About this project
--- IF OUR TOTAL REACHES OVER $190,000, WE WILL MAKE THE OVER NINE-THOUSAND VIDEO AND RELEASE IT TO EVERYONE! --
--- 10/21 UPDATE ---
Today is the LAST DAY to support VGHS and be a part of the project before we go into production!
We've added a $30 Blu-Ray option, just in case you had a hankering for HD. If you already pledged for the DVD, you can change your pledge. If you pledged more than $30, don't worry - you'll have the option of picking between the Blu-Ray and the DVD edition. Aside from HD-ness, there is no difference between the two versions.
And remember - if you pre-order our DVD/Blu-Ray, you're ensuring that the final product is that much better! We're going to be starting shooting next week, and every bit helps!
We can't wait to show you VGHS, and from all of us on the team, thank you!
What is Video Game High School (VGHS)?
It's the near future: You're dead. Your kids are probably dead. Your grandkids (if they're alive) are playing video games. Why? Because professional gaming is the biggest sport on earth.
Around the world, millions of players duke it out in fighters, RTS’s, First Person Shooters and more. To the victors go the spoils: glory, clan contracts and million dollar endorsements. The best young gamers are recruited by elite boarding schools to sharpen their skills. The best of the best go to VGHS: VIDEO GAME HIGH SCHOOL.
VGHS is a feature-length action/comedy web series (9 episodes, ~10 mins per episode) about best friends, first loves, and landing that perfect head shot. It follows Brian, a young FPS player stuck in a town where he doesn’t belong. His fortunes change when he scores a massive kill against the world’s top amateur player: VGHS senior “The Law.”
Brian rockets into the national spotlight and lands an invite into the hallowed halls of VGHS. There his skills will be tested as he fights to fit in with the most talented gamers alive. Along the way he’ll make unlikely friends, fall in love with no-nonsense FPS hot shot, Jenny Matrix, and face powerful enemies – namely The Law, who vows to destroy Brian for good.
Will Brian’s dreams end before they’ve even started? Or will he pull it together and become the gamer he was born to be?
Who is behind VGHS?
VGHS is co-created by Freddie Wong and Brandon Laatsch and Matt Arnold. In addition to acting as showrunner, Matt is also a writer, along with Will Campos and Brian Firenzi (founder of 5secondfilms.com). It is based on a concept by Will Campos and Chris Pappavaselio.
Freddie Wong and Brandon Laatsch run http://youtube.com/freddiew, the 7th most subscribed YouTube channel of all time. Collectively their videos have over 450 million views, with over 2 million subscribers tuning in every week to watch their work. Their work has been featured on CNN, BBC, ESPN, and The Huffington Post, and they've worked with actors such as Eliza Dushku, Andy Whitfield, and Kevin Pollack.
Most recently, they worked with director Jon Favreau for a crossover video for Cowboys and Aliens, and appeared on Jimmy Kimmel Live to talk about their work.
Brian Firenzi is the founder of 5secondfilms.com, a comedy website that has churned out five second short films every single weekday since 2008. 5sf has been featured on "Tosh.0" and "Attack of the Show," screened at SxSW and ComiCon, and they've worked with actors such as Peter Stormare and Patton Oswalt.
Matthew Arnold is a collaborator and business partner with freddiew. After graduating USC, he was an assistant and than associate producer at Disney Interactive Studios for 2.5 years where he worked on nearly a dozen projects that polluted kids minds and emptied parents wallets (nah games are great for kids). Matt left in 2010 to start his own game company and create VGHS. His first iPhone game - an action adventure marble game - is set for release this holiday season.
Will Campos has been a long-time friend and collaborator. He is a graduate of the USC School of Cinema Screenwriting program, and has the professionalism to make the rest of us feel like children.
How is this project funded? What's the funding for?
Making a feature-length project can be surprisingly expensive - there are numerous costs involved with doing a project legit, including production insurance, location permits, actor and crew salaries, and legal paperwork. In addition, the scale of the project means we'll have to hire on additional post-production personnel, such as editors and visual effects artists.
Over the last year and a half of making weekly special effects laden YouTube videos, we've learned to be flexible and resourceful with our budgets. Every cent raised for this project is going into the production, so the more we raise, the bigger we can go with this project.
Also to put things in perspective, we're asking for less than 1/1000th of the budget for the upcoming Twilight movie.
Why a webseries?
We strongly believe the foundations for the future of digitally distributed content will be laid by webseries. We don't see a webseries as a stepping stone to get a feature film project, or a TV deal - a good webseries is an end unto itself. The webseries format is uncharted territory, and we want to explore it.
What's the status of the production?
VGHS is currently in pre-production. The scripts have all been written. Production is scheduled to start mid-October, with the project finishing early 2012.
How can I help?
By pledging an amount, you will be eligible to receive rewards exclusive to those pledging through this Kickstarter page. Take a look at the rewards column on the right - you can think of pledging as placing a pre-order for the product once it's done.
Yes, we will ship DVDs internationally. The DVDs will also be non-region encoded. Please keep in mind that it might take a bit longer to get to you due to massive bodies of water between us and you.
This is a possibility - we're still investigating the replication costs, as well as the compatibility issues with Blu-Ray. We'll have more details nearer to release.
That means we'll be putting your face/image in the series - photo or otherwise. Since we don't expect all of you to live driving distance from Los Angeles, this way you can get in the series without having to, say, pay for airfare.
The filmmaking bootcamp will take place over a weekend in 2012. We'll be coordinating with every person at this level to figure out a weekend that works for everyone. It'll consist of two days of one-on-one instruction with myself and Brandon, and we'll teach you everything we know about filmmaking.
We're planning on mastering these with no region coding, so yes.
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