Funded! This project was successfully funded on January 26, 2013.

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Inspiring film that unearths the dramatic story of seeds. From the creators of QUEEN OF THE SUN & REAL DIRT ON FARMER JOHN.

Update: Help us meet our stretch goal of $75,000 and pay for music, animation and funds to finish the film! 

Join us on our SEED Facebook page.

Dear Friends, 

Thank you for helping us reach our goal. Now, let's bring in enough to finish this film!  

As some of you know, $50,000 is the bare minimum we need in order to continue production to bring SEED: The Untold Story to all of you by early 2014. With this money we're already setting up new shoots in important locations with stories that will not exist if we wait. Over 800 of you have helped us achieve this initial goal. Thank you. 

So, why donate more?  

1. The story will be better. Every dollar we go beyond our goal will allow us to focus more on the story of SEED without returning to the drawing board for funding. We will be able to pay a talented editor to make the story sing. We will document important stories unfolding in the world of seeds that we will not otherwise be able to film and we will be able to pay staff to do important work that we would otherwise do ourselves (which means a greater likelihood of finishing in early 2014!)

2. The film will be able to have an incredible score. It will look and sound better. More funding will allow us to pay a composer to create an evocative score for SEED: The Untold Story. It will cover color-correction so that the film LOOKS GREAT and it will pay for a sound mix so it SOUNDS GREAT.

3. The animations will be stunning. More funds will also be used to cover animation costs so that the crucial animations get completed on time and look stellar. 

We have the momentum. Please help us reach this "stretch goal" of $75,000. The extra $25,000 is the minimum for finishing expenses for SEED and will be instrumental in helping us finish the film. It will make a huge difference. 

As a "Thank-You" if we reach 75,000 we'll be giving out a few new rewards.

Our thanks and gratitude, 

Taggart, Jon and the Collective Eye Films Team

ABOUT THE FILM

Seed is not just the source of life. It is the very foundation of our being. - Vandana Shiva

SEED: The Untold Story is a new documentary film that will investigate the dramatic story of seeds, the basis of life on earth. For 12,000 years man has been nurturing and cultivating seeds to form the backbone of civilization. Now, 94% of our seed varieties have been lost and many more are nearing extinction.

SEED unveils a David and Goliath battle for the future of our seeds by examining how five chemical corporations have taken control of seeds through patents, copyrights and genetic modification. These companies are placing ownership on the seeds, literally stealing the genetic material from our ancestors who nurtured these seeds for thousands of years. As Vandana Shiva says “the threat to seed freedom impacts the very fabric of human life and life on the planet.”

Entertaining and engaging, SEED follows heroes working tirelessly to preserve agricultural diversity as well as the rich knowledge held by indigenous cultures. These farmers, scientists, and seed collectors such as Gary Paul Nabhan, Bill McDorman, Vandana Shiva, Harald Hoven, Native American Emigdio Ballon and Winona LaDuke are the visionaries and caretakers of many of the world’s remaining seeds. On an absorbing journey following a diverse cast of characters, we will witness a brave new movement as these heroes struggle to create a vibrant web of biodiversity and resilience.

SEED will reveal the awe, wonder and hidden beauty of seeds. It will ignite the imagination of audiences, inspiring them to be part of a new movement to help sustain seed diversity. We will unearth the resilience and power that all seeds have to sustain, enliven and enrich our humanity. 

Dr. Vandana Shiva among the finger millet at Navdanya's Seed Bank in Dehradun, India
Dr. Vandana Shiva among the finger millet at Navdanya's Seed Bank in Dehradun, India

OUR GOAL

Our goal with SEED is to make an inspiring, uplifting film that will encourage communities to take action and create positive change. SEED will be the third film in a trilogy that began with the award-winning films Real Dirt On Farmer John & Queen of the Sun. Through SEED, audiences will witness the beginnings of a new movement. In numerous agricultural centers around the world, SEED will follow farmers taking back their rights to seed, food and their land. SEED will inspire local communities to reverse an impending global food crisis by reclaiming seeds that can be freely dispersed, and adapted to their own conditions and culture.

SEED will be an active community-driven film that will engage and inspire audiences around the world through broadcast, theatrical release, film festivals, community screenings, educational markets, Home DVD and video on demand. Collective Eye will also develop an educational curriculum for SEED and prepare for the distribution to K-12 schools, colleges, universities, public libraries, and other non-profit organizations. SEED will follow a similar but more robustly developed Educational Outreach model that we developed with REAL DIRT ON FARMER JOHN and QUEEN OF THE SUN. Working with our non-profit Collective Eye Films we will strategize with a global network to help relay the urgency of this global issue. SEED will be used as a tool to bolster advocacy for direct action that ranges from saving native seeds and habitats and implementing community initiatives, to creating national and international policy change.

Heirloom Pumpkins, Squash and Melons in all shapes and sizes at the National Heirloom Expo
Heirloom Pumpkins, Squash and Melons in all shapes and sizes at the National Heirloom Expo

IS MY DONATION TAX-DEDUCTIBLE?

All donations made to SEED: The Untold Story are TAX-DEDUCTIBLE! This is because we are sponsored through our non-profit Collective Eye Films. We’ll send out e-mails with your receipt at the end of the campaign. For larger donations, feel free to contact us at jon [at] collectiveeye [dot] org with any questions. 

A community farmer in India holds freshly threshed Basmati Rice Seed
A community farmer in India holds freshly threshed Basmati Rice Seed

HOW WILL THE MONEY BE USED?

We urgently need to raise $50,000 in order to keep production going for SEED so that the film can be completed in 2013. With the rapid decline of seed varieties, and the threat of genetically modified seeds contaminating traditional seeds, the public must be aware of this issue so that civic discourse and action can continue and make change before it’s too late.

The ground work has been set, we’ve already filmed incredible footage in India and the Southwest. In the coming months we will travel to Mexico & return to the Southwest U.S. (where ancient Maize is under threat by GMO corn). We will go to Turkey (the origin place of wheat), Germany, Ethiopia, the different regions in the U.S. In all of these places, we will be filming amazing seedbanks, seed collectors, biodynamic farmers, scientists and philosophers. We will also work with animators and macro-photography to begin bringing essential parts of the SEED story to life.

THE BUDGET

$25,000: This is to continue paying a dedicated production crew, translators and researchers who all deserve being paid for the amazing work they doing as we continue filming.
$10,000: For travel, field research, securing local translators and other help.
$7,000: This is to pay a great editor and transcriptionists who will be helping to build a rough-cut that guides the story of the film.
$5,000: This is to pay for key animators to begin bringing essential parts of the SEED story to life.
$3,000: To website development, so we can soon launch an online hub to share enduring stories about seeds with a broad audience.

Lieutenant Louie Hena of the Tesuque Pueblo says a prayer for his communities native corn fields
Lieutenant Louie Hena of the Tesuque Pueblo says a prayer for his communities native corn fields
Diversity is Beauty
Diversity is Beauty

WHO ARE WE?

TAGGART SIEGEL (Director/Producer)

Taggart Siegel has been making award winning documentaries for 25 years. His recent film, QUEEN OF THE SUN: What are the Bees Telling Us?, winner of 11 international film festival awards, received critical-acclaim during its theatrical release. Roger Ebert calls it “Remarkable documentary that’s also one of the most beautiful nature films I’ve ever seen.” Siegel is also known for the grassroots hit REAL DIRT ON FARMER JOHN, winner of 31 international film festivals awards and broadcast and theatrically released worldwide. 

JON BETZ (Director/Producer)

Jon Betz is an award-winning independent documentary filmmaker. He was the producer and editor for the multi-award winning QUEEN OF THE SUN: What Are the Bees Telling Us? which was critically- acclaimed during it’s U.S. theatrical release and was heralded by The New York Times as “Revelatory! A Critic’s Pick” His previous film, MEMORIZE YOU SAW IT, is an intimate documentary about former-child soldiers in Eastern Uganda. Betz is a graduate from the Rhode Island School of Design and is the director of Collective Eye Films. 


WHO IS FEATURED IN THIS VIDEO?

We give our thanks to the individuals featured in our Kickstarter Video: Bill McDorman (Executive Director, Native Seeds/SEARCH), Author and Activist Dr. Vandana Shiva (Navdanya/Seed Freedom Campaign), Bija Didi (Navdanya), Emigdio Ballon (Tesuque Pueblo Seed Bank/Four Bridges Traveling Permaculture Institute), Author and “Father of the Local Food Movement” Gary Paul Nabhan, Jeffrey Smith (Institute for Responsible Technology), Ronnie Cummins (Organic Consumers Association), Suman (Navdanya), Jere Gettle (Baker Creek Heirloom Seeds) and Paul Wallace (Petaluma Seed Bank & Baker Creek Heirloom Seeds).

We also give special thanks to Jami Sieber for allowing us to use her incredible music in our video!

There are so many incredible people doing wonderful work in the world of seeds. Many more stories and characters will be in the finished feature-length film.

HOW DOES KICKSTARTER WORK?

Just choose your donation level and rewards you would like to recieve and donate by entering payment information. It’s that easy! If you choose a reward that requires shipping (many do), be sure to leave your address. We’ll be in touch!

SPECIAL THANKS TO....

A special thanks to all of our donors, who have given what they can to help us reach our goal. We also extend our gratitude to Mother Earth News, Organic Consumers AssociationSeed Matters, Organic Seed AllianceSpikenard Farm and Honeybee Sanctuary and others who are helping us get the word out there!

MORE LINKS:

Our non-profit Production and Distribution Company Collective Eye Films

Queen of the Sun: What are the Bees Telling Us? Official Website

Risks and challenges Learn about accountability on Kickstarter

SEED is being made through our non-profit Collective Eye Films where we created REAL DIRT ON FARMER JOHN and QUEEN OF THE SUN: What are the Bees Telling Us? Making films independently is always a huge challenge, from financing to completion, but we are committed to finishing SEED in a timely manner, and this is why we’re asking for your help.

We are excited about giving these fun gifts for your pledges and are eager to deliver these gifts promptly according to their estimated delivery dates. We’ll keep you posted with our Kickstarter updates and hope you join us on this exciting adventure!

FAQ

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  • Pledge $5 or more
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    71 backers

    A heartfelt THANK YOU from all of us. Plus we’ll keep you updated on our progress with great seed stories as we make the film. (Donations are Tax-Deductible.)

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    282 backers

    A surprise packet of Organic Baker Creek Heirloom Seeds and a heartfelt THANK YOU! Plus we’ll keep you updated on our progress with fun seed stories as we make the film. (Donations are Tax-Deductible.)

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    220 backers

    Enjoy an exclusive DIGITAL DOWNLOAD of Extended Interviews from the heroes of the film, a beautiful set of digital photos and a SPECIAL THANKS credit on our official website for SEED. Plus a surprise packet Baker Creek Heirloom Seeds and, of course, we’ll keep you updated on our progress too! (Donations are Tax-Deductible.)

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    116 backers

    Grow your DVD collection! Receive the award-winning Queen of the Sun: What are the Bees Telling Us? (subtitled in 16 languages). PLUS a SPECIAL THANKS credit on our website and ALL of the rewards included with the $25 Pledge! (Donations are Tax-Deductible.)

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    182 backers

    Hooray! We'll send you signed DVD of SEED: The Untold Story when it's released in 2014! PLUS you'll receive the award-winning Queen of the Sun: What are the Bees Telling Us? on DVD, a Special Thanks credit on our website and ALL of the rewards included with the $25 Pledge! (Donations are Tax-Deductible.)

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    77 backers

    Start an herb garden from seed! Get a hand selected set of 7 different Heirloom Herb Garden Seeds from Seed Savers Exchange. PLUS a signed SEED: The Untold Story DVD upon release, a Special Thanks on our website and ALL of the rewards included with the $25 Pledge! (Donations are Tax-Deductible.)

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    17 backers

    Signed DVDs of the entire Biodiversity Trilogy DVD Collection! Including the award-winning films Queen of the Sun: What are the Bees Telling Us?, Real Dirt on Farmer John, and a signed SEED: The Untold Story DVD upon it’s release! PLUS you'll receive a Special Thanks credit on our website and ALL of the rewards included with the $25 Pledge! (Donations are Tax-Deductible.)

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    16 backers

    Get inspired to start next year’s heirloom vegetable garden! Receive a hand selected set of 16 Vegetable Garden Seeds from Seed Savers Exchange. PLUS: A signed DVD of Queen of the Sun: What are the Bees Telling Us? and a signed SEED: The Untold Story DVD upon release. You'll receive Special Thanks on our website and ALL of the rewards included with the $25 Pledge! (Donations are Tax-Deductible.)

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    19 backers

    We’ll include you in the CREDITS in the finished film, and you’ll receive the Signed Taggart Siegel Film Collection on DVD including award-winning films: Queen of the Sun, Real Dirt on Farmer John, Split Horn, Between Two Worlds and a signed SEED: The Untold Story DVD upon release. PLUS Special Thanks on our website and ALL of the rewards included with the $25 Pledge! (Donations are Tax-Deductible.)

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    NEW REWARD! Receive a box of field-fresh summer produce, biodynamically grown by Farmer John Peterson of "Real Dirt on Farmer John" fame on his Organic Farm, Angelic Organics. As he says himself, "Love poems have been written about our veggies, they're that good." 10 x 12 x 16 Box. Shipped to via 2-day mail to you anywhere in the U.S. in August or September, your choice. PLUS you’ll receive the Signed Taggart Siegel Film's Queen of the Sun, Real Dirt on Farmer John and SEED: The Untold Story DVD upon release. DOUBLE PLUS Special Thanks on our website and ALL of the rewards included with the $25 Pledge! (Donations are Tax-Deductible.)

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    2 backers

    You’re invited to a Master Class with Taggart and Jon (online or in-person) where they'll give you personal insights on how to make an engaging documentary. We’ll include you in the credits in the finished film and you’ll get 2 VIP tickets to the opening premiere (travel not included). PLUS you’ll receive the Signed Taggart Siegel Film Collection on DVD including award-winning films: Queen of the Sun, Real Dirt On Farmer John, Split Horn, Between Two Worlds and a signed SEED: The Untold Story DVD upon release. Receive Special Thanks on our website and ALL of the rewards included with the $25 Pledge! (Donations are Tax-Deductible.)

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    1 backer

    You’re invited to a Story Consultation with Christopher Upham, Screenwriter and Teacher. We’ll include you in the credits in the finished film and you’ll get 2 VIP tickets to the opening premiere (travel not included). PLUS you’ll receive the Signed Taggart Siegel Film Collection on DVD including award-winning films: Queen of the Sun, Real Dirt on Farmer John, Split Horn, and Between Two Worlds as well as a signed SEED: The Untold Story DVD upon release. Receive Special Thanks on our website and ALL of the rewards included with the $25 Pledge! (Donations are Tax-Deductible.)

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    2 backers

    Have an heirloom feast! Enjoy dinner made by Taggart’s Wife (a great cook!) or at the filmmaker’s favorite Slow Food restaurant in food-famous Portland, OR. We’ll include you in the credits in the finished film and you’ll get 2 VIP tickets to the opening premiere (You will need to provide travel for dinner and the premiere.) PLUS you’ll receive the Signed Taggart Siegel Film Collection on DVD including award-winning films: Queen of the Sun, Real Dirt on Farmer John, Split Horn, and Between Two Worlds as well as a signed SEED: The Untold Story DVD upon release. Receive Special Thanks on our website and ALL of the rewards included with the $25 Pledge! (Donations are Tax-Deductible.)

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    0 backers

    Be an Associate Producer for SEED: The Untold Story! We’ll share the final rough cuts of the film with you, and you’ll be part of the experience of finishing this film! Enjoy dinner made by Taggart’s Wife (a great cook!) or at the filmmaker’s favorite Slow Food restaurant in food-famous Portland, OR. We’ll include you in the credits in the finished film and you’ll get 2 VIP tickets to the opening premiere. (You will need to provide travel for dinner and the premiere.) Plus, enjoy all of the perks above. (Donations are Tax-Deductible.) [please e-mail us at seedproject@collectiveeye.org if you wish to donate as KS only accepts credit card donations up to 5,000.]

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- (44 days)