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An outrageous comedy about a timid salesman who finds his swagger after an unexpected spiritual odyssey. Read more

Los Angeles, CA Shorts
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This project was successfully funded on November 26, 2012.

An outrageous comedy about a timid salesman who finds his swagger after an unexpected spiritual odyssey.

Los Angeles, CA Shorts
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About this project

Hello all you beautiful people of the Kickstarter community!  My name is Eric Wentz, and I'm the Co-writer and Producer of the comedic short film, "First Class Vacations."  I would like to invite you, along with the rest of our creative team, to become a very important part in the making of this exciting and outrageous film!  Here's a little bit more about the project:

"First Class Vacations" synopsis:

Dave lacks confidence as a new salesman in a cutthroat environment.  His trial period is nearing its end and he's facing the chopping block, which makes him even more anxious in his pursuits.  Hoping to relax Dave, his co-workers come to his aid by showing him a new way to get high.  Instead of catching a buzz, Dave ends up in a spiritual realm where he's left to grapple with his deepest hopes and fears...

If you just watched our project video, you were introduced to one of the characters in our film, BO MAVERICK.  Bo is the spokesman for the fictional second-rate travel agency, First Class Vacations.  In the film, our struggling protagonist, Dave, watches Bo's tutorial videos in order to adapt to the company's aggressive "do whatever it takes to score" sales philosophy.  Dave so badly wants to succeed, but something about the deceptive and manipulative nature of the job just isn't sitting well with him.  How far is he willing to stretch his ideals in order to make the sale and keep his job?

First Class Vacations' employee motto
First Class Vacations' employee motto

We have a very talented cast of stellar comedic actors already attached including The Groundlings very own, Laird Macintosh!!

Meet our Director and Co-Writer, Courtney Thomas:

Writer & Director Courtney Thomas recently got her MFA at USC’s School of Cinematic Arts. While at USC, she sold her first 16mm film Flesheater to Canal Plus and received a grant from the Avon/Love Foundation to make a PSA for Breast Cancer Awareness that appeared on Lifetime Television. She loves to spend her free time making webseries such as Opposable Thumbs and Puberty Now!. Courtney is incredibly excited to work with her extremely talented cast and crew and thanks you all for reading this bio.

And check out our fabulously talented Director of Photography, Adam Goral!!

http://www.adamgoraldp.com/

Risks and challenges

There are so many challenges to making a film, no matter the size or scope of the project. Besides the many financial challenges (which I'll get to), there are a plethora of risks and potential setbacks that could happen at any point of the production: shooting locations could fall through, cast and crew could have last-minute scheduling conflicts, the weather could shift for an outdoor shoot (yes, even in LA), or equipment can malfunction. Simply put, almost anything could happen. We feel however, that most major risks can be minimized by very detailed and structured planning. This is why Courtney and I always make several contingency plans for every objective so we're more prepared when circumstances change. We also feel that because filmmaking is such a collaborative endeavor, strong and clear communication is essential. That is why we have very frequent and structured production meetings so our team is always on the same page. And when we're not meeting in person, we're sending emails, texts, and speaking to each other over the phone. Communication is key.

Because we are on a shoestring budget, we have been incredibly lucky that a good deal of our cast and crew have generously waived their usual fees and are volunteering their time and skills to a film project they are very passionate about. Unfortunately, no matter how clever and driven a project's creators might be in producing a film, there are always unavoidable expenses that can often add up to a rather intimidating amount. And while we have and will continue to make the most fiscally responsible decisions while maintaining a high level of quality, there are many things for which we will need funding. These things include: equipment rentals (lighting, sound, and camera), securing locations, purchase of props and wardrobe, production insurance, meals for cast and crew, post production and sound mixing costs, and everything else in between.

Besides our desire to tell this comedic little gem of a story and have a few laughs along the way, we ultimately hope that it will serve as a great piece in which to showcase the talents of a new generation of filmmakers. Upon completion, we will hold a premiere screening of the film for all of our industry contacts in Los Angeles and submit it to film festivals all over the country in order to gain as much exposure as possible. Getting the word out after it’s done will be just as important as creating a strong and unforgettable final product.

For all of these reasons we humbly ask for your financial support. Everyone involved is so excited and driven to see this project come to fruition, but we need your help!

So on behalf of the whole creative team at "First Class Vacations," I would like to thank you so much for your time and very generous support!!!

Now let's do this thing!!!

Sincerely,
Eric Wentz

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Rewards

  • You selected
    Pledge $5 or more

    1 backer

    Every little bit counts! Thank you so much for contributing!! Courtney and Eric will post a special "Thank You" to you on their Facebook accounts so everyone in their lives will know how much you rock!

    Estimated delivery:
  • You selected
    Pledge $15 or more

    8 backers

    You receive a password protected digital link to screen the completed movie before its official release and everything above.

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  • You selected
    Pledge $25 or more

    6 backers

    Jackpot!! You'll get a special "Thank You" with your name listed in the credits and a personalized voicemail of Courtney’s rendition of the Cosby Show theme song. (Spoiler alert: it sounds like a giddy, meth-head chipmunk after a cash advance and nothing distinguishable to the actual tune.)...and everything above.

    Estimated delivery:
  • You selected
    Pledge $50 or more

    7 backers

    You'll receive a DVD copy of the completed film signed by the creators: Courtney and Eric...and Eric's been working extensively on his cursive so he'll no longer have to just print in block capitals...and everything above.

    Estimated delivery:
    Ships anywhere in the world
  • You selected
    Pledge $100 or more

    4 backers

    For you? You get a signed cast and crew photo and everything above.

    Estimated delivery:
    Ships anywhere in the world
  • You selected
    Pledge $200 or more

    0 backers

    Sadism prize!! We'll send you a digital video link of Eric screaming, “Thank you, (your name here)!!!” While jumping into an almost freezing Pacific Ocean wearing only a dance belt. And everything above. Duh.

    Estimated delivery:
  • You selected
    Pledge $300 or more

    2 backers

    Gift of glorius music...TO YOU!
    We'll send you a link to a video recording of Eric or Courtney performing any requested song live at Dimples karaoke bar in Burbank, CA. And everything above...

    Estimated delivery:
  • You selected
    Pledge $500 or more

    1 backer

    Take part in a skype video chat with the creators to discuss why people would probably like to hang out with you more if you didn’t always insist on telling that story of when you totally could have hooked up with Jessica Lange but didn’t because you’re not quite shallow enough to do it purely for the novelty and that even though she’s still a handsome woman at her age, you feel that you could probably do better…or any other topic you would like, like maybe our movie. AND everything above.

    Estimated delivery:
  • You selected
    Pledge $750 or more

    0 backers

    You get a copy of the script signed by the cast and crew AND get to hang out for a few hours onset while they shoot! (Travel expenses not covered)
    ...and everything above.

    Estimated delivery:
    Ships anywhere in the world
  • You selected
    Pledge $1,000 or more

    1 backer

    Hey you sexy mover and shaker! You are now an associate producer on our film and you'll get a very personalized thank you video from the creators!
    AND everything above.

    Estimated delivery:
  • You selected
    Pledge $2,000 or more

    0 backers

    Money talks! You are now a big, impressive EXECUTIVE producer on our film!!! You now have the official right to berate Courtney or Eric over the phone and in person! Remind them daily how their miserable lives wouldn't amount to squat if you hadn't given them a chance. You also get to take part in the creative process by coming onset during production to give feedback inbetween takes. (Travel expenses not covered) AND everything above!

    Estimated delivery:

Funding period

- (21 days)