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FLOATING HORSES, the documentary, will reveal the rags to riches story of Rodeo legend and Western movie star, Casey Tibbs.

Introduction

Howdy! Casey Tibbs is celebrated as the cowboy who elevated Rodeo from its hard-luck contests at the turn of the 20th century to the multimillion-dollar sport it is today. Floating Horses: The Life of Casey Tibbs will reveal why Casey’s legend lives larger now than it did when he tamed saddle-broncs and graced silver screens.

Whether you’re a lifelong fan of Casey Tibbs or hearing his name for the first time, thank you for visiting our page. The Director of this film, Justin Koehler, has been producing this documentary up until now, but because of Casey’s popularity, the project grew ever more in scope and we need you, Casey’s fans, to help us make this documentary a reality. Donation levels and perks are in the column to the right ------>

Hours upon hours of research on Casey Tibbs has unearthed some exceptional memorabilia, which include unique photographs, vintage movie scenes, and the radio interview you heard featured within our Kickstarter video. On top of that, we casted the role of Casey Tibbs for our reenactment scenes! This role will go to one of the rising stars in ProRodeo, two-time National Finals Rodeo Qualifier, Cole Elshere! Furthermore, we have compiled an impressive list of people to interview for the film. These people include: 

Larry Mahan (World Champion Rodeo Cowboy)

Baxter Black (Cowboy Poet)

Korkow Rodeos (Rodeo Producer/Stock Contractor)

Jeff Willert (World Champion Saddle Bronc Rider)

Sutton Rodeos (Rodeo Producer/Stock Contractor)

Gail Woerner (Rodeo Historian)

Jim Thompson (ProRodeo Announcer/Rodeo Historian)

Johnny Western (Johnny Cash/Sons of the Pioneers)

Dean Smith (Hollywood Stuntman)

Charlie Daniels (Country Musician, Friend of Casey Tibbs)

David Corlew (Charlie’s Manager, Friend of Casey Tibbs)

Nudie’s Rodeo Tailors (Apparel Company)

Cleo Harrington (Casey's Former Wife)

Edd Hayes (Sculptor)

John Duffy (Casey Tibbs Historian)

Byron Price (Casey Tibbs Historian)

Jim Aplan (Casey Tibbs Historian)

Jim Hunt (Actor, The Young Rounders)

Sunny Hannum (Niece of Casey Tibbs)

Dayle Angyal (Niece of Casey Tibbs)

Larry Tibbs (Nephew of Casey Tibbs)

Jesse Reed (Friend of Casey Tibbs)

Selena Roberts (Friend of Casey Tibbs)

We are excited to announce that wardrobe for the Casey Tibbs reenactment scenes will be provided by PETROL and GREELEY HAT WORKS!!!

Screen Saver
Screen Saver

Recent Press

Filmmakers, cowboys, stock contractors from South Dakota to tell the story of Casey Tibbs

‘Floating Horses’ needs to raise 100K

Telling the story of 'Floating Horses'

Insider Story: New Film about The Life of Casey Tibbs, directed by Justin Koehler

Cinema South Dakota: "Floating Horses" coming soon

Filmmaker Raising Funds for Documentary on Life of Rodeo Great Casey Tibbs

‘Floating Horses: The Life of Casey Tibbs’ documentary in its early stages of production

Floating some funds for ‘Floating Horses’

The Director

Justin Koehler has lived and operated in the Denver production scene for the past 9 years working with projects airing on History, Discovery, Weather Channel, HGTV, as well as historical films for the National Park Service. These NPS films include: Shiloh National Military Park, Chickamauga and Chattanooga National Military Park, Kennesaw Mountain National Battlefield Park, Little Bighorn Battlefield National Monument, Petroglyph National Monument, and the upcoming 2014 PBS series, Civil War: The Untold Story.

When Justin decided to share his own vision on screen, he was drawn to the rich history of his home state of South Dakota. His preceding film, The Buffalo King: The Man Who Saved the American Bison, is an award-winning documentary on the film festival circuit and garnered distribution to public stations in all 50 states, the U.S. Virgin Islands, and Puerto Rico. The Buffalo King tells the life and times of South Dakotan, James (Scotty) Philip.

Justin pinpointed Casey Tibbs as his succeeding documentary midway through the production of The Buffalo King, and he is honored to be the first filmmaker to feature Casey’s story on the big screen. Casey is often credited with elevating Professional Rodeo to National attention, branding him ‘the Babe Ruth of Rodeo.’ His flamboyant lifestyle included plush, purple Cadillacs and flashy cowboy attire. Akin to riding a wild bronc in competition, Casey’s unpredictable life had its grand victories and cheerless crashes. Tighten your cinch and get ready to “Let’er Buck!”

Transparencies
Transparencies

What am I supporting?

Editing

A skilled editor is the heartbeat of the postproduction process. Aaron Pendergast was the editor for our previous film, The Buffalo King, and we would like to hire him again for this project! 

Sound Mastering

We want this film to sound great, and we have the accomplished Brooke Saelens to get us there! Brooke will professionally master the entire soundtrack for theatrical, online, and DVD viewing.

Composer

The music heard during our Kickstarter video came from the talented composer, Will Ecker. We would love to hire Will to create an original score for the entire Floating Horses: The Life of Casey Tibbs film. 

Travel

To complete our interviews, we need to purchase tickets for air-travel and hotel lodging. We will be flying from Tennessee to California and from Texas up to South Dakota… and that gets expensive!

Crew

The number of filmmakers devoted to Floating Horses is directly correlated to the amount of money we are able to raise. Producing a film is a costly undertaking and attracting the talent of those who can best tell Casey’s story is not cheap. Simply put, the more money we raise, the more talent we can hire and the better Floating Horses will be.

Equipment and Expendables

We want this documentary to look stunning! We will both rent and purchase production equipment. Cameras, lights, microphones, and media are just a few of the items we need to make this picture pop.

Footage and Photograph Rights

There are hundreds of Casey Tibbs photographs held by an assortment of private organizations, and the rights belong to those organizations. Casey also appeared in various television shows, movies, game shows and talk shows. The rights to that footage will belong to a major network or held in an exclusive collection. Our goal is to get access and rights to all footage and photographs from this pivotal moment in Casey’s life to help tell the most captivating story possible.

Post Cards
Post Cards

 Casey Tibbs Fun Facts:

“I had a drive, a desire, to ride broncs. I used to pray for the toughest horses.” -Casey Tibbs

Casey, thirteen, was paid $5 to ride his first bronc in competition. He drank himself sick on soda with the winnings.

Casey worked for the legendary Diamond A Cattle Company and earned $10 for every horse he tamed.

“America's Most Beloved Cowboy" was a term Casey used on his telephone answering machine.

“When the weather was right, with the wind blowing from the right direction, you could hear Casey’s spurs singing, and as the rowels turned, they just hummed.” -Donna Melvin

Casey received the prestigious Golden Boot Award from the Motion Picture and Television Relief Fund for his efforts to promote Western movies and television shows.

“When Casey set his hat on the back of his head, showing his curly hair, many a female’s heart skipped a beat.” -Leon Adams

Casey Tibbs was the first and only cowboy ever featured on the cover of LIFE magazine.

Casey, as well, produced an award-winning documentary film titled, Sioux Nation, in the spring of 1969.

For two decades, Casey worked in Hollywood as a director, actor, stuntman, and stagehand.

Casey appeared in Gunsmoke, The Waltons, The Cowboys, Tales of Wells Fargo, Junior Bonner and numerous other Hollywood pictures.

“Every time you put your entry fees down you’re bettin’ you can beat any other guy ridin’. If you don’t, you don’t eat.” -Casey Tibbs

Casey wrote and directed the film Born to Buck. Henry Fonda and Rex Allen narrated the picture, which out-grossed The Graduate 5 to 1 in South Dakota theaters.

“It was impossible to believe that this curly-haired boy was actually an athlete with tremendous ability.” -Rusty Richards

Casey ran with famous leading men, which included Steve McQueen, Frank Sinatra, John Wayne, Robert Mitchum, and Pat Butram.

Country music legend Charlie Daniels said, Casey Tibbs was "as western as the sunset, and cowboy to the core.”

Risks and challenges Learn about accountability on Kickstarter

FAQ

Do you have to reach your goal? Yes. We need to reach or exceed our goal of $100,000 in order to keep any of the pledges for the film. If we don’t reach our goal, no one will be charged for their pledge and it will be as if this whole thing never happened. It’s all or nothing!

What happens if you exceed the goal amount? Thanks for asking! We have a stretch goal of $150,000 and if we reach that goal we will put that money directly into the production and postproduction of Floating Horses: The Life of Casey Tibbs. We want to make this film as good as it can be.

When is the release date? If all goes well with this Kickstarter campaign, and we reach our goal, we hope to be finished by the end of 2015.

FAQ

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

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    THANKS, PARD! Every dollar counts, and you’ll get a firm, bronc rider handshake the next time we cross paths!

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    OUR HAT’S OFF TO YOU! You’ll be given a personal Thank You Credit on our Facebook page, Floating Horses: Life of Casey Tibbs.

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    FLOATING HORSES DIGITAL WALLPAPER Let the “Rhythm Rider” revamp your computer desktop with this sly Casey Tibbs wallpaper! Includes Facebook thank you.

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    SET OF 5 FLOATING HORSES MOVIE POSTER POSTCARDS “America’s Most Beloved Cowboy” wants to connect you with family and friends through these Floating Horses postcards. Includes Facebook thank you and digital wallpaper.

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    DIGITAL DOWNLOAD OF FLOATING HORSES: THE LIFE OF CASEY TIBBS SOUNDTRACK! “Let’er Buck” as you two-step to the original soundtrack from Floating Horses: The Life of Casey Tibbs! (Download will be delivered after the official theatrical release) Includes Facebook thank you, digital wallpaper, and 5 postcards.

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    DIGITAL DOWNLOAD OF FLOATING HORSES: THE LIFE OF CASEY TIBBS FILM!!! The “Rainbow Rider” awards you with a special download of Floating Horses: The Life of Casey Tibbs film prior to DVD release! (Download will be delivered after the official theatrical release) Includes Facebook thank you, digital wallpaper, 5 postcards and soundtrack.

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    REMARKABLE DISCOVERY!!! DIGITAL DOWNLOAD OF THE LOST CASEY TIBBS RADIO INTERVIEW!!! Unearthed during research for Floating Horse: The Life of Casey Tibbs, this 8m42s interview with Casey Tibbs may be the only one in existence! It can be yours ONLY during this Kickstarter campaign! (Download will be delivered after the official theatrical release is finalized) Includes Facebook thank you, digital wallpaper, 5 postcards, soundtrack and movie download.

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    RARE CASEY TIBBS PRINT!!! COLLECT A RARE 5x7 PRINT FROM A PRIVATE COLLECTION OF CASEY TIBBS TRANSPARENCIES!!! 150 transparencies of Casey’s ventures were discovered, and we are digitizing all for use in the film. You can choose 1 of 5 prints from this collection to be your very own! ONLY available during this Kickstarter campaign! (Choice of prints will be emailed after Kickstarter campaign) Includes Facebook thank you, digital wallpaper, 5 postcards, soundtrack, movie download, and radio interview.

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    THE BUFFALO KING: THE MAN WHO SAVED THE AMERICAN BISON Expand your DVD collection by receiving this award-winning documentary by Floating Horses Director, Justin Koehler. Includes Facebook thank you, digital wallpaper, 5 postcards, soundtrack, movie download, radio interview and 5x7 print.

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    11x17 FLOATING HORSES: THE LIFE OF CASEY TIBBS MOVIE POSTER! Enjoy this limited edition print signed and designed by award-winning Director, Justin Koehler! Includes Facebook thank you, digital wallpaper, 5 postcards, soundtrack, movie download, radio interview, 5x7 print, and Buffalo King DVD.

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    FLOATING HORSES: THE LIFE OF CASEY TIBBS DVD!!! To boot, the DVD will be autographed by Floating Horses Director, Justin Koehler! You will also earn a PERSONAL PHONE CALL from Justin to Thank You for your donation, plus discuss the film and Casey Tibbs. (DVD will be delivered after the official theatrical release is finalized) Includes Facebook thank you, digital wallpaper, 5 postcards, soundtrack, movie download, radio interview, 5x7 print, Buffalo King DVD and signed poster.

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    SPOILER ALERT!!! 15 MINUTE SNEAK PEEK OF FLOATING HORSES: THE LIFE OF CASEY TIBBS This sneak peek will be delivered before the film’s official theatrical release!!! Includes Facebook thank you, digital wallpaper, 5 postcards, soundtrack, movie download, radio interview, 5x7 print, Buffalo King DVD, signed poster, signed Floating Horses DVD and phone call from the director.

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    8x11 FLOATING HORSES PHOTO BOOK!!! You were “Born to Buck” with this collection of Casey Tibbs archival photographs, photos of personal memorabilia, and behind-the-scenes pictures from the making of the film. You will also be presented with a “BORN TO BUCK” CREDIT (Special Thank You) during the end credits of the film. Includes Facebook thank you, digital wallpaper, 5 postcards, soundtrack, movie download, radio interview, 5x7 print, Buffalo King DVD, signed poster, signed Floating Horses DVD, phone call from the director and sneak peek.

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    FRAMED AND MATTED 8x10 PRINT FROM PRIVATE COLLECTION OF CASEY TIBBS TRANSPARENCIES!!! Decorate your wall with a professionally framed and matted 8x10 Casey Tibbs print! 150 transparencies of Casey’s ventures were discovered, and we are digitizing all for use in the film. You can choose 1 of 5 prints from this collection to be yours. (Choice of prints will be emailed after Kickstarter campaign) In addition, “The Kid Wonder” wants you to come celebrate with 2 VIP TICKETS to the movie premiere! You will also be presented with “THE KID WONDER” CREDIT (Associate Producer) during the end credits of the film. Includes Facebook thank you, digital wallpaper, 5 postcards, soundtrack, movie download, radio interview, 5x7 print, Buffalo King DVD, signed poster, signed Floating Horses DVD, phone call from the director, sneak peek and photo book.

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    11x17 FRAMED FLOATING HORSES MOVIE POSTER You are a member of “Casey’s Crew” with a framed Floating Horses poster, plus it will be signed by Director, Justin Koehler. You will also be presented with a “CASEY’S CREW” CREDIT (Co-Producer) during the end credits of the film. Includes Facebook thank you, digital wallpaper, 5 postcards, soundtrack, movie download, radio interview, 5x7 print, Buffalo King DVD, signed poster, signed Floating Horses DVD, phone call from the director, sneak peek, photo book and framed print.

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    You are “THE CHAMP”!!! You will be awarded a HOTEL ROOM AND AIRFARE FOR TWO to Floating Horses: The Life of Casey Tibbs movie premiere! (Continental U.S. airfare only and one night hotel room) You will also be presented with an exclusive “THE CHAMP” CREDIT (Executive Producer) during the end credits of the film. Includes Facebook thank you, digital wallpaper, 5 postcards, soundtrack, movie download, radio interview, 5x7 print, Buffalo King DVD, signed poster, signed Floating Horses DVD, phone call from the director, sneak peek, photo book, framed print, and framed poster.

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Funding period

- (60 days)