About this project
Animation Fans! Art Fans! Story Fans! ... THANK YOU SO MUCH for helping us fully fund this project. We're a team now... you're in, you signed up, welcome!!! We are going to make a great film, and we're so glad you're a part of it. -- Chuck & Aaron
Please check out The Art Story website at: www.artstoryfilm.com
What is Art Story?
... the start of a very special, unique animated film. Aaron and I saw all the exciting things happening online through crowd funding and thought, we've got a great film that SHOULD BE MADE and we could use some help -- so dang it, let's try Kickstarter
So, what's the story?
It's a story about an 11-year-old, meticulous boy, WALT, and his crazy, loopy GRANDPA -- two complete opposites -- who get stuck in a vast, imaginative WORLD OF PAINTINGS. Inside, they cross paths with a ruthless painted character determined to make it into our world. In order to get home and stop the villain, Walt and Grandpa have to set aside their differences, work together and navigate worlds where the rules can change around every corner.
It's structured like a hilarious, character-driven, buddy picture ("Planes, Trains & Automobiles," "I Love You, Man" etc.), but takes place INSIDE THE WORLD OF SOME OF THE GREAT MASTER PAINTINGS OF ALL TIME ... where the characters change their appearance to match the style of each painting -- and meet lots of wildly entertaining characters. It also explores and was inspired by that special relationship between a grandchild and their grandparent -- not something you see often in films nowadays.
Yeaahhh... paintings? Sounds sort of "high brow"
OH CONTRAIRE mon frere! Our number-one focus is to make an entertaining, compelling story with characters you love and who propel you through the film. This one is for the whole family -- funny, emotional, and thrilling. AND, believe me, we'll stay away from the low hanging fruit of crass gastronomical jokes and sexual innuendo (not our style).
And, BONUS, YES!! the film is set in some of the greatest master paintings of all time! We believe this is an AMAZING WORLD to explore in a story, AND ALSO what a fantastic way to expose young kids (and some adults) to some of the most famous works of art of all time!!! There's a reason these paintings and painters are so celebrated -- they're imaginative, engaging, spiritual, and, well, just astounding images and worlds.
Look, Aaron and I both have kids AND we love art of all sorts. But how do we get our kids interested in this type of art? "It's boring dad." We believe if you FIRST, TELL A GREAT, FUNNY, COMPELLING STORY; and second, set it in this world -- kids will be head over heels for it all. We've all seen the success of fish, toys, bugs, dragons and monsters -- well, how about art? The worlds of paintings are endless -- and the technology is available now to take us all into them and explore them in this unique way.
Who are you guys?
Aaron and I are two passionate, experienced animation filmmakers who created this project and want to see it made. We're both Disney feature animation film veterans, working at Disney for 21 years each on many of the recent classics -- Lion King, Beauty & the Beast, Aladdin, Pocahontas. We also produced and co-directed the Academy Award nominated Brother Bear. (See more the in the biography section.)
Above all, Aaron and I want to make films that stick with you. Stories that are wildly entertaining, but also enrich the lives of their audiences -- films that have something to say. We've helped create these kind of films in the past and are ready to do it again.
What will you do with the money?
We'll use the money to create a script, a children's book ready for publication, killer artwork and a video presentation of the whole film. It takes teams of people working 5 or 6 months to ready a film like this for production. Along with a A LOT OF BACKERS (really critical to show there's an audience for a film like this) and these items, we think we'll have a slam-dunk to get the film fully funded.
Will this film get made?
Not without YOU. Seriously, you, the person reading this right now. This is a grassroots approach to making a film. Help us send a message. YOU pledging now means there's another person who wants to see this film. The money we raise here will get us started and is only a fraction of what the whole effort will take. Any studio, any company or individual who wants to fund it will want to know there's an audience for this kind of film. You backing us now, with whatever you can give, means there is someone else who wants to see it. We need lots of backers. It takes many raindrops to fill up a bucket.
Why not wait and just see the movie when it comes out?
Yes, we want you to see the movie when it comes out, take the whole famly. But it may not come out at all without your help. The studios are interested in BIG sequels, films from books or fairy tales that already have a following. It's very hard to get an original film made unless you're already in a studio OR there's a proven, existing audience.
We're 1000% confident this will be a sure-fire hit -- but we need YOU to support it and to show that it can have a big following! With lots of backers and the entire package we'll create with the money, we're sure we'll have the momentum we'll need to get the film made.
OK, looks fun... how can I help?
To become one of our backers, just click on the big green button to the right of our video. Kickstarter will ask you for your pledge, which reward you want, and how you want to sign up. Signing up is easy -- you can even do it on Facebook. And PLEASE pass on the info to your friends -- the more backers, the more we can show the studios films like this can have a following.
Behind the scenes look at our process:
Art Fans of the World Unite!
If you're an art teacher, work at a museum or are just a big fan of paintings or the arts -- this project is for you. We'll treat this world right -- with respect -- honoring and celebrating these paintings. An animated film is a great way to excite the next generation of artists, museum-goers and fans of the arts. We hope you see the potential in the story and will become a backer.
More Visual Development Artwork (Concept Art)
We've got a great bunch of guys and gals on the crew, especially our ART DIRECTORS. Let's meet the team...
And O'Keeffe, Monet, Hopper, Wyeth, Vermeer, Renior, Gainsborough, Pollock, and many, many (almost too many) more.
Chuck and Aaron's TEDx Talk about how they develop stories...
CHECK OUT OUR PRESS:
-- Huffington Post
-- Ain't It Cool News
-- The Animation Archive
-- Business 2 Business
-- Magical Mouse School House
Risks and challenges
The biggest challenge is getting the film fully funded and distributed. The $350k will give us a great start, but animation is expensive -- in the 10s of millions, especially considering all the location and character design changes in this film.
But we know there's nothing out there quite like it and we think this can be a VERY SPECIAL FILM: a moving, entertaining story set in a world that will fascinate and one which you'll want to expose your kids to.
THE FINE PRINT (Stuff we gotta say)
• Please understand, we are a creative team -- directors, writers, artists, producers -- we are not a production facility. At the appropriate time in the future we will look for 3rd party production partnership to complete the film. At this stage it's too early to pick a partner. However, this a technically challenging, reel-worthy project. We're 100% confident that when fully funded, we can find a great production facility to make this film -- there are a handful of really top-quality houses ready for animation.
• If we can't get the funding for the film, we won't be able to fulfill some of the items. The pitch book, T-shirts, blog site, digital artwork and apprenticeship will all be funded by this campaign and we'll get them to you asap. We'll also create a CHILDREN'S BOOK ready for publication, but we can't guarantee you or your painting can be in the film or that we'll have a private screening if we can't get the film made. This is the same for the DVD. We're confident, but we've got a lot of big wig studio execs to convince -- THAT'S WHY YOUR BACKING IS SO IMPORTANT.
• The APPRENTICESHIP is an unpaid position and is NOT a guarantee of employment on the film. We'll make it a worthwhile, rich experience -- you'll be right at the core of the film. Great for a resume and a unique peak into the pre-production process.
• You must be over 18 or accompanied by a parent or legal guardian to tour the studio or be a voice in the film.
• The usage of a character likeness or a voice in the film will be ultimately determined by the filmmakers. You will be in the final cut, but we'll have to figure out where and how. We know we're asking for a lot of money for it, so we want you to have a good meaningful appearance, but we can't determine it until the storyboarding and editing begin in earnest.
•This fundraising campaign is all subject to applicable Kickstarter rules and regulations, movie guild rules and applicable laws. If any of this conflicts, we will work with you in good faith to give you a substitute reward.
To wrap it up -- filmmaking on this scale is a long and winding journey and we're not sure where all the bumps in the road may come. We know how important your contribution will be to this project and will do EVERYTHING POSSIBLE to: 1) make a great film you can enjoy for years, and 2) get you your rewards. Anything you can give, any recommendation you can pass on to your friends and family is very important to us. We want to THANK YOU in advance for all your good wishes and support.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
The answer is: YES! One of the cool things about this project is as Walt & Grandpa travel through the painted worlds, the way they look changes too. Some of the changes, like the Lichtenstein paintings, scream out for 2-D/handdrawn and will be amazing. There are still many great 2-D animators out there we hope to wrangle on the production. Other paintings, like Rembrandt’s, are much more rendered and will likely require a 3-D approach. The “worlds” won’t be limited to one particular painting, but will draw from ALL of a particular artist’s paintings in a similar style in order to build out the world. Our visual goal will be to match that style with as much fidelity as possible. This approach will also allow for multiple production houses to work on separate “worlds” if we choose. Right now, we’re more focused on first telling a good story and don’t have all the answers.
The best answer we can give is YES! Given our plans for the scope of the production, distribution and the current market, BlueRay is a must. However, we’re projecting something, when we haven't even made the film yet.
No, not yet. Keep in mind it’s still in a development project. Part of our effort after funding will be to look further into the rights. Many/most of the paintings we want to explore are already in the public domain, but some may not be. We’ll contact the estates (or artists in a few cases) and see if they want to be a part of this film. If we run into too many road blocks, we’ll weep bitterly, then move on. There’s thousands of great paintings and many unique, different worlds we want to explore.
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