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A documentary about the Flamin' Groovies, a legendary rock band from the 1970s and their attempt at a comeback after 30 years. Read more

Brooklyn, NY Documentary
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A documentary about the Flamin' Groovies, a legendary rock band from the 1970s and their attempt at a comeback after 30 years.

Brooklyn, NY Documentary
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About this project

From award-winning filmmakers William Tyler Smith and Kurt Feldhun comes a feature length rock 'n' roll documentary about the Flamin' Groovies, a colorful and highly influential rock band that had some big hits in the 70's, but met with an untimely and difficult break up in the early 80's.  

Although the Flamin' Groovies had all the makings for a successful career, life seemed to conspire against them and they never quite made it, although their songs, Slow Death, Shake Some Action and Teenage Head, have been heard on motion picture soundtracks such as Clueless and numerous CD compilations. They have been called the "Godfathers of Punk Rock" and many bands such as The Dictators have done Groovies' covers. Legend has it that the Groovies' album, Teenage Head (1971), was Mick Jagger and Keith Richard's favorite album at the time, and Jagger is purported to have said that the Groovies "did the R&B thing" better than the Rolling Stones did. They are often referred to as "the biggest band you've never heard of." 

Despite being highly regarded and respected in the music industry, and having diehard fans all over the world, most people have never even heard their music…until now.

Now 30 years later, they are embarking on a comeback tour and this time they are determined to get the notoriety that seemed to have eluded them. They're full of life, full of stories, and full of sh*t…

...and we're ready to capture it all on film.  

THE FILM

Our film will take the viewer on a fun and exciting journey through the world of the Flamin' Groovies with a behind the scenes and backstage portrayal of their comeback, the new recording sessions and each band member's personal lives. We will capture all of their antics, stories, and general madness. We'll cover the ins and outs, the ups and the downs of life with the Flamin' Groovies. And of course, we'll cover the Groovies' colorful history leading up to their difficult break up.

Cyril, Chris and George, all fascinating characters and well into their sixties, can still rock and roll. They're unpredictable and think they're in their early twenties. Who knows what's bound to happen? 

If you liked Anvil, Searching for Sugarman, and Spinal Tap you're gonna love this one!

NEWS FLASH!! NEWS FLASH!!

We recently spent two weeks shooting with the Groovies on tour in the Northeast and in San Francisco recording some of their new music tracks. We can definitely say that the footage is not only entertaining, but absolutely hysterical, insightful, surreal and inspiring. 

 
 

GROOVIES HISTORY

The Flamin' Groovies story goes all the way back to 1965 when the band began in their hometown of San Francisco, California. Their first self-released 10-inch album called Sneakers sold well and caught the attention of Columbia Records, which signed them and released their first real album, Supersnazz, on the Epic label.

 "Bill Graham hated our name. He thought we were gay or something. He said, ‘you gotta change your name.' That’s like telling Van Gogh that color don’t work.” Cyril Jordan

The band had its first brush with success in 1971 with the song and album entitled Teenage Head, which is listed in the 2006 book, 1001 Albums You Must Hear Before You Die. In 1972, Chris Wilson joined the band as lead singer and they released the song Slow Death. The gritty sound of this recording was infectious and the band was invited to play television shows around the world. 

Slow Death on live television... 

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The Groovies continued to tour hard and record an impressive number of albums during the 1970's. In 1976, they released their biggest hit to date, Shake Some Action. The song hit 142 on Billboard's top 200 and years later was featured in the film Clueless.

Shake Some Action on live television...

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In July of 1976, the Ramones opened for the Groovies in London at the Roundhouse. This show is considered a galvanizing event for the UK punk scene. In 1981, after over a decade of hard work and dedication the band experienced a difficult and painful break up. 

"We were all, you know, basically just too stoned to continue. We needed to take a break. Everybody had cocaine-itis." Cyril Jordan

 "It seemed like life was thwarting us at every turn and after ten years of living out of each others suitcases we just couldn't take it anymore and we cracked." Chris Wilson

The band went their separate ways and rarely spoke over the next 30 years. George worked for the United States Postal Service for 25 years, Cyril often held 3 jobs at once, and Chris jumped from one construction job to the other. The clock was ticking, the years were passing when Cyril, Chris and George finally decided that it was time to let bygones be bygones and to continue exactly where they had left off that day in 1981 when they broke up.

"We were just so happy when we first saw each other. We just grabbed each other and gave each other a big hug and a kiss." Chris Wilson

 "I'm getting a little too old to be doing this rock 'n' roll thing." Cyril Jordan

"I made a promise with Cyril...that we would see this out together to the end. Now that we’re back together again, it’s almost as if we get a second chance to fulfill that promise." George Alexander

New drummer Victor Penalosa faithfully recreates the style heard on the classic recordings, while at the same time adding his own flavor. The foursome has gone into the studio to record brand new material as well as finish up some long lost recordings. They have begun playing shows again to enthusiastic fans both old and new. Fans have been delighted with what is being called "a dream set list," including original songs the band has never performed before onstage.

"This time around, it happened mostly because of the fans." Cyril Jordan

 "I thought one day we might get the kudos and attention that we all had craved. I hope that’s what’s happening now.” Chris Wilson

"I hadn't played the bass for twenty-five years. I had no reason to play." George Alexander

 "Time and space don't affect us for some reason when we're together. It's like the day after we broke up in 1980." Cyril Jordan

 We are pleased and honored to have music veteran, Joel Jaffe, on board who will supervise the audio recording and mixing, and will engineer and produce The Groovies latest album at Studio D in Sausalito, California. 

 Joel has worked with such artists as Ray Manzarek, Roy Rogers, Carlos Santana, Ringo Starr, John Entwhistle, Indigo Girls, Huey Lewis & The News, Todd Rundren and The Call to name a few. Joel was also the engineer/sound mixer for the cult classic films Light Sleeper and Wave Twisters.

THE FILMMAKERS

Filmmakers William Tyler Smith and Kurt Feldhun met at New York University and have known each other for over 20 years. Having recently collaborated on a documentary about Ray Manzarek of the Doors and Delta Blues slide-guitarist Roy Rogers, Smith and Feldhun decided to team up once again to tell the incredible story of the Flamin' Groovies, a band that they both knew from their youth. (Please see our full bios above right for more information.)

"I had one of their albums in high school and I really liked it. I was thrilled to hear that they were making a comeback 30 years later." Kurt Feldhun

"I went to see one of their recent shows in NYC and I was introduced to them back stage. As soon as I met the band and heard their stories, I knew we had to make this movie." William Tyler Smith

HOW WE WILL USE YOUR FUNDS

We have recently completed our first round of production, successfully shooting the Groovies' recent Northeastern tour and recording of some of their new tracks.

The money we raise will be used to complete production and take us through a rough cut. It will enable us to cover our expenses: equipment rentals, crew wages, transportation, fuel, expendables, food and all of the other unpredictable expenses that are inherent to documentary filmmaking.  It will also cover all post-production expenses through the completion of a first rough edit.

We will resume shooting in April when the Groovies go on tour again and complete the recording of their latest tracks. We will travel to London, Phoenix and San Francisco to reveal the private lives of each band member. We will also be shooting interviews with celebrity fans and music business insiders. These may include celebrity fans such as Kurt Russell, Val Kilmer, Keith Richards, Ivan Julian (Richard Hell and the Voidoids), Mick Jones (The Clash), Dick Manitoba (The Dictators) and John Carpenter. 

Your funds will help us preserve the legend of the incredible Flamin Groovies for generations to come.

Thank you so much for your time and consideration.

We appreciate your support. 

If you have any questions or comments, please feel free to contact us at grooviesfilm@gmail.com

REWARDS IMAGES

Shake Some Action Drink Shaker

 

Cyril WEIRD SCIENCE cover, oil on canvas, 24" x 18".

Cyril MAD MAGAZINE cover, oil on canvas, 24" x 18".

 Cyril STRANGE TALES cover, oil on canvas, 24" x 18".

 Cyril MAGIC CHRISTIAN, oil on canvas, 24" x 24".

 Cyril's THE PIRATE, oil on canvas, 28" x 22".

 Limited Edition Groovies T-Shirt.

 YOU TORE ME DOWN Acetate.

 Groovies Signed Tour Poster 1.

 Groovies Signed Tour Poster 2.

 Magic Christian Vinyl LP signed by Cyril Jordan.

FLAMIN' GROOVIES ON THE WEB:

Facebook Page For The Movie https://www.facebook.com/pages/The-Incredible-Flamin-Groovies-Movie/660957357273508

End of the World: http://www.rollingstone.com/music/news/flamin-groovies-at-the-end-of-the-world-song-premiere-20131105

Shake Some Action: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2XXLQozrq1g

Slow Death: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EL3pP29N-Wc

You Tore Me Down: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CXfsHztgH84

Tallahassee Lassie: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6hvNHazbwGI

Little Queenie: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6hvNHazbwGI

Roll Over Beethoven: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9_PAr445CwM

Wikipedia:http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Flamin%27_Groovies

Groovies Facebook Page: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Flamin-Groovies/85760453541

Risks and challenges

Documentary filmmaking is always a risky endeavour as you are dealing with human lives, which often times, can be highly unpredictable and volatile.

Smith and Feldhun have been producing, directing, shooting and editing documentary and fiction films for over twenty-five years. Both have always successfully completed all of their films. To date, all three of Smith's feature films have been sold around the world. His fourth, Translucent Blues, edited by Feldhun, about the musical collaboration between Doors keyboardist, Ray Manzarek and slide-guitarist, Roy Rogers, is nearing completion and already has distributor interest. Feldhun's television show, Fishin' Impossible, which he produced, directed and edited, is currently being broadcast on ESPN International.

Smith and Feldhun are the perfect music documentary partners and collaborators for this project, and many future projects to come.

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    GROOVIES THANK YOU:
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    FLAMIN' GROOVIES ALBUM DOWNLOAD: A digital download of the Groovies latest tracks. Plus GROOVIES THANK YOU, FILMMAKER THANK YOU and WEBSITE THANKS.

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    MOVIE POSTER AND GROOVIES ALBUM DOWNLOAD: A digital download of the Groovies latest tracks and a poster from the movie. Plus GROOVIES THANK YOU, FILMMAKER THANK YOU and WEBSITE THANKS. (Some of the above may be delivered earlier than 06/15).

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    BLU-RAY OR DVD OF THE FILM AND MOVIE POSTER: Get a physical copy of the film and a movie poster. Your choice of either Blu-ray or DVD. Plus GROOVIES THANK YOU and FILMMAKER THANK YOU and WEBSITE THANKS (Note: Some of the above may be delivered earlier than 06/15).

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    MOVIE DOWNLOAD AND GROOVIES ALBUM DOWNLOAD AND SIGNED MOVIE POSTER: A download of both The Groovies latest album, the film download and a movie poster signed by the filmmakers. Plus GROOVIES THANK YOU and FILMMAKER THANK YOU and WEBSITE THANKS (Note: Some of the above may be delivered earlier than 06/15).

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    SIGNED TOUR POSTERS AND SIGNED ALBUM: Two 2013 Flamin' Groovies tour posters signed by the band and a Magic Christian LP or CD signed by Cyril Jordan. See photographs in body of text. Plus GROOVIES ALBUM AND FILM DOWNLOAD, GROOVIES THANK YOU and FILMMAKER THANK YOU and WEBSITE THANKS (Note: Some of the above may be delivered earlier than 06/15).

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    DRINK SHAKER AND DOWNLOAD OF MOVIE: Makes a great date. See photograph below.
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    AUTOGRAPHED DVD AND AUTOGRAPHED MOVIE POSTER: An autographed DVD of the film and movie poster signed by Cyril, Chris and George, and the filmmakers. Plus GROOVIES ALBUM AND FILM DOWNLOAD, GROOVIES THANK YOU and FILMMAKER THANK YOU and WEBSITE THANKS (Note: Some of the above may be delivered earlier than 06/15).

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    LIMITED EDITION GROOVIES T-SHIRT and AUTOGRAPHED DVD or BLU-RAY: A very special and limited edition Groovies t-shirt and autographed DVD or BLU-RAY. Plus a FILM THANK YOU CREDIT, MOVIE POSTER, GROOVIES ALBUM AND FILM DOWNLOAD, GROOVIES THANK YOU and FILMMAKER THANK YOU and WEBSITE THANKS (Note: Some of the above may be delivered earlier than 06/15)

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    PERSONAL FILMMAKER VIDEO MESSAGE: A personal thank you from Kurt and Billy. Plus LIMITED EDITION GROOVIES T-SHIRT, AUTOGRAPHED DVD or BLU-RAY, MOVIE POSTER, GROOVIES ALBUM DOWNLOAD AND FILM DOWNLOAD and FILM THANK YOU CREDIT (Note: Some of the above may be delivered earlier than 06/15).

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    GROOVIES PERSONAL VIDEO MESSAGE: A personal thank you from Cyril, Chris and George. Plus LIMITED EDITION GROOVIES T-SHIRT, BLOOPERS AND OUTTAKES, MOVIE POSTER, AUTOGRAPHED DVD or BLU-RAY, GROOVIES ALBUM DOWNLOAD and FILM DOWNLOAD and FILM THANK YOU CREDIT (Note: Some of the above may be delivered earlier than 06/15).

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    ROUGH CUT SCREENING INVITE:
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    FILMMAKER SKYPE SESSION AND ROUGH CUT SCREENING INVITE: Personal 30-minute Skype session with Billy & Kurt. Discuss the film and/or documentary filmmaking. Plus ROUGH CUT SCREENING INVITE, LIMITED EDITION GROOVIES T-SHIRT, BLOOPERS AND OUTTAKES, MOVIE POSTER, AUTOGRAPHED DVD or BLU-RAY, GROOVIES ALBUM DOWNLOAD and FILM DOWNLOAD and FILM THANK YOU CREDIT (Note: Travel and lodging not included. Some of the above may be delivered earlier than 06/15).

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    PREMIERE INVITATION AND FILM SPECIAL THANKS CREDIT: You and a guest are invited to the premiere of the film and will receive a special thanks credit in the film. Plus ROUGH CUT SCREENING INVITE, MOVIE POSTER, LIMITED EDITION GROOVIES T-SHIRT, BLOOPERS AND OUTTAKES, AUTOGRAPHED DVD or BLU-RAY, GROOVIES ALBUM DOWNLOAD and FILM DOWNLOAD. (Travel and lodging not included. Some of the above may be delivered earlier than 06/15).

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    OIL ON CANVAS: WEIRD SCIENCE COVER painted and signed by Cyril Jordan. 24" x 18". See photograph in body of text. Plus FILM SPECIAL THANKS CREDIT, ROUGH CUT SCREENING INVITE, LIMITED EDITION T-SHIRT, GROOVIES ALBUM and FILM DOWNLOAD, BLOOPERS AND OUTTAKES, MOVIE POSTER, and AUTOGRAPHED DVD or BLU-RAY. (Note: Travel and lodging not included. Some of the above may be delivered earlier than 06/15).

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    OIL ON CANVAS: MAD MAGAZINE COVER painted and signed by Cyril Jordan. 24" x 18". See body of text for photo. Plus FILM SPECIAL THANKS CREDIT, MOVIE POSTER, ROUGH CUT SCREENING INVITE, LIMITED EDITION T-SHIRT, GROOVIES ALBUM and FILM DOWNLOAD, BLOOPERS AND OUTTAKES and AUTOGRAPHED DVD or BLU-RAY.
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    OIL ON CANVAS: STRANGE TALES COVER painted and signed by Cyril Jordan. 24" x 18". See body of text for photo. Plus FILM SPECIAL THANKS CREDIT, ROUGH CUT SCREENING INVITE, LIMITED EDITION T-SHIRT, GROOVIES ALBUM and FILM DOWNLOAD, MOVIE POSTER, BLOOPERS AND OUTTAKES and AUTOGRAPHED DVD or BLU-RAY. (Note: Travel and lodging not included. Some of the above may be delivered earlier than 06/15).

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    OIL ON CANVAS: THE PIRATE painted and signed by Cyril Jordan, 28" x 22". See photo in the body of text. Plus FILM SPECIAL THANKS CREDIT, MOVIE POSTER, ROUGH CUT SCREENING INVITE, LIMITED EDITION T-SHIRT, GROOVIES ALBUM and FILM DOWNLOAD, BLOOPERS AND OUTTAKES and AUTOGRAPHED DVD or BLU-RAY. (Note: Travel and lodging not included. Some of the above may be delivered earlier than 06/15).

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    OIL ON CANVAS: MAGIC CHRISTIAN painted and signed by Cyril Jordan. 24" x 24". See photograph in body of text. Plus FILM SPECIAL THANKS CREDIT, ROUGH CUT SCREENING INVITE, LIMITED EDITION T-SHIRT, MOVIE POSTER, GROOVIES ALBUM and FILM DOWNLOAD, BLOOPERS AND OUTTAKES and AUTOGRAPHED DVD or BLU-RAY. (Note: Travel and lodging not included. Some of the above may be delivered earlier than 06/15).

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    DOCUMENTARY WORKSHOP WITH KURT AND BILLY and PREMIERE INVITATION:
    Spend 8 hours with Kurt and Billy learning about documentary and reality filmmaking techniques and come to the premiere of the film. (Workshops may be in either Seattle or New York City.) Plus ROUGH CUT SCREENING INVITE, FILM SPECIAL THANKS CREDIT, LIMITED EDITION GROOVIES T-SHIRT, BLOOPERS AND OUTTAKES, GROOVIES ALBUM DOWNLOAD, MOVIE POSTER, FILM DOWNLOAD, and AUTOGRAPHED DVD or BLU-RAY. (Travel and lodging not included. Some of the above may be delivered earlier than 06/15).

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    GROOVIES MEET AND GREET: 2 CONCERT TICKETS to the show of your choice and a meet and greet with the Groovies after the show. Plus ROUGH CUT SCREENING INVITE, MOVIE POSTER, LIMITED EDITION GROOVIES T-SHIRT, BLOOPERS AND OUTTAKES, GROOVIES ALBUM DOWNLOAD and FILM DOWNLOAD, FILM SPECIAL THANKS CREDIT and AUTOGRAPHED DVD or BLU-RAY (Note: Travel and lodging not included. Some of the above may be delivered earlier than 06/15).

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    PRIVATE ROUGH CUT SCREENING AND DINNER:
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    YOU TORE ME DOWN ACETATE: Rare 45 rpm acetate of the hit song, You Tore Me Down. See photograph in body of text. Plus ROUGH CUT SCREENING INVITE, MOVIE POSTER, LIMITED EDITION GROOVIES T-SHIRT, BLOOPERS AND OUTTAKES, GROOVIES ALBUM DOWNLOAD, FILM DOWNLOAD, AUTOGRAPHED DVD or BLU-RAY and FILM SPECIAL THANKS CREDIT. (Travel and lodging not included. Some of the above may be delivered earlier than 06/15).

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    BE IN THE MOVIE: Be a part of the film. Interview and/or interact with a band member/s. Plus a PREMIERE INVITATION, ROUGH CUT SCREENING INVITE, MOVIE POSTER, LIMITED EDITION GROOVIES T-SHIRT, GROOVIES ALBUM AND FILM DOWNLOAD, AUTOGRAPHED DVD or BLU-RAY, BLOOPERS AND OUTTAKES and FILM SPECIAL THANKS CREDIT (Travel and lodging not included. Some of the above may be delivered earlier than 06/15).

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    PRIVATE FILM SCREENING PARTY: If you provide the space, we will come to you anywhere in the U.S. Invite your friends to a private screening of the film with Kurt and Billy. Plus FILM SPECIAL THANKS CREDIT, ROUGH CUT SCREENING INVITE, LIMITED EDITION GROOVIES T-SHIRT, BLOOPERS AND OUTTAKES, MOVIE POSTER, GROOVIES ALBUM DOWNLOAD, FILM DOWNLOAD, and AUTOGRAPHED DVD or BLU-RAY. (Travel and lodging not included. Some of the above may be delivered earlier than 06/15).

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    ASSOCIATE PRODUCER CREDIT AND PREMIERE GUEST AND DINNER: Associate Producer credit on the film and be a guest of the filmmakers at the premiere and for pre-premiere dinner. Plus ROUGH CUT SCREENING INVITE, LIMITED EDITION T-SHIRT, AUTOGRAPHED DVD or BLU-RAY, MOVIE POSTER, GROOVIES ALBUM DOWNLOAD, FILM DOWNLOAD, BLOOPERS AND OUTTAKES and 2 CONCERT TICKETS (Travel and lodging not included. Some of the above may be delivered earlier than 06/15).

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    CO-PRODUCER CREDIT AND PREMIERE GUEST AND DINNER: Co-Producer credit on the film and be a guest of the filmmakers at the premiere and for pre-premiere dinner. Plus ROUGH CUT SCREENING INVITE, LIMITED EDITION T-SHIRT, MOVIE POSTER, AUTOGRAPHED DVD or BLU-RAY, GROOVIES ALBUM DOWNLOAD AND FILM DOWNLOAD, BLOOPERS AND OUTTAKES and 2 CONCERT TICKETS (Travel and lodging not included. Some of the above may be delivered earlier than 06/15).

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    PRODUCER CREDIT AND PREMIERE GUEST AND DINNER: Producer credit on the film and be a guest of the filmmakers at the premiere and for pre-premiere dinner. Plus ROUGH CUT SCREENING INVITE, LIMITED EDITION T-SHIRT, AUTOGRAPHED DVD or BLU-RAY, GROOVIES ALBUM DOWNLOAD, MOVIE POSTER, FILM DOWNLOAD, BLOOPERS AND OUTTAKES and 2 CONCERT TICKETS (Travel and lodging not included. Some of the above may be delivered earlier than 06/15).

    Estimated delivery:
    Ships anywhere in the world
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    Pledge $10,000

    0 backers Limited (4 left of 4)

    EXECUTIVE PRODUCER CREDIT AND PREMIERE GUEST AND DINNER: Executive Producer credit on the film and be a guest of the filmmakers at the premiere and for pre-premiere dinner.
    Plus ROUGH CUT SCREENING INVITE, 2 CONCERT TICKETS WITH GROOVIES MEET AND GREET, LIMITED EDITION T-SHIRT, AUTOGRAPHED DVD/BLU-RAY, MOVIE POSTER, GROOVIES ALBUM DOWNLOAD, FILM DOWNLOAD, 2 SIGNED POSTERS AND SIGNED ALBUM and BLOOPERS AND OUTTAKES (Travel and lodging not included. Some of the above may be delivered earlier than 06/15).

    Estimated delivery:

Funding period

- (60 days)