Alex, on ADD meds since he was 10, struggles balancing an overwhelming class schedule, college football and an over-burdening family.
Welcome to "ADDicted's" Kickstarter page! For those that don't know about me (Dan Jenski, pleasure to meet you), I wrote/produced "ADDicted" as a short film with the intentions of turning it into a feature. With the script complete, here we are at the film-funding stage. Glad you can join us!
I always get asked "Why ADD/ADHD? Why prescription pills?" Well, its quite simple: as writers, we are always told "Write what you know" and the things I've lived through and have seen first-hand equate to the topics I just mentioned. When I was in 4th grade, my mom was told that I had ADD by the psychiatrist I was seeing. My parents had just divorced and my behavior immediately started changing. I was getting kicked out of gifted classes for constantly interrupting my teachers, ending up in detention quite frequently. My teachers and psychiatrist wanted me to be put on Ritalin but my mom didn't. To this day I am QUITE THANKFUL I didn't go down that route. I saw some of my friends put on Ritalin and they were never the same again, almost zombie-like with lack of any real emotions. When a child is told that he or she has a disorder, their self-esteem plummets. They are forced grow up on a substance that they're basically told they won't be able to succeed without it.
I was also in college for the EXPLOSION of ADHD meds onto campus. Everyone was taking them to study (prescription or no prescription), trying to get a week's worth of work done in a day and, at times, just to function. I've seen people fake symptoms in order to get prescriptions and I've seen people with prescriptions turning into monsters when they lose track of their meds and run out. This begs to question: What is really going on with the diagnosing of these "disorders?" There is so much subjectivity in this process. I'm just making a movie on what I see and what's really going on in this world. This is how it is in society right now and no one can deny that.
Alan Schwarz of the NY Times just came out with a heart-breaking and eye-opening reality check about the current state of country in regards to this culture. If you have time please check it out:
After seeing and hearing everyone's reaction towards ADDicted the short film, whether it be at film festivals or via the Facebook page, it was quite clear that this was a topic that almost everyone could relate to. The consensus has been that people WANT to see a feature film made about this and that's exactly what we're doing.
Our goal with Kickstarter is to get the ball rolling with the film funding, not fund the entire film. We plan on shooting in a football stadium and want known names attached in a few lead roles and as well as the director. In this industry, you need money to attract money and names.
Kickstarter has a policy that if we don't reach our funding goal, we don't take a DOLLAR of the pledges. Well, I want to be clear that if we don't reach our OVERALL goal for financing, we aren't going to take a single dollar either. We don't believe in shooting a film under-budget and cutting corners just to have a movie made. With our talent and our resources and the scope of this topic, there is no way BUT to make as high quality, amazing and compelling of a film as possible. If our name is attached (and your names as well), please believe that this will be as perfect of a film that we can deliver, or no movie at all. We don't believe in selling this movie or your pledges short.
Here's a link to the FB page: https://www.facebook.com/ADDictedMovie
Interview at the Sonoma Int'l Film Fest: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MWjPMs5Wz9k
And here's a link to "ADDicted's" review from the Ft. Lauderdale Int'l Film Fest: http://www.pronetworks.org/independent_films/index.php/post/review_pictures_addicted_dan_jenski_2012_fort_lauderdale_film_festival
For more information, including watching the short film in its entirety and investment opportunities, don't hesitate to email me at DJenski81@hotmail.com!
Thank you so much for your time and we hope this is a project you can and want to get behind!
Risks and challenges Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
Alex is a college football player so shooting in a football stadium is never an easy thing. The costs to film there (insurance, permits, fees, etc.), the amount of people used and the number of camera shots altogether can be a difficult thing to pull off.
To tackle this (no pun intended) you need take it step by step, shot by shot, moment by moment. Anytime I film something I storyboard the heck out of it and have a very detailed plan on getting the shots we want and how we want with as much efficiency as possible. We can knock this out in one night so we limit the mistakes that re-shooting the same scenes on different days can sometimes bring.
We are also filming on a campus during winter break. Our goal is to get all shooting done in this time period so we don't interfere with school while its in session. Whenever a truncated timetable is involved, you're that much more under pressure to get EVERYTHING shot and completed in the way you want. This gives us 5-6 weeks max to complete a feature film, not an easy thing to do. When we worked on the short film of ADDicted, we had 7 hours to complete 5 scenes, all of them involving many background actors, from children to adults, We crushed it, did it in time and were quite happy with the results. Was it stressful? ABSOLUTELY. But we banded together and pulled it off. I know we're up for a great challenge with the schedule but there is no doubt we can pull it off.
And lastly, getting names attached is always an issue, usually full of negotiating and red tape. We have a list of ideal actors, actresses and some directors but you just don't know what their schedules are like, how much money it'll cost and what their personal thoughts on the project are. This is one of those areas that you cross that bridge when you come to it. I'm convinced this is as compelling and unique of a story that almost anyone would want to be a part of it. We've already begun reaching out to specific camps and telling them about the project so hopefully we can get exactly who we want with a negotiated deal that satisfies both sides. We just won't know until that time arrives which is usually when most of the money has come in and a lot of pre-production stuff has been laid out (which we can't secure pre-production stuff such as locations, permits or crew until we have the money).
I am very very excited to have this opportunity to go after this movie and face these challenges. Almost everything in this world can be solved using common sense and working as a team in getting the best out of every situation. We're ready to roll!
Have a question? If the info above doesn't help, you can ask the project creator directly.
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