About this project
What a ride! Thank you all! I'm looking forward to bringing you Dead Meat!
FINAL 24 HOURS! BILLY & MANDY BLOWOUT! DEAD MEAT CARS! BE AN EXTRA!
I dug through my closets and I'm prepared to hand out most of the Billy & Mandy stuff I've got. I found two more boxes of toys, Billy & Mandy pillows, Underfist T-shirts, posters, and more! For all of the Billy & Mandy, Evil Con Carne, and Underfist stuff, I will ship it the second the Kickstarter succeeds. I may need a few days to get the posters signed. That means Billy & Mandy Holiday gifts, if that's what you're looking for.
Let's get this thing made!
BE AN EXTRA AND ATTEND THE DEAD MEAT PARTY:
Now it's only $350 bucks! Listen to Voltaire. Hang with puppeteers and actors! Have a party! Get killed by puppets!
ORIGINAL BILLY & MANDY MAIN MODEL PACK ARTWORK - 2005
Remember when people used to draw on bleached, recycled tree pulp with graphite? Me neither. But this is proof that it happened. Here are a bunch of drawing that I and others created in 2005 when I revamped the main model pack for Billy & Mandy. I'll throw in a copy of the finished model pack as well so you can see how it all came together. Lots of good stuff in here. A piece of animation history for sure. I'm adding this to the $10,000 "You Run Barter Town" prize!
UNDERFIST CREW SHIRTS:
They're all Large and slightly wrinkly, but they're brand new! They're also substantially cheaper than the main model pack. Get this, the dead Meat shirt, and a bunch more stuff for only $50! Here's the front:
ORIGINAL B&M BACKGROUND KEY ART:
There's only one of these. This is a BG key used in the show and used as reference by our overseas studio. $350
BILLY & MANDY PILLOWS:
Dog hair not included. $250 and they come with a complete set of Dead Meat art prints and more!
A PAIR OF POSTERS:
Each one will be signed by Maxwell Atoms, Grey DeLisle, Richard Horvitz, Greg Eagles, and Phil LaMarr! Some light wear and wrinkling along the bottom edges. Get these and more for $200!
UNCUT BILLY & MANDY TAROT CARDS:
One sheet of these signed by Maxwell Atoms, Grey DeLisle, Richard Horvitz, and Greg Eagles! Only two of these! Also $200.
HEADHUNTER AND LEATHERFACE:
The two finished cars from Dead Meat are up for bid! You won't get them until the shooting is done, but what you get is an original piece of plastic and paint artwork by Maxwell Atoms. He'll even sign the bottom!
These are a steal at $2,500 apiece, and come with a bunch of prints and other stuff!
One of the new prizes for the final week is a custom voicemail message provided by one of your favorite V.O. actors! Or even one of your least favorite, if that's how you want to play it. Now when grandma calls, she can be shocked and thrilled that she's leaving a message for Master Shake and not you.
Only 50 of these! Get 'em while they exist!
You, Maxwell Atoms, Josh Sussman, and Dana Snyder will dine with whoever else bids on this package and as much of the Dead Meat gang as I can wrangle. We should definitely go somewhere where it's okay to draw on the tablecloths. And maybe where shoes are optional.
Only eight of these! So you can see and hear all these people eat their dinner. Maxwell Atoms will have sauce all over him by the end. Guaranteed.
NEW ART PRINT - "I AIN'T GOT NO BEEF"
I AIN'T GOT NO BEEF:A prop can label from Dead Meat turned art print! This parody label is one of many fakey products that will appear in the L.A. Wasteland. Heck eats L.L. Cujo. You Should Too-jo.
See a larger version at: maxwellatoms.tumblr.com
"Dead Meat" is a twisted R-rated buddy comedy/action movie featuring a mixture of live actors, puppets, and a surreal combination of practical and digital FX. If "The Grim Adventures of Billy & Mandy" was my take on laughing at irrational childhood fears, "Dead Meat" is my take on laughing at the often all-too-real fears of adulthood.
DEAD MEAT IS THE COMEDY FOR YOU IF:
- Every time you turn on the news, you find yourself shaking your head, wondering how humanity can be so massively stupid.
- You're in it for the LULZ.
- You're tired of watching soulless, watered-down studio movies and think that entertainment should be, well... entertaining.
- You are, in any way, inebriated.
- You enjoy watching puppets shoot each other and get run over by cars.
- You mostly watch Dancing With the Stars and stuff like that, but you're feeling a touch daring.
- You're wealthy and somewhat irresponsible.
- You enjoy shocking surprises, fun characters, smart 'n' sassy dialog, and buckets of puppet gore.
"Dead Meat" is the story of a lovable mutant dog (named "Dead Meat") who dreams of being just like his a-hole master, James "Heck" Heckler -- the deadliest Mutant Hunter in the L.A. Wasteland. Unfortunately, in this world mutants are killed on sight, so Dead Meat must live a life of quiet isolation for the good of himself and his best friend.
After rescuing Heck, Dead Meat calls in a favor to spare the life of a dangerous mutant known as the Battle Priestess Suzuki Jackson. This single act of kindness undermines Heck's entire lifestyle, changes Dead Meat's world, and sets in motion a bizarre love triangle that threatens to destroy friendships. And maybe the world. Again.
Imagine "This is the End" directed by John Carpenter in the 80's. Or if Troma were put in charge of the Muppet Show. It'll be kind of like that.
Dead Meat takes place in post-apocalyptic Los Angeles-- a psychedelic wonderland of violence. This is Murphy's World where everything that could go wrong already did, and will again. Not because the world itself is flawed, but the people who inhabit it absolutely refuse to learn from the mistakes of the past. In other words, it's pretty much like the world we live in right now. Only with slightly more radiation and a bunch of green-skinned mutants running around eating people.
Here, what's left of humanity lives under the dubious protection of a corporate theocracy known as "The Church of the Conglomerate". Everyone else must fend for themselves, hunting mutants in trade for rare and precious toilet paper. Expect Mad Max-style cars and car chases, brutal torture, stomach-churning action, a city of barbaric horrors where only the strong survive, hideous radioactive monsters, gross-out jokes galore, and a touch of romance. Maybe even some puppet twerkin'. If you're good.
HOLLYWOOD IS BROKEN
If you haven't already, go check out Steven Spielberg's, Steven Soderbergh's, and Patton Oswalt's thoughts on the state of the entertainment industry. They're all right. It's a mess. Studios are too afraid to take risks, and the gatekeepers are too afraid of losing their jobs to stick their necks out and say anything but "no".
So even if Hollywood was willing to take a gamble on something this bazonkers, there's no doubt in my mind that the project would suffer from the culture of fear in the studio system.
KICKSTARTER IS BADASS
My experience has been that nothing will ever get done unless you fight for it tooth-and-claw. Kickstarter is Democracy and Darwinism made digital flesh. I like that. In the early days of Cartoon Network, you did what you had to do to get the job done. It was guerilla filmmaking. That's how I work best.
And, call me petty, but the idea of blackening the eye of The Man really appeals to me right now. Kickstarter eliminates the gatekeepers and middle men. It allows me to make art and entertainment without compromise. And that's what turns me on, baby!
YOU GUYS ARE BADASSES
"The Grim Adventures of Billy & Mandy" was voted into existence on Cartoon Network's Big Pick Weekend thirteen years ago. Not by executives, but by people who liked what they saw. Without the support of fans and likeminded people, the show never would have been made, much less lasted for seven seasons or been resurrected from the dead thrice. I trust your sense of taste. Trust me to make you something awesome, and I won't disappoint.
Who are the other mutants joining the gang to help make Dead Meat a reality?
CAST UPDATE: Dana Snyder is Dead Meat!
CAST UPDATE: Vanessa Marshall is a Mew-Tant!
CAST UPDATE: Rachael MacFarlane is Rachael the Bartender!
*Kickstarter rules do not allow the support of a charity. My bad! Ignore that part of the video.
CAST UPDATE: Voltaire is Creepy!
CAST UPDATE: Richard Horvitz is Malockawokka!
CAST UPDATE: Josh Sussman is Clawed!
CAST UPDATE: Greg Eagles is Outburger!
CAST UPDATE: Greg Ellis and Phil LaMarr are Mutant Cockroaches!
CAST UPDATE: Grey DeLisle is Barbaria!
ABOUT THE REWARDS:
Most of the rewards pictured here have already been created by me and are basically ready to be printed. The key chain, T-shirt, embroidered badges, and prints should all be able to get to you by January 2014.
The DVD, puppets made in your image, signed copies of the script, and stuff like that you won't be able to get until Dead Meat is done.
Please note that none of the rewards include prices for airfare! If you bid on a package that gets you into the shoot or the screening, you'll have to get to Los Angeles on your own. Once you're here, though, I'll treat you right!
Exclusive DVD: When all is said and done, Dead Meat will appear on the internet. But as a Kickstarter backer, you'll get additional content and an exclusive Kickstarter DVD cover. And you'll get to see it before the general public! Plus, you'll have a "DVD"-- an obscure artifact of legend from the waning days of the 20th century! Every backer at $30 or above will receive the exclusive DVD.
MUTUAL ASSURED DESTRUCTION - BLACK LIGHT POSTER: Warm up those black lights and get this 23X35 flocked black light poster before it gets you! Colors may vary slightly due to the printing process.
ART PRINTS AND SIGNED/NUMBERED LITHOGRAPHS: You'll notice that some of the rewards say "Art Prints" and some say "Signed and Numbered Lithographs". These options both draw from the same pool of artwork below. Art Prints are 16X20 poster prints and Signed/Numbered Lithographs are higher quality 20X30 prints.
THE PRINT SELECTION:
BFF: Bullet Friends Forever. Heck and Dead Meat know more guns mean more funs. Stick this print on your wall and stare at it while you wait for the series to premiere!
WANTED POSTER: A mock-up of the digital Church of the Conglomerate wanted poster from the film.
KILLER GRIDLOCK: Enjoy a typical work commute with Dead Meat, Heck, and Suzuki in this piece of concept art. The good news: There's no texting and driving in the future. The bad news: Bleeding and driving is at an all-time high.
CHOICE IS A BULLSHIT!: This is one of many propaganda posters that will litter Dead Meat's wastelands. And you get to litter your home or workspace with it before anyone even knows what it is!
MAP OF SOKAL SECTOR: Stretching all the way from Sanctuary to Beverly Holes to the Forbidden Zone and beyond, this is the comprehensive map that the Church of the Conglomerate uses to navigate the wastelands. Inspired by all of those teeny-tiny Sergio Aragones drawings from Mad Magazine, this map is packed with puns, Easter Eggs, and wasteland misadventures.
Here's a section blown up so you can see some detail. I'll also post a high-res version on my tumblr at maxwellatoms.tumblr.com. Don't forget that this (like all the art prints) can be acquired as a poster or high quality lithograph. Some tiers give you all seven art prints together!
SHE'S THE BOMB: A wasteland pinup featuring the Battle Priestess and her pet basking in the blood-soaked glory of victory. Get this print as part of any art print or litho package, or get all seven art prints together!
TRICK OR TREAT!: This signed, rare-as-toilet-paper in the apocalypse box of Billy & Mandy action figures comes with a signed Dead Meat sketch, the DVD, and an invite to the private screening!
WHAT IF YOU DON'T LIVE ANYWHERE NEAR LOS ANGELES!?
The tickets you see here for the Dead Meat exclusive screening and party are great if you live in L.A. or can afford to fly there. For the rest of you, I'll let you swap out your ticket for either a signed drawing, some time on the phone or Skype with me, or an original Dead Meat prop! The props will all be hand-made and unique to Dead Meat. I'll choose them grab-bag style myself to make sure everyone gets something cool. A survey will be sent to you once the Kickstarter miraculously succeeds, allowing you to tell us what your pleasure is.
Check out the rewards section on the side if you haven't. There's more cool stuff like signed scripts and custom puppets. Plus I'll be adding new prints and prizes each week, so don't be a stranger!
Where doesn't it go!? Well, it doesn't go into my pocket to be turned into delicious burritos. I'm going to make sure that every penny gets used to make this the best series it can be. First off, we'll need puppets. Lots of puppets. Muppet-style puppets are works of art unto themselves, and they're more costly and time-consuming to build than you might think. Then there are also tons of props still to be built and matte paintings to be painted. Then we need cast, crew, puppeteers, and a whole lot of green screen. The characters are designed, and the script is written, but the adventure is just beginning!
Risks and challenges
Even though I've produced animated TV up the wazoo, this will be my first project that doesn't involve tons of animation. Thankfully, I've got a lot of savvy, talented professionals to help me out! In fact, that's where some of the money goes-- to making sure I have smart, creative people who can fill in the gaps in my knowledge and make sure that Dead Meat looks muy macho!
We've priced out all the rewards being produced through your kind support, and are working with reputable companies in order to handle production and fulfillment in a timely manner. Of course, in the real world things frequently go a bit cockeyed. If that happens, we'll work with you to iron it out.
I'll be providing regular updates to backers to let you all know how the project is progressing. I'm super excited about sharing this horrible new world with you, and I can't wait to get this 'Meat cookin'!Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
I'm totally excited that so many people are excited to work with me on Dead Meat. Many of the roles have already been filled, and you'll learn more about those wonderful people in the coming weeks. If the campaign succeeds and I'm able to create Dead Meat as a series, there'll be plenty to do. If you'd like to help Dead Meat get to that point, I can think of a few ways to help!
And whaddya mean!? What's wrong with my hair?
For all intents and purposes, Dead Meat is a cartoon. It's not animated, but it is an exaggerated spoof with weird looking characters. So why not animation? For one thing, I wanted to explore new territory. I also feel like the mix of actors and puppets adds a visceral reality to the world that makes Dead Meat even more funny.
Puppets also allow me to produce a continuing series more cheaply than all but the cheapest forms of animation. Once the puppets are built, I can use them again and again. $50,000 won't even get you eleven minutes of studio quality animation. At least not for long.
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