For the next 24 hours, every donation to the INTERLUDE GoFundMe will be tripled! The starting point is $11,701. (Yeah, I noticed NCC number hiding in there.) Let’s see if we can reach $12,901 by Thursday at midnight!
There’s a LOT of video podcasts out there, and one of my favorites (and I’m not just saying that!) is EGOTASTIC FUNTIME. The host, JP, is really funny, lively, insightful, and of course, a total geek. He covers The Orville, Star Trek, the latest blockbuster movies, video games, and whatever water cooler geek-news is out there at the moment. He edits his videos very well, cutting out the pauses and “ums” so you get one of those short ‘n’ choppy viewing experiences that can save you a lot of viewing time. (Now, if only certain bloggers could learn to be just as pithy…but we all have our mountains to climb, folks!)
Naturally, the subject of the interview would be my Axanar Universe fan film INTERLUDE. The challenge at this point in a campaign (at all points really) is finding ways to spread the word beyond people who already know about it. I’d been working with JP for a number of weeks trying to set up an opportunity to appear on his podcast, as he has over 22K subscribers. In fact, in the two days since the video got posted, it’s been viewed more than two thousand times!
This has translated into upwards of $350 in new donations to the GoFundMe campaign since Monday. Things had slowed down prior to that, but it wasn’t too concerning, as I’ve been planning for the big THOUSAND DOLLAR THURSDAY (tomorrow) when all donations will be tripled. So I hadn’t been pushing the campaign as much as I usually did over the past seven days in order to focus more donations towards this Thursday.
Speaking of which, Thousand Dollar Thursday is going to have a “tote board” progress report, of sorts, as I track the donations throughout the day…hoping to reach our target of $1200 for the day. Here’s the GoFundMe link again (if you haven’t already committed it to memory):
In the meantime, check out my appearance on Egotastic Funtime below. It was an hour-long chat that JP edited down to 29 minutes, so there’s a couple of “jumps” in the conversation flow, but it’s still a fun little chat and worth a listen…
This is really exciting, folks! Last week, two of my backers for INTERLUDE approached me separately with an offer to match—dollar for dollar—any donation made to the InterludeGoFundMe during a 24-hour period that I could determine. Both backers have asked to remain anonymous, but one of them is the fan who donated $1,000 just a few days after we launched in June.
After discussing details with both of them, we came up with the following rules for this special one-day promotion:
The 24-hour period will be thisThursday, August 15 beginning at the stroke of midnight PDT and ending at 11:59pm PDT Thursday night.
Both of these backers will each match any donation from $1 to $100 with an equal donation…essentially TRIPLING whatever you give. This means a $10 donation is worth $30 to the campaign, $25 becomes $75, and $100 becomes $300!
The matching donations will max out at $1,200 for the day for each of our two match-backers. This means that, if we manage to hit our ceiling, the Interlude GoFundMe will take in $3,600 in just 24 hours!!!
Now, you might be wondering why they’re matching only donations of between $1 and $100 and not larger ones. We discussed this, and the reason is because both of these match-backers want this to be FUN! But if someone came along and just donated all $1,200 in one fell swoop. Then—poof!—the promotion would end…and no one else would enjoy knowing that their donation just tripled.
And why is there a $1,200 ceiling? That’s simply because that’s the amount that each of these backers was comfortable matching. I don’t want anyone going broke, y’know…and it’s a very generous offer on both of their parts.
So if you’ve been waiting to make a contribution to Interlude, THIS THURSDAY is the day to do it! And if you’ve already donated, even if you just have an extra $5 sitting around, it’ll be worth $15. If we make our maximum, we’ll hit nearly $15K…surpassing the minimum $13.5K we need by August 20 in order to film in November.
You’re also welcome to donate before or after thus Thursday, but for 24 hours, it’ll be a sprint to $1,200! Here’s the link (and I’ll post it again on Thursday, of course)…
Yesterday, the GoFundMe campaign for my fan film INTERLUDE crossed $11,000! Although this might not seem as significant a milestone as crossing the half-way point or crossing $10,000…it’s very exciting to me personally because it means I’m doing my job properly. (Also, most of the detractors never thought I’d raise more than $5K-$10K at the most, and now even some of them are impressed!)
Y’see, unlike many folks who make fan films, I don’t have any background or experience in filmmaking. Zero. Zip. Zilch. Nada. While I’m a decent graphic designer and can edit as a novice with iMovie on my Mac, I’m not a director or VFX artist or lighting specialist or cameraman. I can’t compose music, build sets, create props, do make-up, or even sew uniforms and costumes. I’m not a sound FX guy, and while I’ve done a couple of fan film voice-overs, I’m not an actor and won’t even appear in my own fan film! All I did was write a script.
So why am I here at all? What’s my bag, baby?
The simple truth is that I’m here to convince people like you to give me your money. In return, I’ve assembled a very talented team who are going to make an amazing fan film for all of you to enjoy. It’s going to have the quality level of PRELUDE TO AXANAR (or as close as we can get!) and be able to stand beside its “siblings” (Prelude and the two Axanar sequels) as a proud part of the expanded “Axanar Universe.”
But in order to do that, things (some of them kinda expensive) needed to be paid for.
Believe me, I would have loved to have just written a check or charged everything to a credit card. But I simply don’t have the financial means—certainly not at the level required to match up to the other Axanar fan films. And even though the Ares bridge set is now complete (or 98% of the way there), this fan film is more than just the set.
So with essentially no skills, no experience, and no money, what the heck am I doing trying to make a fan film???
There’s just something about VANCE MAJOR that makes fans want to give him money! Maybe it’s his adorable son Royce, Maybe it’s the three dozen Minard fan films he’s made. Maybe it’s the photos from his shoots that he posts almost daily to the Fan Film Forum Facebook group. And maybe it’s because he knows you can see the cord in the doorway of his scene and he just doesn’t care because he’s more interested in having fun and telling a good story.
Whatever the reason, Vance has won the hearts and minds of scores of fans, and his crowd-funding campaigns quickly reach their goals. Granted, these goals are usually in the mid-hundreds of dollars and not difficult to achieve. But whenever Vance launches a campaign, it’s always completely funded before I even have a chance to mention it here on Fan Film Factor.
Not this time, though!
I’m in Colorado this week and next visiting my family…while the rest of fandom is in Las Vegas enjoying Star Trek celebrities and the eighth plague suffered by the Egyptians in the Old Testament’s book of Exodus. But that means a brief pause in fan film blogs till I get back. So I have the opportunity to slot in this quick shout-out to tell you all about Vance’s new campaign before it gets fully funded in a few more hours (or less!).
Vance isn’t offering any perks, and his CONSTAR CHRONICLES fan series won’t premiere until December (read more here). But he already wants to shoot additional episodes in 2020, and he needs to buy more uniform tunics and props. The goal this time is $1,100 (his first foray into four-figure funding), and in the first 19 hours, he’s already halfway there.
So if you want to be part of this Major movement, part of Vance’s victorious vision for Constar contributions, just click over to the following link and make a donation…
Has it been six weeks already? Wow, this summer is flying by! When I posted page 1 of this comic on June 18, the GoFundMe campaign for INTERLUDE had been up for a week, and we’d just crossed the $3K mark with 53 donors. Now we’re at $10,415 with 144 donors (plus a few more via Paypal)!
That is so awesome, and I can’t tell you how amazing it feels to have so many people supporting me and sharing this crazy dream of making a fan film. But we’re still not quite there yet, so once again, here’s the link to the GoFundMe campaign for Interlude.
Please donate or at least share. And now, let’s wrap up the comic…
Yep, one last time, here’s your warning. The “Stardate 2245.1” comic book short story is pretty much the same plot you’ll see in the fan film Interlude. So if you don’t want to know what’s going to happen, for the love of Garth(!) don’t read the 7-page (plus cover) comic below. So say we all.
The typical “life cycle” for most crowd-funding campaigns (especially for Star Trek fan films) is a burst of excitement and donations at the beginning, then a slowdown in the middle, and (if you’re lucky) a smaller burst at the end just before the deadline. I’ve seen it dozens of times.
The problem for my Axanar Universe fan film INTERLUDE, however, is that I decided to use GoFundMe instead of Kickstarter or Indiegogo. The latter two have built-in deadlines—usually 30 or 60 days—before the campaign must either reach its goal or fail.
But GoFundMe is open-ended. Conceivably, I could still be raising money for Interlude when Earth makes first contact with the Vulcans 44 years from now! Of course, I don’t plan to do that. At some point, I will need to shut this campaign down and deliver a completed fan film to you all. The question is…when?
We had a FANtastic first month, taking in nearly half of our goal from more than 100 backers ranging from $5 and $10 and $20 donors to donations in the hundreds and even thousands of dollars! But in the past couple of weeks, although donations are still coming in, the pace has slowed considerably…which is consistent with the crowd-funding “life cycle.”
Unfortunately, without a specific deadline, it’s unlikely that we’ll get that final boost. And even if I do set an artificial deadline (which I am about to do in this blog), it’s not likely that we’ll reach or exceed the $19,500 goal that our budget calls for.
However, as I mentioned last week, my budget blog back in June mentioned that my numbers purposefully erred on the high side in order to provide flexibility for trimming and cutting various items just in case we didn’t make our goal.
So this past week, I sat down with my directors, VICTORIA FOX and JOSHUA IRWIN, and went through every line item with a fine-toothed comb. We sliced, we diced, we cropped and capped. And in the end, we came up with a minimum that we’ll need to commit to making this fan film…as well as the date we’ll need to have those funds by in order to be ready to shoot the first weekend of November.
What’s in a name? Actually, a better question might be: What’s in a poster? If you’re talking about the image of Captain Benjamin Sisko featured above on the new poster for the magnificent DS9 documentary WHAT WE LEFT BEHIND, the answer is…names. Thousands and thousands and thousands of names!
Back in March of 2017, nearly 10,000 backers donated a staggering $647,000 to an Indiegogo campaign for a look back at STAR TREK: DEEP SPACE NINE made by the people who made the series itself (because neither Paramount nor CBS was interested in ta tackling such a project). Over the next two years, the number of backers grew and the donated total reached all the way to a million dollars!
Now the perks are being packed up and mailed out. And along with DVDs/Blu-rays of the documentary itself and the standard movie poster, the Niner folks have created a special, limited edition poster (shown above) with the names of every backer listed in alphabetical order. Don’t believe me? Let’s do a quick zoom-in…
Wait, let’s see if we can get even closer…
And there it is!
If you donated, then you can order one of these nifty posters for $25. But the deadline is this week, so hurry! Click here to order.
And if you didn’t donate, don’t have $25, or simply aren’t interested in a high quality 24×36” print of Ben Sisko made up of 10,000-plus names…but you still want to take a closer look and see if your name or the names of people you know are on it, just click here. The Niners have uploaded a super-high resolution, 1,742 x 2,606 pixel, 84MB PDF file for you to zoom into or download. How considerate!
And speaking of considerate, here’s IRA STEVEN BEHR, Executive Producer, prepping what probably feels like an endless pile of DVD/Blu-ray perks…
Yesterday, the GoFundMe campaign for INTERLUDE crossed the $10,000 threshold (on our way to $19,500) with 140 backers! Plus there’s a handful of Paypal donors. And of course, donations are always welcome right here…
As we present the next-to-last page of “Stardate 2245.1,” I’ll remind you all once again that, if you want to be know nothing about my Axanar Universe fan film Interlude, then you should stop reading now and find another webpage to visit. The comic story is almost the same as the fan film story. So if you want to be completely surprised by Interlude, staying on this blog entry is pretty much the worst place you could be!
There, I said it.
As much as I love every single panel of every page of artwork that my illustrator DANIEL FU produced, if I had to pick a favorite, Page 6 would be it. Go ahead and scroll down to the bottom of this blog page to check it out and then come back up here, because it truly is a beautifully composed masterpiece.
I recall that Daniel and I spent a lot of time on this page, discussing it both before and after he had produced the first clean version. Initially, Daniel’s bridge background in panel three wasn’t accurate to the photos of the actual set, and while I hated asking my poor, overworked artist for a redo, I also felt it was very important that this particular panel look like the real thing.
When I launched the GoFundMe campaign for my Axanar Universe fan film INTERLUDE, I knew going in that there were three possible outcomes…
Total failure – I was using GoFundMe (not Kickstarter or Indiegogo) with no perks…would that even work? If I’d only managed to take in a few thousand dollars in the first month or two, I’d likely need to refund the donations and give up on my dream project.
Smashing success– If I quickly blasted past my $19.5K goal in a few weeks, then full speed ahead and maybe even start planning for a second production.
Something in between.
We’re definitely in the third scenario, folks, which is fine. In fact, I kinda expected it. When I wrote my budget blog, I even said the following:
If we come up short, we’ll need to figure out ways to trim things. For that reason, I’ve “erred on the side of caution” and created my budget to assume costs on the high side. That way, if we don’t make our goal, we’ll hopefully still have enough to make a decent fan film by streamlining and trimming things from the budget.
And that’s where we are. It’s been a little over a month, and we’ve just crossed the half-way point to our goal. We’re at $9,768 as I type this…plus another $100 or so in Paypal donations. It’s a solid start, and donations are still coming in. But they’ve slowed down (as they usually do after a quick start), and I need to look at practical considerations now.
In order to film in November, we need to commit to certain things by September. For this reason, I can’t simply keep up the GoFundMe until we reach our goal (even if it takes months or years). We have to figure out a “point of no return.” What is the minimum we need to get this project filmed? Can we do it for $17K? $15K? $13.5K? Do we have enough with just the nearly $10K raised so far?
Obviously, if we have to cut things out of the budget, we won’t have all the bells and whistles. But for me, it’s more important to turn this dream into a reality. So I’m going to sit down with my co-directors, VICTORIA FOX (who is also my producer) and JOSHUA IRWIN and start figuring out what can be trimmed, and by what date we need to lock down our GoFundMe to either commit to filming in November or else delay the production until we’re better funded. (I think we’ve taken in enough to no longer need to consider canceling the project.)