We're shooting a short version of the GIRLS STATE TV pilot later this summer and we need your help!
What is Girls State? GIRLS STATE is a new musical comedy television project about a mock state government summer camp for rising high school senior girls. We're shooting the short version of our pilot later this summer and we need your help. Across the nation, those honored with the nomination to attend Girls State compete for college scholarships by running for office in a high stakes simulated state government experience - singing and cheering required. This satirical hour long comedy featuring original pop songs highlights the most cutthroat kind of politics – high school politics. Our take on this world focuses on what it means for a young woman to give voice to her beliefs.
What's With All the Women? We have assembled a team of accomplished, emerging women filmmakers to bring GIRLS STATE to life. We are making TV about women, created by women. These women include...
KRISTEN SABERRE (writer) Kristen is a writer/editor based in LA. She has worked on Hit The Floor, No Ordinary Family, Missing, Nashville, as well as numerous commercials and music videos.
ELLAROSE CHARY (writer/lyricist) EllaRose is an NYC-based, award winning bookwriter/lyricist, playwright and dramaturg. She is a member of Ars Nova's Uncharted, has worked with The Civilians, Playwrights Horizons and The Drama League, and is a NYFA Fellowship Finalist for Playwriting/Screenwriting. In addition to being a Hoosier Girls State alum, she lettered in Speech and Debate at Valparaiso High School.
BETSY ROSENBLOOM (producer) Betsy's recent credits include feature films Sisters, Pitch Perfect and Pitch Perfect 2, as well as television Newsroom, Clear History, Super Fun Night, and Trophy Wife. She also produces music videos, writes comedy and has studied and performed at the Upright Citizens Brigade.
ANNE TROUP (producer) Anne founded Grover Knows Productions, providing resources for the production of female focused narratives while seeking to build community through comedic content.
MELISSA LUSK (composer) Melissa is a Brooklyn-based composer, performer and musician. She is the composer and co-lyricist of Baby No More Times, a stadium pop show for small spaces that is also only about feminism.
Why should you pledge to fund GIRLS STATE? What we need most to make this project a reality is your financial backing. There are significant expenses involved in mounting a professional TV show – and that’s what we and the talented and skilled cast and crew we will hire are: Professionals. As Frances McDormand said about women filmmakers, “We need money. We need platforms, we need voices, but we don’t need help.”
Budget What does your money go towards, anyway?
We're shooting a short version of the GIRLS STATE pilot later this summer, because we want to share this world and these characters ASAP. Your donations will help us pay for:
Talent - we are committed to hiring top notch professional filmmakers, actors, and production team members - with a priority on hiring women (especially in the roles that women are usually underrepresented in behind the scenes). With your help we don't have to ask them to donate their time, but we can actually pay them!
Equipment - in order to make our short the best it can be, we need to shoot it on something other than our iphones - and that costs money. Your dollars will support equipment rentals and insurance.
Permits - while it does feel very high school to adopt a devil-may-care attitude and shoot wherever we want, whenever we want, we were the rule followers in high school. We don't want to get in trouble with the City of Los Angeles or have production get shut down because we don't have the proper permits, and those cost money, too.
We have a story to share with you, to entertain you, to make you laugh, to start a conversation. Your donations give us the means to do that. Thank you.
Risks and challenges
CHALLENGE: We are committed to having women artists in leadership roles on this project. That commitment comes because we know that there are often barriers to women gaining experience in the field. However, that does create a challenge because those barriers mean that there are more men that we know who are interested in and available to work on this project - who are in a position to do us favors and help out our low budget production - and finding women takes more time and research. Additionally, women are less likely to be able to take low budget work because they are not as often considered for the higher budget projects that enable people to work for less money. Your contributions will enable us to pay our women artists fairly and will support the extra time and research we are more than happy to put in to find wonderful, women filmmakers who will make this project a success.
CHALLENGE: Half of our team is in LA and half of our team is in New York. In addition to presenting logistical challenges for planning, this challenge has a real financial impact. We're shooting in LA. We need to get our NYC artists there. Your help will enable us to do this comfortably, so that we don't have sacrifice quality because of distance.
RISK: We're doing something that isn't standard practice. If we just wanted to sell our GIRLS STATE pilot, we wouldn't need to shoot our pilot presentation this summer - we could just shop the script to networks. If we wanted to make a web series, we could invest in that, but it would be a different medium. We have written a television pilot for TV. But, it takes a long time to get things on TV, and we want to share this world, these characters, and our project, with the world now. The story is timely, we have a lot of great artists excited about making a thing together, and we're ready to get behind the camera. Since there isn't a lot of precedent for what we're doing, you the audience may not understand exactly what we're doing or why. You may say, why not just shop the pilot? Why not just make a web series? We understand that that's a big risk inherent in our premise, but we also trust that we have the talent and strength of material to make this thing together that will stand on it's own. Visit girlsstate.tv to learn moreLearn about accountability on Kickstarter
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