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From producers of Oscar & Emmy-winning films: A documentary about families doing the extraordinary–fighting to save their sons’ lives.
From producers of Oscar & Emmy-winning films: A documentary about families doing the extraordinary–fighting to save their sons’ lives.
346 backers pledged $125,057 to help bring this project to life.

About this project

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$125,057

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We are thrilled to be making national news!

Check us out in THE WASHINGTON POST and our interview on SiriusXM.

 ––––––

This Kickstarter campaign is raising funds to finish To the Edge of the Sky, a documentary about parents fighting to stop Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy before it kills their sons. New drugs are on the horizon to treat this deadly disease–and many other rare diseases–but the treatments are stalled at the FDA.  

We are completing this film as soon as possible to help families across all rare disease communities as they battle to gain access to potentially life-saving drugs. 

Imagine if, as a parent, you were destined to outlive your child. Imagine if, after years of watching your child struggle with a rapidly progressing deadly disease, a new drug offered you the hope of halting its progress. What would you do to obtain this drug for your child? What would you do to save your child’s life? 

To the Edge of the Sky offers an unflinching portrait of families going through just that, and doing whatever it takes to save their sons’ lives.

A deadly disease and the possibility of a cure.  

Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy is one of the biggest genetic killers diagnosed in childhood, that almost exclusively affects boys. When a boy is born with Duchenne, his body is unable to produce dystrophin, a genetic protein that holds muscles together. Without it, his muscle cells gradually degenerate.

In the early phase of the disease, a boy with Duchenne will fall down more than most. Routine tasks will seem exhausting. Between the ages of 6 and 12, he will have trouble walking. He may compensate by walking on the balls of his feet or toes. 

By age 12, the deterioration will begin to accelerate, and he will most likely need a motorized wheel chair. By the early teens, he will develop heart muscle problems, which will lead to heart and respiratory complications.

In almost all cases, he will die before his mid/late 20s.

Promising new drugs offer the hope of possibly treating Duchenne. However, these drugs remain stalled at the FDA. As a result, only a limited number of boys who are enrolled in specific clinical trials have access to them.

The film.

Our film follows four families with sons dying of Duchenne as they wage an extraordinary campaign to convince the FDA to allow the accelerated approval for a drug they believe is a potential cure for Duchenne––before it kills their sons.

With incredible access to the families, legislators, and FDA, our documentary presents the day-to-day combat and strategizing required to get the government and public-at-large to pay attention to any disease, let alone one that affects just a few thousand kids yet creates tremendous devastation.

Beyond that, at the heart of this political drama is an incredibly poignant and human narrative: the tireless battles that parents fight to protect their kids. These parents will do anything to save their sons. They'll go to the ends of the earth, to the edge of the sky.

We are racing against the clock.

To the families affected by Duchenne, the fight against this disease seems like an endless battle. These kids and their families have desperately been seeking a cure for Duchenne for years––forever. When will a cure be available? Today? Tomorrow? A month from now? Ten years from now? Will it be too late?

Many families would give up in the face of such adversity but these parents and their supporters do not and will not. They refuse to accept that their boys cannot be cured.
       
While the parents’ efforts and struggles have been in the press, our hope is that this film will amplify their voices giving these families much-needed allies to rally alongside them.

Why Kickstarter?

Through Kickstarter, we are hoping to raise the necessary funding to accelerate our post-production schedule, increase our staff, finalize editing immediately, and hire the right people to assist in our outreach campaign.

We want to bring this film to a public forum like Kickstarter so people can see the struggles that these boys and their families face every single day. Additionally, we hope it will help convince the FDA to pay more attention to the special needs of people that are suffering from rare diseases.

Ultimately, we want to rally the masses and get the global community involved in reform––the more people who get involved, the more attention rare diseases will receive. And we can do that through crowdfunding.

Our heroes: FDA success stories.

The unknown becomes known when enough attention is paid to it. Our cause needs more allies.

AIDS activists were successful at getting the FDA to allow for accelerated approval of HIV treatments in 1992 by demanding change through a power in numbers. Accelerated approval allows early market access to experimental drugs that are likely to be working, by accepting surrogate endpoints — markers that suggest whether a drug is working and worth delivering to more patients.

The Cystic Fibrosis community worked tirelessly to get approval for a promising experimental drug. It took years of stalling, negotiations, and review before the FDA gave the green light for this drug which proved to be effective.

Like these communities, the parents in our film have been working tirelessly getting petitions signed, meeting with the media, and presenting information to the public. Now they need your support. Together, we can stop the stalling and start saving lives.

Many of our films have led to change.

We are committed to creating social justice through film. We are extremely proud of the following films for having a real impact. 

Taxi To The Dark Side 
We executive produced Taxi To The Dark Side, which shed light on the killing of an Afghan taxi driver while being held in extrajudicial detention. It exposed the injustice of the killing, examined U.S. policy on torture and interrogation, and highlighted the negative impact on American soldiers and their morale. Before the 2008 Presidential election, Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama asked for copies of Taxi to the Dark Side. During the election, both Barack Obama and John McCain were outspokenly against torture as a policy.  In one of his first acts as President, Obama signed an executive order that banned the use of torture. 

Semper Fi: Always Faithful
We produced Semper Fi: Always Faithful, which followed Marine Master Sargent Jerry Ensminger’s mission to find answers after losing his nine-year old daughter to leukemia. His search exposed a cover-up of one of the largest cases of water contamination incidents in U.S history. Jerry’s story and advocacy helped get legislation passed in the form of the Janey Ensminger Act, which mandated insurance coverage for the victims of the water contamination. Both Jerry and the filmmakers were present in the Oval Office when this landmark act was signed.

Mea Maxima Culpa: Silence in the House of God
We produced Mea Maxima Culpa: Silence in the House of God, which examined the abuse of power in the Catholic Church by telling the story of four deaf men who were abused as children by a Milwaukee priest at a school for the deaf. Their case was the first known public protest against clerical sex abuse in the United States. In the words of the Peabody Awards, our film “empower[ed] long-silenced victims and unveil[ed] clandestine Church practices around accusations.” Less than a month after the film's release, Pope Benedict XVI became the first pope in nearly 600 years to step down. This caused The Wall Street Journal, The Huffington Post, The Guardian, The Hollywood Reporter, and the New Statesmen to publish stories that linked the sexual abuse scandals addressed in Mea Maxima Culpa to the Pope’s resignation.


Who we are.

In the past twelve years, we have produced numerous critically and commercially successful feature documentary films including the multiple Primetime Emmy Award-winning film Mea Maxima Culpa: Silence in the House of God (2012, HBO), the 2008 Academy Award Winner for Best Documentary and Emmy Award Winner for Best Documentary, Taxi to the Dark Side (HBO), the Emmy-nominated Semper Fi: Always Faithful (2011), the 2012 Academy Award Nominee for Best Documentary Short, King's Point (HBO), the multiple Emmy-nominated Client 9: The Rise and Fall of Eliot Spitzer (2010), the 2008 Sundance favorite Kicking It (ESPN), the POV film A Dream in Doubt (2007), Morgan Spurlock’s What Would Jesus Buy? (2007), and the critically acclaimed Beyond Conviction (2006, MSNBC).

In 2011, we were each nominated by the Producers Guild of America for Outstanding Producer of Documentary Theatrical Motion Pictures. 

Join us, and consider your pledge signing a petition.


Our rewards

 

Risks and challenges

Our biggest risk is that this film will not be funded, and that these boys and their families will not receive the help they need in time.

Logistically speaking, if the campaign is funded, the only delays we foresee are the delivery of DVDs and the availability of digital delivery per the terms of the agreement with our distributor.

All delivery dates are estimates and subject to change at any time.

That said, all non-film related rewards should be fulfilled by October 2015, or possibly before that time.

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Questions about this project? Check out the FAQ

Support this project

  1. Select this reward

    Pledge $5 or more About $5

    THANK YOU FOR YOUR DONATION

    Every contribution makes a difference. By donating to this film, you are letting the families affected by rare diseases know that you hear them and that you care. In exchange for your donation, you will receive digital updates from our campaign page.

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    MOTHER'S DAY E-CARD

    In honor of the To The Edge Of The Sky moms, we are offering an Exclusive Mother's Day E-Card. Make a donation in a mother's name and show your support for the power of mom. Plus, receive digital updates from our campaign.

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    LETTER TO THE PRESIDENT

    We will add your name to our letter to the President, in which we will urge him to voice his support for the families affected by Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy. Plus, receive digital updates from our campaign.

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    TO THE EDGE OF THE SKY FRIENDSHIP BRACELET

    Show your support for the families affected by Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy with an awesome TO THE EDGE OF THE SKY friendship bracelet. Plus, be included in our letter to the President and receive digital updates.

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    Pledge $25 or more About $25

    DIGITAL COPY OF THE FILM

    Receive a digital copy of TO THE EDGE OF THE SKY when it’s released. Plus, be included in our letter to the President and receive digital updates.

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    TO THE EDGE OF THE SKY BASEBALL CAP

    Show your support for the families affected by Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy with a TO THE EDGE OF THE SKY baseball cap. Plus, receive a digital copy of the film, be included in our letter to the President and receive digital updates

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    TO THE EDGE OF THE SKY FILM POSTER

    You’ll receive the official film poster for TO THE EDGE OF THE SKY. Plus, receive a digital copy of the film, be included in our letter to the President and receive digital updates.

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    SIGNED TO THE EDGE OF THE SKY POSTER

    You’ll receive the official film poster for TO THE EDGE OF THE SKY signed by the filmmakers. Plus, receive a digital copy of the film, be included in our letter to the President and receive digital updates.

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    TO THE EDGE OF THE SKY T-SHIRT

    Show your support for the families affected by Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy with an official TO THE EDGE OF THE SKY t-shirt. Plus, receive a digital copy of the film, be included in our letter to the President, and receive digital updates.

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    SIGNED COPY OF THE FILM

    Add to your documentary film collection with a signed DVD TO THE EDGE OF THE SKY. Plus, receive a digital copy of the film, be included in our letter to the President and receive digital updates.

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    SPECIAL THANK YOU IN THE END CREDITS

    Have your name appear on the big screen with a special thank you from the filmmakers in the end credits. Plus, receive a digital copy of the film, be included in our letter to the President, and receive digital updates.

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    LIMITED EDITION JULIE ROFMAN BRACELET

    Our friend and world famous jewelry designer, Julie Rofman, has graciously designed a limited edition bracelet for the film. Julie's work is sold and featured in stores across the globe including the Guggenheim Museum’s world-renowned store. http://www.julierofmanjewelry.com/

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    ADVICE FROM THE MOMS ON HOW TO BE THE BEST ADVOCATE

    The moms of TO THE EDGE OF THE SKY have years of experience running successful non-profit organizations. In that time, they have learned all there is to know about furthering a cause. Select this reward and one of the moms will give you their expert advice on getting attention from major decision makers for your cause. Plus, receive a digital copy of the film, be included in our letter to the President, and receive digital updates.

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    Pledge $2,000 or more About $2,000

    TWO TICKETS TO THE FILM PREMIERE

    You’ll receive two tickets for the red carpet premiere of the film. Plus, receive a digital copy of the film, be included in our letter to the President, and receive digital updates. Travel and accommodations not included.

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    TWO TICKETS TO THE FILM PREMIERE AND AFTERPARTY

    You’ll receive two tickets for the red carpet premiere of the film. Plus, receive a digital copy of the film, be included in our letter to the President, and receive digital updates. Travel and accommodations not included.

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    GUEST LECTURE FROM THE WIDER BROTHERS

    We will visit your class and explain what it takes to produce social impact documentaries. Plus, receive a digital copy of the film, be included in our letter to the President, and receive digital updates. Reward limited to the continental United States. Travel and accommodations not included. Restrictions may apply.

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Funding period

- (30 days)