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A professional American basketball player accepts an offer to play in one of the world's most feared countries: Iran.
744 backers pledged $100,466 to help bring this project to life.

50K !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Posted by Sara Nodjoumi & Till Schauder (Creator)
Hello everyone!

We did it!! You did it!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Thank you!!!!! Thank you all so very, very much!! From the bottom of our hearts, we thank you for your support!

Your generosity, your encouragement, your beautiful comments to us on Facebook, on Twitter, on our kickstarter page and in direct emails, as well as to each other, have been the sweet juice of our lives in the past 40 days.

We haven't even had a chance to call Kevin yet - but we'll do so as soon as this update is out! And if you haven't guessed who the surprise guest will be at next week's fundraiser dance party, wink, wink... guess again...:-)

We are still in awe of what just happened in the past 24 hours. As some of you noticed the last few days had been a bit slow compared to the CNN - WashPost -frenzy of the Christmas days. We needed to find a way to keep the momentum going, but really had no idea how. Nahid, our mother and mother-in-law likes to say "ask and you shall receive." So we tried that trick,  as you'll remember from yesterday's update. We asked for a year-end-miracle. We had hopes this would put the campaign back on track (needing to raise 1K per day on average). But we certainly didn't expect what then happened. 

Here's the sequence of events which we're still very much processing...:

We came home last night after a very slow day at the office, frankly a little discouraged. Decided to watch a little NBA basketball since the Knicks were playing the Lakers. Figured this would get our minds off the campaign. Around 1:30AM we decided to go to bed, even the NBA couldn't keep us up - we were basically half-asleep when we checked Kickstarter one more time before bed, as has been our habit in these crazy last 40 days (don't laugh, we know for a fact that some of you have that same habit...:-). Sleepy-eyed we kind of saw that we had two new backers, and that the three numbers to the right had moved by a total of 15. So we thought - "15 bucks through 2 backers... that's much better than a kick in the chin". 

Then we noticed that the two numbers on the left had actually changed too... from 38 to 48... Scrolled down the page to see that the "Revolutionary Reward" had been taken! It wasn't a mistake! Someone had just pledged 10K to put our campaign within striking distance of 50K. Needless to say we needed to find a way to calm down now. We couldn't even call anyone! 2:00 AM by that time! Plus we have two small kids (more on them later) and they wake up at 6:45AM, or earlier!, no matter what goes on with kickstarter, so we needed to find a way to go to sleep! 

Luckily we had a couple of Guinness left from Christmas and that did the trick... kind of...

6:45 AM kids are up. We get the milks ready, then head back to the laptop to make sure last night wasn't a dream. Bam! Another backer had pledged 1K to put us inches away from 50K - and the same person proceeded to increase his pledge a few minutes later to put as squarely at 50K. Took a screen grab, just to process it all - then posted on FB and the congratulatory notes started coming in. By that time we knew it was indeed a miracle.

We would like to point out that the two backers who - between the two of them - basically took the 40s all by themselves came from the Middle East and Switzerland. This just confirmed what's been going on in the past few weeks - people pledging from all over the world because they see the importance and the timeliness and the value of this movie. We had always hoped someone other than ourselves would see it, but to have this confirmed by people from all across the world is quite frankly a once-in-a-lifetime experience.

Thank you thank you thank you!

The most amazing part about all of this is that we reached the 50K mark with 10 days left on our campaign clock (9 days by the time this update goes out). 

Immediately after we got to 50K people asked if they can still pledge. Luckily some of you responded on FB to point out that YES, YES, YES anyone from anywhere in the world can still pledge until January 9!

When we set our goal for kickstarter before the launch 40 days ago, we looked at a budget for what's needed to provide a wide release (in the 150K range). We conferred with our executive producer, and with other trusted advisors, and we came to the conclusion that 150K would be an unrealistic number to reach. We agonized over how much to go for - at some point 75K was in the discussion, but we where concerned that we couldn't raise it - even 50K seemed like an extremely ambitious amount. Eventually we decided to go for 50 K - in the hopes the campaign would go viral and exceed that amount with some days left on the clock. And that's exactly what's happening now. 

Being the eternal optimists that we are, we had some hopes to come into a situation like this, where we reach our stated goal before the campaign is up - and then have a reason to explain to people why we actually need to keep the campaign going until the very end of the Kickstarter clock (Jan 9), and possibly beyond that.

Here's how we explained it in the FAQ tabs on our kickstarter page:
In answer to the question that has come up so many times today: Can we exceed our goal? 

YES, and we need to! $50,000 is our primary goal. Going forward we'll
need much more than that to cover distribution and marketing expenses.
Kickstarter will allow you to donate as much money as you want/can
before the deadline. All of it will go into the film — footage
licensing, marketing, promotion, additional screenings etc. —
everything to move the film forward and give it the widest possible
audience. Film is still an incredibly expensive medium. Every dollar

helps. In a perfect world we’ll raise twice our goal.

In other words: there are 9 more days to get involved!

It's not over yet!

We now have a real opportunity to hit this thing out of the park - or in basketball terms - to slam dunk it.

Just in the last week alone, thanks to CNN and the Washington Post, more and more people around the world have been hearing about the film and writing to us - we have been contacted by an African American living in Kuwait who related on a personal level to Kevin's experience in Iran regarding his very positive relationships with Muslims. We've been contacted by an all-American soccer mom from Upstate New York who responded to the unifying message of our film. We've been contacted by countless people in Iran and other Muslim countries, and by people in America and other "Western" countries - and they all have the same desire to see a film that shows compassion and commonness between peoples from all creeds of the world, while not sugar-coating what's going on in Iran politically.

The momentum is not stopping now. Let's keep this going! 

This community of backers here is 450+ strong now, and we want to open it up to as many people as possible - people who share your views about the potential of this film, people who'd like to see the world become a place with less conflict, stereotypes and aggression.

In the remaining 9 days, let's grow this film! Let's not let up now! 

Please consider asking one or two friends to join this movement and see if they would either match your pledge or pledge whatever they can. If everyone of you, and each one of us here, succeeds in getting just a few friends to play a part, the number of backers will double! 

This alone will give us crucial leverage in negotiating with distributors and broadcasters - because through the sheer numbers of backers and the success of this campaign we can prove to them that there is already an audience out there. And they need to see this film!

For comparison, here are some Kickstarter campaigns that went well beyond their goal.

Goal: 50K
Pledged: $150,000

Goal: 70K
Pledged: $92,029
In the last 67 hours they raised $22,000 past their goal. They had 480 backers and 67 hours later they had 658 backers

Goal: 80,000

All of these campaigns had longer durations than ours. And none of them reached their goal, in relative terms, sooner than we did. In other words, we run very competitively with all three of these campaigns. 

We have an amazing opportunity. Let's use of it!

Please keep spreading the word:

Facebook has been our strongest front, so please "Like" our Facebook page and share our posts:

Other useful steps:
  • Post this link to your Facebook and Twitter with your endorsement!
  • Send an e-mail blast to your friends and family, encouraging people to watch the trailer and get involved. The minimum donation is $1, and every little bit counts!
  • If you're in the U.S. and you'll be receiving a reward via mail, consider increasing your pledge by $6 to cover shipping, so more of your donation goes to making the film!
  • If you don't already, please  follow us on Twitter (@TheIranJob)!
We will add more artwork and some new pledge levels!

If you'd like to change your pledge amount, please visit the kickstarter page and click “Manage Your Pledge.” Enter a new amount in the pledge amount box. 

If you'd like to change your reward selection, please visit the kickstarter page and click “Manage Your Pledge.” To change your reward, make a new selection. Note that changing your reward selection does not automatically change your pledge amount.

Thank you all for being tremendous ambassadors. This film would not happen without you.

Before we go we want to thank Stephanie and Kristen, our tireless and absolutely outstanding former-interns-turned-outreach-professionals! Steph and Kristen, this would never be possible without you. We can't wait to celebrate with you on Thursday!!!

And everyone, please join us at our Fundraiser Dance Party next week!

Finally, we'd like to share with you what happened this morning at the office once we realized that we had in fact cracked 50K.

Enjoy this video.

Much love, eternal gratitude and a happy last day of the year!!!

Sara & Till


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