Share this project

Done

Share this project

Done
A Christmas Story: The Making of a Holiday Classic's video poster
Play

A full-color behind-the-scenes look at the production, release, and popularity of one of the best-loved holiday movies of all time. Read more

72
backers
$2,942
pledged of $20,000 goal
0
seconds to go

Funding Unsuccessful

This project's funding goal was

A full-color behind-the-scenes look at the production, release, and popularity of one of the best-loved holiday movies of all time.

About this project

11/30 UPDATE: NEW REWARD LEVELS!

Exclusive artwork by Ben Zurawski, only available here!
Exclusive artwork by Ben Zurawski, only available here!

For the Christmas fan that loves Pee-wee Herman, new exclusive awards that won't be available anywhere else ever! You can get a set of ten Christmas cards ($35 level) with the Pee-wee's Playhouse nativity scene, an 11x17 poster print of this painting ($45 level), or both ($70 level).

Love this painting enough to marry it? A limited number of signed 11x17 poster prints are available as well ($100 level).

For those of you who already donated, but are interested in owning the Pee-wee themed Christmas cards, please upgrade your donation by $25 and leave me a comment that you'd like the cards added to your reward gift. The poster print? $35. Both? $60. The signed poster? $90!

Did I mention these prints are only available here? And, of course, you'll get a signed copy of A Christmas Story: The Making of a Holiday Classic with every reward as well.

"YOU'LL SHOOT YER EYE OUT, KID! HO-HO-HO!"

Nowadays, it seems difficult for the experts to agree on anything. However, even in these divisive times, the nation’s leading critics and publications agree that Bob Clark's A Christmas Story, the 1983 film based on the tales of writer and radio personality Jean Shepherd, has become an undeniable pop culture phenomenon over the three decades since its release.

My upcoming book, A Christmas Story: The Making of a Holiday Classic, will offer an informative and illustrated look behind-the-scenes of the well-respected film. I have obtained access to the cast and crew, rare and previously-unpublished photographs, and never-before-told stories. While nearly 4.5 million people watch A Christmas Story every year on television, few know the story behind the film’s production and release. My book seeks to change that, and explain how a modestly successful movie went on to spawn multiple sequels, a Broadway musical, a major tourist attraction in Cleveland, and the praise of critics at AOL, IGN, Moviefone, Hollywood.com, and FilmCritic.com, all of which cited it as the #1 holiday film of all time.

The book includes previously untold stories from Yano Anaya (Grover Dill), Tedde Moore (Miss Shields), Ian Petrella (Randy), Scott Schwartz (Flick), Zack Ward (Scut Farkus), and over a dozen other people affiliated with the film and its place in pop culture. Help me tell the stories in the best way possible.

A mock-up book cover by Ian Petrella (Randy Parker)
A mock-up book cover by Ian Petrella (Randy Parker)

WHY I NEED YOUR HELP

Writing books is often more difficult than, well, just writing the book. The cost of web design and hosting is expensive, and I'm hoping that the Kickstarter community will be interested enough in this project to contribute on that front. The website for the book will include bonus content like additional interviews, pictures, and videos that are rare and never-before-seen.

ECW Press, the book's publisher, does a lot to promote the book, but you can never have too many author events. I am hoping to help defer the costs of driving to author events and buying ads to help get the word out about this book. How awesome would it be for a television commercial for the book popping up during the 24-hour marathon on Christmas Eve? Ah, a guy can dream...

Finally, before he passed away, the film's director had a goal that the film would once again play in movie theaters. With next year being the 30th anniversary, I would like to have a book signing event at a screening of the film in New York City. I have been working with some of the film's actors to get them to participate, and it's shaping up to be a fantastic event. The more I can raise on Kickstarter, the better this will be.

I don't take asking for your help lightly. I'm asking because it's needed.

Writing a book is like pushing down a big Christmas tree in the middle of a forest. A successful Kickstarter campaign will not only attract more people to the forest to hear the tree fall, but also give them a fuller tree to look at once it hits the ground.

How's that for a metaphor, huh? Together, we can get more people to the forest and give them something truly spectacular to see once they get there.

Another prototype of the book cover by Ian Petrella
Another prototype of the book cover by Ian Petrella

"IT'S A MAJOR AWARD!"

The actual venue for the book launch! Pretty cool, huh?
The actual venue for the book launch! Pretty cool, huh?

I'm asking you to help me out on this venture by backing this campaign, sharing it with your friends and family on your Facebook, Twitter, and in emails. I need your help to not only fund this project, but also to get the word out.

In exchange, I'm offering some rewards that I think you'll really enjoy. Check out each reward level (on the right of this page) and you'll see the chance to get a signed copy of the book, tickets to the NYC screening of the movie tentatively scheduled for November 2013, a "thank you" video from me, and much more.

I've also teamed up with Ian Petrella, the actor who played kid-brother Randy Parker in the movie, to offer some extra-special rewards. Not only can you get a telephone call from him and I, but you can also get an exclusive gift just for Kickstarter supporters: signed prints of the book cover and two alternate book covers he designed, as well as custom-designed Christmas cards! These won't be available anywhere else.

Q: WHO IS CASEEN GAINES? A: ME!

I'm a pop culture enthusiast. My first book, Inside Pee-wee's Playhouse: The Untold, Unauthorized, and Unpredictable Story of a Pop Phenomenon (ECW Press, 2011), received the praise and recognition of journalists from The A.V. Club, Gawker, Ain't It Cool News, The Advocate, The Village Voice, In Touch Weekly, and a host of other publications. I post regularly on Facebook and suggests you "like" me at www.facebook.com/caseengaines. I promise I'm a fun time!

On a personal note, I'm also quite intrigued by the possibilities of Kickstarter. I've contributed to a few campaigns and am always impressed by the creativity of people in this community. I'm excited to start my very first campaign and hope to have your help with it.

If you have any questions, comments or suggestions for me, please reach out to me.

Winning an Independent Publisher Book Award for my first book! ECW co-publisher David Caron is on my right and my publicist Jenna Illies is on my left.
Winning an Independent Publisher Book Award for my first book! ECW co-publisher David Caron is on my right and my publicist Jenna Illies is on my left.

Risks and challenges

Luckily, there aren't many risks and challenges associated with this project. If there is overwhelming interest in this campaign, and I hope there is, it may take a little while for me to mail everything out. However, I'll make sure all the rewards will be in the mail and delivered well in advance of Christmas. After all, the book I wrote will make a great gift!

Learn about accountability on Kickstarter

FAQ

Have a question? If the info above doesn't help, you can ask the project creator directly.

Ask a question

Rewards

  • You selected
    $15 reward

    2 backers

    BONUS PACKAGE: Listed on the website as a donor and access to exclusive bonus content.

    Estimated delivery:
  • You selected
    $20 reward

    5 backers Limited (20 left of 25)

    ELF *EARLY BIRD* PACKAGE: Listed on the website as a donor, access to exclusive bonus content, and a digital copy of A Christmas Story: The Making of a Holiday Classic.

    Estimated delivery:
  • You selected
    $25 reward

    24 backers Limited (1 left of 25)

    STANDARD *EARLY BIRD* PACKAGE: Listed on the website as a donor, access to exclusive bonus content, a DVD of the TV Guide Network television special about the film, and a print copy of A Christmas Story: The Making of a Holiday Classic signed by the author.

    Estimated delivery:
    Ships anywhere in the world
  • You selected
    $30 reward

    1 backer

    ELF PACKAGE: Listed on the website as a donor, access to exclusive bonus content, and a digital copy of A Christmas Story: The Making of a Holiday Classic.

    Estimated delivery:
  • You selected
    $35 reward

    2 backers

    PEE-WEE CARD PACKAGE: Get ten Christmas cards with Ben Zurawski's exclusive Pee-wee's Playhouse nativity design and a copy of A Christmas Story: The Making of a Holiday Classic signed by the author.

    Estimated delivery:
    Ships anywhere in the world
  • You selected
    $40 reward

    9 backers

    STANDARD PACKAGE: Listed on the website as a donor, access to exclusive bonus content, a DVD of the TV Guide Network television special about the film, and a print copy of A Christmas Story: The Making of a Holiday Classic signed by the author.

    Estimated delivery:
    Ships anywhere in the world
  • You selected
    $45 reward

    3 backers

    PEE-WEE PRINT PACKAGE: Get an exclusive 11x17 poster print of Ben Zurawski's Pee-wee's Playhouse nativity design and a copy of A Christmas Story: The Making of a Holiday Classic signed by the author.

    Estimated delivery:
    Ships anywhere in the world
  • You selected
    $55 reward

    1 backer

    POP PACKAGE: Listed on the website as a donor, access to exclusive bonus content, a DVD of the TV Guide Network television special about the film, and two print books: A Christmas Story: The Making of a Holiday Classic signed and Inside Pee-wee’s Playhouse: The Untold, Unauthorized, and Unpredictable Story of a Pop Phenomenon, both signed by the author.

    Estimated delivery:
    Ships anywhere in the world
  • You selected
    $65 reward

    1 backer

    CHRISTMAS CARD PACKAGE: You'll get ten Kickstarter exclusive (and awesome!) Christmas cards inspired by the movie, designed by Ian Petralla. You'll also be listed on the website as a donor, receive access to exclusive bonus content, a DVD of the TV Guide Network special, and a copy of A Christmas Story: The Making of a Holiday Classic signed by the author.

    Estimated delivery:
    Ships anywhere in the world
  • You selected
    $70 reward

    1 backer

    PEE-WEE MEGA PACKAGE: Get ten Christmas cards and an 11x17 poster print of Ben Zurawski's Pee-wee's Playhouse design. You'll also get a copy of A Christmas Story: The Making of a Holiday Classic signed by the author.

    Estimated delivery:
    Ships anywhere in the world
  • You selected
    $75 reward

    5 backers Limited (95 left of 100)

    MOVIE PACKAGE: Want to see A Christmas Story on the big-screen in the Big Apple? You’ll receive two tickets to the A Christmas Story 30th Anniversary screening in NYC (tentative date – November 2013). You’ll also get everything in the CHRISTMAS CARD PACKAGE. Travel to and lodging in NYC is the responsibility of the backer.

    Estimated delivery:
    Ships anywhere in the world
  • You selected
    $85 reward

    1 backer

    KICKSTARTER EXCLUSIVE PACKAGE: You’ll be listed in the acknowledgements of the book as a Kickstarter supporter and will receive three signed 8x10 prints of the book cover and two alternate book covers exclusively available to Kickstarter supporters by graphic designer Ian Petrella, who also played kid-brother Randy Parker in the film. You’ll also get everything in the CHRISTMAS CARD PACKAGE.

    Estimated delivery:
    Ships anywhere in the world
  • You selected
    $100 reward

    0 backers Limited (50 left of 50)

    PEE-WEE SIGNED PACKAGE: Get an 11x17 poster print of Ben Zurawski's Pee-wee's Playhouse nativity scene signed by the artist! You'll also get a copy of A Christmas Story: The Making of a Holiday Classic signed by the author.

    Estimated delivery:
    Ships anywhere in the world
  • You selected
    $125 reward

    1 backer

    SANTA CLAUS PACKAGE: You’ll be listed in the acknowledgements of the book as a Kickstarter supporter, listed on the website as a donor, and receive access to exclusive bonus content. You’ll also receive four copies of A Christmas Story: The Making of a Holiday Classic, signed by the author and personalized to whomever you choose, to give out as gifts! The ten Christmas cards will also be included.

    Estimated delivery:
    Ships anywhere in the world
  • You selected
    $140 reward

    0 backers

    GRATITUDE PACKAGE: You’ll be listed in the acknowledgements of the book as a Kickstarter supporter, listed on the website as a donor, and receive access to exclusive bonus content. You’ll also receive the ten Christmas cards, a personalized “thank you” video and five-minute telephone call from Caseen Gaines, and a copy of A Christmas Story: The Making of a Holiday Classic signed by the author.

    Estimated delivery:
    Ships anywhere in the world
  • You selected
    $175 reward

    0 backers

    RANDY PACKAGE: You’ll be listed in the acknowledgements of the book as a Kickstarter supporter, listed on the website as a donor, and receive access to exclusive bonus content. You’ll also receive the ten Christmas cards, the DVD of the TV Guide Network special, a personalized “thank you” video from Caseen Gaines and ten-minute telephone call from Caseen and Ian Petrella. You’ll also get two copies of A Christmas Story: The Making of a Holiday Classic signed and personalized by the author.

    Estimated delivery:
    Ships anywhere in the world
  • You selected
    $250 reward

    0 backers Limited (20 left of 20)

    MOVIE LOVERS PACKAGE: Want to see A Christmas Story on the big-screen in the Big Apple? You’ll receive two VIP tickets to the A Christmas Story 30th Anniversary screening in NYC, and a VIP reception at the screening (tentative date – November 2013). You’ll also receive everything in the RANDY PACKAGE. Travel to and lodging in NYC is the responsibility of the backer.

    Estimated delivery:
    Ships anywhere in the world
  • You selected
    $375 reward

    0 backers

    BOOK CLUB PACKAGE: You’ll receive ten (!!!) copies of A Christmas Story: The Making of a Holiday Classic, all signed and personalized by the author, and a 20-minute Skype video conference with him to discuss the book or your own writing project. You’ll also receive everything in the RANDY PACKAGE.

    Estimated delivery:
    Ships anywhere in the world
  • You selected
    $650 reward

    0 backers

    BIG BOOK CLUB PACKAGE: You’ll receive ten copies of A Christmas Story: The Making of a Holiday Classic and ten copies of Inside Pee-wee’s Playhouse: The Untold, Unauthorized, and Unpredictable Story of a Pop Phenomenon, all signed and personalized by the author. Caseen Gaines will also have a 20-minute Skype video conference with you to discuss the book or your own writing project. You’ll also receive everything in the RANDY PACKAGE.

    Estimated delivery:
    Ships anywhere in the world
  • You selected
    $2,750 reward

    0 backers Limited (10 left of 10)

    THE MAJOR AWARD: Want to see A Christmas Story on the big-screen in the Big Apple but don’t live in the area? You and a friend/family member will receive flight and lodging to New York City, along with two VIP tickets to the A Christmas Story 30th Anniversary screening in NYC, and access to the VIP reception the screening (tentative date – November 2013). You'll also get everything in the RANDY PACKAGE. This offer is only available for those in the continental United States. Please note that the New York City accommodations will be for three days, two nights.

    Estimated delivery:
    Only ships to: United States
  • You selected
    $5,250 reward

    0 backers Limited (10 left of 10)

    FRA-GEE-LAY - THE INTERNATIONAL MAJOR AWARD: Want to see A Christmas Story on the big-screen in the Big Apple but don’t live in the United States? You and a friend/family member will receive flight and lodging to New York City from anywhere in the world, along with two VIP tickets to the A Christmas Story 30th Anniversary screening in NYC, and access to the VIP reception the screening (tentative date – November 2013). You’ll also get everything in the RANDY PACKAGE. Please note that the New York City accommodations will be for three days, two nights.

    Estimated delivery:
    Ships anywhere in the world

Funding period

- (41 days)