Funded! This project was successfully funded on March 11, 2012.

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First, a film about banana workers saying Dole had made them infertile. Then Dole's attack on the filmmakers. Time for another film!

Why should you contribute to this campaign although the initial goal has already been reached? Our updates will tell you!

BIG BOYS GONE BANANAS!* 

Have you ever wondered how far big corporations are willing to go in order to protect their brand? I’m a documentary filmmaker who has experienced this first hand – and I have a new film to prove it. Here’s my story...

What happened to my last film

It all started with my previous film BANANAS!* which recounts the lawsuit that 12 Nicaraguan plantation workers brought against the Dole Food Company, the largest fruit corporation in the world. When the film was about to premiere at the Los Angeles Film Festival, Dole tried to stop it at all cost, claiming the documentary was “fraudulent” – although they hadn't even seen it. Dole’s law firm sent us a “cease and desist” letter demanding of us to withdraw the film and close its website, or we would get sued. 

It soon became clear that this multinational corporation wanted to scare us and the festival into silence. The festival kicked the film out of competition and had a disclaimer read in front of the film. I had to accept this, I simply felt that I must screen my film and show the world that there is no defamation or slander in it. I decided that if the big boys were going to deliver a lawsuit against me then I wanted it on camera. 

What's this new film about?

My new film BIG BOYS GONE BANANAS!* tells the story of this journey, a story you would hardly believe unless you witnessed it with your own eyes. Dole attacked us with a lawsuit, bullied us personally with scare tactics, and tried to control the media through massive PR-spin. Dole managed to create major headlines in their favor, saying that the documentary was based on a lie – before our film could be seen and judged by anyone. Their agents even called up every single news reporter who published a story about our film. It was mind-boggling and frightening. 

Dole spent a lot of time and money trying to kill the story of BANANAS!* simply because their reputation was on the line. As Dole’s public relations company stated it, “it is easier to cope with a bad conscience than a bad reputation.”

The only way to stop corporations from acting this way in the future is to raise awareness about this kind of behavior. The principles of free speech and freedom of the press were established to protect citizens from their governments. In my experience, it’s now corporate control that’s threatening these rights the most. So this new film is not just a film about us. It’s a fight for the rights of all storytellers. And I want to inspire people around the world to discuss this. 

Where we're at

The new film is already finished and just had a very successful world premiere at the world’s largest documentary festival, IDFA in Amsterdam. The film will have its North American premiere at the prestigious Sundance Film Festival later this month. So we’re lucky enough to have the greatest possible launch platform. What we don’t have is the money to pay for the initial costs of such a launch. The greatest platform is no use to us as long as our pockets are empty, thanks to Dole’s impact on our business. An international launch costs a whole lot of money that we just don´t have.

So what do we want?

BIG BOYS GONE BANANAS!* should be seen and used by people all over the world – in cinemas and in schools. It might be a scary story, but it comes with a happy ending. There is hope. 

What is utterly important to me is that this film reaches out to the heart of the conflict, the United States. This is where this story needs to be told. This is the home of the people who tried to stop BANANAS!*. 

Yet for a launch in the U.S., I need to pay for so-called ‘errors & omissions insurance’, which is required to protect people who show the film from the economic consequences of potential lawsuits. In addition. there are a lot of other expenses required for the release, paying for people who work on the distribution, for film copies needed for theatrical screenings, for DVD production and shipping costs, for travel expenses and so much more. That’s why I really need to raise at least $15,000. And we simply can’t do it without your help.

Why we need to reach this goal

If the project does not reach $15,000, we’ll get nothing from Kickstarter. This is my first campaign here, so I wanted to be modest. Everything beyond this target will really help us get back on our feet and reach an even broader audience. We’re still suffering from the loss of all the time and money that went into the fight Dole had brought upon us. Against all odds, we did succeed in making my previous film available to people around the world. But it came at a huge price.

What do you get out of it?

Not only will your contribution kick-start the outreach of an important film about the power of big corporations and their impact on our rights – you’ll also have a great choice of rewards for your support. Naturally, many documentary projects can only promise rewards that you’ll receive after a long, long wait until the film has actually been made. Luckily, we’re in a different position. With your help, our film is ready to be launched – and (depending on your choice) you’ll receive your reward right away.

The clock is ticking, so pledge your support today! 

What if you cannot pledge money?

You can still help a great deal. If you spread the word about this campaign or share the trailer for the film, you’ll do us a huge favour. You can also organize a screening of the film in your own town. Come and learn more on www.bigboysgonebananas.com and join our network!

Thank you for your time and support. It is all greatly appreciated. 

Fredrik Gertten

FAQ

  • These are approximate exchange rates on the day this message was posted (21 February). These are for guidance only, as we can't guarantee these, and you'll only be charged if and when we reach our goal..

    Activist Reward: $5 = €3.78 = 33.32kr
    Instant Download: $10 = €7.56 = 66.63kr
    Bananas!* Download: $20 = €15.13 = 133.27kr
    Rapid DVD: $25 = €18.90 = 166.58kr
    Bananas!* DVD: $35 = €26.47 = 233.22kr
    Book: $50 = €37.81 = 333.17kr
    Bananas Bonanza: $75 = €56.72 = 499.75kr
    Meet and Greet: $100 = €75.63 = 666.34kr
    Go Wild: $250 = €189.06 = 1665.84kr
    Have a Chat and Go Wild: $500 = €378.13 = 3331.69kr
    Golden Box: $1,000 = €756.25 = 6663.37kr
    Fair Trade Bananas: $5,000 = €3781.29 = 33316.89kr
    Special Screening: $7,500 = €5671.93 = 49975.35kr
    Associate Producer: $10,000 = €7562.58 = 66633.79kr.

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  • Please contact us at kickstarter@wgfilm.com, and we'll let you know how you can make a donation directly to us.

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  • Fredrik is pretty new to Kickstarter, as the concept is only starting to spread outside North America. However, he has backed other projects using a different user account. This particular account you're looking at was set up by Richard J. Lee, a California-based lawyer acting pro bono in support of Fredrik's cause.

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  • To comply with certain Kickstarter requirements, Fredrik is represented by Richard J. Lee, a California-based lawyer acting pro bono in support of this cause. You can actually see him in the film, too!

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  • These terms indicate how soon you'll get your reward once the goal has been reached and the campaign has finished. We'll make sure that everyone who chooses an 'Instant Reward' will get access to those downloads as soon as this campaign is over. Likewise, DVDs will be sent out as 'Rapid Rewards' and you won't need to wait for us to finish the film first...

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  • Just send us an email to kickstarter@wgfilm.com or use Kickstarter's own messaging system. We look forward to hearing from you!

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  • We had set the $15,000 target not because that's all we would need – we set it because this was going to be our first-ever Kickstarter campaign and we wanted to be modest and realistic. Dole's attack on my previous film BANANAS!* did cost us so much more than this amount – at least 10 times as much. So if you make a pledge – or increase a pledge you've already made – it'll help us so much more to get on our feet again, and get the new film out there, everywhere.
    Of course, all rewards remain available for your pledge, even with the initial target already reached.

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412
Backers
$16,847
pledged of $15,000 goal
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  • Pledge $5 or more
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    28 backers

    ACTIVIST REWARD. If you don't have the money, give me your time and help me spread this film. I will provide you with any digital material you'll need. As a thank-you we'll publish your name on our website (the same goes for all of the rewards below).

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  • Pledge $10 or more
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    44 backers

    INSTANT REWARD: You'll get instant access to a high-quality digital download of a previous film I directed or produced. This is your choice: I BOUGHT A RAINFOREST (2010) 58 min, TRUE BLUE 2: THE WAY BACK (2002) 78 min, THIN ICE (2006) 57 min, BELFAST GIRLS (2006) 60 min, THE LEFTOVERS (2008) 28 min. And yes, that's a download to keep and play as many times as you like, not just a one-off streaming!

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  • Pledge $20 or more
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    144 backers

    BANANAS!* DOWNLOAD: A high-definition digital download of my previous film BANANAS!*, or of new film BIG BOYS GONE BANANAS!* as soon as it becomes avaliable. Again, that's a download to keep and play as many times as you like.

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  • Pledge $25 or more
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    11 backers

    RAPID REWARD: I'll send you the DVD edition of a previous film I produced or directed. Simply choose between more than 15 films in our web shop.

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  • Pledge $35 or more
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    44 backers

    BANANAS DVD: I'll send you the DVD edition of my previous film BANANAS!*, or of the new film BIG BOYS GONE BANANAS!* as soon as it becomes avaliable.

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  • Pledge $50 or more
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    16 backers Limited (34 left of 50)

    INSTANT BOOK. Get a book written and signed by one of the experts in our film. Choose between Dan Koeppel's "BANANA: The fate of the fruit that changed the world" and Ken Silverstein's "Washington on $10 million a day". We'll add a BIG BOYS GONE BANANAS!* poster signed by the director.

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  • Pledge $75 or more
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    33 backers

    BANANAS BONANZA: Get the full kit of one BANANAS!* poster, one BIG BOYS GONE BANANAS!* poster, both signed by the director, a BANANAS!* DVD, a BIG BOYS GONE BANANAS!* DVD, postcards and pins.

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  • Pledge $100 or more
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    19 backers

    MEET AND GREET: Watch the film together with me when I'm presenting it at a festival or cinema near you. We'll also take a photo of you and me that will be featured in a Hall Of Fame on our website.

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  • Pledge $250 or more
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    2 backers

    GO WILD IN FREDRIK'S WEB SHOP: Pick 10 acclaimed documentaries of your choice.

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  • Pledge $500 or more
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    0 backers

    HAVE A CHAT AND GO WILD: A 30-minute live talk with me over Skype or the phone, on a subject of your choice. And you get to pick 10 acclaimed documentaries of your choice from the web shop.

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  • Pledge $1,000 or more
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    2 backers

    FREDRIK'S GOLDEN BOX. All films directed by me put together in a special DVD box, plus the 30-minute talk over Skype or the phone, plus your choice of any of the previous rewards.

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  • Pledge $5,000 or more
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    0 backers

    FAIR TRADE BANANAS AT A FAIR PRICE: A year-long supply (24 boxes) of fair-trade bananas to be picked up in your local fair trade shop. (To be safe, please get in touch with your location before selecting this.)

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  • Pledge $7,500 or more
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    0 backers

    SPECIAL SCREENING: Have your own private (or public) screening at a place of your choice, and I'll be there to talk about anything you want. (Please get in touch to discuss preferred dates.) On top of this, choose one of our rewards we offer for pledges of $1,000 or less.

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  • Pledge $10,000 or more
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    0 backers

    BECOME AN ASSOCIATE PRODUCER: If you contribute $10,000 or more, we'll make you an associate producer, and your name will be on anything we print or publish once this campaign has finished. Again, on top of this, treat yourself to one of our rewards for pledges of $1,000 or less.

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Funding period

- (60 days)