About this project
What is Lake City about?
A dark comedy-drama, Lake City follows recent college grads Malcolm and Lily, who, unsure of what to do with their lives, decide to move to New York City. Unfortunately, they lack the funds and so settle on staying with Malcolm's grandparents in a New Jersey "active adults" community. That community is called Lake City.
Their arrival sends Malcolm's grandfather, Bart, into a crisis about his own fate. He sees Malcolm struggling for direction, and it awakens in him a hunger to once again have an impact on the world, to quit playing as though all that's left for him is TV, crossword puzzles, and funerals. Bart's extreme response to his crisis forces Malcolm, Lily, and Bart's wife, Catherine, to confront questions about just what is piloting their lives: their desires or their fears.
Malcolm is an animator, and several of his animations are spliced into the film, helping to characterize the pervasive paranoia of Lake City as well as the whimsy all the characters yearn to feel.
Why We're Different from Other Kickstarters
- Kickstarter experience: Director Aaron Fisher-Cohen used Kickstarter to fund his first feature-length project, DAMN!, a documentary about viral media with Jimmy McMillan, the man behind the slogan, "The Rent is 2 Damn High!," as its subject. We understand how to make a beautiful film under financial constraints. We also understand the value that Kickstarter has beyond just from your financial support. Not only does it help generate interest in the film, but a successful Kickstarter campaign can be a key tool in our belt in persuading other investors to help out.
The trailer for DAMN!:
- Post-production experience: DAMN! received distribution before it was submitted to a single festival. Only about 1% of independent films receive distribution.
- Critical success: DAMN! was a New York Times critic's pick and showed in several film festivals. It was a finalist for best documentary at the Little Rock Film Festival.
- Social media experience: The Bosco, Aaron's web-connected photo booth company, has gone from a tiny startup to working with companies and organizations such as Yahoo!, CNN, South by Southwest, Hugo Boss and Esquire. This is because we understand the importance that communication and sharing plays in people's lives and how to leverage the web to allow people to share instantly. We will leverage our experience with social media to ensure that Lake City is not only a great film, but one that people can easily share and discuss through their favorite social media sites.
Listen to Cassandra Jenkins' "Up in Flames," which will be featured in the film and is available as a digital download to backers of $5 or more:
Why THIS Story?
From screenwriter, Max Fisher-Cohen:
In the spring of 2005, I quit my job, spent a bunch of my savings wandering around the world, and then landed in Philadelphia, working for minimum wage at a grocery store. When I went to visit Grandma and Grandpa, as usual, they fed me, but afterwards, they served me with both mint chocolate chip ice cream and a self-help book. I appreciated their concern. I was concerned too. I wanted to be doing something I loved; despite lots of looking, I still didn't know what that was.
During my time at graduate school, my grandparents got older. It might seem unnecessary to point such a thing out, but I don't think many people ever get the stomach to calculate and anticipate a person's decline. It is always a surprise, even when it shouldn't be. My grandparents became more difficult to talk to on the phone, always nervous that they were imposing on my time, always rushing to hang up. This behavior really bothered me not just because of what it foreshadowed, but because I could relate to it.
When you're young, you often find yourself asking questions like, "What am I meant to do?" or "What is my right place in this world?" The implication of these questions is that there is some encrypted program inside of you, and if you do the right things, you'll unlock that program and live a happy life. Otherwise, you're screwed. When you are old, and each day you lose a little more control of your body and mind, I imagine you ask similar questions: "What is left for me to do?" or "Why am I still here?" These questions have the same implication. They suggest that you are more a spectator than a participant in your own life.
Is that really true? If I had the answer to that, I would write philosophy (or maybe self-help) instead of fiction. What I do know is that it's something everyone I know seems to struggle with, whether or not they're willing to say so out loud. As a person and as an artist, all I can do is express the feelings that take over my head. This film expresses a feeling -- a conflict -- that comes at me with big fists and swings hard. That's why I'll do whatever it takes to see it made.
Cast & Crew
Jonathan Rosen's "Golden Ears":
What Is Your Schedule? When Will the Film Be Released?
- Location scouting: Main location secured (grandparents' house). We will continue scouting for the remaining locations between now and 8/01/13.
- Pre-production goodies mailed/digitally delivered to Kickstarter backers: July 2013 - September 2013
- Casting and Crew: Two of the four leads already cast. Casting will be complete by 06/01/13
- Shooting: 08/17/13 - 09/06/13
- Post-production: 09/15/13 - 1/01/14
- Completion: January 2014
- Production-dependent goodies mailed/digitally delivered to backers: August 2013 - January 2014
Where's All This Money Going?
While we understand that a good story is sometimes all you need to make a good film, the fact of the matter is that there are just some things we can't skimp on in quality filmmaking. Here is just a short list of some of the things your money will help us get:
Cinema Quality Camera Package
Cinema Lens Rental
Lights and Equipment
Crew Day Rates
SAG minimum actors rates
NY city filming permits
…and the list can go on and on...
Keep in Touch!
Risks and challenges
We already have $30,000 secured from private investors. An additional $20,000 from Kickstarter would get us close to halfway to our initial budget of $120,000.
The biggest challenge will be raising the remaining money so that the film can be made. We chose $20,000 because experience tells us that a successful Kickstarter campaign will draw the attention of investors, but what was true in the past isn't always true in present.
There is a lot of other work to do between now and the first day of shooting. We have to cast the remaining roles, of which there are seven (let us know if you are interested, especially if you are older!). Spencer Dennis's production experience will be a great asset here as will Aaron's connections in the film world, but these actors need to be great. This is a character-based film, so without the right actors, we cannot make the film.
Most of the other things such as equipment and the remaining locations will require a great deal of work, but we wrote the script with the budget in mind, so we can be very flexible. We are optimistic, but we cannot ask you to back our project without being 100% honest, and this is another challenge that will take a great deal of time and effort to overcome.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
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