun sharing some of his incredible ideas. And we didn’t tell you this, but he’s probably going to get a few world-renowned musicians to jam for a day, bringing unparalleled emotion to our story. We just need to throw them a bone as a token of our appreciation.
• Sound Editorial / Mixing: Often the unsung hero of Hollywood, sound can make the movie, especially when more is left up to the imagination. Our supervising sound editor and his team are ready to pull the trigger, currently discussing innovative ideas on how to design our dinosaur’s unique vocals. Absolutely NO ‘stock’ sounds will be used in the making of this short; that’s not how we roll.
The final rerecording mix is just as critical as the sound design itself. It’s the quality control for all audio. These funds allow us to bring on a professional engineer to ensure that our film sounds nothing short of remarkable in both theaters and on television. We’ll also finish in both surround sound and stereo so you have the option of enjoy either one. All this for a modest $2,500.
• Color Grading: One of the final ingredients that gives big movies their polished touch. It’s the distinct visual palette or ‘look’ of our film. Strong, expressionistic tones create the overall feeling of being completely immersed in our post-apocalyptic world. $1100 flat. For as much time as we need to get it right at a professional coloring house. That’s an amazing deal!
... and we still have to find money for festival submissions, website creation, DVD / Blu-Ray printing, distribution, and online promotion. (Even this kickstarter video wasn’t free.) Oye! There’s a lot left to do, but your support guarantees the most important part gets finished first: our film. And shrewdly applying every penny of your donations to post-production, we'll be able to make this happen.
There are definitely some cool, fun, one-of-a-kind gifts to be had for supporting this project, including but not limited to original concept art, props used in the film, and your own personal short film produced by us. Take a quick scroll through that column to the right. Anyone who pledges $25 or more will get their name in the credits. Not only in the film itself, but under thank-yous on our imdb page, our official website, and any other publicity materials displaying credits. We want to share with the world our generous fans and supporters who made this dream (/ nightmare) a reality.
We know the economy has seen better days, and filmmaking happens to be the most expensive art form. But movies are also one of those rare things that are depression-proof. Take a moment to ask yourself what cinema means to you, how you’ve enjoyed it on those rainy days, when you needed an escape or longed to feel a connection. That’s the spirit of what we do. We truly love making movies and always have. The real reward however comes from doing it for EVERYONE.
If we manage to surpass our fundraising goal, we’ll be able to cover ancillary costs (described above), AND if we even further exceed that number, anything extra will go directly to our next project. Making movies is always, always the objective. So look at this as not only a one-time fundraiser for ‘Battle Lizard’, but a contribution to our future work. A good faith investment, if you will, in our promise to deliver quality, thought-provoking and meaningful content... with the occasional fun flick in between. In the end, with your support, we’ll be able to deliver better films to YOU, our audience, our muse.
-Keegan, Eric, Gil and team
PS. If we meet our fundraising goal, we can all expect a June 2012 release.
PPSS. Roger has something to say...
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- (35 days)