Wednesday, 8 May 2013

Being part of a film.

If, like me, you follow media organisations on Twitter and keep up to date with film news then you would have heard by now of Zach Braff's Kickstarter campaign to fund his next directorial 'Wish I Was Here'. With the success of the Veronica Mars gang Kickstarting over $5,702,153 of their $2,000,000 goal, Braff was inspired to finance his next film from generous donations. Braff too has achieved over his goal and he still has 14 days to go.

If you're interested, watch the video instead of me trying to explain it.

To simplify the point - Zach Braff wants money so he doesn't have to go the big guys who can control the way the film is made. He wants final cut.

As with everything, Braff's Kickstarter has been met with some controversy. People slamming the fact Braff has his own money from being the star of the hit show Scrubs, or how Kickstarter should be used to fund independent filmmakers who do not have opportunities like Braff.

I completely understand why people might feel angry or annoyed at Braff. Before Veronica Mars' achievement, Kickstarter was used for independent filmmakers. Also, unlike the people behind Veronica Mars, Braff has been offered finance for the film.

At the end of the day everyone is entitled to their own opinion, but the simple fact is - you do not have to fund Wish I Was Here if you do not want to.

I'm not massive a Scrubs fan, but I did love Garden State. I've always found Zach Braff interesting and have been fascinated that he is constantly engaging with his fans. He too is a film buff, so I know he's making this with a passion. With this in mind, I had a look into the campaign.

After having a few minutes to think, I donated $10 (£7). It's nothing really. Without my donation, Braff still has over his target, but that's not the point. The point is that I am part of this film. I am helping make Braff's dream into a reality. Braff has said on numerous occasions that he is making this film for fans. It's quite revolutionary to think that, as a fan, I am paying just a few pounds of my own money for a film to be made that I actually want to see.

Many people are saying that lots of other Kickstarter campaigns have 'better' rewards for donations, but slowly and surely Braff is adding more rewards such as new locations for screenings because his fans are asking for them. I'm very happy with my reward of recieving a PDF of the script once the film has been released as well as production diary videos and email updates. I've already received 18 emails from Braff on how the early stages of the film are going, and I'm looking forward to receiving video diaries once filming begins.

Braff has recently been interviewed by Kickstarter and he responded to negativity around it.

'It's a club. And it's a club of like-minded people who are interested in the same thing. If you hate Zach Braff, if you hate me and Garden State and think that it was horrible- this isn't the club for you. If you like Scrubs and Garden State and the things I've done, and like movies like I make, this might be a really fun, cool thing for you to be part of.'

I'm sure even this video will get a lot of comments from people who don't agree with this at all, but Braff is being honest and to the point.

I'm glad to be a part of this club, I'm looking forward to watching Wish I Was Here and knowing that my $10 did something for the film. It might be used to fund filming in LA, it might be used to fund costume, it might be used to help take the film to Sundance, it might even be used to pay Natalie Portman (eep).

From someone who is paying their own money, never mind how small, I'm happy to be a part of this. It's a film I want to see and I'm helping make it.

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