Funding Unsuccessful This project’s funding goal was not reached on .
Photo-main
Play
00:00
00:00

An exploration of controversial topics in comedy and an examination of recent incidents involving comedians who have crossed the line.

Watch the TEASER TRAILER (without my ugly mug talking about it):

Or the 30-second version, for anyone like me with a short attention span.

Yep, we got blogged about-- and backed-- by Mike Krahulik (Gabe) on Penny Arcade.  We couldn't be more thrilled.
Yep, we got blogged about-- and backed-- by Mike Krahulik (Gabe) on Penny Arcade. We couldn't be more thrilled.
Listen to our hour-long interview about the project on the Battleship Pretension podcast!
Listen to our hour-long interview about the project on the Battleship Pretension podcast!

You should also read this great article about the project on FirstShowing.net!

And check out my brief interview on the Succotash Comedy Podcast podcast.

NEW!  Here's my interview on DJ Grandpa's Crib Crowdfunding podcast!

Also NEW!  Here I am on The Worst Show on the Web!

How are boundaries defined in comedy?  Is there a line, and if so, when is it okay to cross it?  Is it in our nature to make fun of things that make us uncomfortable, topics that might otherwise be considered dire or taboo?

In recent years comedians have faced increased scrutiny over the content of their material, largely due to the ever-present and permanent nature of the information age.  Certain comics have been made to apologize for offending members of their audiences, while others have lost jobs due to the dissemination of jokes that were deemed "in poor taste."

The feature documentary "That's Not Funny" will address these issues, events and more via historical analysis, archival footage, and first-hand interviews with comedians, comedy aficionados, and those who would seek to impose a limit to what is considered acceptable for a performer to say on stage or elsewhere.  By exploring and discussing this matter with an even hand, we hope to arrive at a better knowledge of why each side feels so passionately about such a divisive topic, and also perhaps a deeper understanding of the function of comedy itself.

We have already conducted interviews with the following participants:

Gariana Abeyta (The Popcorn Mafia, Out of Print)
Paul Cibis (NerdMelt, San Francisco Sketchfest)
Emery Emery (The Aristocrats, Ardent Atheist)
Jackie Kashian (The Dork Forest, Comedy Central Presents)
Kyle Kinane (Funny People, Comedy Central Presents)
Benny Parks & Sam Rodriguez (Super Tuesday News, Early Late Night with Raf)
Greg Proops (Whose Line is it Anyway?, The Smartest Man in the World)
Paul Provenza (The Aristocrats, ¡Satiristas!)

And this is just the very top of our WISH LIST of further interviewees (some of whom I have contact information for already):

Michael Richards / Daniel Tosh / Tracy Morgan
Louis C.K.
Margaret Cho
Andrew "Dice" Clay
Ricky Gervais
Gilbert Gottfried
Anthony Jeselnik
Penn Jillette
Seth MacFarlane
Bill Maher
Tig Notaro
Monty Python (all surviving members)
The Onion writing staff
Patton Oswalt
Trey Parker & Matt Stone
Don Rickles
Joan Rivers
Chris Rock
Joe Rogan
Sarah Silverman
Doug Stanhope

Plus we plan to track down many, many more comics, comedy writers, family members of deceased legends (Kelly Carlin, Rain Pryor, etc.), and comedy journalists/historians.  We also intend to interview people on the other side of this debate: anyone who has been vocal about being offended or outraged by a joke, and those who have demanded or received an apology from a comedian.  Our goal is to understand why.

Director / Producer / Editor - Mike Celestino (The Last Days of Cinerama)
Producer / Editor / Assistant Director - Robert Garren (The Last Days of Cinerama)
Director of Photography - Alex Simon (Out of Print)
Consulting Producers - Brent Celmins and Paul Cibis
Original Score - James M. Garren (The Last Days of Cinerama)

Check out:

Our viral spec music video for OK Go

Our runner-up entry in They Might Be Giants' music video contest, judged by John Hodgman of The Daily Show

Our music video for Los Angeles' premiere fantasy-themed rock-metal juggernaut, Ogre Mage

Our music video for Hermosa Beach's hard-rock superstars Lose Control

Mike doing stand-up ten years ago

Follow us on Twitter at:

@THATSxNOTxFUNNY, @mikecelestino, @WHNProductions

Risks and challenges Learn about accountability on Kickstarter

Our current plan is to conduct interviews throughout the remainder of 2013, with the hope of having a rough cut of the feature assembled by the end of the year. The movie will ideally include footage from 75-100 interviews, and though most comedians tend to live in Los Angeles, there are many in New York and even London to whom we would like to reach out as well.

Another major hurdle will be clearing the rights to the archival footage we want to include in the final edit, but we are currently investigating possible solutions to that problem.

Mostly we are looking forward to getting back out there and continuing to talk comedy with comedians in the interest of getting this documentary made. A contribution of whatever you can afford can help make that happen.

Thanks.

FAQ

  • Travel expenses, equipment rentals, and crew fees for 75+ interviews, location rentals, production and editing equipment for the feature, rights clearances of the many pieces of archival footage we would like to use, fees for professional sound mixing and color correction, a fee for our score composer, an animator's fee for our opening title sequence, and a fee for a (potentially-notable) indie-rock band to compose and record a theme song. It adds up quickly.

    Last updated:
  • Mike Celestino grew up loving movies and comedy on the mean streets of suburban Long Island, NY. He attended the University of Southern California as a creative writing major and took several film production classes at Los Angeles City College. He has performed stand-up, improv, and sketch comedy on both coasts, and for the last five years or so he has worked as a film/video projectionist at one of Hollywood's most prestigious and reknown movie theaters. With his creative partner Robert Garren, he has co-directed a number of music videos and the short documentary "The Last Days of Cinerama". "That's Not Funny" will be his first feature as a director.

    Last updated:
  • They probably are! I only listed the top 15 or so entries off a list that is almost 200 names long, and growing. However, if you know of a comic or anyone else who would be perfect for this movie that I probably haven't thought of yet, please feel free to let me know.

    Last updated:
  • I agree! The trailer feels one-sided. Rest assured, the feature will not be.

    The current trailer was cut together with footage from the few comedians and comedy writers that we had access to immediately after production began. At the time, we didn't have the resources to reach out to anybody who could lend insight to the other side of this heated debate. I've already made a short list of potentials, but if you can recommend anyone along those lines who would be interested in discussing this topic with us and having their voice heard, please let me know.

    Last updated:
684
Backers
$28,525
pledged of $50,000 goal
0
seconds to go
  • Pledge $1 or more
    You selected

    11 backers

    BRAND NEW FOR FINAL TWO WEEKS - ACQUAINTANCES - A personalized thank-you message on Kickstarter from the director, plus a firm handshake if we ever pass each other on the street. (Applies to all existing backers as well.)

    Estimated delivery:
  • Pledge $10 or more
    You selected

    16 backers

    FRIEND - A "That's Not Funny" postcard with a personalized thank-you note from the director.

    Estimated delivery:
  • Pledge $15 or more
    You selected

    372 backers

    NEW! By popular demand! A digital download of the movie only, upon its release.

    Estimated delivery:
  • Pledge $25 or more
    You selected

    35 backers

    SPECIAL FRIEND - A personalized postcard, PLUS a digital download of the movie's score by James M. Garren AND the "That's Not Funny" theme song, to be created specifically for the movie's opening title sequence by a to-be-announced rock band.

    Estimated delivery:
  • Pledge $35 or more
    You selected

    72 backers

    NEW! - INTERNET FRIENDS - A personalized postcard, a download of the score and theme song, AND a digital download of the completed movie itself, upon its release. (digital copy will now be included with all reward levels above the $35 mark)

    Estimated delivery:
  • Pledge $50 or more
    You selected

    67 backers

    BEST FRIENDS - A personalized postcard, a download of the score and theme song, AND a copy of "That's Not Funny" on DVD upon its release.

    Estimated delivery:
    Add $10 USD to ship outside the US
  • Pledge $75 or more
    You selected

    9 backers

    SUPER BEST FRIENDS - A personalized postcard, a download of the score and theme song, a copy of the "That's Not Funny" DVD, AND exclusive early online access to a montage of sure-to-be-hilarious deleted footage.

    Estimated delivery:
    Add $10 USD to ship outside the US
  • Pledge $100 or more
    You selected

    26 backers

    GENEROUS FAMILY MEMBER - A personalized postcard, a download of the score and theme song, access to the deleted footage, one copy each of the "That's Not Funny" DVD AND Bluray, PLUS a personal thank-you phone call from the director, at whatever time of day or night strikes your fancy!

    Estimated delivery:
    Add $10 USD to ship outside the US
  • Pledge $250 or more
    You selected

    11 backers

    SUPPORTER - A personalized postcard, a download of the score and theme song, access to the deleted footage, a "That's Not Funny" DVD and Bluray, a thank-you phone call from the director, AND a "Thanks" credit at the end of the movie itself.

    Estimated delivery:
    Add $10 USD to ship outside the US
  • Pledge $500 or more
    You selected

    4 backers

    CONTRIBUTOR - A personalized postcard, a download of the score and theme song, access to the deleted footage, a "That's Not Funny" DVD and Bluray, a thank-you phone call from the director, a "SPECIAL Thanks" credit at the end of the movie, AND a copy of the movie poster autographed by the director, crew, and whoever else we can get to sign it.

    Estimated delivery:
    Add $15 USD to ship outside the US
  • Pledge $1,000 or more
    You selected

    0 backers Limited (50 left of 50)

    COMEDY ENTHUSIAST - A personalized postcard, a download of the score and theme song, access to the deleted footage, a "That's Not Funny" DVD and Bluray, a thank-you phone call from the director, a "Special Thanks" credit in the movie, a signed poster, PLUS one invitation to the Los Angeles world-premiere of the movie (must provide own transportation and lodging), AND a 30-second chunk of the DVD audio commentary for you to say whatever you choose, no matter how offensive.

    Estimated delivery:
    Add $15 USD to ship outside the US
  • Pledge $2,500 or more
    You selected

    0 backers Limited (20 left of 20)

    BIG-TIME COMEDY FAN - A personalized postcard, a download of the score and theme song, access to the deleted footage, a "That's Not Funny" DVD and Bluray, a thank-you phone call from the director, a "Special Thanks" credit in the movie, a signed poster, a 30-second chunk of the commentary, TWO passes to the premiere (must provide own transportation and lodging), AND you will be heard as the "voice of the comedy fan" in an exclusive on-screen interview for the movie itself. (Must provide own transportation to Los Angeles for the interview. We can't guarantee how much of your footage will make it into the movie, but we'll get you in there somewhere!)

    Estimated delivery:
    Add $15 USD to ship outside the US
  • Pledge $5,000 or more
    You selected

    1 backer Limited (9 left of 10)

    EXECUTIVE PRODUCER - A personalized postcard, a download of the score and theme song, access to the deleted footage, a "That's Not Funny" DVD and Bluray, a thank-you phone call from the director, a signed poster, a 30-second chunk of the commentary, an exclusive interview for the movie (Must provide own transportation to Los Angeles.) FIVE passes to the premiere (must provide own transportation and lodging), AND an Executive Producer credit in the movie and on the Internet Movie Database (IMDb).

    Estimated delivery:
    Add $15 USD to ship outside the US
  • Pledge $10,000 or more
    You selected

    0 backers Limited (5 left of 5)

    ULTIMATE COMEDY FAN - All of the above (including Executive Producer credit), PLUS TEN passes to the movie premiere, AND the director will take you and a guest on a one-week tour of Hollywood's most reknown comedy clubs and introduce you to as many comedians as possible. (Must provide own transportation to and lodging in Los Angeles.)

    Estimated delivery:
Funding period

- (45 days)