About this project
THANKS SO MUCH to everyone who pledged so far.
We are SO SO grateful!
Don't stop getting involved and spreading the word now though- we've got just under 2 weeks left to go!! We didn't dare to dream that we would reach our goal this quickly- through your participation we have, so lets see if we can STRETCH. THAT. GOAL!!
With this kind of momentum we can't help but believe that it can keep going. We want to expand the ACCH community, make it bust at the seams!
So IF EVERYONE HERE GETS ONE OTHER PERSON INVOLVED, just 1 additional person to contribute as little as $1 we will have twice as many people who are a part of the team!
Most importantly we want to grow the community, but if new members of this community can participate by pledging more than $1 and help us reach a new stretch goal of $120, 000 that would obviously be amazing too and it would allow us to do so much more with this project.
The extra money will allow us to make this film and it's soundtrack EVEN better by having the additional funds go towards the following:
- An extra day of shooting. Every day of a shoot is incredibly valuable to the outcome of the film as the more time you have, the better you can visually cover each scene.
- Renting better recording equipment for the recording of the soundtrack and pay for travel costs of flying in great musicians to play on the soundtrack.
YOU GUYS ROCK!!!
Anna & Ryan
You’re probably wondering why we are on Kickstarter when we already have this great team and an awesome group of investors involved...
We should mention up front that we are making this movie no matter what- our generous investors and hard-working, passionate team have made that possible! As we mentioned in our video already it’s incredibly hard to finance independent movies and find traditional investors who are interested in true storytelling without wanting to change the material and heavily influence the finished product. We have been lucky enough to find a few great investors who share the vision we have for this movie and while their contributions are helping to make the realization of A COUNTRY CALLED HOME possible, we are asking for your participation to enable us to make an even better movie.
Every penny we raise through your participation will go directly into making this movie, from pre-production tasks like securing locations, to the actual shoot of the film (getting the right camera equipment, costumes, catering for cast and crew etc) through to post-production and editing and even marketing efforts. This film is inspired by my experiences of traveling to small towns all over the United States, especially by my time spent in Texas. However, weaker tax incentives in Texas would make it harder for us to shoot there. Since Texas is where the story is actually set it would not only be a dream come true to be able to shoot there, but it would lend the film that much more authenticity as well. Your participation could make our goal of shooting in Texas a reality.
We also envision a Movie & Music tour across the US in order to bring A COUNTRY CALLED HOME and it’s music not only to a couple of big cities but many towns and communities across the country. This movie is so much about finding community in the most unexpected of places so it’s really important to us to take a grassroots approach to marketing this film and share the movie with our participant community. Through your participation we could expand this Movie & Music tour and include even more people that believe in our project.
In addition to all of the above, we feel really passionately about Kickstarter as a platform. We think it’s amazing that this platform enables artists and creatives alike to reach out to such a diverse group of people. Kickstarter allows you to invite anyone to be a patron of your art and include those patrons in a community that forms around believing in great ideas. We are therefore not only excited to put your contributions to great use in making A COUNTRY CALLED HOME but we are also super excited to build a community that believes in the film. We look forward to engaging with you, expanding our community and to make the process of bringing this movie to life even more collaborative.
“Traveler, there is no path. Paths are made by walking.”- Antonio Machado
The story of A COUNTRY CALLED HOME follows Ellie, a 27-year old whose life is far from where she imagined it to be. Filled with annoying friends, a self-involved boyfriend, and a career that she can’t bring herself to pursue, Ellie feels detached from her life. When she learns that her estranged alcoholic father has died, her world is disrupted and she begins a journey that takes her to a small town in Texas. Amidst strangers Ellie tries to confront the emotionally difficult relationship with a parent now gone. She must deal with the overbearing ways of Amanda, her drunk stepmother, the resentment of Amanda’s son Jack, and the affection of grandparents she’s never met before. She encounters a world in which she feels out of place, a part of America that is as foreign to her as another country. While in Texas Ellie befriends Reno, a young musician, who feels equally out of place in this small town.
While dealing with the logistical arrangements of her father’s death Ellie has to confront what happens when the structures and safety nets we build for ourselves come undone. She eventually is able to find family and friendship in this most unexpected place and so a world that she saw as two-toned starts to appear in many different shades. When things come to a head at her father’s wake, Ellie must take charge and decide if she can steer through the sometimes blurry difference of being an adult and growing up.
I started writing A COUNTRY CALLED HOME at a point in my life when it seemed that everyone around me, including myself, was trying to define and redefine their identity in adulthood. We’d all formed certain ideas of what our grown-up lives would be like, but the reality of the present rarely matched up perfectly to the ideas we’d formed in the past. Losing a parent, in whatever circumstance, is one of those moments where we are forced to jump closer into adulthood. Undeniably the process of mourning and revisiting the past is complex and highly personal. But however sad and difficult this process may be, ultimately there is beauty in redefining our path through letting go. And this is the over arching theme of A COUNTRY CALLED HOME.
Through touring with a band across almost the entire U.S. with my husband Ryan, I was introduced to places that I would have never seen otherwise and I was faced with different cultures, identities and experiences that ultimately had common ground no matter how diverse they seemed. As a foreigner I found myself in cultures that were at once familiar and unknown and the act of redefining one’s path, combined with the question of identity on an emotional, cultural, and geographical level, inspired me to write this story. And after I finished the story I teamed up with the amazingly talented screenwriter Jim Beggarly to write the actual script.
Though Ellie’s journey is a personal one, her experiences in this story are universal. We all have to grow up and we inevitably have to deal with issues of identity, belonging, and parenthood in the process. The people Ellie meets in the small Texas town further illuminate those same themes and make this story appealing to many people from different generations and walks of life.
Music plays a significant role in this movie’s storyline and it will also provide a lot of the mood and feel of the movie and its setting. Music is also a huge part of my life - I am married to a musician after all! As we have collaborated on many different projects and we speak the same creative language in our different ways of expression, the soundtrack to A COUNTRY CALLED HOME will naturally include songs by Ryan. Ryan has already written and recorded some of the songs he plans to feature on the ACCH soundtrack, including the film’s theme song “A Country Called Home” (he played a little part of it in our Kickstarter video). He will also produce the soundtrack, which will include songs by other artists as well. Ryan will bring in a bunch of great musicians to record the score for the film.
As a writer, director and producer, Anna has been making films and music videos for more than 10 years, many of which have screened in festivals around the world and been viewed more than 3 million times online.
Anna graduated with a Masters degree in directing from the London Film School and after working in film production in both the UK and Spain, Anna moved to Los Angeles in 2007 where she continued work as a writer and director. Shortly after moving to LA Anna started collaborating with Ryan Bingham. Among other videos Anna directed all of Ryan Bingham’s music videos and in 2012 she formed Axster Bingham Records, which released Bingham’s most recent album Tomorrowland.
Imogen Poots is quickly becoming one of the most exciting actresses in film today, having worked with such filmmakers as Steven Soderbergh, Terrence Malick, Richard Linklater, Michael Winterbottom, and Peter Bogdanovich as well as starred alongside such actors as Cate Blanchett, Christian Bale, and Phillip Seymour Hoffman. Imogen first burst onto the scene in Fox’s 28 WEEKS LATER for director Juan Carlos Fresnadillo, which was then followed-up with her starring turn in the critically acclaimed MISS AUSTEN REGRETS for BBC Films. Imogen is attached for the lead role of Ellie when the project gets funded.
Ryan Bingham is an Oscar, Grammy and Golden Globe-winning singer/songwriter, born in New Mexico and raised all across Texas. Ryan set out on his own at a young age, shuffling from town to town and performing gigs at local no-frills bars. It’s this spirit of having done plenty of living early on, that has informed Ryan’s world-weary and jagged, weather-beaten vocals.
In 2010 Ryan’s song “The Weary Kind” which he wrote for the movie Crazy Heart earned him a Grammy, Oscar, Golden Globe and Americana Artist of the Year Award. The song also led to his collaboration with T Bone Burnett, who produced his third studio album Junky Star (2010, Lost Highway Records/UMG.) Junky Star received rave reviews from critics and fans alike, saying “Ryan Bingham’s songs will still be around long after the Oscar Glow is gone. This dude is writing for the ages.” –PopNewsWire
In early 2012, Ryan decided to move on from Lost Highway Records/UMG to form his own Axster Bingham Records with wife Anna Axster on which he is releasing his current albums.
In 2013 Ryan wrote and recorded the theme song “Until I’m One With You” for FX Network’s hit television show The Bridge starring Diane Kruger and Demián Bichir.
As a producer, Nick Gonda has worked with Terrence Malick on THE TREE OF LIFE and TO THE WONDER. He has several projects in various stages of production, including producing AJ Edwards directorial debut THE BETTER ANGELS starring Diane Kruger, Jason Clarke and Brit Marling. He is continuing his work with Mr. Malick, producing his two upcoming films, KNIGHT OF CUPS and the currently untitled feature based in the Austin music scene whose combined casts include Christian Bale, Ryan Gosling, Natalie Portman, Cate Blanchett, Michael Fassbender and Rooney Mara. Nick Gonda was recently named one of Indiewire’s inaugural “Influencers” and Variety’s “10 Producers to Watch” for his work in the independent film industry. He also serves on the Board of the Austin Film Society.
Nicolas Gonda also co-founded Tugg, Inc. (www.tugg.com), a web-platform that enables people to choose the films that play in their local theaters and promote their own events. Launched at the 2012 South by Southwest Festival, Tugg empowers audiences nationwide to screen films from its extensive library of studio and independent titles. Tugg has partnered with mainstream and independent exhibitors, boasting a theatrical footprint of over 75% of movie theaters in the United States.
Alec Jhangiani graduated with a degree in Philosophy from the University of Texas at Austin and has been working in independent film since 2006. He joined the Lone Star Film Society in 2007 as director of programming and was appointed director in 2011. He is a founding member of the Lone Star Film Festival (LSFF), ranked among the Top 25 of MovieMaker Magazine's Top 50 Festivals Worth the Entry Fee out of 5,000 festivals worldwide. Alec worked in casting and the art department on Terrence Malick’s THE TREE OF LIFE and was a production consultant on Malick’s TO THE WONDER. He produced James Johnston’s short film KNIFE, an official selection of the 2012 SXSW film festival, Daniel Tarr’s short SHERMAN AND PACIFICO featuring the voice of Javier Bardem as Pacifico and is an associate producer on Jesus Beltran's debut feature AMERICANO, developed in part by the Sundance Institute Creative Producing Initiative.
We are excited for all of you wonderful people out there – from Ryan Bingham fans, to film fans, to art supporters - to participate in bringing A COUNTRY CALLED HOME and it's soundtrack to life! We hope you’ll consider participating in this Kickstarter campaign and earn some of the backer rewards we have for you! (See pictures below and the sidebar on the right for full details.) There are of course lots of additional ways you can help out and encourage others to participate as well:
- Post about A COUNTRY CALLED HOME on your favorite social media platforms such as Facebook and Twitter.
- You can help us spread the word further by Liking us on Facebook (www.facebook.com/ACountryCalledHome) and following us on Twitter (@ACCHMovie) and Instagram (@acountrycalledhome) for news and information.
- If you belong to any indie film forums or chat rooms, don't be shy to post about our movie.
Above all keep us in the loop- we’d LOVE to hear from you! We’ll be sure to keep you updated during this campaign, and long after too! We can't wait to start engaging with our new ACCH Kickstarter community!
Together, we can make this happen!
(A Country Called Home/Ryan Bingham double sided drink koozie designed exclusively for our backers, available at the $25 pledge level.)
(KICKSTARTER EXCLUSIVE Ryan Bingham Memorabilia! RECIEVE A LIMITED EDITION ALL ACCESS TOMORROWLAND TOUR ACCESS LAMINATE autographed by Ryan. These are the LAST 20 laminates left from Ryan’s Tomorrowland tour, available at the $30 pledge level. Limited to 20.)
(A Country Called Home tote bag designed exclusively for our backers, available at the $50 pledge level.)
(A Country Called Home T-shirt designed exclusively for our backers, available at the $50 pledge level.)
(KICKSTARTER EXCLUSIVE limited edition 7in Red Vinyl AUTOGRAPHED BY RYAN TO YOU OR SOMEONE YOU LOVE. There were ONLY 500 EVER produced and these are the LAST 60. Songs included are “Hallelujah” and “Depression”, available at the $65 pledge level. Limited to 60 and only available here on Kickstarter)
(KICKSTARTER EXCLUSIVE! Want to hear what Ryan sounded like with less whisky and less cigarettes under his belt?! Get your copy of the LIMITED EDITION WISHBONE SALOON CD, AUTOGRAPHED BY RYAN. Be one of the very few to own Ryan’s first ever recorded album- NEVER officially released anywhere! Available at the $100 pledge level and ONLY available HERE!)
(KICKSTARTER EXCLUSIVE Limited Edition Ryan Bingham poster AUTOGRAPHED BY RYAN, available at the $40 pledge level. Not available anywhere else.)
(KICKSTARTER EXCLUSIVE Ryan Bingham "Stitch's" AUTOGRAPHED Vinyl LP (includes CD as well). Tracks include the NEVER BEFORE RELEASED SONGS "TEARS" AND "BIG COUNTRY SKY", available at the $125 pledge level. Limited to 30. Not available anywhere else.)
(Double LP vinyl album of “Junky Star” AUTOGRAPHED BY RYAN plus an AUTOGRAPHED “Junky Star” Lyric Book, available at the $125 pledge level. Limited to 20.)
(Double LP vinyl album of “Roadhouse Sun” AUTOGRAPHED BY RYAN, available at the $125 pledge level. Limited to 20.)
(Double LP vinyl album of “Tomorrowland” AUTOGRAPHED BY RYAN, available at the $125 pledge level. Limited to 20.)
(LP vinyl album of “Mescalito” AUTOGRAPHED BY RYAN, available at the $125 pledge level. Limited to 20.)
(KICKSTARTER EXCLUSIVE! RECEIVE A COPY OF THE ACCH SHOOTING SCRIPT, SIGNED BY ANNA, RYAN & THE LEADING MEMBERS OF THE ACCH CAST. Availbale at the $1000 pledge level.)
(KICKSTARTER EXCLUSIVE EXTREMELY LIMITED EDITION RYAN BINGHAM PORTRAIT PRINT BY RENOWNED ARTIST KIKI SMITH, signed by the artist. Available at the $2,000 pledge level. Limited to 6. Not available anywhere else.)
Artist Kiki Smith putting the final touches on Ryan's portrait during his last sitting for "TOWARDS HOME".
Kiki Smith (b. 1954, Nuremberg, Germany) is a leading figure among artists addressing philosophical, social, and spiritual aspects of human nature, whose career spans more than three decades. Smith employs a wide-range of non-traditional materials ranging from hair and latex to beeswax and gold to a diverse body of work that includes painting, photography, bookmaking, sculpture, drawing, and printmaking. From Smith’s transgressive works of the mid-80s that dealt with mortality, bodily dissolution and decay to her explorations of the natural world and domesticity, her work is layered with meaning and metaphor.
Risks and challenges
There are inherent risks and challenges in making any independent movie – you need a bunch of money to be able to pay for the production of the movie. The camera equipment needs to be rented, the cast and crew (while in this case working on minimum scale) need to be paid and fed, the editing process needs to be financed. But luckily we already have some amazing independent investors who are making it possible to shoot the film on bare-bones budget. In order to make the movie even better and achieve goals like shooting in Texas and creating a marketing campaign that will allow us to tour with both the movie and the music, we are here on Kickstarter trying to raise more money through your generous contributions. So the risks are not too high because the movie will get made but you can help us make it the best it can be.
What sets A COUNTRY CALLED HOME apart is the incredible response the script has received, getting great actors, like Imogen Poots, excited to be a part of it.
Additionally we have an amazing team of creative people behind this film that want to bring this story to life. Our favorite part about filmmaking is the collaboration needed to bring a story to the screen and we know we could not have a better team who won’t give up EVER and who are bringing their creative force and passion with them.
So while we don’t see any risk in this movie being made, we don’t know the exact date when we will start shooting as that depends on where the shoot will take place, which in turn depends on how much money we raise here through your participation.
The Backer Rewards Fine Print:
• For those of you visiting our set (extras at $1000 pledge level) (special guests at $10,000 pledge level), we anticipate shooting in March, 2014 hopefully in Texas. However, this has the potential to change. We will keep you updated so you can plan ahead to visit us.
• If you become an extra ($1000 pledge level), you must be a US citizen or have a US work visa and be 18 years of age or older.
• You must be over 18 or accompanied by a parent or legal guardian (who will count as your plus one) to attend the premiere and after party, the screening after party, the ACCH production wrap party and the visit to our set. Extras must also be over 18.
• All shooting locations, are subject to change for a variety of reasons, including the amount of money we are able to raise and the particular locations giving us the right to shoot.
• Some rewards may require additional paperwork. If you are appearing in the film as an extra, you will have to sign a release.
• Some rewards may require travel and accommodation if you are coming from out of town. You will be responsible for all travel and accommodation costs and arrangements.
• The content of the voice and video messages are at your direction, but at Anna & Ryan's discretion. They reserve the right to refuse to say or do what you request if they find it inappropriate.
• The autographed Ryan Bingham “Tomorrowland” Tour Laminates are Memorabilia ONLY, they do not grant access to any of Ryan’s future shows.
• The final cut of ACCH may have to be further edited in certain cases to adhere to the laws in the country in which it is being viewed, or for different types of media.
• Scheduling for Ryan's solo acoustic private concert ($10,000 pledge level) is subject to his availability. We will work with you to find a date that works best for both you and Ryan. The private concert is indeed meant to be private. Under no circumstances can the event be publicly advertised nor are tickets allowed to be sold. Should we find out that the private concert has been advertised publicly, Ryan has the right to cancel and thereby void our agreement with you. You will not be refunded your contribution. While Ryan is commited to making the private concert an awesome experience for everyone, he agrees to a 60 minute solo acoustic set and any autograph signings or additional meet and greets are up to Ryan's sole discretion.
• This fundraising campaign is all subject to applicable Kickstarter rules/regulations, movie guild rules and applicable law. If any of this conflicts, we will work with you in good faith to give you a substitute reward.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
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