CONVERGENCE winds up 134% funded, releases TEST SCENE Teaser!

At midnight Pacific Time last Friday (while I was on East Coast time in Atlanta…don’t worry, folks, Axacon coverage is coming later this week!), the 5-way crossover fan film CONVERGENCE finished up its Indiegogo campaign with $7,385 from 114 backers!  This was a third over their posted goal of $5,500, and allowed them to surpass two stretch goals.  The first (at $6,000) would cover the Indiegogo fees and perk production costs, meaning that all $5,500 could go to the production itself.  The second stretch goal ($7,000) will fund both a new late TNG/DS9 era uniform for actor Jim Von Dolteren (of a quality to match the others) as well as a special behind-the-scenes bonus video with interviews, bloopers, and “making of” features.

Even though Indiegogo offers the “In Demand” status for any campaign that exceeds its goal (meaning, you can continue raising money even after your campaign “ends”), sh0w-runner and Hobbit ring-bearer (to bring them all, get it?) SAMUEL COCKINGS has decided that he’s now got enough to make this happen.  So the campaign is now officially closed.

As you might remember, Samuel was contacted by a concerned CBS when they saw the trailer to his other upcoming Trek fan film TEMPORAL ANOMALY.  And even though discussions with CBS were cordial, and Samuel reached an agreement when Temporal Anomaly could be released with some changes and is now allowed to exceed the 30-minute runtime limit, Samuel prefers not to poke the bear when it comes to the Trek copyright holders.  He set out to raise $5,500.  He did so, got a little extra to improve the finished project, and now he doesn’t need to keep taking in more money.

On the final day of the campaign, Samuel released a sneak-peek “test scene teaser” showing what Convergence will look like when finished.  Well…kinda.  Y’see, it’s a TEST scene, and it still needs quite a bit of work.  Samuel says it’s got the wrong LCARS, it’s missing a Master Systems Display, a dedication plaque, and possibly some extra crew members in the background.  The sound and music aren’t finalized yet either.  “It’s a work-in-progress (WIP),” Samuel told me with the enthusiasm of someone tackling a challenging project that he’s really excited about.  And I’m also excited!

And I think, after you watch this sneak-peek video, even though it’s still rough around the edges, you’ll be excited, too…

LAST CHANCE to donate to CONVERGENCE (new “4th wall” video available)!

The Indiegogo campaign for the multi-crossover fan production CONVERGENCE ends in less than two days!  Convergence unites actors and elements from FIVE different fan films and series—Intrepid, Dark Armada, Starship Republic, Renegades, and the soon-t0-be-released Temporal Anomaly—under the direction of fan CGI wunderkind SAMUEL COCKINGS.

The campaign has already met its primary goal of $5,500 and currently sits at $6,040.  But if Samuel can reach $6,400, he’ll be able to afford an improved late-DS9/TNG movie-era uniform…or possibly even something a little more, shall we say, futuristic (since one of the characters will be traveling back from the future).  I’m pretty sure he can make that goal before things close up.

And the campaign will be closing up.  Although reaching a goal on Indiegogo allows a campaign to continue raising funds after the campaign “ends” (it’s called “In Demand” status), Samuel has no intention of doing so.  Since he’s offering a lot of really exciting perks, he doesn’t want CBS to think that he’s trying to turn this project into an online shopping site.  (Right now, Samuel has a good relationship with CBS after making the changes they requested to Temporal Anomaly before releasing it…which is why it’s been delayed.)

So once this campaign is over, it’s over—and the perks will no longer be available.  If you want any of ’em, donate NOW!

There are also currently some exciting stretch goals.  At $7,000 (certainly within reach!) fans will get to see special behind-the-scenes features: bloopers, interviews, making-of documentary, etc.  $8,000 will see the addition of a NEW SCENE in the corridor (which requires a new virtual CGI “set” be created), available as a special direct-to-donors extended cut.  $9,000 funds a second exclusive NEW SCENE, this one in Engineering.  And $10,000 will allow Samuel to create a new shuttle design rather than using the existing Type 11 shuttlecraft we’ve all seen before.

So take those credit cards out of your wallets (assuming you’re so inclined!), and let’s try to give our Trekyards buddy a donation boost as far as we can:

Click here to donate to Convergence.

And here’s a fun little video with NICK COOK and ROBIN HIERT that knocks on that fourth wall a little while showing the quality that can be expected once this ambitious cross-over fan production is completed…

CONVERGENCE releases one of the BEST crowd-funding videos I’ve ever seen!

With less than seven days to go, and within striking distance of his goal, Trekyards co-host and treknology trexpert SAMUEL COCKINGS is filling his final week of his Indiegogo campaign for CONVERGENCE with new videos.  Currently at $4,755 as I type this, they’re just $845 (14%) away from their goal of $5,500…although Samuel would love to reach $6,000 to cover Indiegogo fees and perk costs.  And if he reaches $7,000, he’ll release bonus behind-the-scenes content.  (There’s also other stretch goals beyond that.)

Samuel has saved the best videos for last.  Already, there was a fun interview on Wednesday with NICK COOK, who will be reprising his role of Captain Daniel Hunter of the fan series Star Trek: Intrepid.  And on Friday, Samuel posted another interview with actor CHRIS BURDETT from the upcoming fan film Temporal Anomaly.  Both of these gentlemen will be starring in Convergence.

While both of those interviews were very well-produced (good lighting, good sound, interesting questions and answers) and are certainly worth viewing if you’re a fan of fan films, it was the video Samuel released this morning that blew me away.

This 3-minute vignette is now my second favorite crowd-funding “ask” video ever.  Why is it my second favorite?  Well, nothing will likely ever surpass this video (and the four that came after it) from Star Trek Continues‘ “Kirkstarter 2.0.”  But the reason this Convergence video gets the secondprise (get it?), is because it has so much fun while asking folks to donate.

Begging for money is never easy, and fan films who go the crowd-funding route have taken various approaches from serious to whacky.  Sometimes it’s easy because they have big celebrities or they’ve already filmed or released other work to show what they can do.  But sometimes, you’ve just gotta work with what you have.

And that’s what Samuel did, combining a script for the video with ad-libs and outtakes to produce a very real, creative, sincere, and funny video that just makes me want to throw my money at them!  Take a look, and see if you agree…

For anyone planning a crowd-funder, bookmark this video and the others in Samuel’s series.  And speaking of which, our Mr. Cockings promises another two interviews over the next two days, followed by what he calls a “4th wall-breaking viral video” on Tuesday and the first full teaser with actual footage on Wednesday.  The campaign ends Friday.

To donate, click here.

 

COZMO’S Kickstarter blasts through its $16K goal…BEFORE it even launches???

If only every Kickstarter could be this way!  The 4-week crowd-funding campaign for COZMO’S from the team that produced RENEGADES went live to the general public Tuesday at 11:00 am Pacific Time with a goal of $16,000.  But it had already blasted through that goal and was above $22,00 when the world found out about it.  (Now it’s up even higher at nearly $25,000!)

How the heck did this happen???

Well, it helps when you have an existing database of thousands of fans who contributed to your previous successful crowd-funders for Renegades )to the tune of more than a million dollars!).  And it helps when you open your Kickstarter with a special 48-hour “pre-launch” with exclusive access to certain perks.

It also helps when you have a cast that includes actors from Star Trek and Babylon 5 in your pilot episode:

  • Ethan (“Neelix”) Phillips
  • Robert (“The EMH Doctor”) Picardo
  • Aron (“Nog”) Eisenberg
  • Claudia (“Susan Ivanova”) Christian
  • Plus many other professional actions from sci-fi and related genres

Also, the footage (which was all shot back in early 2017 using sets originally constructed for Renegades‘ “The Requiem”) was directed by Stephen Furst (Vir from Babylon 5…who tragically passed away during June of last year).

The project is billed as “Cheers in Space”…

Cozmo’s Thirsty Tentacle Bar and Grill is a local hotspot—well, local to anyone visiting an asteroid—where an enormous variety of lifeforms visit to party, do business dealings, find work, meet their true love…or just to get drunk and alien-watch. 

The owner of this esteemed establishment is, of course, Cozmo, a four-tentacled alien (played by Ethan Phillips), who has a knack for mixing stellar martinis and giving good advice.  His serving staff includes two humans, Kallie, played by Renee Olstead(13 Going on 30), and Ken, played by Drake Bell (Drake and Josh, Ultimate Spiderman). They’d love their jobs if it weren’t for one tiny detail—humans are the butt of the joke of the entire galaxy.

The hilarity never stops as zany characters like a hermaphrodite with blue hair (Robert Picardo), a crustacean-like madam (Claudia Christian), an alien who’s head is shaped like a….well, like a butt (Aron Eisenberg), and so many others swarm, bump, argue, laugh, and scheme at Cozmo’s!

It looks hilarious (and very well-produced!)…

 

Heck, I threw in $35 myself before lunchtime on Monday!

You can donate by clicking here.

I asked show-runner SKY CONWAY a few questions about the project…

Continue reading “COZMO’S Kickstarter blasts through its $16K goal…BEFORE it even launches???”

CONVERGENCE launches new INDIE-GOGO campaign (audio interview with SAMUEL COCKINGS)

Welcome to CONVERGENCE…a fan production uniting FIVE accomplished fan films and series from FOUR different countries into ONE amazing crossover event!

And YOU can help make it all possible.

These folks have already completed one video shoot with four of their five primary actors: NICK COOK from Star Trek: Intrepid (Scotland), ROBIN HIERT from Star Trek: Dark Armada (The Netherlands), and CHRIS BURDETT and NIMRAN SAUND from the upcoming Temporal Anomaly (Great Britain).  They also have a number of jaw-dropping VFX created by SAMUEL COCKINGS, life-long Star Trek fan and co-host/co-creator of the popular webseries “Trekyards.”  Some of this CGI will include the Archer-class starship from the original Star Trek: Renegades, as well as the villains from that fan film, the Syphon.

Their project is already well underway.  But now they need $5,500 to complete it, and they’ve just launched a new Indiegogo campaign. Fan donations will allow Samuel to fly in his full cast for a second studio green screen shoot to get the rest of their scenes filmed with proper lighting, sound, and staging.  This will include their final main actor, JIM VON DOLTEREN from Starship Republic, who will be flying to the U.K. from America, along with the others.

They’ve got some really nice perks that you can choose from, and thanks to a series of preview teaser promos released over the past month, the campaign is already off to a decent start, taking in about 9% of the goal in the first 24 hours (including $60 from me).  It also has one of the most impressive “ask” videos that I’ve seen for a crowd-funding campaign in a very long time.  Check it out…

After you watch that video, you’ll probably be excited enough to donate.  But even if you’re not, you should listen to this really awesome audio interview with Samuel.  Not only do we discuss Convergence, but we also discuss Temporal Anomaly, his interactions with CBS legal, the fan film guidelines, and a host of other topics that you’re certain to find, as Jean-Luc Picard would say, engaging…

Click here to donate.

Some unsolicited CROWD-FUNDING advice from me… (editorial)

At this point, I’ve seen a LOT of crowd-funding campaigns.  I’ve seen them succeed, and I’ve seen them fail.  I’ve seen the good, the bad, the fantastic, and the face-palm.  I might not be the uncontested expert on how to create a strong campaign, but I’ve talked to enough successful crowd-funders and seen enough examples of what works and what doesn’t work that I think I can share some pretty useful advice if asked…

…and in certain cases, if I’m not asked.

I have to say that this year has been pretty wild when it comes to crowd-funders.  I’m already outlining the “2018’s Year in Review” blog to focus on the various Kickstarters, Indiegogos, GoFundMes, and even FundRazrs that have raised hundreds of thousands of dollars for various fan projects over the past several months.  Some have soared, some have been absolute nail-biters until the final hours, and yes, some have struggled.

I feel really bad for the struggling ones.  In some cases, I do whatever I can to help with blogging support and even personal contributions on occasion.  But sometimes, all I can do is watch helplessly from my computer, seeing so clearly what’s being done wrong (or not being done), and wanting to shout like a frustrated fan sitting in the bleachers to a quarterback on the field.

But usually, I just hold my tongue (or in the case of blogging, my typing fingers).  After all, these are not my campaigns, and if people don’t ask me, then all I’m doing is shoving my nose in where it doesn’t belong, right?

Well, I’m about to shove my nose in.  Hopefully, I won’t regret it…

Continue reading “Some unsolicited CROWD-FUNDING advice from me… (editorial)”

DS9 documentary is looking for a LITTLE MORE MONEY…for something REALLY COOL!

Ah, scope creep…

You’ve got your budget, the money is available, but suddenly you realize that you want to do something really AWESOME, and now you need more money.  It happens all the time in Hollywood.  It’s happened to Star Trek multiple times.  It happens for Marvel movies and other blockbusters.  It’s happened to fan films like Renegades, Space Command, and Axanar.  And now it’s happening to the Deep Space Nine documentary WHAT WE LEFT BEHIND.

It’s not like producer/show-runner IRA STEVEN BEHR and director ADAM NIMOY just squeaked by with their Indiegogo campaign last year.  Not only did they exceed their initial goal of $150,000…they more than QUADRUPLED it with nearly $650,000!  They even blew past four different stretch goals along the way.

So why do they need even more money now, just months away ?  I’ll let Ira Behr explain it…

So that’s the story.  The resampled footage looks amazing, incredible, AWESOME!  There’s five minutes of clips from various episodes that now appears in glorious, vibrant, and crystal clear high definition.

But there’s also 15 minutes of standard definition footage, captured from the same DVDs you probably have on your shelf or the episodes you watch on Netflix or All Access.  The problem is that, because the HD footage looks so good, the SD footage palls in comparison and makes the viewer think, “Why do some of the clips look so crappy?”

Unfortunately, although TOS and TNG were digitally remastered to HD from the original film negatives, the same treatment is highly unlikely for DS9.  The process is expensive (even more so for DS9as Robert Meyer Burnett explains in this interview), and the TNG remastered Blu-ray sets didn’t sell nearly as well as expected, so CBS is unlikely to throw more money down the Bajoran wormhole.

And thus, this is pretty much the one shot fans have to get more footage from DS9 remastered.  Sure, it won’t be all seven seasons, but even another 15 minutes sure would be nice.

The documentary makers are now taking new donations for the remastering exclusively through their website.  For $50, you get a special challenge coin.  But for $500—and this is REALLY cool!—your name will appear superimposed over the remastered footage.  Take a look…

Click to enlarge to REALLY see the difference!

To donate (or donate again!), visit their website:

https://ds9documentary.com

Can STALLED TREK’s kickstarter reach $4,000??? $6,000???

A couple of days ago, I wrote a blog asking “Can SPACE COMMAND make it to $100,000???”  Less than 24 hours later, it did just that with a total of $102,632!  Can lighting strike twice?

Today, I shift the fan film spotlight to a much more modest Kickstarter for STALLED TREK: “The City on the Edge of Foreclosure.”  The campaign started with a teensy goal of only $600.  That goal was reached in less than eight hours!  Now there’s only  29 hours left, and the total so far is $3,796 with 99 backers.  There’s a stretch goal at $4,000 that will result in an HD remastering of the hilarious and brilliant first episode of Stalled Trek: “Amutt Time.”  If you haven’t seen it, take a look…

Another stretch goal awaits at $6,000…the remastering of The Wobbling Dead, the other puppet parody of a major genre franchise by Stalled Trek creator MARK LARGENT .

To encourage more donations, Mark has just added a NEW donation level of “Acting Captain” for $100:

I’ll make a puppet of you and put you in the Captain’s chair on the bridge! You’ll get a wallpaper of it and it will appear in a special section of the closing credits! Plus you get the Blu-Ray and the digital copy!

Already, 8 of this level perk have been claimed.  But the most popular perk (50 backers so far) still remains the $25 level:

Your very own blu-ray! Plus a digital copy and your name in the credits. I’m only making 250, so make sure you get one.

Yes, Mark is allowed to distribute Blu-rays because this is a parody and not a standard fan film.  Reaching the $4,000 or even $6,000 stretch goal levels will help him to produce “City…” and the other films more quickly, as the finding will enable him to purchase more computer processors to render the many frames of 3D animation.  (You can read more about that in my recent 2-part interview with Mark.)

Click here to donate to the STALLED TREK Kickstarter.

Can SPACE COMMAND make it to $100,000?!?!?

WOW!  Just three days ago, I wrote a blog about two Kickstarter campaigns that each had less than a week left: STALLED TREK (which wraps up early this Thursday morning in the U.S.) and SPACE COMMAND (which ends at 9:06pm Pacific Time on Monday night…tonight!).

At the time I wrote the blog, Space Command had well exceeded its $45,000 goal…insuring they would collect the donations and locking in post-production on Part 3 of their 4-part, two-hour pilot “Redemption.”  In fact, by that point, they’d raised $73,581 from 921 donors with four days to go…very impressive!

The hope of writer/director/show-runner MARC SCOTT ZICREE (whose birthday was this past Saturday) was to reach all the way to the $100,000 stretch goal.  This would fund post-production on both Parts 3 and 4, completing the two-hour pilot.

I’ll be honest with you: I thought they might get close, but based on needing to increase their total by 35% in just 93 hours, reaching that final stretch goal seemed to be a pretty remote possibility at best.

Not anymore!

The Kickstarter has taken in a staggering $20,000 from nearly THREE HUNDRED new backers in the last 72 hours…leaving them only $6,000 short of their $100,000 stretch goal (as I write this) with just 21 hours to go!  Can’t they make it to $100,000?  Possibly even by the time I wake up in seven hours…we shall see!

How did they manage to attract 300 new donors in just three short days?  Those of you trying to fund projects of of your own might want to take note.  During those three days, Space Command managed to get a “shout out” from two other successful crowd-funding campaigns with large donor lists (in the thousands each).  Renegades and The Circuit both issued e-mail updates to their donors—which they do periodically—and mentioned the Space Command Kickstarter.  Since actors from those two projects also appear in Space Command, the shout-out is actually relevant.  (By the way, Renegades‘ update was a simple one: “September 8th, 2018 – RENEGADES RETURNS…”  Oh, wow!)

Anyway, if you haven’t donated to Space Command yet and want to get something in before the deadline, please click here!

And if you still need convincing, listen to this interview I did with Marc Zicree two weeks ago:

Marc Scott Zicree

…and/or watch Part 1 of “Redemption”:

TWO Kickstarters enter the HOME STRETCH!

Have YOU donated yet?  Smack dab in the middle of a year that’s turned out to be very busy on the crowd-funding front, two active and worthy Kickstarter campaigns are heading into their final days.

Both are well past their goals, so each will get to keep the money donated.  In fact, each has even surpassed a stretch goal or two, so they’re doing quite well.

But there’s always room for more donations, right?  Well, at least I think so!

The first campaign ends on Monday night just after midnight Eastern Time.  It’s raising money to pay for post-production on the third part of the 2-hour pilot for SPACE COMMAND: “Redemption.”  (Here’s the link to their Kickstarter page.)  With an initial goal of $45,000, they’re currently at $73,581 from 921 donors.  If they reach $100,000 in donations, post production on the pilot can be completed.

Creator MARC ZICREE has just added a new perk at the $1,000 level (for those who can afford it): “A 16 Gigabyte Jump Drive with an INCREDIBLE AMOUNT OF SUPER SECRET SPACE COMMAND MATERIAL! Screen Tests! Concept Drawings! Visual Effects Tests! Rehearsals! Outlines! Series Bible! Scripts! Behind-the-Scenes Footage! Character Designs! Alternate Takes! Discarded and Bonus Scenes! Trailers! And MUCH MUCH MORE!”


The other Kickstarter campaign isn’t nearly as ambitious, but it’s just as deserving of your support and contribution.  It’s for the Star Trek animated parody STALLED TREK.  The first episode, “Amutt Time” (watch it below), was hilarious.  Now creator MARK LARGENT is ready to create a sequel: “The City on the Edge of Foreclosure.”

With a modest goal of only $600, the campaign quickly surged passed that level as well as its first $2,000 stretch goal: a special behind-the-scenes feature for download and included on the Blu-ray for anyone donating $25 or more.

Right now, with just six days left, Mark has taken in $2,281 from 74 backers.  If he crosses $4,000, he’ll be able to render out a special HD version of “Amutt Time” to include on a Blu-ray.  (Here’s the link to his Kickstarter page.)


Check out videos for both.  Here’s Part 1 of Space Command: “Redemption”…

Click here to donate to Space Command


And here’s Stalled Trek: “Amutt Time”…

Click here to donate to Stalled Trek