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A documentary film exploring the making of Otto Preminger's 1959 classic, Anatomy of a Murder - a film shot entirely on location.

Dear Backers

This is an important time for us to raise the necessary funds to complete our documentary Anatomy of "Anatomy", a film that we have been funding out of pocket. Unfortunately, we just don't have the funds to pay for the high cost of licensing the footage and music from Anatomy of a Murder. Those materials are imperative to the project. In order to tell the story of its making by the people of Michigan whose lives have been forever impacted by it, we need to raise a minimum of $25,000.

Kickstarter is offering us an opportunity to raise the necessary money through this fundraising campaign. However, as you may know, this is an all or nothing deal: We either raise $25,000 within 60 days or all donations will be refunded. We're optimistic with your help we can make it happen!

We experienced great success with Anatomy of "Anatomy" when The Criterion Collection included 30 minutes of excerpts from the documentary on their newly released Blu-ray/DVD of Anatomy of a Murder; it's in the "Supplements" section. You can pick up a copy of the beautifully re-mastered film and check it out. 

Now your generosity can help us complete our documentary film, so that we may bring the full version, including Duke Ellington's masterful score, to you and film lovers everywhere.


In May of 1959, famed Hollywood director Otto Preminger converged his filmmaking crew on Marquette County in Michigan's Upper Peninsula. He was about to film a courtroom drama - one by which all others would be measured; one based on a best-selling novel and true-life story; and one that would bring controversy, once again, to the monocratic director.

A few months earlier, Preminger had gone there to scout out locations for background shots. He also met John Voelker who's best-selling novel, Anatomy of a Murder, based on an actual murder trial, was about to be made into an Oscar-nominated masterpiece. Preminger was completely charmed by Voelker. So much so that he decided to make his entire film there, even shooting scenes at the locations where the real-life events had taken place.

Preminger's experiment of shooting an entire feature film "on location" certainly did more than just displace a comfortable cast and crew from Hollywood, California; it gave the out-of-work residents of Marquette County, Michigan employment in the movie business, hiring them as extras and bit players; drivers and security detail. It brought hope back to a people suffering from unemployment, and changed their lives and towns...forever.


Anatomy of "Anatomy" sets out to tell this exciting story of how and why Hollywood invaded the small community of Marquette County, Michigan - a community that was suffering unemployment - and brought hope back to them. It's a story best told by the residents who lived there when the filming began:

"It took me a week of photography work with a guy named Gjon Mili a famous black and white photographer who took me out 'on location', if you will, to different places". Bob Brebner had the fortune to land the part of "Barney Quill", the tavern owner who was shot and killed by "Lieutenant Manion" in the film. Brebner's character is only seen in photographs.

Millie Menze, who worked in the courthouse during the filming, got a brief appearance in one scene when Preminger asked her to keep working at her desk, which could be seen in the background of the shot. "I was at the telephone and he said, 'Cut! I can tell you're not saying a word, is that the way you use a telephone?' So, do it over again, you know, all day long".

"John [Voelker] was instrumental to having the cast stay in Ishpeming. She [Remick] would come down every once in a while, and this was her little glass that she drank out of; and we haven't had a drink out of it since. SO the story has it." Local historian and Congress Pizza owner Paul Bonette talks about actress Lee Remick who, while staying at the Mather Inn in Ishpeming, would pop in at the popular pizza joint on occasion. She seems to have left an interesting memento for them, as well.

Once we began work on Anatomy of "Anatomy" we discovered Joan Hansen's book. This became the glue that binds our film together. Hansen was gracious enough to rework it into a more conversational tone AND record the narration. In addition to the stories from the locals, she also provides a wealth of information surrounding the filming of Anatomy of a Murder, and a great number of personal stories, herself.

Anatomy of "Anatomy" will also include clips from Anatomy of a Murder, vintage behind-the-scene footage from the set and feature Duke Ellington's great Jazz score; but only if we can raise the necessary funds to do so. Again, we have ONLY 60 days to raise $25,000 through Kickstarter. Please help us to tell this fascinating story.

Risks and challenges Learn about accountability on Kickstarter

We have worked on this film for over a decade and we still have yet to complete it. This had been due to high production and post-production costs as we chose to shoot on film, a very expense medium. One of our big risks was sticking with the project as we have been funding this out-of-pocket. We did stick with it, and now, thanks to advancements in post-production technologies, we are able to finish the technical work.

Licensing the music and film clips are also a big risk as there are many entities entitled to compensation for their use, and we have to make sure all our bases are covered in this manner. We have hired a clearance house to handle the rest of our needs in this and hope to have all the parties identified by the end of the year.

One note: Most rewards will be delivered sooner than the estimated date given. The only exceptions are names listed in the credits and the limited edition movie posters.


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  • Pledge $5 or more
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    You will get a personal thank you card sent right to your mailbox from the director, and our eternal thanks for helping tell this fascinating story of a classic Hollywood film.

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    1 backer

    In addition to the above, your name will be listed in the credits of our film and as a supporter on our Facebook page.

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    8 backers

    In addition to the above, you will receive a limited edition movie poster of our film.

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    In addition to the above, you will be invited to join the producers in an interactive Skype session in which they will discuss the making of their film and the making of Anatomy of a Murder.

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    2 backers Limited (23 left of 25)

    In addition to the above, you will receive a signed copy of Joan's book Anatomy of "Anatomy": The Making of a Movie.

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    1 backer Limited (4 left of 5)

    In addition to the above, you will receive a copy of the shooting script signed by Joan G. Hansen and director David C. Jones and be listed as an Executive Producer in the credits.

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    0 backers Limited (2 left of 2)

    In addition to the above, you will receive two passes to any one film festival (of your choosing, minus airfare and lodging) that we are invited to and dinner with us!

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Funding period

- (60 days)