Color me shocked and excited!
It was Sunday afternoon, and I was having a call with JOSHUA IRWIN of the AVALON UNIVERSE fan series (Josh was also my director of photography and editor on INTERLUDE). Josh has been deep in planning for his next crowd-funding campaign for not one but TWO new Avalon fan films, both of which will feature the return WARREN HAWK as the Captain Jakande of the Avalon Universe…along with introducing two other really interesting new characters.
Josh and I were discussing strategies and timing, since there’s been a lot of “traffic” in the crowd-funding highway of late. Last month, SAMUEL COCKINGS raised a very impressive $13.7K for his six-film project TREK SHORTS Indiegogo campaign. And although I didn’t cover it, MARC SCOTT ZICREE just took in $86K in the Kickstarter for the conclusion of the “Forgiveness” 2-parter of SPACE COMMAND. That’s a LOT of funds raised during a month that included the delayed Tax Day for those of us in the United States!
This month, it’s GARY DAVIS and DREADNOUGHT DOMINION‘s turn to try to reach $5K in their latest Indiegogo campaign to fund three fan films (two episodes of Dominion plus one of the new fan series PROJECT RUNABOUT).
Now, you folks probably don’t know about what I’m about to tell you, but these three show-runners—Sam Cockings, Gary Davis, and Josh Irwin—have been trying very hard not to step on each other’s toes when it comes to their campaigns. When it looked like Samuel might not make it to his goal for Trek Shorts within the 30-day deadline, I suggested he might take advantage of Indiegogo’s “extension” option to give him an extra 30 days to meet his goal. But Sam was adamant that his campaign had to be over by the time Dominion‘s began on June 1st, as Sam didn’t want to compete for donor dollars (or pounds, in Sam’s case).
The same was true when I spoke to Gary, asking if he’d be willing to extend his deadline if it looked like he’d be coming up short by the end of June. Again, no…Gary did not want to compete with Josh, whose Avalon Universe crowd-funder would be up next.
But as I discussed things with Josh on Sunday, there emerged a small wrinkle. Y’see, one of the first pieces of advice I give to fan filmmakers when they set up a crowd-funder is: “Your campaign launch should NEVER be a surprise!” Always tease the kick-off of the new campaign with at least a few weeks of lead-up—posts on social media, videos, interviews, etc.—building excitement and anticipation.
Teasing Avalon‘s upcoming crowd-funder now while Dominion is still trying to generate donations—while not as bad as having the two campaigns going simultaneously—is still not really considerate. So Josh and I were discussing the timing to launch his new Avalon campaign and when to start teasing it, and I decided to check to see how well Gary and Dominion were doing. After all, if Josh could delay a few weeks or a month, that might allow Gary to extend his deadline if it was looking like he wouldn’t make it. And when last I checked the previous day, Dominion had started struggling just a bit.
The Dominion Indiegogo had gotten off to a strong start, reaching about 30% of their goal in the first week when I posted this blog highlighting the personalized action figure perk and interviewing Gary about their campaign. But four days later, the needle had barely moved more than a couple hundred dollars, and the total was still showing up as $1,650 (33%) in my open browser tab. (I always leave crowd-funding tabs open during active campaigns.)
As I chatted with Josh, I decided to refresh the browser tab to see if Dominion‘s total had moved at all…hoping for perhaps another couple of hundred bucks, maybe even breaking $2K if Gary was lucky. As the browser refreshed, what I saw made me do a double-take: $3,900! The total had more than doubled overnight!!!
After wrapping up with Josh, I checked in with Gary, and apparently just THREE donors were responsible for a combined $2,250! One donor had doubled his previous $500 donation with another $500. A second donor had grabbed one of the two $750-level personalized action figures. And a third had given an amazing $1,000 for the top-level Admiral’s package…which includes a printed copy of an original Dreadnought Dominion comic being drawn by super fan film fan TREY McELVAIN and adapting their fan film”A BARREL FULL OF QUINCYS” (along with a personalized action figure, of course!).
Now only $1,100 (just 22%) short of their $5K goal with 18 days still remaining, Gary is very excited and extremely appreciative. “Dreadnought Dominion is so humbled and thankful for the generous donations to continue our production,” Gary said. “With the campaign in such solid shape, we have our first Project Runabout shoot already scheduled for June 26th. Sam Cockings has totally designed something that is OUTSTANDING to match the interior sets. I’ll have some set photos by the weekend to tease everyone. in the meantime, Dreadnought Dominion ‘The More Things Change’ is finalizing post production, and we hope for a September release…if not sooner!”
So Dreadnought Dominion is looking good heading into the second half of the campaign. If you’d like to hop on the bandwagon—er, shuttlecraft—you can make your donation here:
The perks are pretty nice! And even if you can’t afford to donate, simply sharing the link with others who might be interested is a BIG help.
And start looking for some early buzz on the next major crowd-funder from Avalon Universe. I now know what Josh has planned, and trust me, you are going to be really excited to see what’s coming up from the folks in Arkansas!