About this project
Thank you for supporting my campaign! My name is Chance Raspberry. I'm an animator for The Simpsons and I love to create! At age 2, I moved from Memphis, Tennessee to North Hollywood near Burbank, California, the international capital of the animation industry. At age 3, I discovered pencils and never looked back. At age 8, I was diagnosed with Tourette syndrome…but we'll get to that in a sec. All the while, my parents (God bless 'em) spoon-fed me cartoon classics from the industry's Golden Age. I've been drawing and loving it ever since! You might say animation is in my blood.
Despite the unique challenges I faced growing up with Tourettes, God, my family, and all my friends helped me cope with, and ultimately embrace, my quirks. As a result, I persisted into an amazing education and professional animation career. Today, I view my condition not as a curse, but as a blessing! It's played a huge role in helping me focus enough to master a craft as intricate and laborious as animation. It has also driven me to relentlessly pursue my dream of one day creating and producing my very own animated series. This campaign is Phase 1 of fulfilling that dream.
When I was 8 years old (3rd Grade), I was diagnosed with Tourette syndrome. At the time, it was a rare, new disorder making me part of the original Generation Rx. I was the quintessential "weird kid": Nervous ticks, medicated, never really into sports or "the scene"; I loved heavy metal and horror so I frightened my peers. In short, I spent a lot of time alone...drawing! This is my story - maybe it's yours, too.
Today, N.I.M.H. (The National Institute of Mental Health) maintains that nearly 50% of the U.S. population struggles with conditions like Tourette syndrome, ADD, ADHD, OCD, and many others. These conditions affect all walks of society worldwide. I have created an original animated series called Little Billy that openly and directly addresses these challenges. It is the first cartoon ever to star a child that struggles with (and overcomes) a rare neurological condition. Inspired by my own life as well as Eighties family sitcoms like Perfect Strangers, and traditionally animated in the Golden Age style of classic Looney Tunes, Little Billy revolves around the (sub)urban adventures of a 4-year-old boy named Billy Harper.
Billy is a puff-cheeked darling with a rare neurological condition known as UHS (Ultra Hyper-Sensitivity.) Like a brand new puppy, his heart-melting cuteness, loving soul, and innocent purity are matched only by his relentless energy and tendency for oblivious destruction. Though based in reality, Billy's condition is fictitious, so any child with any condition can relate without feeling singled out. While the series intentionally possesses the heart of an after-school special, its serious nature is always rivaled by its very unique brand of outrageous humor, making every episode a hilarious new journey! Set in the 1980s, Little Billy is a heartfelt homage to all forms of childhood nostalgia, and specifically speaks out to kids with Tourette syndrome, ADD, ADHD, OCD, and other Special Educational needs.
Jam-packed with outlandish comedy, youthful adventure, sincere life lessons, and of course, throwbacks to all your favorite childhood consumer brands, products, and content, the Little Billy series marks a return to the heart, depth, and morale of classic TV. With its mass nostalgic appeal, limitless story potential, and an over-the-top family cast (guaranteed to put the fun in dysfunctional), Little Billy is truly a gem for all ages!
I have already copyrighted and produced an animatic for this project with my own time and money (ABOVE!) The show bible, pitch treatments, and promotional content have also been created. The intellectual property has been submitted to Oprah Winfrey's team along with various other investors...but why rely solely on them when I can reach out (and cater) directly to YOU, my core audience! The PURPOSE of this campaign is to raise the necessary funds to complete and distribute the Little Billy pilot. That's where you come in.
THERE ARE TWO DRIVING FORCES BEHIND THIS CAMPAIGN:
1. Raise at least $30,000 (one-tenth the minimum production cost of a single industry episode) to create and distribute the Little Billy Vol. 1: "Special Ed"ition DVD/Blu-Ray (see "ADDITIONAL FINANCIAL TIERS" below for what happens if we exceed this goal), and in doing so…
2. Launch Season One of the Little Billy series, 3. Create a modern version of the "Special Educational" video, and best of all, 4. Show all the Little Billys of the world that being different, even weird, doesn't have to be a bad thing. Being "weird" is what makes projects like this happen!
Well then...looks like there are four driving forces behind this campaign (the same number of years Billy's been alive!) Hey now, are the stars aligning?? Could be.
Little Billy is basically an artistically licensed version of my own life story with all its perks and problems. Through the success of bringing this character and his world to life, we can prove that just because you're not like the other kids doesn't mean you can't set the world on fire. In fact, the very thing that sets you apart just might serve as the fuel!
What You're Paying For
1. The Little Billy Vol. 1: "Special Ed"ition DVD/Blu-Ray:
- An Introduction by Chance Raspberry
- The all-ages, full-length, full-color TV Pilot of Little Billy
- The complete, UNCUT, full-color Extended Pilot of Little Billy
- Little Billy: From Concept To Chaos (The "Making-Of" Featurette)
- Growing Up Different: Chance's Personal Story of Life with Tourettes
- A sneak peak at the entire First Season of the Little Billy series
- Little Billy "1980s Flashback" Commercials and Promos
- The Little Billy Theme Song (Full Version) Music Video
- From The Vault: Script, Storyboards, Layouts, Pencil Tests, Art, etc.
- The Fun Stuff: Deleted Scenes, Blooper Outtakes, Trade Secrets, etc.
- BONUS CARTOON: "Clownsyndrome" (IF $200,000+ is pledged!!!)
2. Professional mass production and distribution of the DVDs and Blu-Rays
CHANCE RASPBERRY - Ariel
CHANCE RASPBERRY - Nightshade
CHANCE RASPBERRY - Chasing The Sunset
EVERYONE GETS REWARDED FOR PLEDGING: Check out my full list of Pledge Rewards on the right to see what kind of BANG you'll get for your buck. If you don't see something that drives you wild, just hit that "Contact Me" button next to my picture at the top right of this page and let me know what I should add. I will personally respond ASAP! (NOTE: While all rewards reflect a delivery date of June, 2013, the completion of the pilot will determine when the DVDs, Blu-Rays, and Digital Copies become available and ship.)
As exciting as these animazing rewards are, KEEP IN MIND: Little Billy is not just a top-quality cartoon and product. It's a very special project from my heart and soul with the power to help children worldwide! Together, we can change lives and bring smiles to kids who struggle with life more than we did.
Once complete, this DVD/Blu-Ray will be released and pitched to all potential outlets, but its success will NOT rely on studio resources or network support. Regardless of whether or not the series is picked up by a major company, Little Billy and its message will touch hearts worldwide.
Remember those educational videos (videos...what are those?) we watched in school to learn about health, sex, etc.? I guarantee every child from the 80s with a special condition does! My teachers showed a video like this on Tourette syndrome to every one of my grade school classes…and since then, said videos have not been updated once. Little Billy Vol. 1: "Special Ed"ition will be the modern version of these educational videos, serving the same special purpose, but without singling out any one child or condition!
DOCTORS, TEACHERS, AND PARENTS EVERYWHERE: This is your chance to personally contribute to the entertainment and education of your patients, students, and children with Special Educational needs.
The entire First Season of the series has already been outlined, and the scripts are on their way! Once produced, this program will help individuals and families be able to laugh at issues that might normally ruin their day, simply by letting them know they're not alone. Let's make Little Billy the amazing reality I know it can be, and show the world that Little Billys can do BIG things!!!
Where Does My Money Go & How Does It Help?
Don't worry, I'd be asking myself the same question. All pledges will go directly and exclusively toward the completion of this product. To give you an idea of exactly what that means, here is a detailed breakdown of the animation process:
After the pilot script, voiceovers, storyboards, and layouts are complete, we have to animate. 1 second of animation = 12-24 drawings. 1 cleaned up drawing can take up to an hour or more. Then there's color, music, sound, timing, editing, and postproduction. Translation...animation is an extremely labor-intensive process that takes TIME, and therefore, MONEY.
That said, REMEMBER: my $30,000 goal is exactly one-tenth (1/10) the minimum production cost of a single industry-made episode! I believe I can deliver a product of equal or greater quality for less money, and would love the chance to prove it.
Keeping my studio and its crew in business on this project is my #1 priority. Your money will go directly towards paying the artists that bring Little Billy to life, as well as DVD/Blu-Ray mass-production and distribution! Any additional expenses will come out of my own pocket, and all investors will be recognized and honored in the pilot's "Special Thanks" credits (among others) as part of the original Little Billy crew.
Why Should I Pledge?
Only several reasons come to mind! Not only will your money fund hard-working, in-house artists right here in the USA (during an extremely transitional period of the animation industry), but it will also help show the world that when the right people are working together, they DO "make 'em like they used to!" If you're a fan of Golden Age animation and miss that look and feel, Little Billy is just what you've been waiting for!! Still not convinced? Keep reading...
REASONS TO GIVE:
* Receive numerous credits in the pilot
* Help bring back the Golden Age of animation
* Little Billy Merchandise (available to you before the public!)
* Learn how to fund and promote your own intellectual properties
* Obtain signed, personalized, and original artwork from the project
* Fund local artists and help pave the way for more quality, in-house entertainment production right here in the USA!!!
As if all this weren't enough, your contribution will also act as a VOTE to air Little Billy on existing and future networks, channels, and websites.
What Happens If You Don't Raise All The Money?
Therein lies the beauty of Kickstarter - your money is handled by Amazon.com and does not leave your bank account until my goal is reached! If my designated amount is not met by the prescribed deadline, all pledges are cancelled, voided, and you keep your money...please, help me NOT let that happen! ;)
What Happens If You Exceed Your Financial Goal?
Remember, there is a minimum amount required to successfully fund this project, but there is NO MAXIMUM! The more pledges I receive, the better YOUR final product will be!!
ADDITIONAL FINANCIAL TIERS
($30,000) - Funds the production & distribution of the DVD/Blu-Ray units
$50,000 - Funds the production & distro of more DVD/Blu-Rays & Rewards
$100,000 - More units, rewards, & License Rights to your favorite 80s music
$150,000 - Units, rewards, rights, & a larger crew, speeding up the process
$200,000 - Funds all this PLUS the BONUS CARTOON, "Clownsyndrome"!!!
Other Ways To Help & Contribute
While even the smallest financial pledges will help more than anything, you can also contribute by doing one of the following:
DONATE A LICENSE - Little Billy is a period piece set in the 1980s. To help maintain the most realistic, entertaining portrayal of that era, I would gratefully accept and appreciate the donation of any licenses or rights to 1980s music, TV, film, or commercial content for exclusive use in this series!
SPREAD THE WORD - Once you've selected and finalized your financial pledge, I implore you to please E-mail, text, Blog, Facebook, Tweet, and yes, even MySpace this info and link to all your friends, colleagues, and loved ones. 50% of the U.S. population struggles with some neurological condition... EVERYONE knows someone who can benefit from this project! Wouldn't you like to put a smile on their face?
WE CAN DO THIS!!! Be sure to check back here frequently for the latest campaign progress and updates.
SAMPLE the Chance Raspberry - "Old Souls...Young Hearts" LP Reward: http://www.chanceraspberry.bandcamp.com
THANK YOU all so very much for your generous contributions, and most of all, for believing in me and my dream. My eternal gratitude and appreciation are yours, friends. God bless!
Risks and challenges
The challenges of this project boil down to the extremely labor-intensive process of animation production (see the detailed breakdown above in the "Where Does My Money Go" section.) Given my extensive art education (The Animation Academy, Otis College of Art & Design, Cal Arts, CSUN Animation) and 10+ years of professional studio experience in the animation industry on projects like Foster's Home for Imaginary Friends, The Simpsons Movie, and my current position as a lead character layout artist on The Simpsons TV series, I have learned and worked in every stage of this process, and therefore, am thoroughly qualified to start, finish, and deliver a broadcast quality Little Billy pilot.
With Kickstarter, you risk nothing by pledging, as your transaction is not processed unless I meet or exceed my goal. The only additional risk (if you can even call it that) is an extended production deadline due to unforeseen delays. There is no question as to whether or not the Little Billy pilot will be made. The only question is how fast will its completion occur. While my ongoing experience in the high-speed world of television animation has given me the tools and knowledge to master a deadline, the integrity, purity, and QUALITY of this project are my number one priority. Why? I want you all to get your money's worth!Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
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