The Film - What is Treasure Trapped
Depending on your exposure to this intriguing pastime, you probably have two questions. What is LARP? And why are you making a documentary about it?
For the uninitiated, LARP (live action role play) can be seen as an extension of the fantasy gaming world of Dungeons and Dragons, but this time it’s for real! You may be thinking it’s those beardy guys you’ve seen hitting each other with swords, or maybe the teenagers in the woods playing real-life Lord of the Rings; you would be right, but it’s also much more. Did you know of those people who recreated a Jane Austen novel and spiced it up with aliens or the folk over in Scandinavia who role-played being stuck in a lift for six hours? These may seem like extreme examples, but that’s just how varied LARP can be.
We couldn't believe we'd never heard of LARP before! It probably took us all of one minute to decide to fill a van with cameras, head out into the big scary world and start finding out as much as we could. It’s in the wake of our exploration into this world that we’ve found the real beating heart of LARP. It is the community of people who follow and support their hobby and we want you to meet these people and see why they are so passionate about what they do at the weekend.
So what is Treasure Trapped? Treasure Trapped is the documentary film that chronicles our journey into the LARP community. It's our adventure into the adventures of every day people, the history of their hobby and everything in between!
How you can help
If we've been out and about exploring LARP all this time then why are we asking for help? It's a good question!
We've already filmed a lot of Treasure Trapped. Like any good documentary though our adventures have lead us to more and more people and the scope of the film we COULD make has grown and grown. So we're looking for that last tiny little bit of support to help us finish the film in a deserving fashion. Your incredibly kind donations can help us round off our journey and present the truest account of LARP we can. Specifically we would like to achieve the following three goals:
Visit Østerskov Efterskole in Denmark - This is a school in Denmark that not only teaches through LARP but gets great results through LARP - challenging the common perceptions of the hobby and education itself. We've been invited to film at the school and would love to blow stereotypes of LARP wide open with this fascinating tale...but petrol costs money...and that's a lot of miles to drive!
Film at the birthplace of UK LARP - There's many a tale of where and how LARP started but an awful lot of people see Peckforton Castle in Cheshire as the breeding ground for the hobby. Our dream? To take original players back to the castle (now an upmarket wedding venue) to relive their memories. Unfortunately larking around a big castle needs insurance and grounds keeping costs.
Show how LARP is...for LARPERS! - What's the most difficult part of LARP to understand? How it must be in the minds and imaginations of the players. It's also the most difficult idea to film...but we're going to have a go! We'd like to open our film with a cinematic opening battle that captures the thrill of the game...but arming 100's of people and capturing a dragon can be pricey!
We feel these three things will help us do the hobby justice and round off what has been a life changing journey in a fitting fashion...and we're almost there! We've been given filmmaking gear, clothing, transport, catering, accommodation - so much from so many kind people. We now just need that tiny bit extra to take us to the finish line.
If you haven't got the spare pounds to help us on our way you can still help in other ways. We're not all about money but we are all about community. We love to hear from people who can help spread the word about our journey or offer help in some other way. We love it even more though when people have a story they can tell us or a way in which we can help them in return. We've formed so many great relationships over the course of filming so get in touch and lets form another!
Who we are
Cosmic Joke are a filmmaking partnership who've been together since 2010. Director Alex Taylor has been working in films for a number of years whilst Cosmic Joke have been churning out award winning music videos and online treats! Partners Michael Surman and Nick Peel complete the Treasure Trapped trio whilst an army of in house production staff and industry freelancers bulk out the team. We could make up a statistic like us having "Over 10,000 years of filmmaking experience" between us...but you get the idea!
Cosmic Joke was born out of a commitment to provide students and media hopefuls with invaluable access to work experience. Several such members of Cosmic Joke have been able to get their foot on the filmmaking career ladder from working on Treasure Trapped. Your kind help can make this a bigger film and a far more rewarding experience for our work experience interns.
The extended Treasure Trapped family sees corporate sponsorship from Wicked Camper Vans and Frozen Flag as well as working partnerships with Lindisfarne Mead, Profound Decisions, Wasteland, Labyrinth and many many more!
Risks and challenges
Whilst the success of Treasure Trapped is by no means guaranteed we've already been accepted for a UK film festival based on our progress so far. We've also had interest in a screening in America as well as a distribution offer from a UK independent cinema chain. With your investment we feel the film has an even greater chance of commercial success.
This being a documentary, however, who knows what untold horrors lie in wait for us out on the road? We will be at the mercy of the weather whilst out shooting in the Danish winter...and will probably have a rough time of it in Cheshire too. Similarly, filming a huge, open air battle sequence is no easy feat with the potential for a lot of obstacles. We will need to secure talented actors, the interest of the LARP community as extras and hoards of weapons and armour. Then there's the logistics of the shoot itself, organising (literally!) armies of people out in whatever weather is thrown at us, and there's the safety and working conditions of all our crew and equipment.
With all this considered though we are confident we can handle any obstacles we encounter trying to complete our quest, especially with the support of your kind donations! From the months of filming we've already completed we've become dab hands at tackling last minute challenges when they rear their ugly heads. Similarly all our equipment, crew, transport and permissions are secured pending the money raised from this campaign.
There will be problems on the road to completion, there always are, especially with this project being at the mercy of the real and uncontrollable world out there. Frodo didn't have the easiest time getting the one ring to Mordor but he succeeded and we can see ourselves doing the same!Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
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