Funded! This project was successfully funded on September 30, 2012.

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A short film about the military career of Pvt. "Little" Sammy Vogel, a 7 ton, 40 foot long Army infantryman and Tyrannosaurus Rex.

Current Progress - Mission Update 

$28k! 24 hours! One final day for one final assault on the $30k stretch goal! Lets give it all we got on all fronts!

The Story

America's Fighting Dinosaur is short faux-documentary about the military career of Pvt. "Little" Sammy Vogel, a 7 ton, 40 foot long U.S. Army Infantryman, fighting shoulder to kneecap with the Allied forces in Europe during the second World War. Using photos, archive footage, letters and interviews with veterans and soldiers who served by his side, I want to shed some light on how America’s biggest soldier managed to go unheard for so long.

Combining dinosaurs and war might sound crazy at first but the combination makes a lot of sense to me; dinosaurs and war vehicles have a lot in common. Cannons look like Triceratops horns. Everything is covered in green armored plates. In comic, cartoons, video games and film there have been more then a few projects that mash up dinosaurs with guns and armor, even in World War 2. These mash ups are almost universally entertaining, and yet I find myself with more and more questions, the older I get. Just how useful would a dinosaur be in a war? How are you going to feed a soldier with an appetite that big when supplies are already hard to come by? I want to get down to the nuts and bolts of this scenario. Literally the nuts and bolts. What kind of gear would you issue a dinosaur? Can he even reload his own gun? Wait.....does he actually have a gun? Then there are even deeper questions beyond logistics. Is sending a dinosaur, or any animal for that matter, into war morally the right thing to do? Is there humanity inside of this monster? Is this T-Rex the scavenger or T-Rex the hunter? 

Don't even get me started on feathers.

An unidentified woman working on the blueprints for Pvt. Vogel's backpack and field equipment.
An unidentified woman working on the blueprints for Pvt. Vogel's backpack and field equipment.

From these questions, Samuel Vogel was born. The decision was made early to limit the amount of dinosaurs in this "universe" to one to focus the scope of the project and then take the time necessary to consider every detail. A Tyrannosaurus Rex from Anytown, USA through which all these questions will be asked. 

Why Tyrannosaurus Rex?
I'll be honest with you, T-Rex is probably not my favorite dinosaur (I'm personally more of a Stegosaurus fan) but he is without a doubt the most iconic. The head. The teeth. The roar. Those little arms. Ask just about anybody and they will tell you that he (or she, as seen in Jurassic Park) is Dinosaur. 

Using some of the amazing technology available I want to put Sammy there. In World War 2, with the troops, among tanks and jeeps. In the forest and on the beaches. 

The Tone
It’s my personal philosophy that to get the most entertainment value from this subject, you don’t have to make it more absurd or sensational than it already is. Lets face it: this is ridiculous and its okay to have some fun with the subject. That being said, in no way is America's Fighting Dinosaur intended to downplay or trivialize the sacrifice of real veterans who fought in WW2, or any conflict. But to make it seem real, to give it grounding and even, if you will indulge me, give it some integrity I think we can possibly touch on something deeper on the subject of war. It won't be The Thin Red Line but it also won't be Operation Dumbo Drop.

The Crew
Steve Snoey - Writer/Director
Lacey Leavitt - Producer
Nathan M. Miller - Director of Photography
Eric Nielsen - Composer

The Budget
With your support, we will use the $10k (minus fees) to shoot interviews and B Roll, create archive photos and footage that include Sammy, print the DVDs and apply to festivals.

Stretch Goals - Updated!
We have hit our $20k stretch goal, which is amazing! We'll be able to make AFD as both an under 10min short film for festivals AND a longer piece that will be broken up by chapters and feature more footage of Sammy. 

Now that we've unlocked the $20k stretch goal, the soundtrack digital download is included at the $40 level,  you have an option of several poster designs OR a T-shirt at the $75 level AND a new $100 level has been added that includes a poster and a t-shirt. Here are our current poster and t-shirt options:

Poster Option 2
Poster Option 2
T-Shirt Design
T-Shirt Design

As it stands, creating archive footage of Sammy is much more time consuming than archive photos. So the more money we raise, the more resources we can spend focusing on motion video.

FAQ

  • Facebook doesn't let movie pages tag people in their posts. So we list the names that donate at $5 and above in a post but you have to look at our page to find them. You can go to: http://www.facebook.com/americasfightingdinosaur We would love to shout out your handle in a Twitter thank you, just follow us and let us know you're a supporter!

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  • Wow, thanks to everyone who wants more than one t-shirt and/or poster! The $100 level gets you one of each. If you want more than that, add an additional $20 per t-shirt and/or $15/poster. At the end of the KS campaign, we'll have a rewards survey where you'll be able to name which rewards you're selecting (designs, sizes, etc). (We'll eventually have these for sale on our film's website but first we have to hire someone to build a website.)

    Patches are included at the $75 and up levels. If you'd like a patch and are below $75, just add $10 to your pledge. You'll be able to indicate that you want a patch in your rewards survey, once the campaign ends.

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  • Feel free to email us at americasfightingdino@gmail.com!

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491
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  • Pledge $5 or more
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    19 backers

    THANK YOU - We'll thank you publicly on the AFD Facebook and/or Twitter account. Welcome to Sammy's Army!

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    POSTCARD - You'll receive a postcard from the front lines (AFD headquarters). Plus a thank you on the AFD Facebook and/or Twitter account. Please add $1 for international shipping, if applicable.

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    DIGITAL DOWNLOAD - A digital download of the finished film (the festival cut)! This includes postcard + thank you on FB/Twitter.

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    160 backers

    DELUXE DVD + THANK YOU CREDITS - A copy of the DVD, as well as your name in the thank you credits! The DVD will include a full color booklet of AFD memorabilia, such as photos, blueprints and letters. This includes the digital download + thank you credit + postcard + thank you. Please add $8 for international shipping, if applicable.

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    70 backers

    POSTER - A color, 11x17 poster of the blueprints for Pvt. Vogel's backpack and field equipment. (Unlocking our stretch goal will add the option of a t-shirt and other poster designs.) This includes DVD + digital download + thank you credit + postcard + thank you. Please add $10 for international shipping, if applicable.

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    34 backers

    POSTER + T-SHIRT - For those that don't want to choose between a poster and t-shirt, you can have both! This includes DVD + digital download + thank you credit + postcard + thank you. Please add $10 for international shipping, if applicable.

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    5 backers Limited (95 left of 100)

    NAME IN THE FILM + SCREENING INVITATION - Your name will appear IN the film, in addition to the thank you credits. Whether you're on the same soldier roster as Pvt. Vogel or have a letter addressed to you from a soldier, we'll find some place for your name to be listed on screen in the finished film. And you can see it at our private cast & crew screening, because you'll be invited! (Screening time/place TBD but in the Seattle area.) This includes all previous rewards.

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    ASSOCIATE PRODUCER CREDIT + LEGO PLAYDATE - Instead of a thank you credit, you'll be listed as an associate producer in the film. You'll also receive an invitation to a LEGO playdate with director Steve Snoey! We'll provide the LEGOs, food and drinks. This includes all previous rewards and a +1 to the private screening. Some assembly required.

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    1 backer

    EXECUTIVE PRODUCER CREDIT + YOUR FACE IN THE MOVIE - For all of the potential John Hammonds out there, you can have an executive producer credit in the film! And we'll use your image in the film, rather than just your name. Whether it's a soldier in a photo with Sammy or perhaps a photo from a cute wife or girlfriend back home, we'll make sure your image goes down in the history books as part of the Sammy legend. This also includes all previous rewards and a +3 to the private screening.

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Funding period

- (30 days)