About this project
THANK YOU TO ALL OF OUR AMAZING SUPPORTERS!
YOU CAN STILL SUPPORT AND JOIN OUR FILM THROUGH PAYPAL. EVERY DOLLAR IS IMMENSELY VALUABLE TO OUR FILM.
***video edited by NOOR HAYDAR
My name is Lena Khan, and for the past 8 years, I’ve devoted my life toward making this movie. I went to film school, worked at studios, directed my own work for a living while writing a script, garnered interest from major actors and distributors, then raised hundreds of thousands of dollars from investors who believe in my project. And now, I turn to you.
I’m making this film because it’s a story I really want to show you, a crazy hodge-podge of inspirations, molded into a comically fictional but authentic script. I kind of feel like how I imagine Sylvestor Stallone or Nia Vardalos did before writing Rocky or My Big Fat Greek Wedding—I have a movie I really want to make because it’s fresh and different, and one that only I could truly tell.
We are making a mainstream, but unique, film, and your support is extremely valuable. To recognize that, we’ve developed an incentive program to show you exactly how your pledge will be used. You are the last step in launching this film into production, and also my career! I want you to see the valuable role you’re playing. Thank you.
The Tiger Hunter is the story of Sami Malik, an ambitious young man with an engineering degree who travels to 1970s Chicago to impress his childhood crush and live up to the legacy of his father, a local legend and tiger hunter. When Sami ends up living in a tiny co-op with two oddball roommates and taking a job as a lowly mail clerk, what ensues is a series of adventures involving outlandish schemes, an arch-nemesis in an absurd office environment, and a variety of misfits that Sami may soon call friends.
My dad used to tell me all kinds of stories. He told me about his father in India, a local legend and tiger hunter at a time when tigers destroyed entire farms. About somebody who broke somebody's toilet then stole their stool sample in order to get a Visa into America. About roommates in the 70s who came up with the most clever of plans to drive their junky car across town with no brakes. He told me funny tales of the type I would never know about from any other source.
Then one day, after searching for ideas for a feature film, my boss at a production company sat there, listening to these stories for two hours. "There," he said, "is your movie."
But I needed more. I realized there was an entire world of unique and hilarious adventures that people on the less talked about rungs of society experienced. I interviewed immigrants, apartment squatters, cubicle hermits, disco dwellers, and more. And, with a strong bit of creative license and twisting, I came out with the heart of my story.
With the overwhelming remainder of our budget already acquired through investors, we only have a small amount left in order to make this film a reality. We are getting most of that amount through this campaign, leaving only a small amount for us to get from prospective investors.
This not only means that your participation will help push this film into production, but that you can be pretty sure it's going to get made! Because of you.
It's hard to describe how exciting it is to have the chance to make a real movie. You know, with recognizable actors. Theaters. Laughs. With our experience and how far the project has come so far, I may just have that chance with this movie!
To give you an idea:
- The inside connection: The Tiger Hunter attracted the interest of a producer who has worked directly with an A-list celebrity for over 7 years and has contacts with nearly every major figure in Hollywood.
- An amazing writer: We did the industry savvy move and hired a professional who has written for years for shows like Modern Family, is represented by CAA (Creative Artists Agency), and was just picked up for an upcoming FOX sitcom. He not only refined the screenplay, but pushed its story, wit and comedy to the level of major studio films.
- Big actors and distributors: We tapped major players to join our team and have garnered interest from powerhouse distributors and extremely well known actors. We even have one recognizable celebrity already on board (under our agreement, unfortunately, we can't reveal who it is yet).
We're making a real movie! Come join us.
We want you to see how your pledge is being used, and how much it is really adding to the film. To do that, we have decided to allocate our Kickstarter funds toward a particular set of line items that you will be able to clearly see on screen.
The steps are simple:
2. We will post a badge/image to your facebook account, representing what your pledge will be used for in the film.
Wardrobe? Props? Picture cars? Those are all possible because of you, and you can see which ones you are helping make possible. If you're the private sort, you can also decline this option.
3. We will email you a clip and still of the film featuring your name and the item(s) you helped make possible.
Post it on facebook. Look at it often. Keep it for days you want to remember how awesome you are, and what a difference you made to somebody else's dream.
Films and TV have done so much to normalize so many different types of people, and remove barriers and prejudice. In The Tiger Hunter, we intentionally featured characters from several misrepresented groups while making sure not to engage in the usual stereotyping or demeaning. Films and TV have done a lot, but there's still more to be done. Be part of the effort to do our part in doing something fun, but also valuable.
For my part, my career has always been supported by friends and people like you. It's something I truly understand the significance of, and so I've tried to do what I can to pay it forward.
For this film, I'm trying to do more. The process of making a commercial, feature film has a tremendous learning curve. To help other filmmakers benefit from what I've picked up along the way and the resources I had, I created a blog, Lena Makes a Movie, that chronicles the journey of making this film and how others can learn what I have.
How does this film help others? At the end of this film, not only will I have blogged what I've learned about making a real movie, but I will also be compiling a comprehensive journal of the steps, facts and figures and even some quite confidential materials we used in getting this film off the ground and made. Need to know how much seed money to save before you can get a movie financed and into pre-production? Want to know what strategies you can use to get a bigger actor on board? Curious on how you should negotiate a distribution deal? Our experiences in all of those areas will be available in that packet, a valuable compendium of names, strategies, and what worked and didn't so you don't have to start from scratch. And, I will give it to every backer who wants one.
You help my dreams come true. Let me do the same for others.
NOW IT'S ALL UP TO YOU
I'm not somebody who thinks I am entitled to everyone's hard-earned money. Instead, I'm just hoping to help you share our belief in this project, and why it needs to happen.
On my end, I promise to live up to your trust. I will put my all into this film, and also my career. And just as you have supported me, I will continue to support other filmmakers in the best ways I can.
Thank you again.
Who edited that video? And did all your graphics?!
A couple of fantastic people.
Our editor: Noor Haydar. Check her out here.
Graphics: Nadia Chohan, Indie VisualDesign Inc.
Can we invest in the film?
Not through pledging on Kickstarter, no. But if you message us we may have a small amount of the budget still available for prospective investors!
Can we exceed the project goal?
YES. Our project goal is the minimum needed to get the project done, but in an industry of big budgets, exceeding our goal will maximize our chances of being competitive with other films. This is especially the case because this film is set in the 70s, and details do a lot to help us reach our vision. For instance, exceeding the budget will allow us to:
- Increase our production value even more, especially in areas like Art Department that is vital in a period piece
- Give us more options in getting licenses for soundtrack music (we are hoping to get some awesome throwback 70s songs)
- Help us further when it comes to distribution
- Allow us to hire more recognizable actors (we have the means to get on board a bunch of them like you see in some films...but we just need the budget for it!)
- And much more.
How do I know you aren't just a bunch of kids running around and making a cheap movie?
First, people like Christopher Nolan launched their careers by making amazing films that one may technically call "cheap." But, to answer what your actual question probably is, I hope our experience and how far we've come ensure you that we are making a commercial, mainstream film with high production quality. People don't realize this, but many, many Kickstarter films have released theatrically, gone to Sundance, and been picked up for national broadcast by networks like HBO.
Why aren't we offering more DVDs of the film as rewards?
Unfortunately, we can't. We would absolutely love to, but we are currently in discussions with distributors who have interest in our film. Since these distributors (and every distributor we've spoken to) warn us that offering downloads will strongly jeopardize the film's chances of a strong release, we can't currently promise many downloads (except for the much higher reward levels) in case we lose our distribution deals and prevent our movie from getting out to the world!
Do you have a mailing list!
Yes! You can join our mailing list for important updates by signing up here! If we didn't spam for our Kickstarter campaign, we won't spam you for the list, don't worry. We will keep you updated - but won't clog your inbox.
Risks and challenges
Our goal is to have the project undergoing production and the rewards delivered according to the noted timeframe, but there are no guarantees. As with all films, unexpected occurrences could come up that delay our schedule. For example, to accommodate a known actor's shooting schedule, we may have to delay production for a few months. If somehow there is a storm that comes up in Michigan, we may have to delay a month. We are lucky, however, to have a team of people intimately familiar with working within this budget and on similar schedules, and will be doing our utmost to keep you updated and conquer any challenges that come our way.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
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