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The Luckiest Shauna documents my search for my namesake - the winner of the Wheel of Fortune on November 28, 1979, the day I was born.
The Luckiest Shauna documents my search for my namesake - the winner of the Wheel of Fortune on November 28, 1979, the day I was born.
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80 backers pledged $8,245 to help bring this project to life.

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$8,245

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Wheel of Fortune gave me a lucky name.

The Luckiest Shauna traces my journey as I set out to find my namesake - the winning contestant on the Wheel of Fortune on November 28, 1979, the day I was born. I was born to a family of modest means, which worked hard over the years to pull itself up by its bootstraps. Building on the lesson to work hard, I felt compelled to seek success, leaving my small-town Iowa home for college and never looking back, criss-crossing the globe before settling into a career in Washington, DC. The odds weren’t necessarily in my favor, yet here I am - somehow I am special - lucky, as my mother put it, just like my namesake.

Over the years, seeking those successes has driven a wedge between me and my family. Feeling like I no longer fit in at home, I set out to find a sense of belonging elsewhere – starting with my namesake. But finding the other Shauna proved harder than expected, since all Wheel of Fortune tapes prior to 1982 were erased, and contestant rolls destroyed.

Despite the setback, I push forward with a few clues and a lot of determination. Although I worry that the other Shauna may not exist and I’m completely at a loss for what I’ll say to her if I do find her, I’m excited for the possibilities of the quest: to find my namesake, to learn the stories of others’ namesakes, and to hopefully find a way, through this searching far and wide, to confront my past and reconnect with my own family back in Iowa. 

We are going on a quest, in search of Shauna(s).

We've launched a social media campaign, leveraging the Internet to help in our search for Shauna. The Luckiest Shauna team will update our followers with new bits of info, interesting Wheel of Fortune facts, and seek out restaurant recommendations as we travel across the US to interview my family in Iowa and New Mexico, as well as on our way to attend a taping of the Wheel of Fortune in LA. Your donation will fund our journey, cover film and production costs, and purchase any incidentals necessary for the research, such as records, or any costs incurred to develop and maintain the social media spaces. Only with your help will we find the other Shauna! 

We are a collaborative team of film novices.

What started as a story I told at cocktail parties became, with the encouragement of wonderful and talented friends, a documentary idea. Though none of us have much film experience, we each bring expertise from other areas to support the making of the film. For a list of these talented individuals, check the "Biography" section on the right.

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  1. Select this reward

    Pledge $5 or more About $5

    A personalized postcard from our road trip. Who doesn’t love postcards? Huh? Nobody doesn’t love postcards. Nobody.

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    Pledge $10 or more About $10

    Receive a digital download of the documentary upon completion. Who needs DVDs anymore? Everything is digital, that’s how the cool kids watch movies.
    And a postcard from our trip,
    and a shout out on our web page.

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  3. Select this reward

    Pledge $25 or more About $25

    Receive a limited edition DVD. I know I just said that nobody needs DVDs, but this is different. This is limited edition! You know what that means? It’s like all those nerds who left their Star Wars action figures in their cases who are now our bosses and they’re rich, but still kind of weird.
    And a postcard from our trip,
    and a shout out on our web page.

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    Pledge $50 or more About $50

    Nod in the credits. You ever had a “nod in the credits” of a film? I bet it’s awesome.
    And receive a limited edition DVD, and a postcard from our trip, and a shout out on our web page.

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    Pledge $100 or more About $100

    A limited edition print/map/movie poster created from maps and photos from the road trip. That’s art! You know what that means? BOOM, you just became an Art Collector.
    And a couple postcards from the trip, and a shout out on our website, and a thank you in the movie credits.

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  6. Select this reward

    Pledge $250 or more About $250

    We will interview you, or a person of your choosing to get their name story into the movie. Unless your name is James Franco, you’re probably not in a movie

    until now! And you'll get a couple postcards from the trip, and a limited edition print/map/movie poster created from maps and photos from the road trip, and a shout out on our website, and a thank you in the movie credit.

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  7. Select this reward

    Pledge $500 or more About $500

    A viewing party of the film. That’s right. We will come watch the movie with you and your friends, and you can even tell us what you *really* think of it. You will also have an "assistant to the regional producer" credit in the movie, and a DVD, and a postcard from every state we drive through, and a limited edition print/movie poster from the trip.

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    Pledge $1,000 or more About $1,000

    A "producer" credit in the movie. Think about that. You will be a producer of a movie. How cool is that? So when that girl in the cubicle across from you keeps blabbing about her Cancun vacation, you can throw that in her face. And you'll get a DVD, and a postcard from every state we drive through, and a limited edition print/movie poster from the trip.

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    Pledge $2,000 or more About $2,000

    We will throw you a badass BBQ viewing party, you’ll be a producer of the movie and you’ll get all that other stuff too, and we will owe you a favor, so when you decide to run for public office, you know who to call when you need to get rid of that "thing" you buried in the yard. Just kidding. (

    not kidding)
    And a DVD,
    and a postcard from every state we drive through,
    and a limited edition print/movie poster from the trip.

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Funding period

- (50 days)