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An emotionally-charged, action-packed 40 minute film about the last days of the infamous Australian bushranger and outlaw, Ben Hall.
364 backers pledged AU$ 78,241 to help bring this project to life.

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AU$ 78,241

364

We've exceeded our funding goal!

But... let's go further. If we can pass $100k before this campaign ends, we can turn 'The Legend of Ben Hall' into a 55 min short feature.

Let's make this film BIGGER, BETTER... AND LONGER!

Ben Hall is to Australia what Jesse James is to America - a fascinating, real-life outlaw who has been deeply forged into our cultural folklore and national identity.

'The Legend of Ben Hall' will be a highly-realistic, cinematic and gritty 40-minute narrative depicting Ben Hall in the final days of his life, culminating in his controversial death outside Forbes NSW in 1865.

We want this film to be ready for the 150th anniversary of Ben Hall's death, which is next year - May 5th 2015.

STORY SYNOPSIS. After three years on the road, Ben Hall and his Gang are the most wanted men in the British Empire. As the law closes in around them, the desperate gang make plans to flee the colony; but unknown to them, an associate has sold them out for a huge reward.

As Ben Hall seeks to make peace with his tortured past, the police and their informant set a cunning trap for the outlaws. As the mist rises from the fields on the cold morning of May 5th 1865, Ben Hall emerges from his camp... and walks into legend forever.

OUR VISION.

'The Legend of Ben Hall' will be a gritty action spectacle and a powerful human drama. We will meticulously and authentically recreate the harsh Australian colonial period and the historical characters within this fascinating true life story.

Too often, film adaptations stray from the real history. Not our film. Nobody will have ever depicted the Ben Hall story in the level of detail and historical accuracy as we plan to do. From the weapons and costumes, to the characters and dialogue - this level of authenticity is rarely seen.

Our Executive Producer and Historical Consultant is author and historian Peter Bradley, Australia's leading authority on NSW bushrangers and in particular, Ben Hall.

OUR GOAL

We want to resurrect this story from history books and explode it onto the screen in a glorious, sweeping way for a whole new generation to discover - in High Definition and surround sound. Australia has been waiting decades for a Ben Hall film; the time has come to deliver one.

Beyond pure entertainment, The Legend of Ben Hall will also be used to raise Australia's awareness of our colonial history and promote tourism in central NSW. We will also enter the film into dozens of prestigious film festivals with hope of snatching up some coveted awards!

We even hope to get The Legend of Ben Hall on television!

BUT... the journey will not end with this film alone! This will hopefully become a vital stepping stone for director Matthew Holmes' proposed 3-hour epic feature of the ENTIRE Ben Hall story, based on his 160-page completed screenplay. So if you want to see an epic Ben Hall feature at your local cinema complex in the near future - this is your way of making that a real possibility!

PS - If you wanna know how Kickstarter works and how to pledge toward this film, just watch this short video below!

 *NOTE: Apologies, but PayPal is not actually an option on Kickstarter yet. Sorry for the inconvenience.

REMEMBER: You can donate ANY amount of money you want to this project. If you wanted, you could choose the $50 reward pack but pledge $1000! It's up to you how much want to give and what reward you want in return.

SO... COME MEET THE PEOPLE BEHIND THIS FILM.

THE CAST

We have already cast a handful of highly-talented Australian actors that bear a striking resemblance to their historical counterparts.

We are casting the RIGHT PEOPLE for the roles.

JACK MARTIN as Ben Hall. Jack is rising actor from Sydney who has been cast in the coveted title role due to superb dramatic talents and his uncanny physical likeness to the real Ben Hall. An intensely committed actor, Jack is immersing himself in the history so he can deliver the most powerful portrayal of the doomed outlaw ever seen.

Jack Martin as BEN HALL
Jack Martin as BEN HALL
LEFT: Actor Jack Martin   RIGHT: The real Ben Hall
LEFT: Actor Jack Martin RIGHT: The real Ben Hall

 MEET THE REST OF THE CAST BELOW!

THE PRODUCTION CREW

Our production team is a world-class collection of filmmakers, whose credits include The Man From Snowy River 1 & 2, The Lighthorsemen, Ned Kelly, The Last Outlaw, Ponderosa, Ben Hall (TV series), Peter Pan, Wolverine, Brides of Christ, The Silver Brumby, Tomorrow When the War Began, Australia, Phar Lap, Sleight of Hand, McLeod's Daughters.... plus many more.

WRITER-DIRECTOR-PRODUCER Matthew Holmes has been working in film and TV for over 15 years. He has written and directed a variety of projects including features, shorts, TVCs, animated films, web clips and music videos. His 2007 independent feature Twin Rivers has been airing on Foxtel since 2008 and has received distribution through DV1 Entertainment. He is currently developing two feature films - the genre-splicing thriller 'Territorial' with Wolf Creek director Greg Mclean and a supernatural horror 'The Artifice' with Stephen Susco (writer of The Grudge 1 & 2which is now being considered by two major Hollywood studios.

Director Matthew Holmes
Director Matthew Holmes

EXECUTIVE PRODUCER & HISTORICAL CONSULTANT. Peter Bradley is Australia's leading authority on NSW bushrangers and in particular, Ben Hall. A direct descendant of Hall's family, Bradley has spent years researching the topic and has produced two amazing books - both of which are Rewards on this campaign. His vast knowledge will help ensure that our film is as historically accurate as possible.

Executive Producer and Historical Advisor, Peter Bradley
Executive Producer and Historical Advisor, Peter Bradley

PRODUCTION DESIGNER-ART DIRECTOR Leslie Binns is a veteran designer of Australian period films whose credits include The Man From Snowy River I & II, The Last Outlaw (TV), Crocodile Dundee in Los Angeles, Anzacs, Noah's Ark (TV), December Boys and Salem's Lot. He is arguably the most experienced Production Designer of period films in Australia today.

Production Designer Leslie Binns
Production Designer Leslie Binns

MUSIC COMPOSER Mario Millo is an AFI, ARIA, APRA and AGSC award winning composer whose screen credits include The Lighthorsemen, Shame, Changi, Against the Wind, Brides of Christ, Paws, A Fortunate Life and Heroes' Mountain. He has an outstanding reputation in the Australian film industry for creating powerful, thematic and emotional film scores.

Film Composer. Mario Millo
Film Composer. Mario Millo

DIRECTOR OF PHOTOGRAPHY Jonathan Rossiter, A.C.S. was Australian Cinematographer of the Year 2013 and has won many accolades for his work on the animated short Sleight of Hand. This multi-award winning A.C.S accredited cinematographer has been working in the industry for 30 years on TVC's and short films at Australia's leading animation and special effects company Anifex Pty Ltd and is now a freelance cinematographer.

ASSISTANT CINEMATOGRAPHER & DIGITAL COLORIST Peter Szilveszter recently lensed Matthew Holmes' chilling short film 'The Artifice' to stunning effect. Szilveszter has been producing high-end short films, documentaries, wedding videos and corporate work through his company Living Lens and is now emerging as one of Australia's newest and most exciting cinematographers.

Director Holmes and DOP Peter Szilveszter shooting 'The Artifice' (2014)
Director Holmes and DOP Peter Szilveszter shooting 'The Artifice' (2014)

ALBUM AND SOUNDTRACK COLLABORATOR Nigel Maclean is the great, great nephew of Ben Hall. He is a  Director, Composer and an established multi-genre violinist who has won international and national recognition. He has played a variety of roles including Orchestral Leader, Solo Artist, Assistant Producer, Producer, Director (FilmHarmonix) and Composer. As a solo artist his performance and recording credits include Kate Ceberano, Joe Chindamo, Paul Kelly, Renee Geyer, John Denver, David Hirschfelder, David Hobson, Dan Hicks and Joe Camilleri. During his role as Notation Editor for Oscar nominee David Hirschfelder, Nigel worked on soundtracks for films Elizabeth, Sliding Doors, Better Than Sex and What Becomes Of The Broken Hearted. Moreover, Nigel has contributed to improvisations on soundtracks for Underbelly, Angel Baby, Rage in Placid Lake, After the Deluge, One Perfect Day, CrashBurn, Crackers, The Interview and more. Nigel orchestrated and conducted the music for Geoffrey Wright’s production of Macbeth (2006), and composed music for a short film Forged by David No, which won Gold Medal for Best Music in a Short Film at the Park City Film Music Festival (Utah, USA) in 2008. Recently Nigel composed music for Jack Charles vs The Crown (Melbourne International Arts Festival 2010) and has been credited as composer/producer on Kate Ceberano’s recent 'Lullabies' album. Nigel has twice won the National Bluegrass Championships and has been awarded three Golden Fiddle Awards.

COSTUME DESIGNER - Michael Chisholm is one of Melbourne's most in-demand Costume Designers whose credits include Snowy River: The McGregor Saga, Ponderosa, Storm Warning, Rush, Offspring and the upcoming Justice Is a Smoking Gun.

HORSE WRANGLERS - Evanne Chessom and Bruce Gleeson of AUSTRALIAN MOVIE LIVESTOCK are arguably Australia's most prolific and experienced horse wranglers. Just look at their film credits: Australia, Ned Kelly, The Cup, Phar Lap, The Silver Brumby, Tomorrow When The War Began, Breaker Morant, Lightning Jack, The Lighthorsemen, Ben Hall (TV series), My Brother Jack and dozens more. Yes, our wrangling department is in the best hands.

HAIR & MAKEUP SUPERVISOR - Deirdre Dobbin is a highly experienced Hair and Make-up Artist who has worked on features, TV and TVCs. Her first collaboration with director Matthew Holmes was the 2014 short 'The Artifice'. She has also worked on Peter Pan, Strangers and Demons In My Head.

THE REWARDS FOR OUR PLEDGERS!

We believe strongly in giving our Kickstarter pledgers what they deserve - since it's you guys that will make this film a reality.

Here are just a few of the rewards on offer! For a complete list of each Reward Category, check the side panel to your right.

Check our sample of a PRODUCTION DIARIES. These short, informative clips will be regularly added to the website - so you can keep up to date on the film's progress and watch it all come to life before your very eyes!

The above Soundtrack Album will include composer Mario Millo's haunting score and a variety of traditional Ben Hall themed songs as well as some originals. Artists that have already agreed to jump onboard are The Vandabelles, SAMI, Visnja, Collector and Jack Martin... and there'll be many more to come yet! Watch this space!

Signed Copy of Jack Martin as Ben Hall in a recreation of Hall's famous posed photograph
Signed Copy of Jack Martin as Ben Hall in a recreation of Hall's famous posed photograph

OUR PREVIOUS WORK

Check out what the THE LEGEND OF BEN HALL crew created earlier this year! THE ARTIFICE (below) is a 12-min supernatural short film and was shot over a 48-hour period in February 2014. (This film is included on the Blu-Ray)

This film was made for $1,200 - so just imagine what we can achieve with $75,000!

In 2007, Director Matthew Holmes completed his 6-year independent feature Twin Rivers (trailer below) a period drama set against the 1930's Depression Era Australia. This was made for about $25,000 of his own money.

 WHY KICKSTARTER?

Traditional funding avenues are becoming harder and harder to access, and going down such paths is long, tedious and ultimately encumbers the project with unwanted compromises. By financing the film through Kickstarter, the filmmakers are free to use the funds in the best way they deem, giving the director the freedom to realise his vision.

Kickstarter also allows us to engage with our audience directly and listen to what they want. We can learn what is important to them, so we can deliver it! After all, our audience is what matters most.

Ben Hall is a story that belongs to the Australian people, and we want them to become a part of it. Our Kickstarter community will give us the chance to take our fans along for the ride!

MEDIA AND PUBLICITY

http://www.forbesadvocate.com.au/story/2356360/holmes-roams-into-town-for-hall/?cs=719

LINKS

Be sure to stay up to date via our Facebook page - but for ALL the updates and exclusive online content, become a Kickstarter pledger for as little as $10!

www.facebook.com/benhallshortfilm

Risks and challenges

Director Matthew Holmes has always found ways to complete all his independent projects despite enormous obstacles.

Filmmaking always presents challenges, but our team is experienced enough to find creative solutions for every problem that may arise, especially with our network of cast and crew reaching into every corner of Film & TV production in the country.

The best thing about this project is that it is being made with film industry professionals - not amateurs. We have highly experienced crew members who have worked on a vast array of Australian and international feature films, TV shows and commercials over the past forty years and our network of filmmakers is huge. Plus, every person involved is highly passionate about this story and is committed to bringing it life.

We are more than confident that Ben Hall will explode onto the screen in early 2015, ready for the 150th anniversary of his death!

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Support

  1. Select this reward

    Pledge AU$ 1 or more About $0.72

    THE DONATION - You have our eternal thanks!!!

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    Pledge AU$ 5 or more About $4

    THE TEASER -
    You get our eternal gratitude AND a private link to view the teaser trailer a week before the rest of the world!

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    Pledge AU$ 10 or more About $7

    THE WEBSITE -
    You get the teaser trailer, plus exclusive access to the 'Pledgers Only' Ben Hall website, updated regularly with behind-the-scenes Production Diaries, photos, cast and crew information, news, competitions and much more! We'll also add your name to the KICKSTARTER BACKERS list on the website!

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    Pledge AU$ 20 or more About $14

    THE DIGITAL DOWNLOAD -
    You get all the above, plus a High Definition digital download of the film - the day after its World Premiere!

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    Pledge AU$ 25 or more About $18

    ***DVD EARLY BIRD SPECIAL*** Our first 100 pledgers, you get all the above, plus a professionally mastered DVD of the film* with special features including Director's Commentary, the Production Diaries and an exclusive 30-minute 'Making-of' documentary (not be available on the website!) *DVD will be in PAL format and region free.

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    Pledge AU$ 30 or more About $22

    THE DVD PACK -
    You get the above, plus a professionally mastered DVD of the film* with special features including Director's Commentary, Production Diaries and an exclusive 30-minute 'Making-of' documentary (that will not be available on the website). *DVD will be in PAL format and region free.

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    Pledge AU$ 40 or more About $29

    ***BLU-RAY EARLY BIRD SPECIAL*** For our first 75 pledgers - you will receive a professionally mastered BLU-RAY* featuring bonus special features not available on the DVD or website, including a mini-documentary 'Ben Hall and his Gang'. And your name will now appear in the 'KICKSTARTER BACKERS' listing in the end credits of the film! You also get the digital download of the film - PLUS, you get a digital download of the soundtrack by Mario Millo, which will include traditional and original Ben Hall songs by contemporary Australian artists! *Blu-Ray will be Region free.

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    Pledge AU$ 50 or more About $36

    THE BLU-RAY PACK - Get stunning images for your home cinema with this professionally mastered High Definition BLU-RAY* featuring bonus special features not available on the DVD or website, including a mini-documentary 'Ben Hall and his Gang'. And your name will now appear in the 'KICKSTARTER BACKERS' listing in the end credits of the film! You also get the digital download of the film - PLUS, you get a digital download of the soundtrack by Mario Millo, which will include traditional and original Ben Hall songs by contemporary Australian artists! *Blu-Ray will be Region free.

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    Pledge AU$ 80 or more About $57

    *** LIMITED EDITION EARLY BIRD SPECIAL*** For our first 50 pledgers only - you will receive one of only 500 beautifully presented Limited Collector Editions which includes the Blu-ray + DVD, a 48-page mini-booklet, fold-out packaging and a signed B&W still of Jack Martin as 'Ben Hall' - plus a hard copy of the soundtrack on CD. Your name will also appear in the 'KICKSTARTER BACKERS' listing in the end credits. You will also receive an A3 poster of the film. (And you will still get the Rewards 1 - 3) *Blu-Ray will be Region free.

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    Reward no longer available 25 backers
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    Pledge AU$ 90 or more About $65

    LIMITED EDITION COLLECTORS PACK - You will receive one of only 500 beautifully presented Limited Collector Editions which includes the Blu-ray + DVD, a 48-page mini-booklet, fold-out packaging and a signed B&W still of Jack Martin as 'Ben Hall' - plus a hard copy of the soundtrack on CD. Your name will also appear in the 'KICKSTARTER BACKERS' listing in the end credits. You will also receive an A3 poster of the film *Blu-Ray will be Region free.

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    Pledge AU$ 200 or more About $144

    THE BEN HALL FAN PACK -
    You get all the above (which is a lot!) We'll even throw in 2 complimentary tickets to the Premiere Night in Australia (place/date TBA, but most likely regional NSW). Plus a signed copy of the 240-page hardcover book 'Ben Hall-The Long Hard Road' by Executive Producer Peter Bradley. You will also receive a personalized 'Thank you!' video posted to our website and Facebook page - AND we'll give you an EXCLUSIVE ONLINE SNEAK-PEEK to the opening 3.5 minute action sequence of the film during post-production!

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    Pledge AU$ 500 or more About $359

    THE BUSHRANGER PACK - You get ALL the above, plus a 68-page A4 full colour book 'Ben Hall - The Screenplay and Storyboards' featuring the director's hand-drawn storyboard panels, production photos, design and costume sketches, the screenplay and more. (Signed by the director, naturally) as well as 'The Judas Covenant-The Betrayal and Death of Ben Hall' 133-page hardcover by Peter Bradley. PLUS, we'll throw in 2 MORE EXTRA Premiere Tickets! We'll also send you a gorgeous A1 Theatrical Poster, signed by whomever you wish from the cast. You will also receive a personal phone or Skype call from the director, along with a personalized 'Thank you!' video posted to our website and Facebook page!

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    Pledge AU$ 1,000 or more About $718

    ASSOCIATE PRODUCER - You get all the above and... congratulations! You are an Associate Producer and your name will appear in the end credits and on all publicity materials where the credits are shown, as well as IMDb. You will receive a complete copy of the shooting script and boards before production begins, and we will send you a private link to view the first rough cut of the film. We'll also show you the complete film online before the Premiere screening... if you wish!

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    Pledge AU$ 2,500 or more About $1,795

    EXECUTIVE PRODUCER -
    Along with ALL the above rewards - which are piling up - you will received a prestigious 'Executive Producer' credit directly after the Producer's credit. Your name will appear on all publicity materials where the credits appear, as well as on IMDb. You will also get a full day on location* and hang out with the cast and crew as the film is being shot. Catering included! *Must arrange your own transport to and from set.

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    Pledge AU$ 5,000 or more About $3,589

    EXECUTIVE PRODUCER CAMEO -
    (for a fit Australian male aged between 20 - 50)
    You get an Executive Producer credit, PLUS you will feature in the film as a Police Trooper. We'll provide you with an authentic uniform, and of course, you get to spend the whole day with the cast and crew on location! Some acting ability required, so consider carefully if you're a camera-shy person...otherwise, go for it!

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    Pledge AU$ 7,500 or more About $5,384

    PRODUCER -
    This is the BIG ONE! For your most generous pledge, you get all the Rewards PLUS you receive a solo 'Producer' credit directly after the Director's credit. Your name will appear on all publicity and printing materials where the credits appear, as well on IMDb. You also get FULL on-set access during the shoot*, along with your own personalized 'Producers' chair (which you can take home). We will keep you updated with the various cuts of the film during post-production, and we'll also make sure you are amongst the FIRST crew to see the completed film! You will get a large B&W cast and crew poster (with yourself in it, of course). You get a 'Producer' profile on the website and we'll even interview you for the 'Making-of' documentary. Not only that, you will be gifted an extremely rare, hand-crafted 35cm BEN HALL metallic statuette made by director PLUS a framed A2 poster of the film, signed by... whoever you wish (in the cast and crew). * Must arrange own transport and accommodation during the shoot.

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Funding period

- (38 days)