About this project
We did it! YOU did it!!! Go Team Matzo!
We are absolutely stunned and grateful beyond words for the support you've given us for the past 45 days. We're in shock, to be honest, at the outpouring of support as the campaign draws to a close tonight - thank you all, from the bottom of our hearts, thank you!!!! It is ALL because of you, your belief in us, and in this story. Thank you!!!!
We're setting a STRETCH GOAL!
With 10 hours left, we're setting a stretch goal at $90,000! Don't worry, we've hit the goal we set, so no chance now of your pledges not being counted! Here's the deal: The original budget for this film was $125,000. Can we make an awesome film for $60,000? Yes!!! And we're going to, thanks to you! But while we have time, we're continuing to raise funds for marketing the film - getting it out to festivals, meeting with distributors, publicizing the project once it's finished. It's a huge part of the process! We're forever grateful for the opportunity you've given us, for your support that's allowed us to make this film. Let's keep sharing it today and see how far we can go! Above all else, again....
On Manhattan’s Lower East Side, in a series of four nondescript brick tenement buildings, sits the Streit’s Matzo factory. In 1925, when Aron Streit opened the factory’s doors, it sat at the heart of the nations largest Jewish immigrant community. Today, in its fifth generation of family ownership, in a rapidly gentrifying Lower East Side, it remains as the last family owned matzo factory in America.
This is place rooted in history and tradition, and not only in the sense that the recipe for their product is 3,000 years old. The machinery still used here to bake and pack 40% of the nation’s matzo is as old as the factory itself. The owners still sit at their great grandfathers desks, declining to clear the drawers of the contents left by their forbearers. They have, again and again, refused exorbitant sums offered by developers for their real estate, and resisted modernizing the facility, worried at the potential effects on their fiercely loyal workforce, made up of neighborhood residents and immigrants from around the world, many of whom have been working there for 30 years or more.
And yet, while in many ways Streit’s may seem a relic from another age, they continue to thrive, consistently receiving more orders than they can fill.
In a neighborhood where the Jewish immigrants have long ago moved on, in a nation where progress and profits trump all else, where manufacturing has left the cities if not the country, where family businesses are bought out by giant corporations and workers move from job to low paying job, Streit’s remains a Lower East Side institution, and a glimmer of hope for the American Dream.
This film, a feature-length documentary, will tell the story of Streit’s - of the factory, of the family, of its workers, of its place in the rich history of the Lower East Side and in America. It is a story of tradition, of resilience and resistance, of the perseverance of the Jewish people, and of immigrants of all faiths, so many of whom have found home in the Lower East Side, behind the doors of Streit’s, or in the matzo they bake.
The film is being directed by Lower East Side-based documentary filmmaker Michael Levine, and produced by Michael Green (see the FAQ for more about the production team).
WE NEED YOUR HELP!
By joining in our Kickstarter campaign, you can help us get this film made!
As you can see from the teaser, we’ve begun production, and the experience has been amazing! The owners of Streit’s and everyone who works at the factory are extremely excited about the project, and helping out every way they can to help us capture their story.
But to this point, the production has been self-financed, and that can only take us so far. A feature length documentary is a major undertaking, and we need to raise money to complete the film (see the FAQ below to learn more about where the funding will go).
With your support on Kickstarter, and by spreading the word about the project, we will be able to finish the film and get the Streit’s story out into the world.
BE REWARDED FOR YOUR SUPPORT!
Not only will your pledge help us tell Streit's amazing story, but it'll get you some pretty nifty rewards as well... Posters of vintage Streit's advertising, the hats worn by workers at the Streit's factory (well, the same type of hat, we're don't plan on sending you a used hat unless you really want it), tours of the factory with the owners and the film's director, gift packages from Streit's, festival passes, and of course the finished film itself! Check out all the reward levels available on the right...
And for those outside the United States, while the rewards say "Ships within the US only, we are happy to ship internationally! Please just add $10 to your pledge for shipping, and send us a note letting us know that your reward will need to be shipped outside the United States. Thank you!
HOW DOES KICKSTARTER WORK?
Through Kickstarter, you can make a pledge to help us reach our funding goal, and we offer you rewards for your support. If we reach our goal within our 45 day fundraising period, we receive the donation you pledged and you receive your reward. If our goal is not reached, no money changes hands and the film remains unfunded. It’s all or nothing!
CAN WE EXCEED OUR GOAL?
Yes! In fact, as thrilled as we would be to reach our goal of $60,000, and as much as those funds will allow us to do, exceeding that amount would be of huge benefit to the production of the film, and to you. And here’s why…
As for the filming, we’re not too worried about going hungry – we’re in a matzo factory, after all. But when it comes to licensing archival footage, music, and other materials, spending the time it takes to really edit a feature-length film, making the final product truly worthy of the Streit’s mark of quality, the extra money goes a very long way, so we’re setting our sights high!
HOW ELSE CAN I HELP?
The most important part of a Kickstarter campaign (aside from reaching our funding goal, of course!) is getting the word out. We’re doing everything we can to let people know about the project, but we could sure use your help! So, tweet about it, like us on facebook and post about it, tell your friends and family about our Kickstarter page. Do you run a blog? A student paper? The New York Times? Get in touch! We and the folks at Streit’s are always available for interviews. It all helps!
GET IN TOUCH!
Have a question that's not answered here? Looking to do a story about the film? Email us anytime at firstname.lastname@example.org. We look forward to hearing from you!
Risks and challenges
Any feature length film production has it's challenges, but we are completely confident in our ability to complete this documentary and deliver the rewards to our supporters. We are on track with filming as we speak, the filmmaker has a strong track record in film and television of delivering projects on time and on budget, and all involved in this project, including the owners and workers at Streit's are extremely passionate about the film. We are completely committed and will work day and night (because that's what filmmakers do!) to deliver a film that captures the spirit, the history, the story of Streit's and the Lower East Side.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
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